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BENCH BUDDY - new idea/accessory

Old 04-14-2013, 08:07 AM
  #1  
marc s
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Default BENCH BUDDY - new idea/accessory

A while back I was doing some work on my jet, I don't have room in the workshop for a bench and a dedicated jet stand so use the workbench top as the place of surgery - problem is making sure the jet is safe and at a height where its easy to work on.

Sure I could use sponge or pillows, carpet or a variety of other 'soft furnishings' but not all are ideal and not all hold the jet from rolling over should it be tilted. I tried one of the low jet stand products, but this made the the jet too high to work on so had a friend cnc an idea I had and this is it - the Bench Buddy

Kinda naff name but it had a tacky ring to it so for now that's what its going to be called.

Essentially it a cnc cut high quality closed cell foam rest, shaped with a shallow curve in the top face to cradle the jet fuselage, in addition to the curve it has a series of holes cut out, these weaken the foam allowing it to further compress where the loads are from the airframe shape resulting in a deeper cradle effect. I mounted the two foam cradles to a cnc cut MDF base, this is shaped to allow the corners of the frame to be fixed with screws to a work top or if needed a wooden carry frame, where the two slots cut at each end would allow a Velcro or strap to be passed down and back up for securing a fuselage to the bench buddy for transport.

The height allows good access when placed on a workbench, but also allows a safety space under the airframe for aerials or vents to remain clear from grounding.

Its a work in progress so comments and ideas on how to improve it are very welcome, depending on the final outcome and cost to manufacture I may look to add it to my shop as an accessory for those interested. My jet is a small 2m span sports jet and it sits nicely in place and when rocked is reluctant to roll over but moves back to its original position when released. It is designed to work with much large jets too.

marcs

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Old 04-14-2013, 08:28 AM
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Default RE: BENCH BUDDY - new idea/accessory

Great idea! I have a home made foam stand sort of like this one that I have used for some time. I wasn't smart enough to mount the foam on the base as you have done so I must be careful not to pull the foam over when I slide the whole thing around. You idea is simple and functional and will be really useful over a wide range of airframes.
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Old 04-14-2013, 08:30 AM
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Default RE: BENCH BUDDY - new idea/accessory

Great Idea,
Can I suggest you fix some of that anti-slip matting to the bottom.
John
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Old 04-14-2013, 08:31 AM
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Default RE: BENCH BUDDY - new idea/accessory

Marc,

A very cool idea and it looks great. A possible suggestion would be to offer different sizes of foam or perhaps one piece like you have with more of a U-shape on one side that could be "flipped" to give more height if needed.

Just "thinking out loud".

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Old 04-14-2013, 08:40 AM
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Default RE: BENCH BUDDY - new idea/accessory

really useful over a wide range of airframes
Yes wanted to try to get a 'one size fits all'

Can I suggest you fix some of that anti-slip matting to the bottom
John this job might be better done by the user, the tool drawer liner matting is great for this, a few dabs of cyano and job done

A possible suggestion would be to offer different sizes of foam or perhaps one piece like you have with more of a U-shape on one side that could be "flipped" to give more height if needed.
George, interesting, and yes bound to be different height needs, the issue is the foam needs to be glued into the base to stop it popping out when you move the jet so might be tricky to cover this but nothing stopping you adding height to the Bench Buddy itself either via feet you can add by screwing them into the holes at each corner or maybe I can make slot in extender legs to give a few height options......

marcs

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Old 04-14-2013, 08:49 AM
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Default RE: BENCH BUDDY - new idea/accessory

Another great idea Mark, would it also work with a wing?

Rob.
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Old 04-14-2013, 09:05 AM
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Default RE: BENCH BUDDY - new idea/accessory

Rob yes indeed.

marcs
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Old 04-14-2013, 09:44 AM
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Default RE: BENCH BUDDY - new idea/accessory

That would be nice in my trailer as well instead of the big foam pieces. Are you produce and sell these? I would take 6 of them :-)
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Old 04-14-2013, 10:32 AM
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Default RE: BENCH BUDDY - new idea/accessory

looks good I'll take a pair
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Old 04-14-2013, 10:34 AM
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Default RE: BENCH BUDDY - new idea/accessory

Are you produce and sell these?
Possibly, will explore costs to make etc, a few tweaks here and there and if a few of you jet guys want some (subject to price naturally) I will make a small batch to see how they go.

marcs
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Old 04-14-2013, 05:18 PM
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Default RE: BENCH BUDDY - new idea/accessory

I could definitely use a few pairs. Some Extra small ones for Hotliner style models would be great as well!
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Old 04-14-2013, 06:17 PM
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Default RE: BENCH BUDDY - new idea/accessory

To adjust height could you make some snap on bases with the same or larger foot print and you go higher to stablize the stand kinda like Legos and use the same kind of foam to let them push together. Just a thought on the height issue.
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Old 04-15-2013, 06:02 AM
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Wayne22
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Default RE: BENCH BUDDY - new idea/accessory

brilliant, simple, functional, and adaptable.

