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Z-bends...yes or no?

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Old 01-14-2008, 05:47 PM
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green river rc
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Default Z-bends...yes or no?

I have used about everything there is to connect push rods to control horns and servo horns on many types of planes, just wondering what you think of z-bends. I keep using them because I can't think of a reason to stop, on top of that the price is right.
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Old 01-14-2008, 05:58 PM
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Default RE: Z-bends...yes or no?

on sport type stand off scale type they are fine ,but if you are into ssspeed or precision aerobatics[pattern] they allow a bit of slop in the servo horn connection,not much.this occurs due to the 90 degree bend going through the hole causing it to strech[elongate]
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Old 01-14-2008, 06:02 PM
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Default RE: Z-bends...yes or no?

I agree! Most ARFs now come with EZ links, which are basically the same thing, only replacing one of the bends with a plastic clip. I might use a different (stronger) method on bigger airplanes, to get the thrust line inline with the servo arm or horn. Even so, this method is pretty much fool proof!
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Old 01-14-2008, 06:03 PM
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exeter_acres
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Default RE: Z-bends...yes or no?

agreed...
but one way to take a bit of slop out is to use Dubro keepers (I think they cal them EZ links)
they will hold the z-bend a bit tighter... but for anything "truer" (is that a word) a different system is needed
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Old 01-14-2008, 06:40 PM
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Default RE: Z-bends...yes or no?

I think the only place I ever used a true Z bend was on the engine throttle arm. But, it did not go through the throttle arm. Instead it was attached via a Dubro or Great Planes EZ pushrod connector. The Z bend offset moved the pushrod to the proper position so as to be in-line with the connector when the hole in the firewall was only 'so' close. It also allowed for a little give at max and min throw since my first radio did not have adjustable endpoints - only trim pots. I predominately use the EZ connectors - not one failure. Ball links have their place too!

I have used the quick links also. So I guess you might say I've used "L" bends! A little dab of super lube and friction is reduced so the hole won't elongate quickly. They are decent for those installations that are VERY tight where anything protruding above the servo arm would/might cause problems.

If you like'em, use'em.

BTW, I don't think everyone is on the same page with regards to the names of the connectors! [:-]

The EZ Connectors are the round or square metal pieces with a hole through the center of the post for the pushrod to go through and a set screw to hold it in place. The post has a pin on the bottom which goes through a hole in the control horn.
EZ Links or Quick Links are the plastic ones that use an "L" bend to hook into the control horn.
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Old 01-15-2008, 02:22 AM
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Default RE: Z-bends...yes or no?

I have used z bins for years. I just make sure there are very snug in the arem. not so snug that they bend when the arme moves but no slop. Works great on all my glow but with my gas I run horns.

I will only run ez connectors on my throttle. ex connectors give way way to ez. I call them ez crash.

Paul
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Old 01-15-2008, 07:35 AM
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Default RE: Z-bends...yes or no?

I've used Z-bends, Quck links-Ez Links for decades without incidence on all conrtrol surfaces on many of my airplanes. However, I feel the same as KI8FR does about the above, with the EZ connectors (as described by Jazzy) and only use them on the throttle!

To each his own.
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Old 01-15-2008, 08:28 AM
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BalsaBob
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Default RE: Z-bends...yes or no?

Use caution on the type of rod/wire that is being 'Z-bended'. In some kits and ARF's the wire they provide is cheap/brittle (I am not sure what type of metal they are using). The rod/wire will Z bend .... but it is very very weak (I actually snapped one with my fingers). Bob
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Old 01-15-2008, 12:24 PM
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Default RE: Z-bends...yes or no?

Definitely NOT! To some of us, it is a matter of professionalism, you will never find such a crude thing in any high quality machine or equipment, certainly not in full scale commercial or military aviation, Mil Spec, medical, etc.
On the purely practical side, the pin part of the bend is seldom at a true 90 degrees to the long part, and thus will not bear perfectly in the servo arm or control horn hole. You have to force it in place, thereby distorting the plastic part. To make it go in easier, you have to enlarge the hole, with slop resulting. If the hole is smaller, you wind up with binding which will affect control precision.
More practical - on profiles, foam toys and other flying junk, probably OK, but on any serious airplane to be proud of, never!
Saving money is a consideration - try a perfect 90 degree bend secured in place with a Hayes Products - or similar - push-on collar.
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Old 01-15-2008, 02:18 PM
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daven
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Default RE: Z-bends...yes or no?

