RCUniverse.com Review of RTL Fasteners Assortment Kits
Review by Andrew Griffith (BarracudaHockey)
your hardware organizer look like either of the two
pictures above (left and center)? Unfortunately
this situation is pretty common for someone that has
been around our great hobby for few years. The center
picture was actually my pathetic attempt to organize
some of the hardware that has been laying around my
workbench, in plastic servo boxes and ziplock bags,
or buried at the bottom of my field box for ages.
About the best thing I can say about my "organizer"
is most of the washers are in the same place as are
most of the bolts. The bad thing is that I have
no idea whether they are metric, standard, or something
is nothing worse than working on a new model late at
night and having to stop because you can't find
the right size or length screw or you can find a screw
but have every size nut but the one you need.
came a chance to review a couple of RTL Fasteners hardware
kits! All of the sudden my hobby hardware collection
looks like the right hand photo. This is a double
edge sword though, now that I have the organized kits,
I'll be spending money on a few more to round out
my needs. Once I had everything at my fingers,
organized by size and use, it will be hard to go back
to the old way.
used RTL Fasteners before and even without the organizer
set, it is easier to have their bags of hardware neatly
labeled and stored in re-sealable bags even if those
bags are floating around the bottom of my flight box!
It's nice to be able to order screws in usable quantities
for a reasonable price instead of the "4 screws
for a dollar" that a lot of hobby hardware is packaged
Brass Phillips Wood Screw assortment contains a number
of useful Phillips head wood screws and includes a handy
clear plastic organizer. The organizer (pictured
below) has lots of slots and dividers that allow you
to configure them in any number of ways. Another
nice feature of the organizer is that you can turn it
upside down and shake it, and even the smallest screws
stay put in their compartments.
screws are all brass pan head style and come in #0,
#1, and #2 size. There are six compartments and
you get bags of 50 screws each from the diminutive 1/4"
long wood screws up to 1/2" long. RTL even
includes a map that suggests the most efficient layout
for organizing your new screw assortment in its container.
screws can be hard to find and are a lot smaller than
anything you generally find at hardware stores and the
like. One area I have seen these used
to excellent effect is in constructing cockpits of WW
I era civilian and military aircraft. This set would
be especially attractive to model boat builders for
attaching small deck fittings and the like.
starts at size #0 with more pan head brass screws and
a bag of the always useful but almost impossible to find
at the bottom of a tin #0 flat washers.
The 2-56 hardware
used in the popular 40 and 60 size airplanes is well represented
with hex nuts, lock nuts, blind nuts, bolts ranging from
1/4" long to 1", and washers for every occasion.
Of special interest in this section are what are quite
possibly the handiest screws in the whole collection.
Servo screws with the built in washer that have a hex
head so they can be installed and removed with hex drivers
instead of Phillips screw drivers. If there are
two items in the supplied kit that I will be ordering
more of right away, these are one of them. (Bonded
washers featured later are the other)
We all know
how much of a pain it is to install Phillips screws if
you don't have a straight shot at the screw.
Installing and removing these little babies with a ball
end hex driver will be a breeze. Even with straight
on access to the screw, it's easy to strip out Phillips
screw heads, these are definitely the ticket!
to the second organizer we find the #4 size hardware.
Plenty of nuts, lock nuts, blind nuts, and washers are
provided. 4-40 size hex head bolts starting at 1/4"
are provided in incrementing sizes up to 1 1/2" long.
This organizer provides an empty slot for something they
sent me that isn't included in the builders assortments
but once you use a few you'll be ordering a bag of
them; steel bonded washers. More on these later.
The nice thing
about reaching the last two organizers is the hardware
is bigger so you don't have to put as many dividers
to the organizers and the hardware, RTL also included
a telescoping magnet tool to retrieve small pieces that
always seem to end up in the most inconvenient places.
I've already used this so many times I don't know
how I have gotten along without one for all these years.
the years I have seen a number of tricks to keep fiberglass
cowls to stay attached without rounding out the screw hole.
The popular options are to epoxy a CA hinge on the inside
of the cowl, and to drill out the screw hole and epoxy or
CA a piece of inner yellow nyrod tubing in the hole, extending
out of the fuselage the thickness of the cowl plus a hair
(yes, that's a scientific measurement!).
washers will attach the cowl without crushing the fiberglass,
and the rubber will make them stay put eliminating the need
to thread lock the bolts. I've used these on 4
50cc gas planes so far for the cowl, canopy, and stabilizer
bolts and have yet to have one back out. It's
obvious they are catching on as the recently reviewed Hangar
9 Pawnee included them in the kit to secure the hatch and
cowl (pictured above). Another area these could be
useful is for canopies that are held on by screws.
As with the fiberglass cowl, the rubber side should secure
the plastic and keep it from moving around and being cracked
by the attaching bolt. As I said before, in addition
to the servo screws, I've already ordered a couple of
bags of these.
they aren't included in the builder assortment, the
organizer for the #4 hardware has an empty spot that is
perfect for the bonded washers.
The comments, observations and conclusions made in this review are solely with respect to the particular item the editor reviewed and may not apply generally to similar products by the manufacturer. We cannot be responsible for any manufacturer defects in workmanship or other deficiencies in products like the one featured in the review.