Discussion in 'Aircraft & Aviation' started by cdcoyle, Jan 18, 2007.
And I'm still enamoured with EZ-Line which is a thin elastic product for Model RR telephone lines.
Years ago i worked in a machine shop making components for aircraft gauges. To make the little flag that drops down we would take a piece of steel wire and tie one end to a post and wrap the other end around a piece of wood and "pull like the dickens" (I dont really know where that expression comes from but it was what we did) the wire would then stretch and be "work hardened stiff". Honest!
Fine piano wire from an RC models supplier or hobby shop should do the trick. And it's already straight.
That's what I used for the rigging on my FG GeeBee R-1. It was .015" "music wire" - piano wire. It's stiff, yet not too hard to put a 90 degree hook in one end to hold it in place.
Edited to correct my spelling.
The store where I got the .015" wire had .02" and so on. I guess you could find the exact right gauge if you found a store with a good supply of music wire.
Copper and Fishing Line
Stretching wire beyond the elastic limit to failure works well. Copper wire becomes very stiff when failed in this manner. I use it to weave ship railings with the aid of little solder paste and a hand torch.
Low test nylon mono-filament that's been passed between 400 grit sandpaper can be set with a small drop of CA. Carefully apply heat to shrink the slack out of the line. Sandpapering the surface enables paint to stick to the surface.
Although I realize this is circumventing the problem as formulated, my solution would still tend to be to make it stretchable at least at one end. Rigging wires mostly are attached to something at one end which will allow that. If there's any kind of fixture this can be simulated by making a small loop of wire (for example in aircraft fuselages) fixed at the back already when you cut out the part. - L.
What about twisted "micro-wire" for fishing? Should by slightly cheaper than piano chord. I am just not very sure about the discussed diameter...
In an earlier how-to message there was a tip to use invisible thread (available at most sewing stores) darkened with a black magic marker. It is really thin and fairly well immune from sagging and breaking. Give that a try.
It has to be around 450 degrees F. A match passed under the line several times should suffice. Be careful to not overheat it. I use an old model airplane heat gun carefully to perform tightening tasks.
I use thread tied with a taut-line knot. I learned this for pitching tents. Thread a needle and tie it off on one side. For the other side run the thread through or around the attachment point and back on itself.
Okay, here comes the knot part.(let's see if I can explain it.) Wrap the needle end around the thread at least three times then go to the other end of the wrap and tie off with a half-hitch. Clip off the extra thread. This knot can be slid into position, but holds under tension. Put on a dab of glue once it's adjusted.
If my explaination doesn't make sense, look at a handbook on knots. Oh and practice with larger cordage before trying it with tread.
I would stay away from everything that blows hot air at your model. You might blow it over! What you want is a source which radiates heat only.
Several people suggested (elsewhere) to wave a burning cigarette close to the line. But if you are not a smoker already, I would recommend against becoming one for the sole purpose of always having a heat source handy.
I recommend to use a soldering iron instead. Bring it carefully close to the line until the magical tightening occurs. A small soldering iron, for electronics work, is ideal.
When rigging this way think ahead. Start with the innermost lines of the model and work your way outward. Attach and tighten one line at a time.
If you have symetrical rigging left/right (or forward/backward), it is good practice to finish the corresponding pair of lines before moving to the next. Never finish all the rigging on one side of the model before starting the other side! Although the pull by any one line is small, if not compensated for by the counterpull on the other side, it might bend your model out of alignment.
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