If they work for you, no need to change.

I use z-bends all the time, and rarely notice the "slop" everyone keeps telling me will eventually happen. When and if I notice it, I change the servo arm.

Z-bends are often used on high performance racing airplanes with great success.
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Old 01-15-2008, 03:40 PM
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Default RE: Z-bends...yes or no?

Well I guess all of my planes are "flying junk" because I think they all have a z bend or two in them. I have used them for years and like daven says if they are installed correctly, you don't have any slop or binding. I have had ball joints pull out, clevises break but can't remember a z bend failure. I do agree with balsabob, you need to consider the wire you are bending. The soft control link wire works best, like Dubro's.
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Old 01-15-2008, 06:16 PM
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Default RE: Z-bends...yes or no?

ORIGINAL: EloyM

Definitely NOT! To some of us, it is a matter of professionalism, you will never find such a crude thing in any high quality machine or equipment, certainly not in full scale commercial or military aviation, Mil Spec, medical, etc.
On the purely practical side, the pin part of the bend is seldom at a true 90 degrees to the long part, and thus will not bear perfectly in the servo arm or control horn hole. You have to force it in place, thereby distorting the plastic part. To make it go in easier, you have to enlarge the hole, with slop resulting. If the hole is smaller, you wind up with binding which will affect control precision.
More practical - on profiles, foam toys and other flying junk, probably OK, but on any serious airplane to be proud of, never!
Saving money is a consideration - try a perfect 90 degree bend secured in place with a Hayes Products - or similar - push-on collar.
Simply put: HOG WASH! EloyM, If you are what professionalism is all about, I'll stick with building flying junk! 95% of the R/C airplanes flying today are using Z-bends or 90 degree bends with plastic keepers; so, statistically your opinion doesn't hold water!

Why does this happen so often on R/CU? I nice conversation is going on and someone comes along and slams down their opinion like a ton of "stinking" garbage. It's not just their opinion, but it's a statement that everyone who has a different opinion, is a moron!

The honest to Gosh truth of the matter Mr. EloyM is, far and away most of us are not impressed with your caustic, egotistical opinions. If your the Eloy M. who has written many articles in Model Airplane Magazines, Shame on you!
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Old 01-15-2008, 06:50 PM
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Default RE: Z-bends...yes or no?

What a crock! Nothing wrong with z-bends at all!!
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Old 01-15-2008, 06:59 PM
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Default RE: Z-bends...yes or no?

I have had cheap wire break when using z pliers more than once; needle nose pliers are can make it sloppy if you don't get it just right. I always end up putting them somewhere I cant get to them and end up regretting it. I just don't learn.
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Old 01-15-2008, 07:42 PM
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Default RE: Z-bends...yes or no?

I am unprofessional I use z bends
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Old 01-16-2008, 03:56 AM
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Default RE: Z-bends...yes or no?

z bends for me too,i have them on everything from small foamies to 120 mph hotliners and have never had a single problem.
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Old 01-16-2008, 10:55 AM
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Default RE: Z-bends...yes or no?

I used "Z" bends for years. They are fine for a sport plane. If you start flying 3D type planes with huge control surfaces. The "Z" bends are just to sloppy. I tiny bit of play at the control horn is a bunch of play 4" back.

David
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Old 01-16-2008, 06:37 PM
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Default RE: Z-bends...yes or no?

I will only run ez connectors on my throttle. ex connectors give way way to ez. I call them ez crash.
Proper installation would prevent them fromcoming out/apart. There are ones that have a metal keeper that gets pushed onto the post after going through the servo arm and there are some with a black plastic disk that you push on. The metal disk will NOT come off without destroying the connector or the servo arm (i forgot what they're actually called). A drop of CA on the black plastic disk after installation secures it VERY well to the post.
World Model aircraft used to come with basically the same things except the post was partially threaded to accept a nut that bottomed out right at the thickness of the servo arm. Nice engineering. A drop of CA on that and it is basically permanent.

