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Old Dec 01, 2011, 03:54 PM
4075aaron is offline
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Help!

How to fix bent wingtips on a foam plane?


Thanks for checking…I do very little electric/foam flying, mostly a nitro/gas kit builder but I do have a small collection of parkfliers and micros that I take out when there is little wind and I don’t have the time to load up the car and drive out to the regular field. I recently picked up an E-Flite Beechcraft Staggerwing 480 here on rcgroups. Something went horribly wrong while it was in transient and the plane suffered some damage. Most of it is not too bad, but both wingtips bent/folded up significantly. I am certain that it will not fly in this condition. I am afraid to try and bend them back down. They most likely will just snap. Is there any good way to fix this other than buying a new wing set? If I do need a new wing set, where would you recommend buying it?

Thanks! Here are some pics…sorry that they are rotated strangely.
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Old Dec 01, 2011, 04:03 PM
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EPO foam, like you have there, is very easy to fix using boiling water. I would lay a cloth in the cease and pure the boiling water onto the cloth and at the same time bend the tip back into position. The idea is to get the foam in the centre of the crease to re expand to its original shape. If you break either of the tips off while doing this, just glue them back on using CA and kicker or Gorilla Glue. Use Gorilla Glue to fill the cracks.

You should get a repair that is 99% of what it was.
Last edited by Gerry__; Dec 01, 2011 at 04:09 PM.
Old Dec 01, 2011, 06:09 PM
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Stick, roger ball.
With the gorilla glue, dampen the material, use sparingly (it expands 4x) then cover the joint with packing tape while it cures to limit squeeze out.

Also the Gorilla Glue white is suposed to be a great choice over the amber.
Old Dec 01, 2011, 07:07 PM
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I think boiling water on this one is a waste of time. Heat it with a hair dryer to get it "soft" .. meaning not so likely to break. Use foam safe CA or the Gorilla Glue that was mentioned above. The tape, if used, needs to stay in place because when you take it off it WILL peel the paint off. I'd do it without tape. Warm things up, glue it in place and hold it with your fingers untill it is set. You might get away with the blue painters tape, it may not peel the paint. GL!!
Old Dec 02, 2011, 02:00 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by dkrhardy View Post
I think boiling water on this one is a waste of time.
It gets the heat where it's needed. The last thing he wants to do is expand all the beads, which what will happen with a hair dryer.
Old Dec 02, 2011, 07:41 PM
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Hmmmm, not sure about that. BUT, go ahead and do the water and if it doesn't work try the hair dryer. I do NOT mean to heat the whole wing, only at the tips where it is needed.
Old Dec 02, 2011, 11:39 PM
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I recon using a hairdryer and kneading it with your fingers to get it straight.
Old Dec 03, 2011, 01:17 PM
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I mean to heat it enough that the bent part is not so stiff, then glue will be needed to hold them in place.
Old Dec 03, 2011, 08:19 PM
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Both the hair dryer and the hot water will expand the beads. The trick is to heat the area enough to get it back into place. Be ready with a large spoon or some other smooth, curved, metal object. If the beads have expanded on you just use the spoon to press them back down after you get the tips back in place.
Old Dec 03, 2011, 09:22 PM
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Good idea


Quote:
Originally Posted by tacx View Post
Both the hair dryer and the hot water will expand the beads. The trick is to heat the area enough to get it back into place. Be ready with a large spoon or some other smooth, curved, metal object. If the beads have expanded on you just use the spoon to press them back down after you get the tips back in place.
Having become rather good a fixxin' foam (DON'T ASK)
I would go with the hot water. Use a teapot so you can pour a thin slow steady stream and target areas that are compressed. Hot air can work also but this lets you be more precise. Let it dry for a couple days then repair any breaks/cracks with glue of choice. The spoon trick mentioned sounds good just be aware it'll work best while the foam is still fairly warm. Try a really COLD spoon??? Let us know if it works better
Don't forget to rebalance wing tip to wing tip
Old Dec 04, 2011, 11:41 AM
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Well .... did it work?

Old Dec 05, 2011, 11:28 AM
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I am still taking notes from all of everyone's ideas! I think I will try the hot water first...I will let everyone know how it turns out.

Thanks!
Old Dec 05, 2011, 03:39 PM
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My preference is to use steam. Any old tea kettle will do.


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