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Rubber Bands or Bolts?

Old 09-16-2003, 09:03 AM
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pixelator
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Default Rubber Bands or Bolts?

Ok, I thought I was out of questions, but I came up with another one.

Someone somewhere said that Rubber Bands on the wings are good for trainers, but won't allow aerobatics? Or they will, but the Bands will stretch?

Is there a way to convert a Rubber Band wing setup to a Bolt type? If so, how difficult would this be? (on a basic trainer, I have an Avistar) Would there be any downsides to this, other than the loss of flex upon crashes?

Thanks in advance... again.
Old 09-16-2003, 09:15 AM
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Montague
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Default RE: Rubber Bands or Bolts?

I don't know who told you that rubber bands are bad for acrobatics, but they are wrong.

I use rubber bands on all my combat planes. They are high or shoulder wing planes (just for convience), so the bands are holding on the wing. We pull more Gs on a regular basis than just about anyone else out there. Maybe the Pylon guys are in the same range as we are in combat. But you can be sure that we pull many more Gs than your trainer would even think of. If you're going to really wring it out, you can add an extra couple of bands, but that's not always necessary. Just keep in mind that too many rubber bands will mean the wing can't shift when it needs to.

If you don't have enough bands on the plane, or the dowls are set too close, it's possible to get the wing to lift a little in a high G pull.

I will say that rubber bands are a royal pain, and once you get to the point that you aren't worried about dorking up a landing or takeoff, it's nice to ditch the rubber bands.
Old 09-16-2003, 09:25 AM
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MinnFlyer
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Default RE: Rubber Bands or Bolts?

Ditto. Plan on using the bands for your first plane or two.

When you are confident enough in your flying that you are willing to risk splitting you Fuse wide open because of a mistake, make the switch.
Old 09-16-2003, 09:39 AM
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Default RE: Rubber Bands or Bolts?

I use rubber bands on my Alpha and I have not had any problems with the wing lifting up off of the wing saddle. Even if I am doing negative G maneuvers, however I am getting kind of tired of using the rubber bands, so I am contemplating on adding wing bolts at the same time that I add a 2nd aileron servo. As far as converting the avistar I really don't have any experience with that aircraft , but if it is similar to my alpha then it should not be any problem. Whatever your decision , may you soar with the eagles with your feet firmly planted on terra firma.
Old 09-16-2003, 09:46 AM
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Montague
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Default RE: Rubber Bands or Bolts?

Eagles may soar, but weasles don't get sucked in to jet engines.

Sorry, couldn't resist
Old 09-16-2003, 11:13 AM
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Mike in DC
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Default RE: Rubber Bands or Bolts?

ORIGINAL: pixelator
Would there be any downsides to this, other than the loss of flex upon crashes?
Probably not, but it's a huge downside. If you use nylon bolts, and you size them exactly right, you can get a similar protection with bolts, but nothing beats rubber bands to save the plane in a crash. I have studied a lot of crashes (most of them mine), and I'm convinced a lot of the damage is caused by the wing being rigidly connected to the fuse. The wings on most of the planes we fly, while being very light weight, are also very strong. In a crash, frequently a wing tip hits first, and the weight of the engine and the rigid connection of the wing to the fuse can really destroy the fuse between the firewall and the leading edge. This happens even in a crash that the plane should easily survive. With rubber bands, you eliminate this rigid coupling, and frequently save the plane. Yes, putting on 10 rubber bands is a bit of a pain, but the bolts aren't all that much fun either, and rebuilding planes after minor crashes is a huge pain.
Old 09-16-2003, 01:33 PM
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Default RE: Rubber Bands or Bolts?

I was flying my trainer (Avistar) at our club field one day and the owner of the LHS came up and asked me how many rubber bands I had on the wing. I thought he was testing me since I was relatively new. I told him 10 and he asked if he could fly it. The next 5-10 mins was the best display of aerobatics I have ever seen with a trainer. At the end, he handed me the radio back and said: "See I told you that trainers can handle more than most people believe." Just make sure you have plenty of them on.
Old 09-16-2003, 03:56 PM
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I Got Hit
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Default RE: Rubber Bands or Bolts?

Bolts are cool, much easier to install the wing, wont get slippery with fuel.
Old 10-06-2003, 08:45 PM
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mikenrhtx
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Default RE: Rubber Bands or Bolts?

Keep the rubber bands if you have any doubts about your flying or landing abilities. But no matter what anyone says cut them off when you remove them from the wing and throw away the used bands. A lot of people like to recycle them by putting them into alcohol or baby powder. What a mess!!! You can buy a pound of #64's for two or three bucks at the office supply or you can support your hobby shop buying them at one quarter pound for the same price.
Old 10-06-2003, 10:24 PM
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Spaceclam
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Default RE: Rubber Bands or Bolts?

even if rubber bands work, if i got into extreme aerobatics or 3d i would definatly go with the bolts for several reasons.
#1 there is no way the wing will shift if you have a hard touch and go or something.
#2 sometimes if you put more rubber bands on to make it stiffer, it will pull the covering back and make unsigltly streach marks and crumples.\
#, you shouldn't worry about your fuse splitting wide open because if you get into that kind of flying you shouldn't have too many crashes, and even with a rubber band plane an uncontrolled crash (ie a radio hit, midair etc) will not be left in one piece so as soon as you are confidant in your flying skills, i agree, make the switch
Old 10-07-2003, 02:49 PM
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ballgunner
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Default RE: Rubber Bands or Bolts?

