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Dec 13, 2016, 04:04 AM
Registered User
Question

Building Jigs? Brainstorming...


For several months as I have been building various boats, I have stumbled across many many ideas for building jigs. But except for the Model Shipways Fair-a-Plank system, I have not found anything "commercially" available out there.

There are some AMAZING systems out there for building airplanes. But it seems nothing much for boats. The Shipways setup is cheap and cheerful. But I can't find any videos or pictures of it in use to determine if it is even worth that small amount. It appears to only be intended for initial setup of bulkheads and keel, as the couple manufacturer pictures show a boat being assembled with keel down. And there are keel clamps. The base is also only 24" long. Might not be an issue as one can move things downward.

If there was a system that was reasonable, and did planes and boats, I would seriously consider it. Otherwise, I would love to see some ideas for simple, yet adjustable jigs. Realistically, I am sure I will be going for a nice DIY solution. But slightly more thought out than just blocks screwed to MDF or similar. Although that could work too I guess.

I have two goals. Ideally, I would like to see these combined into one setup. A building jig for bulkheads. And a setup or platform of some sort to assist with aligning hull, fin, rudder. I really don't think the two are combinable though.

I would really like to get my hands on the drilled aluminum grid they use in labs for setting up lasers and optics. I can find it shown in lab experiment kits, but not available separately. Pegboard might be too flimsy...

Anyways, thinking out loud here. Especially curious as to methods used by you guys to setup all the alignments.
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Dec 13, 2016, 05:45 AM
Thomas Armstrong
Quote:
Originally Posted by BiggsDarkLighter
For several months as I have been building various boats, I have stumbled across many many ideas for building jigs. But except for the Model Shipways Fair-a-Plank system, I have not found anything "commercially" available out there.

There are some AMAZING systems out there for building airplanes. But it seems nothing much for boats. The Shipways setup is cheap and cheerful. But I can't find any videos or pictures of it in use to determine if it is even worth that small amount. It appears to only be intended for initial setup of bulkheads and keel, as the couple manufacturer pictures show a boat being assembled with keel down. And there are keel clamps. The base is also only 24" long. Might not be an issue as one can move things downward.

If there was a system that was reasonable, and did planes and boats, I would seriously consider it. Otherwise, I would love to see some ideas for simple, yet adjustable jigs. Realistically, I am sure I will be going for a nice DIY solution. But slightly more thought out than just blocks screwed to MDF or similar. Although that could work too I guess.

I have two goals. Ideally, I would like to see these combined into one setup. A building jig for bulkheads. And a setup or platform of some sort to assist with aligning hull, fin, rudder. I really don't think the two are combinable though.

I would really like to get my hands on the drilled aluminum grid they use in labs for setting up lasers and optics. I can find it shown in lab experiment kits, but not available separately. Pegboard might be too flimsy...

Anyways, thinking out loud here. Especially curious as to methods used by you guys to setup all the alignments.
Sounds to me you are just overthinking this. Airplanes come in many different sizes and shapes, not so with boats. I've build several RG65 hulls, and as they are all same length, and almost all plans I've found have the spacing divisions (seems natural to have 65cm divided into 10 spaces), I build a single jig and used it every time. I'm sure same applies to other RC sailboat classes.

In fact, first RG65 I did with only 6 stations (5 spaces), thinking it would be enough. But for the second I added the rest to complete 11 stations (10 spaces) - much firmer build.

Dec 13, 2016, 06:34 AM
Registered User
Biggs

I use steel "H" section, 6" x 6", - this is very straight, flat, strong, rigid and not very expensive.
Dec 13, 2016, 10:48 AM
Registered User
A similar set up can be duplicated very quickly for any number of RC boats.

The problem is if it's worth doing it. If you plank one boat a month maybe yes, but otherwise, a simple setup like the one tarmstro posted is more than enough.
Dec 13, 2016, 11:15 AM
Registered User
Quote:
Originally Posted by tarmstro
Sounds to me you are just overthinking this....
I always do! I really like that setup you used! It is simple and adjustable. And one could easily just make a couple sets of holes for different spacings....
Quote:
Originally Posted by RW1966
Biggs

I use steel "H" section, 6" x 6", - this is very straight, flat, strong, rigid and not very expensive.
Found a couple options online quickly enough! In steel that would be roughly $30. Aluminum was $44. Unfortunately shipping for the steel was $45, aluminum was $25. So unless I can get local, that pits the price too high.

