Building Materials, Excluding Covering

Re: Building Materials, Excluding Covering

Postby Lily Essence on Sun Nov 13, 2011 11:23 pm

I've been looking around as well (aluminum, plastics, carbon, kelvar, etc) and have found that things weigh alot more than balsa in terms of g/ft... Honestly, I don't think my helicopter would use the strength that carbon fiber offers; balsa's strength does just fine, and weighs less...

Am I looking at the wrong things, or not being specific enough? Is there a site or store that sells helicopter sized pieces of light weight material? I'll keep searching for something lighter and as strong as balsa, but any nod in the right direction would be appreciated!
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Re: Building Materials, Excluding Covering

Postby theandrew on Sun Nov 13, 2011 11:25 pm

Frogger4907 wrote:
theandrew wrote:Does anyone know of a material stronger but yet lighter than balsa? I've looked at carbon fiber, but I'm not convinced it's worth the time and energy. The reason I ask is for the new chinook style incentive. I have some designs, but keeping the weight low is a HUGE issue.

Thanks

I already made a Chinook style helicopter to 4.1 grams, a few tweaking and my scores could get ridiculous ;)

Out of balsa? You didn't fly it at Southland, did you?
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Re: Building Materials, Excluding Covering

Postby chalker7 on Sun Nov 13, 2011 11:46 pm

theandrew wrote:Does anyone know of a material stronger but yet lighter than balsa? I've looked at carbon fiber, but I'm not convinced it's worth the time and energy. The reason I ask is for the new chinook style incentive. I have some designs, but keeping the weight low is a HUGE issue.

Thanks


Balsa is really your best bet. Carbon fiber is actually very dense and it is difficult to use a small enough amount to get down to weight. However, the good news is that since balsa is a natural material there is a huge variability in the weight of different sheets and sticks. What I would recommend is to choose the lightest and stiffest balsa wood available while being very careful with your construction (wood dimensions, glue use, covering, etc) to get down to weight. Browse through some of the archived forums on this site for Helicopter and Wright Stuff (and even towers/bridges) for some more detailed descriptions of reducing weight (in particular, search through jander14indoor's posts)
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Re: Building Materials, Excluding Covering

Postby chalker7 on Sun Nov 13, 2011 11:52 pm

Lily Essence wrote:I've been looking around as well (aluminum, plastics, carbon, kelvar, etc) and have found that things weigh alot more than balsa in terms of g/ft... Honestly, I don't think my helicopter would use the strength that carbon fiber offers; balsa's strength does just fine, and weighs less...

Am I looking at the wrong things, or not being specific enough? Is there a site or store that sells helicopter sized pieces of light weight material? I'll keep searching for something lighter and as strong as balsa, but any nod in the right direction would be appreciated!


Wood selection is really tough. You can get by at your normal hobby shop if you literally weigh every single stick/sheet before buying it, but this can be hit or miss and take quite awhile. You can buy preselected light balsa wood from places like lonestar balsa, but it is more expensive. Here's a link for their 4-6 lb/cubic foot stock (the light stuff) if you're interested. http://www.lonestar-balsa.com/Ordering/ ... hp?PROD=2&
A2Z corp also carries indoor grade wood, but that is even more expensive. Here's a link for them. http://www.a2zcorp.us/store/Category.asp?Cguid= {FFE3E53A-52FD-40C6-8300-323764E379BF}&Category=BuildingMaterials%3ABalsa+Wood+Indoor
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Re: Building Materials, Excluding Covering

Postby Lily Essence on Mon Nov 14, 2011 12:37 am

chalker7 wrote:You can buy preselected light balsa wood from places like lonestar balsa, but it is more expensive. Here's a link for their 4-6 lb/cubic foot stock (the light stuff) if you're interested. http://www.lonestar-balsa.com/Ordering/ ... hp?PROD=2&


I'm eyeing the wood there, and 4-6 lbs seems a lot better than the stuff I've been buying at my local hobby shop, but Lonestar requires orders of at least 25 dollars + 12.50 for shipping (And then 8.25% tax on that since I live in Texas).