Like I said, not a single failure.

I must fly junk too[&o]
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Old 01-16-2008, 06:40 PM
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Default RE: Z-bends...yes or no?

Z Bends are the best. Tha'ts the only type of bend you should use because they are almost impossible to come out. When i crashed my airplane i had the pushrod with a 90 degree bend with a special keeper. Unfortunatley it started coming off and i lost elevator control and the airplane crashed.
Stick with Z bends!
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Old 01-16-2008, 09:20 PM
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Default RE: Z-bends...yes or no?

a lot has to do with the tool used for making them.I use these but they are no longer in production,they also cut 2 sizes of music wire with straight ends by shearing.I think they are better than the jaw type pliers.
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Old 01-17-2008, 10:59 AM
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Default RE: Z-bends...yes or no?

EloyM! Writer? Guilty!
And if it is a crime to take a pofessional approach to building an R/C airplane, to install the all-important control system with the least possible binding or slop, I plead guilty for that also.
And I have to ask again, show me a high grade, high quality, precision piece of equipment that uses anything as crude!
Forgive them God, they know not what they do!
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Old 01-17-2008, 11:40 AM
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Default RE: Z-bends...yes or no?

I think the point is that most people dont feel its very professional to take such a high and mighty approach. Im sure it must feel nice to be so superior, but frankly, I think it makes you look like an arrogant jerk.

You talk as if we should all have degrees in engineering and be flying $20,000 precision planes if we're to be good enough for this hobby.

Forgive them? Give me a break.

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Old 01-17-2008, 01:54 PM
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Default RE: Z-bends...yes or no?

I have a feeling that a lot of the heat is coming from people that have taken offense because they don't believe they are using an inferior method of attaching wire to a control horn. As for "90%" of the planes are currently using zee bends, I'd like to know how that percentage was derived, not that it matters at all.

Now those using wood or nylon control horns could easily fit into a group that used zee bends but those flying gas giants or large 3d aerobats with longer metal servo arms most certainly are not. The gas giant/3d group makes up a pretty fair sized percentage of rc modelers at the moment. This group of people have a requirement to eliminate any metal to metal connections so a zee bend into a metal control arm is out of the question.

If you are using a control horn such as wood or nylon where a zee bend is practical then it's simply a fact of life that the bend will enlarge the hole in the horn over a given period of control cycles. That's just the way it works and there's no avoiding it. It's a simple attachment method that's quite effective under given conditions but can be better. I have to agree to a great extent with EloyM in that, at least for me, they would only be used in planes that were small and inexpensive enough for me to consider disposable, like foamies, and if there was no better way to connect the linkages. As for "Easy Connectors", those are items that I won't use at all. I've lost planes becasue a set screw vibrated out of a connector in 2 and 4 stroke glow aircraft. Never again.

Now if you have an average sized plane that uses control horns that can effectively use a zee bend, by all means use them if you're so inclined. Most planes don't last long enough to wear out the horns when using zee bends anyway. You know better than anyone how much money you want to put into a plane and what kind of performance you're willing to settle on. When you move up to heavier iron where you have a few grand wrapped up in them, and using better than average equipment, I'm willing to bet you stop using the low budget methods though. You will immediately notice the difference in control performance.
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Old 01-17-2008, 05:49 PM
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Default RE: Z-bends...yes or no?

The 90 % included 90 degree bends with a snapper-keeper/EZ link/EZ keeper as the keeper method. 90% of the planes flying today are ARFs in the .30 to .90 size range, which use this method at the servo, almost exclusively!

Eloy, all the respect I had for you as a writer has deminished because of your excessivly high opinion of yourself and the fact that you are so wrong over this point!
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Old 01-17-2008, 05:51 PM
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Default RE: Z-bends...yes or no?

Forgive them God, they know not what they do!
Very appropriate if used in a SPAD!
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