Catching small parts that fly off

Discussion in 'Tips & Tricks' started by Dave-the-Train, Oct 16, 2006.

  1. You know the way small parts hide in the carpet when they have pinged off from the job you are doing?

    Well... why not use this to catch them in the first place?

    When I have things up and running properly (not much recently) I have a big box lined with old army blanket for when I'm working on things like Kadee springs. It takes a lot less time to find them in the box than in the whole room.
  2. Relic

    Relic Member

    The only way I can find a Kadee spring is if it hits me in the eye.....and sticks
  3. 60103

    60103 Pooh Bah

    When working with Kadee springs, I run a length of thread through the length of the coils. This cuts down on how far the spring can jump.
    This would probably work with any small part with a hole in it.
  4. Ralph

    Ralph's for fun!

    Pretty good tips guys! I'm still searching for a l;ittle screw from an Atlas block controller..... :)
  5. zedob

    zedob Member

    Ralph, it's on that old atlas junk controller in that junkbox under your layout.:D

    AS for parts getting loose, I found that if something gets out of hand and starts traveling that it is often best not to move while said part is in motion(all subject to it's size, or temperature, of course). This eliminates "the variable of outside influence", or simply put, batting the piece way father out than it would have traveled if I had just stayed still. Sometimes, not always, I can feel a small part bounce off of my leg or foot (if I am still) and have a good idea of where it ended up, which should be relatively close because I didn't jump back and kick it into another universe.:thumb:

    This works for the stuff that doesn't end up flying into the box in a controlled manner.:D
  6. MasonJar

    MasonJar It's not rocket surgery

    Ralph - I keep a magnet holder at my desk to "hold" screws as I take them out... and if you get one of those little rare earth magnets (very strong) you can stick it to the side of your screwdriver so the screw is not lost coming out of the hole in the first place...

    Doesn't work for nylon screws... ;) :D

  7. Or brass, or chrome, or any plastic...

    If you have a good strong magnet and a ferrous (iron) screwdriver tip stroking the screwdriver with one end of the magnet in one direction only for several minutes will (1) get you some extremely odd looks from anyone observing and (2) re-arrange the molecules in the screwdriver and magnetise the tip. You'll never get that much metal very magnetic but it will probably help.
    It's quite useful to put a blob or band of red paint on tolls that are magnetised for easy i.d.

    Hope this helps :)
  8. papasmurf37

    papasmurf37 Member

    Tips & Tricks

    Try this: If you have; can find mediun to large size aquarium:
    If laid on it's side, so you can work inside it; you can hang cover[old bedsheet, plastic, etc.]over opening with hand holes and opening to look thru, cut in it[sort of like what scientists use in labs]and light will shine in OK from top & sides. A chunk of foam-core board, masonite, formica, etc. could be used as work surface, as I personally don't like working on a thin glass surface[my own 'thing']and also having a large self-healing cutting mat in there is good, too. After all, I too remember never ever finding my Kadee springs again, once launched into 'orbit'.
  9. TrainClown

    TrainClown Member

    I am a modeler and my wife is a beader. I love to build models and she loves to make necklesses and bracelets and things like that. We both have the problem of dropping small things, with me it's parts and with her it's beads. I have made us both "catch aprons". These are made from cotton and are long and wide. They have a bib with a pocket so there is an extra place to hold tools or Nicorette. The bottom of the apron has some Velcro tabs sewn to it and they attach to tabs on the underside of the bench. There is a strap around the tummy and Velcros at the back. Once in place and hooked up, if we drop something it lands in the bag formed by the apron and is easy to find and retrieve. No getting down on the floor and searching in vain. To leave the bench, simply pull the tummy strap open and take the loop from behind the neck and let it hang or hook it on something convenient.

    Works like a charm. Cut the cussing in our house almost completely.:thumb:


    GNRYFAN New Member

    I think Kadee couplers springs are the basis for the Star Trek's "transporter beam's" mechanism. Wherever they DO go when they fly off, it's not in this universe. If you could only ride on one, you could go there too.!! I have found mounting a wooden strip (like a yardstick...1/8" thick or so) to the front of my workbench that sticks up about 3/8" from the top of the front edge, keeps a LOT of things on the bench that used to hit the floor, and it's not really noticeable when working.

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