Have you ordered from Lonestar before? Are they dependable and the wood accurate to its description? I don't want to fork over almost 40 dollars for wood that isn't what I was expecting. Thanks for the help!

EDIT: Also, what do they mean by "Grain selection is $.20 per sheet. Weight selection is an additional 25% of the cost of the sheet when available." (0.o) Does this mean I should add $0.20 to every sheet I'm ordering? or 25% since I'm looking at 4-6 lb wood? Confusing site... (=.=)

Second EDIT: What does AAA mean? I know what A(B,C) Grain is, but is AAA some sort of more specific way of saying "A Grain"?
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Re: Building Materials, Excluding Covering

Postby chalker7 on Mon Nov 14, 2011 12:59 am

Lily Essence wrote:I'm eyeing the wood there, and 4-6 lbs seems a lot better than the stuff I've been buying at my local hobby shop, but Lonestar requires orders of at least 25 dollars + 12.50 for shipping (And then 8.25% tax on that since I live in Texas).

Have you ordered from Lonestar before? Are they dependable and the wood accurate to its description? I don't want to fork over almost 42 dollars for wood that isn't what I was expecting. Thanks for the help!

EDIT: Also, what do they mean by "Grain selection is $.20 per sheet. Weight selection is an additional 25% of the cost of the sheet when available." (0.o) Does this mean I should add $0.20 to every sheet I'm ordering? or 25%? Confusing site... (=.=)


I have, and I like what I've gotten from them before. I would recommend getting together with your team and seeing what wood you need for towers (and any other events if you think you will use balsa there) and combining the order.
Grain selection means choosing A, B or C grain. Here is a good summary with images of what that means: http://pldaniels.com/flying/balsa/balsa-properties.html
Since you'll be stripping individual sticks off of sheets that you order from Lonestar (they only offer the light stuff in sheet form), it won't matter what grain the sheet is (A grain turns into C grain when you turn it 90 degrees on its side).
I'm not sure precisely what they mean by weight selection, but I would guess they are referring to exact density (like telling them you want sheets that weigh 5.5 lbs/cubic foot). I'm not connected to them in any way, so I'd say you'd probably be best off giving them a call to see exactly what they mean.
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Re: Building Materials, Excluding Covering

Postby chalker7 on Mon Nov 14, 2011 1:04 am

Lily Essence wrote:
Second EDIT: What does AAA mean? I know what A(B,C) Grain is, but is AAA some sort of more specific way of saying "A Grain"?


I'm not 100% certain what AAA means, but it's almost certainly not related to grain (there would be no reason for them to sell only A grain). I'd guess it is some description of the quality of the wood (that is, no knots, holes due to worms, etc.) Again, give them a call if you're confused.
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Re: Building Materials, Excluding Covering

Postby Lily Essence on Sat Nov 26, 2011 5:26 pm

After receiving my order, I vow to never buy wood from online stores again. I have much better customer-satisfaction bringing my gram weight into my nearby hobby shop and weighing/checking every piece they offer myself before buying.

In my order, I asked for sheets of 1/16. They gave me 1/4. =.= (1/16 is pretty much the main reason I ordered.)
One of my 1/20 sheets has a horrible knot and crack. AAA grade my butt.

I hope, Chalker, that your service with that store has been loads better than mine.

I will most certainly be calling to question them...but I won't be ordering wood again.
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Re: Building Materials, Excluding Covering

Postby chalker7 on Sat Nov 26, 2011 5:36 pm

Lily Essence wrote:After receiving my order, I vow to never buy wood from online stores again. I have much better customer-satisfaction bringing my gram weight into my nearby hobby shop and weighing/checking every piece they offer myself before buying.

In my order, I asked for sheets of 1/16. They gave me 1/4. =.= (1/16 is pretty much the main reason I ordered.)
One of my 1/20 sheets has a horrible knot and crack. AAA grade my butt.

