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Old Oct 24, 2001, 01:38 PM
Just an average RC'er
Jim McPherson's Avatar
Laurel, Maryland USA
Joined Aug 2000
4,291 Posts
Tools you can't live without.

I've noticed a lot of "newbie" questions recently. I'm hoping that this means that more there are more people entering the electric flight hobby. Because of that I thought I'd post a few tools that I feel are essential to the e-flight hobby. Please list your "can't live without tools" as well... after all I didn't know I couldn't live without a tool until I actually knew about the tool.
My Short list of tools not typical of a garage:

1. Quality Weller Adjustable Soldering iron (or equivilant).
2. Helping Hands w/or without maginifying glass.
3. Dremel Tool.
4. Miniature C-clamps
5. Quality automatic wire strippers.
6. Z-bend tool for smaller size wire.
7. AstroFlight Watt Meter.

Please add to this list!
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Old Oct 24, 2001, 01:52 PM
Registered User
Canada, NS, Lunenburg
Joined Oct 1999
3,867 Posts
Second the Dremel.

And add a variety of Perma-Grit tools. They last for ever.
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Old Oct 24, 2001, 02:00 PM
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Larry @ SR's Avatar
Bellport, NY, USA
Joined Apr 2000
1,219 Posts
Hi Jim...

If the Weller soldering iron you're talking about is the"gun" type, no, no, no, no, no! The gun type solder guns heat by inductance which is a fancy way of saying magnetism. The problem is that you can demagnetise the magnets in your motor and the motors in your servos. You want to stay very far away from anything magnetic with that type of soldering gun.

Larry
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Old Oct 24, 2001, 02:29 PM
BEC
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Auburn, Washington USA
Joined Jan 2001
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Not specifically e-related but tools I find indespensible include:

Fourmost miter cutter and sander (http://www.geocities.com/fourmost1/index.htm)

Third the Dremel. I find I use the wimpy little Mini-Mite cordless one much more than the old powerful one on the cord.

Along with the Whattmeter, a decent tachometer is a plus.

Also, a good quality scale! Also a good quality covering iron like the Coverite 21st Century unit.

I'm sure there are more....
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Old Oct 24, 2001, 02:37 PM
Most Exalted Windbag
Newark, DE USA
Joined May 2001
1,632 Posts
For my old eyes a crane type magnifying light. It's good for light even when you're not looking through the lens.

Of course the Dremel.

RB
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Old Oct 24, 2001, 03:17 PM
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secaucus,n.j.
Joined Jan 2001
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Major credit card.
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Old Oct 24, 2001, 03:23 PM
Just an average RC'er
Jim McPherson's Avatar
Laurel, Maryland USA
Joined Aug 2000
4,291 Posts
Quote:
Originally posted by Larry @ SR
Hi Jim...

If the Weller soldering iron you're talking about is the"gun" type, no,
Larry
Hehehehe.... I'm not sure I've ever used a gun type soldering tool... that's kind of why it says "adjustable" and "Iron" in my description. But your right, a gun is a very very bad idea! Bye bye servos!
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Last edited by Jim McPherson; Oct 24, 2001 at 10:35 PM.
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Old Oct 24, 2001, 03:31 PM
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Larry @ SR's Avatar
Bellport, NY, USA
Joined Apr 2000
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I thought it was worth mentioning as most people aren't aware of the problem.

Larry
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Old Oct 24, 2001, 03:56 PM
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Peachtree City, GA
Joined Aug 2000
845 Posts
Higley trimmer for covering. My covering jobs have gotten much better with this tool
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Old Oct 24, 2001, 03:58 PM
DNA
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NE Ohio
Joined Jun 2001
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Emery board finger nail files. Handiest thing in my shop.
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Old Oct 24, 2001, 04:14 PM
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Denver
Joined Sep 2001
31 Posts
Larry,

Are you saying that ALL soldering "Guns" heat by inductance? Or is it just the Wellers. If it hums, is it heating by inductance?

Tools I cant live without:

a big piece of thick (1/4") glass! Found a glass topped coffe table at a yard sale a couple of years back, how did I build well without it?

a tabletop bandsaw...Ok, so I dont use it at all for my electrics, but for scratch building slimers...gotta have one.

a GP slot machine...ditto on the comment about building electrics.
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Old Oct 24, 2001, 06:14 PM
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United States, WA, Sumner
Joined Oct 2000
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Incidence meter, CG stand, and prop balancer. Oh yeah,
and a multimeter.
Perry
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Old Oct 24, 2001, 06:14 PM
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CA and NH
Joined Oct 2001
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Sorry I am new, but what is a dremel tool?
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Old Oct 24, 2001, 06:23 PM
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United States, WA, Sumner
Joined Oct 2000
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http://www.dremel.com/html/home_fr.html
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Old Oct 24, 2001, 07:00 PM
high-speed freak
opualuan's Avatar
San Jose, CA
Joined Sep 2001
3,863 Posts
I've had my experiences with soldering... with even a pen-type cheap soldering iron I couldn't solder worth anything... got a weller esd safe temp-adjustable iron, and I now make my own double-sided smt and trough-hole circuits! makes a WORLD of difference.

as far as dremel, any accessories to get? I want to get a dremel for my b-day coming up...

also, for a tach, is a globee intellitach any good? I've been looking to buy one to see if the rpm's are matching in reality with motocalc's predictions..

already have a crane light... probably more useful if you've got bad eyes...

suggestion: digital readout caliper. since I got mine, I don't know how I lived without one, for measuring wire size, motor shafts, prop sizes, etc...
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