Engine Test Stand building thread! - RC Groups
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Oct 10, 2005, 11:18 AM
Grumpa Tom
Kmot's Avatar

Engine Test Stand building thread!

Here's a new one for ya!

I designed a heavy duty model engine test stand 20+ years ago. I had some scrap lumber, some nails and a hammer, and a hand saw. I made a scale model of what I had in mind, from balsa and basswood. Then set about cutting wood, and nailing and screwing together my engine stand. Well, actually it is an engine stand "base". I used a wood test stand that was popular at the time. Here are some pics:

In 1996 I moved to another house and had nowhere else to store this old stand except outside. The weather took its toll and it became too rotten to use and was tossed in the 'bin". Lately, I have resorted to using a small child size wood bench:

I have recently completed a massive project of building 5 workbenches for my shop. And I had some 'scrap' lumber left over. This got me to thinking about another engine stand. Especially since I still have that scale model in my hobby room.

So, out came the measuring tape; the miter saw; the cordless drill with bits; the clamps; etc. This is version 2.0 (lol...) and it is slightly different (upgraded?) than before. I added additional bracing to the legs and made it wider to fit my PSP engine test plate. This one will also be painted to protect it from the elements as well as being stored inside a shed.

Off we go!

1) I cut two 2x4's to length and then used a power plane to square an edge of each. Then I used Liquid Nails adhesive and clamped them together:

Notice my old scale model on the bench:

2) Attaching the first of three cross braces. I used long drywall screws (better than wood screws!) and I rub them on a bar of soap to lube them and help ease them through deep holes:

3) The three bottom cross braces installed:

4) After cutting the legs to length, I mitered each edge at 45* so that it would fit the top of the stand as well as sit flat on the ground (unlike version 1.0). The first two of four legs installed:

5) All four legs installed and set on the ground:

6) The PSP Mfg test plate resting on the business end of the stand:

At this point, it was time to call it a day. During the night I was thinking about different ways to strengthen the legs and decided to install a cross brace to each pair of legs. Here it is so far with the leg cross braces installed and also the first coat of primer:

More to follow as the work progresses.

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Oct 10, 2005, 03:09 PM
Formerly of mcba fame
Matthew Allen's Avatar
Very nice work.

One thing: do you ever worry about your bigger engines simply pulling the test stand over? I've been considering options for a stand but this bugs me. Do we actually know that a big (say a 90 size four stroke or something) engine doesn't pull that hard? I guess that 2x4 is pretty heavy though.

I suppose I should actually work out the physics of it, but it seems like a lot of trouble.

Last edited by mcba; Oct 11, 2005 at 12:15 PM.
Oct 10, 2005, 05:21 PM
Grumpa Tom
Kmot's Avatar
Mathew, from my experience no it will not.

The engine is in the same plane as the top of the stand. If anything, it would pull straight ahead. But, the friction of the wood on the ground/grass/dirt prevents that.

If there is ever any doubt, just place your gallon fuel can on top of the stand at the opposite end and there is no way it will 'pull over'. In addition to that, since this newest version has the cross braces on the legs it would be an easy matter to tie them down; add something heavy to sit on them, etc.

Thanks for the compliment!

The second coat of primer is drying right now.
Oct 10, 2005, 08:22 PM
In Massive Debt
Very nice work

I dunno though, looks a little small for my supertigre g4500
Oct 10, 2005, 08:36 PM
Grumpa Tom
Kmot's Avatar
Originally Posted by blizzardwarrior7
Very nice work

I dunno though, looks a little small for my supertigre g4500
Not at all. And, if you go to PSP's site you can see the add on fixture that allows their test plate to hold chainsaw size engines.

BTW, as it sits there is clearance for a 32" diameter prop.

Here is the first color coat. Safety Yellow!

Thanks for the compliment bw7!
Oct 11, 2005, 11:19 AM
3 cylinders or more...
Radial power's Avatar
Really nice work Kmot! Probably I'll need a test stand soon, so I may copy your project (is there any copyright???? ).

Back to the big engines problem, there would be a simple solution: instead of a fuel jug, use a sandbag to keep the rear end down (this way it should be slightly safer), and if you fear that your stand may slide forward, put two big nails through the tips of the front legs into the ground.

Just a couple of suggestions that came into my mind reading this thread.

Oct 11, 2005, 06:54 PM
Grumpa Tom
Kmot's Avatar
Thank you Radial! No, there is not a copyright so you need not fear the lawyers.

The sandbag is a very good option. So is just tying a rope around the back leg brace to the nearest tree.

Here are the latest pics. Got the belly of the beast painted with the first coat of color:

It's slow going now because each coat of paint must dry overnight.
Oct 11, 2005, 09:14 PM
Grumpa Tom
Kmot's Avatar
Well, I wanted to show what it will look like when it's finished. So I just rested the PSP engine test plate on top of my stand. That is a Saito 1.20 with a 14" prop.

You can also see it has a very slight slant to the rear. It is 1" lower in the rear than the front to give the prop a slight upward angle.

I've got a few more ideas for this before it is finished. More to come!
Oct 12, 2005, 01:29 PM
Formerly of mcba fame
Matthew Allen's Avatar
Wow - looks great. I love the colour.

Oct 14, 2005, 09:14 PM
Grumpa Tom
Kmot's Avatar
Thanks Matthew!

Sorry guys, more pics!

Right, I placed some anti-skid rubbers on the feet of the legs. Think I will double them up but for now.......

Marked the holes to be drilled for the PSP test plate:

Test plate base mounted:

Because of the threat of rain I had to put everything up. I have a couple more ideas and details I am thinking of doing but basically it is finished and ready to run engines!

Oct 17, 2005, 07:28 AM
Rehab is for quitters
LuckyArmpit's Avatar
I'll bet take-offs and landings are a might difficult with this setup!

Oct 17, 2005, 09:41 AM
Grumpa Tom
Kmot's Avatar

I bet if I put wheels on it, my 4 year old grandaughter could ride it!
Oct 29, 2005, 11:28 PM
Grumpa Tom
Kmot's Avatar
Here is my stand in action, boys!

May 03, 2006, 08:37 AM
jimi hendrix
May 06, 2006, 01:35 PM
jimi hendrix
om going to start makin one today!
once it stops raining!

how high is yous off the ground?

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