Tarmstro, what did you use for your base?

gio06226 I am also really liking the way Tarmstro built his setup!
Dec 13, 2016, 11:45 AM
Thomas Armstrong
Quote:
Originally Posted by BiggsDarkLighter
Tarmstro, what did you use for your base?
It's a 25mm "Trupan" piece, factory painted in white. It's made of wood fiber and some glue... It's sturdy yet easy to drill/screw on. I'm sure you can find something similar around you. The internal structure has no visible wood chops, just a smooth small grain that you can cut/drill/carve as any regular piece of wood, but softer/easier to work with...
Dec 13, 2016, 11:49 AM
Registered User
DLord's Avatar

Master Trimaran Jig


I went to a local Architectural Foam place and had them cut out a very large styrofoam jig that I used to assemble the Fire Arrow Trimaran. The boat was almost 7' wide and 5 ' long and so was the jig. I had them cut a slot in the middle I could use for a straight edge-you can see it sticking out in both pictures. The jig made getting the crossarm dihedral,ama angles and main hull angles possible. It was too big for my car and the styropeople delivered it!
Dec 13, 2016, 12:02 PM
Registered User
Quote:
Originally Posted by BiggsDarkLighter

gio06226 I am also really liking the way Tarmstro built his setup!
Good, if you want to make it "universal" just route two 1/4 inch groves on both side of the center line (parallel groves to each other and the center line) and use bolts to fix the shadows holders ...... or a T-Slot bar.

To stiffen the whole assembly you can add two 3/4 inch stringers under the board.
Dec 13, 2016, 02:29 PM
Registered User
Quote:
Originally Posted by DLord
I went to a local Architectural Foam place and had them cut out a very large styrofoam jig that I used to assemble the Fire Arrow Trimaran....
That is a really cool way to do it! I would be afraid to ask how much that one cost though LOL! Obviously for my purpose I need something a bit, smaller.

Quote:
Originally Posted by gio06226
Good, if you want to make it "universal" just route two 1/4 inch groves on both side of the center line (parallel groves to each other and the center line) and use bolts to fix the shadows holders ...... or a T-Slot bar. ...
Oh man this is the ticket to erector set BLISS! That wouldn't be too expensive, very sturdy, customizable 50 ways from Sunday, and well it just looks cool! The only problem with this idea, is I could spend hours/days just looking at the parts and picking goodies out... And on eBay, the prices are pretty good. I could easily setup multiple fixtures for side extensions, clamps, and alignment.

That right there is the brilliant idea I was hunting for! It will take a bit of study to sort out how to best connect everything and keep it super modular, yet squared. That is defiantly the right system for this idea.

Aluminum is cold though... I am going to combine it wood clamps the way tarmstro built his. That will "warm" it up a bit. And give softer surfaces for the wood. Mmmmm, the ideas are coming now!

In the meantime, now that I have an idea the direction I want to take. I need to make up some jigs today/tomorrow. I will give the other bits some study, and then go get wood for the clamping portions and temporarily bolt it up to something.
Last edited by BiggsDarkLighter; Dec 13, 2016 at 02:35 PM.
Dec 13, 2016, 03:38 PM
Registered User
It's probably better if you just finish and sail a boat. Then figure things out from there.
Dec 13, 2016, 03:42 PM
Registered User
That's way overdoing it, it could easier and faster doing it with two of those may bee longer or just this cutter and some 3/4 MDF or ply.
Dec 13, 2016, 05:45 PM
Registered User
DLord's Avatar

Styro Jig


It was around $38--much less expensive than I thought it would be.....
Dec 13, 2016, 06:01 PM
Registered User
hiljoball's Avatar

A fin alignment jig for IOMs - could be adapted for other classes


http://www.wcmya.ca/pop_topic_items/iom_fin_jig.pdf

This jig allows alignment of fin and ballast, including tip up on the bulb.

John
Dec 13, 2016, 06:51 PM
Registered User
The reason for the effort now, is the need for some sort of clamping system to attach the boats, and alignment lasers to. That and I like to make tools...

gio06226, that track and router bit would be a quick solution, if it were sitting on the shelf at Home Depot. But I have no router, or router table. And it doesn't give me the extra flexibility I want to setup my alignment jig... Once you take those things into account, the t-slot "erector set" system comes in a little cheaper too. With anything aligned with wood, squaring things up is also critical. The t-slot pieces are CNC cut and will square themselves taking out a major potential problem.

Anyways, for now all of this is thoughts and brainstorming to solve a couple problems. I also have been recently (yeah right, like forever ago lol) diagnosed with "Project ADD." A simple solution with lots of effort to implement it, usually fails when a more complex, but much less effort solution is available.

In the meantime, I grabbed some nice oak for the clamps and a piece I could use for a building board. Still need to sort out the hardware bits and grab some more parts. But this should solve tonights building problems at least. And will be using the clamps with any system I make up.
Dec 13, 2016, 06:53 PM
Registered User
Quote:
Originally Posted by hiljoball
http://www.wcmya.ca/pop_topic_items/iom_fin_jig.pdf

This jig allows alignment of fin and ballast, including tip up on the bulb.

John
THAT IS AWESOME! I am studying it now before I head back out!


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