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Carbon Fiber LE's

Old 04-10-2007, 01:38 AM
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normblitch
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Question Carbon Fiber LE's

I'm seeing many Park Flyers (and others) with dowels for LE's instead of traditional balsa squares or shapes... (fortuitous, as CompuFoil offers the option of 'foil development with round LE's)

Can these be replaced with carbon fiber tubes/rods? If so, is there a Rule of Thumb for sizing of dowel replacement?

Lastly, as a CF virgin, what are guidelines for cutting and gluing of CF media??

Norm
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Old 04-10-2007, 10:18 PM
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Eric_N57105
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Originally Posted by normblitch View Post
I'm seeing many Park Flyers (and others) with dowels for LE's instead of traditional balsa squares or shapes... (fortuitous, as CompuFoil offers the option of 'foil development with round LE's)

Can these be replaced with carbon fiber tubes/rods? If so, is there a Rule of Thumb for sizing of dowel replacement?

Lastly, as a CF virgin, what are guidelines for cutting and gluing of CF media??

Norm
I built my Stevens Aero Stick wing with a CF LE instead of the dowel. Since the size determines the shape of the airfoil, I used the same diameter.

I use a Dremel cutoff wheel to cut the stuff. I also wear googles, a dust mask and cheap latex gloves. It can be real itchy stuff so take some sort of precautions.

You can use CA or epoxy with CF. I haven't tried other adhesives, but these two work very well.

Eric
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Old 04-10-2007, 10:40 PM
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normblitch
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Eric,

For the same diameter, did you use hollow CF tubing, or solid rods?

CA; thin and wicking, or medium/thick??

Norm
(very disturbed at the lack of STRAIGHT dowels in the bins at LHS's)


Originally Posted by Eric_N57105 View Post
I built my Stevens Aero Stick wing with a CF LE instead of the dowel. Since the size determines the shape of the airfoil, I used the same diameter.

I use a Dremel cutoff wheel to cut the stuff. I also wear googles, a dust mask and cheap latex gloves. It can be real itchy stuff so take some sort of precautions.

You can use CA or epoxy with CF. I haven't tried other adhesives, but these two work very well.

Eric
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Old 05-01-2007, 01:18 AM
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Saucerguy2
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Default carbon fiber

I use hollow tubes on mine, they work great. CA, unless you are building something that's extreemly weight sensitive, either or will do the job, epoxy will give you a little more working time though.

On some planes, I'll stack the ribs together and using a round file, create a groove into them the same size as the tube I'm planning to use there. On others, such as the current build, I left the original square stock in place since the ribs were lazer cut so I couldn't modify them and simply secured the tubes to the front section, it makes the wing area slightly larger, but is an easy way of doing it.

There are huge advantages using the material, it really strengthens up the wings significantly and since it remains rock solid regardless of temperature or humidity, acts as an anchor to keep everything else remaining straight and true.
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Old 05-01-2007, 01:28 AM
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normblitch
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Thanks!

If it was up to you (and it IS for me, as I generate my own 'foils with CompuFoil, which allows for round LE's), would you use a diameter tube similar to the wood you replace, or go smaller in size??

Norm



Originally Posted by SaucerGuy View Post
I use hollow tubes on mine, they work great. CA, unless you are building something that's extreemly weight sensitive, either or will do the job, epoxy will give you a little more working time though.

On some planes, I'll stack the ribs together and using a round file, create a groove into them the same size as the tube I'm planning to use there. On others, such as the current build, I left the original square stock in place since the ribs were lazer cut so I couldn't modify them and simply secured the tubes to the front section, it makes the wing area slightly larger, but is an easy way of doing it.

There are huge advantages using the material, it really strengthens up the wings significantly and since it remains rock solid regardless of temperature or humidity, acts as an anchor to keep everything else remaining straight and true.
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Old 05-01-2007, 01:57 AM
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Saucerguy2
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Default It depends

Being at the mercy of what's being produced with the stock, some times you have to settle with it being smaller, letting the ribs do the work for keeping that nice rounded leading edge. I tend to pick up stock out of impulse, so use what ever I have on hand and make it work. If you check out the WWI subforums, you'll see my SE5 build, the tube is actually a little larger then the unfinished stock and it just happened to be what I had on hand. I like the fact that it makes a little more rounded leading edge so should help it handle better.

The reason I don't try to cut out the round front leading edge from the balsa stock itself individually is that it's really hard to get them all symmetrical and a perfect fit for the stock. I'm also rather old school with scratch builds, I don't rely upon any form of software and part of it is because it pushes my skills, having to be intuitive and figure out how to get things to work. When I use plans, it kind of feels like I'm building a kit but is probably the best way to go about it, especially if you are going for a scale appearance.
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Old 05-01-2007, 02:39 AM
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SaucerGuy,

Do you have any links or sources for CF tubes you can share? -Rod-
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Old 05-01-2007, 02:52 AM
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Saucerguy2
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Default I can find them

I'm sure if you do a google search, you'll find plenty of online resources for them. I just get them at my LHS and I'm sure, paying a premium, but the time invloved and expense of a stick build, it's worth spending the extra 5-10.00 due to the dramatic increase of how it enhances the strength of the overall structure. I've crashed planes that were unreinforced and had to spend many hours rebuilding the many broken areas, with the CF reinforced ones, they have withstood severe beatings without having to do any form of repair.
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