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Old Jan 09, 2013, 01:18 PM
Warbird Fanatic
jchtr3a's Avatar
United States, PA, Coraopolis
Joined Jun 2012
275 Posts
Help!
Cowling prop shaft hole enlargement

I have a thin plastic cowl. The existing prop shaft hole is about
3/4" in diameter and I need about 1 1/8" diameter to clear the prop adapter.
I don't want to make a mess of it trying to cut it with an xacto knife by hand.
Is there a method to get the bigger hole centered and cut smooth and round
like the original? I haven't come up with any good ideas of my own yet,
and looking for some experienced help.
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Old Jan 09, 2013, 03:12 PM
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rcav8r2's Avatar
United States, PA, Beaver
Joined Sep 2001
3,524 Posts
Most likely this will be hidden by the spinner, but if not.
Get one of those circle template thingies at the art/craft store. (Pat Catan's in Aliquippa has them) Draw your new circle on the cowl.
Now get aDremel (or any rotary tool) with a sanding drum, and carefully, and slowly, sand to the line.

Where in Cory do you live? I grew up there. Corner of Free and Ridge as a kid, then later up in Robinson above Cory
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Old Jan 09, 2013, 07:43 PM
B for Bruce
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The 'Wack, BC, Canada
Joined Oct 2002
11,600 Posts
This is one of those places where a Dremel or similar is the "right tool". Mark the new outline precisely and then with a sanding drum open up the hole to size.

If you don't have a Dremel or one of the cheapies this might just be a good excuse to get one.
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Old Jan 09, 2013, 08:38 PM
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United States, PA, Coraopolis
Joined Jun 2012
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Thanks. Giving it a go. Wish me luck.
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Old Jan 10, 2013, 09:48 AM
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United States, PA, Coraopolis
Joined Jun 2012
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OK. Tried the dremel on a piece of scrap plastic and did OK but not good. My hands just don't have the skills they used to I guess. I found a small electric screwdriver that I got from Home Depot. It has a tapered end to it, and starts out about 3/4" and goes to 1 1/2" in diameter. So I wrapped a piece of sandpaper around it and just started to turn it in the opening. Took about 10 mins. with lots of checking the new diameter, but it worked. A perfectly round hole just the right size, and no damage to the fragile cowl. Success!
Thanks for your help everyone. I'll probably be back again as this plane has been really difficult for me. I keep reminding myself that I have all winter to get it all sorted out.
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Old Jan 10, 2013, 03:12 PM
Illegitimi non carborundum
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Canada, ON, Ottawa
Joined Mar 2011
1,495 Posts
Glad it worked out for you.

Recently I had to enlarge the openings in some wheel pants - the dremel and drum sander method worked perfectly for me.



I found my accuracy and stability were best when I held my upper arms against my sides and limited the movement to my forearms and wrists.
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Old Jan 10, 2013, 03:50 PM
B for Bruce
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The 'Wack, BC, Canada
Joined Oct 2002
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jchtr3a View Post
....My hands just don't have the skills they used to I guess.....
We are all getting there. The trick is to use our brains to cheat in order to achieve the sort of results we wish to get. Grosbeak's hint on braceing and using other tricks to better support the work and the tools for more control are the key. NEVER just hold a tool and work piece up in free air and expect anything good to come from it. Learn to brace off your tool hand off the work piece. Or for small stuff to hold it in a vise or taped to something so you can connect the work piece to the hand that holds the tool. That way you get the support you need to get the control you want.
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Old Jan 10, 2013, 05:13 PM
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United States, PA, Coraopolis
Joined Jun 2012
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I've got some issues, not the least of which is failing eyesight. Good days/bad days sort of thing. Now at 63 and retired early, with all the time in the world to pursue my hobbies and interests, my old body is beginning to fail me. My hands are steady, just very painful at times.
Today I got all the servos installed, centered, and tested. Put a battery hatch in the belly of the nose, as you had to take the wing off to change the battery--what a poor design. Got the fixed gear in. Tonight or tomorrow I will fit the wing and struts. Then the windshield and cowl tomorrow, and all will be done except for a prop I am waiting on.
This is a HK DHC-2 Beaver, balsa/plywood model. Very badly made and needing lots of work for each step in the process. Just FYI--I would not advise anyone to buy this plane. It's the Harbour Air edition, very good price, very poor quality.
Thanks for all the help and suggestions, I really appreciate it.
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Old Jan 10, 2013, 07:34 PM
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You might also try to putsome sort of temporary plug in the existing hole. Locate that center and redrill with a "hole saw" Neat and clean if you are carefull.

I have found that establishing "controls" in whatever I'm doing (within reason) is prefereable to shooting the moon freehand!
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Old Jan 10, 2013, 07:40 PM
B for Bruce
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The 'Wack, BC, Canada
Joined Oct 2002
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I hear ya. I've got the beginnings of arthritis. I find that if I don't use my hands for a while that the joints just don't move fully until I work them for a while. And I can feel the pressure along with a bit of pain in them until they "unseize". So far I'm keeping them limber and haven't lost any motion or control. I just hope I can keep that up. Got myself a LONG list of projects to do yet....

All the best to you with your own fight in regards to beating all the health issues. Just don't take it lieing down.
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Old Jan 10, 2013, 10:38 PM
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United States, PA, Coraopolis
Joined Jun 2012
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I have another question--perhaps a dumb one. I have a Turnigy 9XR radio arriving maybe tomorrow. Presently I am using a FlySky TH9X (same as turnigy 9X). The new 9XR hasn't got a module yet, so I got a compatible HK Orange module and two rx's. The rx's are different than the ones I have in my other planes using the FlySky TH9X in that on the Orange rx's CH1 is throttle, not ailerons. Throttle is ch3 on my old rx's. So do I treat CH1 as throttle, or plug my ailerons into it? My guess is that I would plug in what the rx has written on it for that channel. ch1-throttle, etc. Right?
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Last edited by jchtr3a; Jan 10, 2013 at 10:39 PM. Reason: Clarity
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Old Jan 10, 2013, 10:52 PM
Art Schmitz
United States, TN, Crossville
Joined Jan 2012
392 Posts
A favorite sign hangs in my shop.
OLD AGE AND TREACHERY
WILL OVERCOME YOUTH AND ABILITY

73 going on 93....art
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