Bolts generally contribute to the appearance of your model. There is something to be said for each method of wing attachment. The main problem seems to be reusing the same bands over and over. mikenrhtx said it all. Use them once and toss 'em. I keep spares in the refrigerator. Don't know if it makes any difference in their longevity, it's just that I thought it would. In any case the only model I have that uses gummi bands is a sailplane. Converted everything elso to bolts and do the same with each new airplane.
Old 10-07-2003, 03:29 PM
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gnyberg
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Default RE: Rubber Bands or Bolts?

I've had the front of the Avistar wing lift up at the bottom of a loop and turning a tight turn (I fly a little agressively with the "trainer"). Causes the plane to pull up harder, stretches bands more, pulls up harder, etc. It was very scary.. Easy to snap the wing if you are too fast.

Now I use so many bands that it can't be any better than bolts in terms of crash protection.. My idea: put a dowel (or two?) through the front of the wing (all the way in to the spar I suppose) and through the bulkhead right in front of the wing to keep the LE from coming up, and leave the bands on there as well, but use less.. I want the crash protection but I wont fly unless I know the LE isn't going to come up.

Thoughts?
Old 10-07-2003, 05:31 PM
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Mike_Mc
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Default RE: Rubber Bands or Bolts?

How many bands on the Avistar. My short lived plane had 8. I would go into a gentle turn and all of a sudden it would pull super hard and I'd have to shove the stick forward. In the end I had the DR set so the elivator only moved about 1/8 inch up and down and it still did it. Is this because the front of the wing lifted up? My son nick named it the Crazy-8 plane.
Old 10-07-2003, 07:06 PM
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Spaceclam
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Default RE: Rubber Bands or Bolts?

probably. if you put dowels going into the bulkhead from the wing to keep the le down, you may as well put on bolts because they look so much better.
Old 10-08-2003, 06:25 PM
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gnyberg
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Default RE: Rubber Bands or Bolts?

ORIGINAL: Mike_Mc

How many bands on the Avistar. My short lived plane had 8. I would go into a gentle turn and all of a sudden it would pull super hard and I'd have to shove the stick forward. In the end I had the DR set so the elivator only moved about 1/8 inch up and down and it still did it. Is this because the front of the wing lifted up? My son nick named it the Crazy-8 plane.
Sure sounds familiar.. Unless it was a gust or radio hit, that kind of sudden pull up was probably the LE coming up. The number of bands is kindof misleading because there is a huge (in my experience) variation in the tension of #64 bands even brand new. And when you start reusing them it gets even worse. I probably use 20 now, of mixed age/tension, but more importantly I hold down the fuse and try to lift the LE of the wing up with 10-15 lbs of force, about 2-3x weight, and it better not come up more than a tiny bit.

ORIGINAL: Spaceclam

if you put dowels going into the bulkhead from the wing to keep the le down, you may as well put on bolts because they look so much better
You are probably right.. I just didn't want to have to do that much work (reinforcing TE where bolts go through, doublers in fuse, etc).
Old 10-08-2003, 07:27 PM
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Spaceclam
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Default RE: Rubber Bands or Bolts?

to be really honest, if you are pulling enough gs to lift the le off the trainer, you are in need of a new plane.
Old 10-09-2003, 12:05 PM
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Default RE: Rubber Bands or Bolts?

Well said space clam.... usually we put between 6 to 8 bands on trainer and some low wing 2nd planes.. micture of new and used.. discard any thing with nicks on it and go flying the wing hasn't move (or at leats moved enough to change atttitude) but on a couple of eagles the fuselage cracked from the repeated tension and 2 planes were lost... the rubber bands were ok upon salvage...
on the other hand they have saved the planes many times while training newbies
Old 10-09-2003, 12:13 PM
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ekrcflyer
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Default RE: Rubber Bands or Bolts?

I don't think this matters that much, and as other guys already said: you will be able to do aerobatics on any plane.
It's up to you to decide but either one will be just fine...
Converting "rubber band" wings to bolted ones... it can be done and it's relatively easy, but I would suggest that you need to gain some experience building airplanes (at least from kits) and then "the sky is limit".
Old 10-10-2003, 07:09 PM
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Geistware
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Default RE: Rubber Bands or Bolts?

I have seen a 33% extra whose wingsd were held on with rubberbands. The rotation pins kept it from spinning around the wingtube and the rubber bands held the wings tight to the fuselage.


ORIGINAL: pixelator
Someone somewhere said that Rubber Bands on the wings are good for trainers, but won't allow aerobatics? Or they will, but the Bands will stretch?
Old 10-10-2003, 08:50 PM
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WCB
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Default RE: Rubber Bands or Bolts?

If you put on enough rubber bands to firmly secure the wing in place chances are that if you hit the wing hard enough to dislodge it is going to break anyway. If it is just a slight mishap the bands might allow the wing to move enough to absorb it. That is both sides of the argument. I got tired of messing with the rubber bands and decided to chance it with nylon bolts. I hit a fence post after a low speed low altitude dead stick at the end of the runway. Sheared the nylon bolts right off. The wing was unhurt.
Old 10-10-2003, 09:46 PM
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Spaceclam
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Default RE: Rubber Bands or Bolts?

that is why nylon bolts are nice. they are impossible to pull apart, and when you hit something, nylon bolts are the way to go. they should however be replaced from time to time. they are also a lot lighter. brass bolts weigh more, but if your nylon bolts keep stripping because they are cheap ones, then a brass bolt will do you just fine

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