I think you have all the bases covered and still give individual owners the freedom to customize it to meet their specific needs. It would be time consuming and diificult trying to create something that would fit 100% of the airframes and 100% of the pilots. You have covered a wide base of needs with this design.......lets get it into production!
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Old 04-15-2013, 07:35 AM
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Default RE: BENCH BUDDY - new idea/accessory


ORIGINAL: Wayne22

brilliant, simple, functional, and adaptable.

I think you have all the bases covered and still give individual owners the freedom to customize it to meet their specific needs. It would be time consuming and diificult trying to create something that would fit 100% of the airframes and 100% of the pilots. You have covered a wide base of needs with this design.......lets get it into production!

Exactly my thought. I think the one posted is perfect! Please let me know if you are going to sell them!
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Old 04-16-2013, 09:50 AM
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Default RE: BENCH BUDDY - new idea/accessory

I'll take a pair!.... Great idea!!

KennyMac
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Old 04-16-2013, 11:24 PM
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Default RE: BENCH BUDDY - new idea/accessory

Best original idea Ive seen for a while. Only thing I would add is a means to strap down the jet, say using stretch and velcro material to double as storage/transport rests.
Would work to transport in van, store on racks etc. So you could move the jet around with the rests attached making it an easy one man job.

My Euro is resting on pillows on a rack, this would be ideal. Brilliant!
Andre

Ok did not read properly...

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Old 04-17-2013, 01:17 AM
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Default RE: BENCH BUDDY - new idea/accessory

Appreciate the positive feedback guys

OK been thinking about the height thing, the design was initially done so when a jet is placed on a workbench on the Bench Buddy it would remain at a height that allowed access and ease of work, however for those who like the idea of having an option for a degree of height adjustment here is an idea.

If I offer an accessory pack which you can buy separately to the Bench Buddy that contains say 4 x adjustable feet and 4 x special inserts to allow these to fix to each corner of the BB along the lines of the picture attached would that tick boxes? If needed I could also add an option to add castor wheels too so the units could be wheeled around (will need to be a smooth surface to avoid the BB from twisting away from the fuselage) - thoughts?

Hope to have some idea on price in the next day or so too.

marcs

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Old 04-17-2013, 05:32 AM
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Default RE: BENCH BUDDY - new idea/accessory

Just a simple idea. You might offer the Bench Buddy as designed but in a couple of different heights as far as the foam cradle part goes. We could then purchase one set of each height and mix and match them to get different angles. I can see wanting at least two sets of these for bench work and plane transport anyway, so why not a couple or three heights to provide some extra flexibility.
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Old 04-17-2013, 05:56 AM
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Default RE: BENCH BUDDY - new idea/accessory

Its possible to make foam inserts in different heights, the issue is they need to be bonded to the base to make sure they are 100% secure, if people are happy to do this and have sets in different heights (bonded to the bases in each case) then that's easy to do - guess I need to see what others think.

Next question would be whats the max height needed?

marcs

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Old 04-17-2013, 06:15 AM
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Default RE: BENCH BUDDY - new idea/accessory

Marc,

Any way the base could me made from 2 parts - an upper and lower and a base of the foam sandwiched between the layers somehow? That way you could add new sized foam blocks.

Or why not use H/D velcro instead of gluing the foam down. Any load that's enough to pull off H/D velcro would likely knock the model off the foam first.....,

Cheers,
mark
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Old 04-17-2013, 08:34 AM
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Default RE: BENCH BUDDY - new idea/accessory

Marc,
How about just producing the foam sections, two sided as mentioned earlier, and a sketch for the base.
"Industrial" Velcro should secure the foam nicely for its intended use, and allow the user to flip the foam as needed - as well as move it closer together for more usefulness.
An added benefit is postage costs will be far more reasonable.....
Great idea, and I want a set!

Greg
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