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Rebuild classics in composite material

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Rebuild classics in composite material

Old 07-25-2007, 12:45 AM
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tracyreed
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Default Rebuild classics in composite material

For a long time now I have had the idea that it might be fun to try to rebuild some old balsa planes I have had in composite versions. I would be curious to see how much stronger/lighter I can make the design by going to new materials but maintaining the same basic design. I still have the plans of several old planes that I have enjoyed to build from. Some of these are former gas powered designs that I might like to convert to electric so weight is key.

The basic idea is to replace any wooden dowel with a same diameter piece of carbon fiber tube. Replace any 1/8" balsa sheet with a piece of glass or carbon laminated 1/8" foam. etc.

Is this crazy or pointless?

If not, what would be the best way to create the carbon/foam/carbon laminate? I am thinking about maybe just using some of the carbon fiber laminate sold by ACP and using it to laminate the appropriate thickness foam using a very thin coat of epoxy to bond them into a panel under a bit of weight.
Old 07-25-2007, 05:13 AM
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Aquila223
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Default RE: Rebuild classics in composite material

Don't bother going thickness equals thickness, You need to go structural strength for equal structural strength. Carbon/foam in 1/64th may be the same strength as 1/8th ply.
Old 07-25-2007, 08:19 PM
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tracyreed
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Default RE: Rebuild classics in composite material

That is a good point, thanks. That was really just an example. I will definitely be going for equal strength materials. The idea is to get lighter weight while maintaining the classic look.

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