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Early Aviation
Discuss World War I and the early years of aviation thru 1934.
Struts from brass?
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Vaasa, Finland
Member Since: August 07, 2002
entire network: 424 Posts
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Posted: Sunday, December 14, 2003 - 03:26 AM UTC
I've seen some articles where people use brass tube to make struts for biplanes, landing gear, etc. The process involves taking brass tube, inserting a rod of smaller diameter inside, and then flattening the tube. The rod is supposed to keep edge of the tube from getting flat, so it maintains an airfoil shape. My question is simply that what is the consensus on the technique? I'd like to avoid ordering Aeroclub brass strutz (time / cost of overseas shipping) but would like to have access to something stronger than plastic. Does it work well? Should the rod be soldered into the edge of the tube before squashing?

Any experiences or tips appreciated.
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United Kingdom
Member Since: June 11, 2003
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Posted: Monday, December 15, 2003 - 09:21 AM UTC
Hi Mika

I was hoping someone would jump in with some advice, because I've never heard of this technique. It sounds a neat idea - I imagine the central rod will also provide ready-made locating pins.

My guess is that you don't need to solder... hammering should be enough to hold everything together.

Can you post some pics of your experiments? They'd be a real help to the rest of us. :-)

All the best

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Vaasa, Finland
Member Since: August 07, 2002
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Posted: Monday, December 15, 2003 - 03:54 PM UTC
Based on the lack of response, this must be a rare technique or error prone, or something. Since all of the knowledge I have of the technique was summed up in my first post, I think I'll need to go down the experiment route. I'll post pictures of how it goes.

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Texas, United States
Member Since: August 03, 2003
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Posted: Monday, December 15, 2003 - 10:53 PM UTC
I hope someone responds. I also am interested in this technique. Let us know how your experiment went. David
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England - South West, United Kingdom
Member Since: September 30, 2002
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Posted: Tuesday, December 16, 2003 - 07:43 AM UTC
:-) Sounds like an interesting technique. Personally I would go for Aeroclubs strutz, or I have a plastic version. I would guess that the tube would require annealling, otherwise it would probably split, at the narrow end.
I would be very interested to know how any trials you conduct, turn out :-)
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Colorado, United States
Member Since: January 25, 2004
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Posted: Saturday, January 24, 2004 - 02:20 PM UTC
Forgive me gents but your working too hard. Check out RollModels and their items from Aeoclub called 'STRUTZ' , streamlines brass rod. Great strut material. JJF
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Virginia, United States
Member Since: December 13, 2002
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Posted: Saturday, January 24, 2004 - 04:10 PM UTC
Ithink this would work great. I don't build WWI aircraft but there are some WWII birds with unfaired struts that this would work well with. I think I fone didn't wait for overseas shipping and not want to incure other sosts this would be a great way of adding some detail and strength to na already fidley kit. STUG
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England - North West, United Kingdom
Member Since: November 13, 2003
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Posted: Saturday, January 24, 2004 - 06:32 PM UTC
Hi madmeex,
I have not made struts this way but have done somthing similar for pitot tubes and legs etc for aircraft.
I usually dip the inner rod/tube in a bit of CA before inserting.
Aso as you are basically making a tube more solid it helps stabilise the piece when cutting.
It can also be done with plastic rod as the inner too...cheaper. And Merlin is right...the smaller inner can extrude as a locating pin.