I hope, Chalker, that your service with that store has been loads better than mine.

I will most certainly be calling to question them...but I won't be ordering wood again.


That's strange, I've always had good results from them. I would definitely call them about it, the 1/16" for 1/4" mess up definitely warrants a replacement.
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Re: Building Materials, Excluding Covering

Postby iwonder on Wed Nov 30, 2011 12:49 am

Lily Essence wrote:After receiving my order, I vow to never buy wood from online stores again. I have much better customer-satisfaction bringing my gram weight into my nearby hobby shop and weighing/checking every piece they offer myself before buying.

In my order, I asked for sheets of 1/16. They gave me 1/4. =.= (1/16 is pretty much the main reason I ordered.)
One of my 1/20 sheets has a horrible knot and crack. AAA grade my butt.

I hope, Chalker, that your service with that store has been loads better than mine.

I will most certainly be calling to question them...but I won't be ordering wood again.


I've always used http://www.balsawoodinc.com/ for balsa wood, it's significantly better than the local sources I have in Houston, however they won't do any weight selection, and there's a $10 order minimum. Overall though, it seems worth it, not to mention it's relatively cheap.
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Re: Building Materials, Excluding Covering

Postby mrsteven on Wed Nov 30, 2011 1:06 am

iwonder wrote:
Lily Essence wrote:After receiving my order, I vow to never buy wood from online stores again. I have much better customer-satisfaction bringing my gram weight into my nearby hobby shop and weighing/checking every piece they offer myself before buying.

In my order, I asked for sheets of 1/16. They gave me 1/4. =.= (1/16 is pretty much the main reason I ordered.)
One of my 1/20 sheets has a horrible knot and crack. AAA grade my butt.

I hope, Chalker, that your service with that store has been loads better than mine.

I will most certainly be calling to question them...but I won't be ordering wood again.


I've always used http://www.balsawoodinc.com/ for balsa wood, it's significantly better than the local sources I have in Houston, however they won't do any weight selection, and there's a $10 order minimum. Overall though, it seems worth it, not to mention it's relatively cheap.

even then, how often are you going to order wood and NOT order at least 10 bucks of it?

Given that your design incorporates a motor stick (or similar object) still, what are you guys using? Bass/balsa and of what dimensions to hold the tension of the rubber. With no weight limit on motors I wanted to use a stronger material to hold more tension AKA more power.
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Re: Building Materials, Excluding Covering

Postby Balsa Man on Fri Dec 02, 2011 12:11 pm

There is another excellent source of balsa- Specialized Balsa in Loveland, CO- www.specializedbalsa.com
We have the luxury of driving down to the shop and picking our wood, but Jake (the owner) does lots on on-line business
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Re: Building Materials, Excluding Covering

Postby illusionist on Fri Feb 24, 2012 5:53 pm

I never thought I'd get the chance to say this, but I just built a 3.01g helicopter :shock:

The bad part is, I don't know what material to use or how to position a .5g ballast...
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Re: Building Materials, Excluding Covering

Postby mrsteven on Sat Feb 25, 2012 12:35 am

illusionist wrote:I never thought I'd get the chance to say this, but I just built a 3.01g helicopter :shock:

The bad part is, I don't know what material to use or how to position a .5g ballast...

Well clay is a good starting point. I'm always a fan of attaching the helicopter to a large cinder block and letting gravity figure it out. haha

Dense clay, or if you feel uber inclined, get some aluminum (note its VERY little) and weigh the .5g then cut to fit on the end of the motor stick in strips to weigh down the bottom effectively.
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Re: Building Materials, Excluding Covering

Postby questionguy on Wed Feb 29, 2012 2:42 pm

If I am looking to build the hollow tube for my helicopter for the body, does anyone know if the Freedom Flighters design come with the proper wood to make a hollow tube. If not does anyone know what is a good place to buy the wood?
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