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Old 02-20-2008, 10:28 PM   #1
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Default Pre-Cut Plywood Servo/Retract Mounts?

It's not that I'm lazy ... I just prefer not to reinvent the wheel (or in this case, the wheel mount. Nyuk nyuk ...). Is there a source out there for pre-cut mounts for servos and retracts anyone knows of? I've been cutting out pieces of 1/8th ply with my dremel, and while it gets the job done, the cuts are rarely straight and quite often are burned away a bit in parts (all I have is a diamond cutting wheel at the moment, and it really heats that wood up!). My carbide cutting bit is a lot wider than I want to use for these cuts, though it would probably make a straighter cut since I could use a cutting guide with it.

Just thought I'd ask ... had such good luck with my dummy radial engines question that I figured, why not try another shot in the dark?

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Old 02-20-2008, 10:42 PM   #2
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I don't cut the nice plywood plates.

I use two straight strips of plywood about 1/2 wide.
The strips go between two ribs and I use a thin usually 1/32 rib doubler.
Here's a picture of what I'm doing.
Click image for larger version

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This happens to be a picture checking rib plotting but you can see the gear mount.

Paul


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Old 02-20-2008, 10:56 PM   #3
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Thanks, Paul. I guess I should have mentioned that all my mounting is in foam, so I need good contact surface between the ply and the foam for glue to hold it securely and not let it rip out on a rough landing, or let a servo twist it out if a control rod happened to bind.

I suppose cutting strips would probably still work ... I guess the "box" just gives me a little more false sense of security. I thought about just gluing a couple of balsa blocks onto a plywood plate, and then screwing the servo or retract mount onto the blocks with their bottom surface resting on the plate underneath. Doing that, though, you'd have to hog out a bit more foam and you'd have some open area around the servo, whereas with the servo dropping down into the plate, the plate covers the hole and you dont have to hog out as much foam down underneath ... just enough for the servo to fit down in the foam, and then the plate to fit up near the top of the hole.

I'll probably go ahead and finish cutting the mounts I need for my current plane, but it's annoying enough (especially since I have no "work area" and do all my cutting in the middle of the living room with a vise, dremel, and a look on my face that says, "I swear I'll vacuum this up after I'm done, sweetie") that I don't want to have to keep doing it for the other eleventy billion kits in my closet if there's already a simple, nicely cut, ready-made solution.

I think I may be a bit paranoid on how sturdy the mounts actually need to be ... guess I won't really know until I manage to rip one out.



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Old 02-20-2008, 11:13 PM   #4
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If you are trying to get away from the Dremel, then you can actually cut two slots in the foam and insert ribs.

Back a while ago I used to d that with 60 powered nitro planes with foam wings.
Click image for larger version

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The two added ribs and twos strips of ply held this retract setup on.

Paul


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Old 02-20-2008, 11:26 PM   #5
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Hmmmm ... I actually like that idea a good bit. Cut two slots, drop down two pieces of ply into them vertically (or maybe a couple of blocks of wood), and then glue or screw two ply strips across the top of them. Would probably hold better than cutting out these little rectangles, too.

Off to the hobby shop for some square sticks of wood and another piece of 1/8th ply, I go!



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Old 02-21-2008, 05:46 AM   #6
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Basswood strips are my new best friend. A lot softer than the ply, but I think it'll hold just fine and weigh less, to boot. Took about 1 minute to do what took me 5 before, and I can easily cut it with a razor saw (which is good, because dremeling and repeatedly sawing squeaky plywood in the living room during just the commercials while the wife was watching T.V. was getting old really fast ... or so I was told. )



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Old 02-21-2008, 04:47 PM   #7
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Dave, just a thought. Don't make the LG mounts too strong. You want them to give first instead of last, in case something goes wrong. It's easier to rebuild a mount then have to rebuild or replace a wing.

That's why a lot of the foam ARF's just glue a piece of plastic to the foam for a gear mount, IE: like on the EFlite P47. They pop off rather then the gear taking a whole chunk of foam out of the wing.

When I die, I want to go like my Grandfather did, in his sleep...... Not screaming like the passengers in his plane.
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Old 02-21-2008, 04:54 PM   #8
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Good point, Brad. I also should have mentioned that I'm using Alfa retracts and I built them with all of the spring-loading and break-away features. So hopefully if something breaks, it will just be the struts popping apart at the planned break-away points.

I have some GP .10 retracts I'm also planning to use, too, and they don't have that little feature. So I'll make sure not to fit them in quite so securely. Guess it's a bit of a trial and error thing ... hard to know how secure is "too secure" until one either pops out too easily, or doesn't pop out and takes off the wing.

On a side note, do you know of any good steerable, retractable nose wheels that are about the same size as the Alfa or GP .10 retracts? I'm wanting to try and put retracts on one of my jets, too, and it'll be the first single-engine plane I have with a nose wheel, so the ability to steer would be a nice bonus (the others with nose wheels are all dual-engine ... P-38, A-10, Me-262 ... so I was just going to mix an extra channel in for thrust differential for ground control on those).



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Old 02-21-2008, 06:05 PM   #9
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like this?
http://www3.towerhobbies.com/cgi-bin...?&I=LXES10&P=M

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Old 02-21-2008, 06:19 PM   #10
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Maybe ... that description doesn't mention anything about it being steerable, though. I think I recall someone mentioning a small, steerable Robart's nose retract to me before, though. I'll start searching for Robart parts.

I liked the idea of a retractable tail wheel: http://www3.towerhobbies.com/cgi-bin...?&I=LXES08&P=M

For .15 to .45 sized planes, that's probably a little big for the GWS birds, but I wonder how it would do on the Hyperion P-51D.



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Old 02-21-2008, 07:23 PM   #11
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ok, how bout this then,
http://www.hobby-lobby.com/retracts.htm

scroll down a bit and you'll see a 3 piece set. mains and steerable retractable nose gear.

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Old 02-21-2008, 07:53 PM   #12
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Since the only 3-piece set I see on that page is for the Executive Jet, I'm guessing that's the one you were referring to unless I'm overlooking something.

I actually have that retract set, since they were designed as a custom drop-in fit for that Exec Jet, which I got as a Christmas present. They're big. The retract box is probably three to four times bigger than my Alfa's.

However, I searched around for some info on that first set you linked to, and plenty of folks mentioned the Robart 1/2A #124's being steerable. So I think that'll get me all set. Thanks, man! Now to find someplace that doesn't charge $9 shipping ... that or work up another decent order from Tower to make it worth the while. I'm still waiting on my last order from them; not sure what the hold-up is.



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