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Old Oct 22, 2012, 10:06 AM
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United Kingdom, England, Basingstoke
Joined Aug 2011
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Help!
Acacia 2 Bigger Ballast tube

Hi All
I'm currently building an Acacia 2 and am thinking of adding a larger ballast tube, I've seen plenty of mention of it including F3x.com, but can't seem to find any instructions on how to remove the old tube and install the new one.
Can anyone point me in the direction of a thread that covers it? (I have tried the search facility).

Cheers
Alex
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Old Oct 23, 2012, 02:06 AM
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Fullerton, CA
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mmm Pretty sure at one time Tom had more details than I see now. I have one I bought second hand and I would bet Tom did the install. I have no clue how such a long tube on this one made it past the servo tray without hitting top or bottom. Very fuzzy but I think there might have been multiple ( 2 or 3 ) pieces which are glued together after one is inserted. IF so, tricky business not getting epoxy inside the tube.

I did my other Acacia myself ( lost in a midair ), rolled my own tube and it was as one piece though so long ago I don't recall how. The trick may be,,, to have access to drop in the slugs and the one I have... the entire front section of the tube is cut just below half the diameter a total of 1.75 inches. I think when inserted you rotate upside down and the cutout allows the tube to make the bend, just a guess.

I looked with a flashlight, I don't see any joints.

I don't recall any difficulty getting the existing out.

Regards
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Old Oct 23, 2012, 02:34 AM
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United Kingdom, England, Basingstoke
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Thanks
Yes I remembered there being more detail on Tom's site, perhaps I should just email him and see if he still has the details.

Alex
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Old Oct 23, 2012, 06:26 AM
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Shropshire
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Alex are you sure you want to fly with that much ballast on board .....the guys over the pond fly MoM fully loaded are you thinking F3F and trying to replicate what the current crop of designs are doing .......an alternative is to try lead ballast rather than brass but maybe youve done that already
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Old Oct 23, 2012, 10:05 AM
F3X
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Costa Mesa, CA USA
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Cut the red inner nose off with a thin kerf saw about 1.25 from the front. This will give you plenty of access to slide in the new tube and you will have a red spinner in your hand that you can easily glass back on after the install.
The old tube comes out by cutting the red molded in ballast ramp. The tube is typically held in the front only.
I made a new plywood bulkhead for a ballast stop and the rear servo rail.
Its a great mod, sometimes you need more ballast than the stock will fit unless you spend $$ on tungsten. You can get the loading you want by brass or lead.
Good luck!
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Old Oct 23, 2012, 10:36 AM
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Thanks Tom. That's what I needed to know.

Andy - I'm not planning on using this for F3F - got the Willow for that (although it may be taken sometime as a spare). The main reason for considering the bigger ballast tube is that Gary H is giving me some 23.5 mm ballast and spacers and I thought it would give me more ballast options. I also fancy having a go at rolling my own tube.

Alex
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Old Oct 23, 2012, 10:51 AM
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:-) Too easy Tom, it's so much more fun trying to force it in there. Cut it off works and there's plenty of room to get inside the cut off nose to add some glass to reinforce the cut.

I had fun last night going through a bunch of Tom's Tips again, good stuff in there. Thanks Tom. I will be turning off Ail/rud mix on Landing and see how that goes. :-)

Dan
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Old Oct 24, 2012, 07:46 PM
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Los Angeles, Ca
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i have built several Acacia tubes, all accepting 1 1/8 inch OD slugs made with thin wall water pipe filled with lead. A 1 inch length gives abaout 6 oz. per slug. as I recall you need 12 slugs to max out to FAI max surface loading.
After ripping the current tube out, saw the servo tray element in the nose clean off. With some fiddling a full length tube can be slid down the fuse. It will also be necessary to open up the fuse next to the pushrod holes, but the strength is restored by fashioning a half-bulkhead that fills the opening back in, and transfers loads into the tube. The aft 1 1/2 inch of the tube will have to be scarfed away to clear the pushrods. Basically a flat or notch for the pushrods.No need to slice the forward end of the inner nose off.
On mine, the forward end of the tube , cut away to half-round, appears in the opening aft of the servos, while the stock opening is reinforced and filled in with glass. A 1/4 inch ply bulkhead fixes the forward end of the tube and resists the tendency of the ballast to keep moving forward in hard landings. servos are mounted in tandem and transversely just forward of the 1/4 ply bulkhead, recovering some length in the nose for battery and reciever. When all this is properly glued in, the fuse is wicked strong, and will not break at the nosecone aft end, as many stock planes heve done.
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Old Oct 25, 2012, 01:36 AM
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Thanks Bill
That sounds a good method -always good to add strength when ballast is involved! Do you have any photos of a finished conversion? It sounds quite different to Tom's, how do you load the ballast with the pushrods in the way?
Cheers
Alex
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Old Nov 01, 2012, 09:03 PM
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I have no pix as all this preceeded digital cameras. With the servos mounted crosswise, and appropriate arms, the clevis position is as far outboard as the nosecone will allow. I do not recall a problem with the width, but if there is, then shorten the carbon tubes back to the fuse bulkhead and use threaded steel rod from there to the clevis, glued inside the carbon with JB Weld. They are slimmer, and can be bent out if needed.

I forgot to mention that the tube is manufactured by getting your 3 ft of copper pipe and wrap 18 inches of it in 3 layers of wax paper, then apply a wrap of heavy fiberglass around it to fporm the glass tube. It can be reinforced with strips of carbon if you like, as the result of a bent tube is trapped aft slugs. make it too long, then cut to fit dimensions. Of course, you have to balance the number of slugs aft of CG with same forward of it, whereas the forward end of the tube is set by the distance needed to get slugs in and out of the fuse opening. be sure the ply plug at the aft end of the tube is well secured with epoxy and some strips of glass.
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Old Jul 29, 2013, 01:17 PM
NCSS, Slopeflicker
Joined Jun 2013
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Hi- ive got a stock a acacia 2. I dont have it here but i need to know the stock diameter of the fuse ballast slugs. Just bought it but han no ballast.
Thanks
Scott
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