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Magnetic Building board sheet gauge

Old 09-24-2009, 11:16 PM
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kargo
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Default Magnetic Building board sheet gauge

Hey gang, I'm going to make a magnetic building board or two. I called a local metal fabricator and they offered me 16 gauge steel, they said anything thinner they would have to special order. Will this work or is it to thick/not flexable enough?

I also read about problems with the steel not sitting flat and it having to be screwed down. Its probably a little overkill, but I was intending on buying some used granite countertop and setting the steel on top so that it would be PERFECTLY flat, or at least very close to it.

What do ya folks think?

Old 09-25-2009, 02:35 AM
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Default RE: Magnetic Building board sheet gauge

i'm at the same point. time for the magnetic building system. maybe we should do a search.
Old 09-25-2009, 05:05 AM
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Default RE: Magnetic Building board sheet gauge

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Old 09-25-2009, 05:54 AM
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Default RE: Magnetic Building board sheet gauge

Well, granite might be overkill. 16 gauge would work well, but here's something to consider. In the cabinet industry, we try to lay up "balanced" sheets. That is, glue up material on both sides of the substrate so that the board doesn't warp. I put metal on one side of my building board and plastic laminate (formica) on the other. It's held up just fine for years.
Old 09-25-2009, 06:15 AM
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Default RE: Magnetic Building board sheet gauge

I've always been told that one of the flattest things you could get to build on is a hollow core interior door. I build on one of those with a 2'X4' ceiling tille attached to the surface. It works great! I expect you could attach your steel sheet to a door as well. Got mine given to me by local builder's supply because of damage. Free is hard to beat!
Old 09-25-2009, 07:05 AM
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Default RE: Magnetic Building board sheet gauge

I'm thinking about going with a door sheeted with metal and painted white. I was thinking about instead of having it graduated with lines just leaving it blank and using those dry erase pens to make lines as needed. I saw they have fine line ones at the store the other day.


Tip; If you ever need to work over plans on the building board use some tracing film. This stuff is expensive $30 for a 20" by 10 yard roll but it works better than using wax paper or plastic wrap. You can slide the magnets around without ripping up the plans and unlike wax paper glue wont pass though it. I use wood glue and I know for sure that it doesn’t stick to the film but I don't know if CA or epoxy will stick to the film . The film last a long time it doesn’t get torn up it just gets dirty.
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Old 09-25-2009, 07:33 AM
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Default RE: Magnetic Building board sheet gauge

I use magnets with a difference the poles are between the short sides there is little pull at the ends but when placed down on the building board they are near impossible to remove and care is needed when they are placed in possition as they will snap together. On one occation I ended up with a blood blister.Things just dont shift. The sheet top is thin gall it works well.
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Old 09-25-2009, 08:50 AM
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DavidAgar
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Default RE: Magnetic Building board sheet gauge

I have the Great Planes magnetic building system laying on top of a hollow core door. I am not sure what gauge metal it is, but it is about 1/16 inch thick. I typically leave it on top of the door so as to not let it get warped or bent. Good Luck, Dave
Old 09-25-2009, 09:44 AM
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Default RE: Magnetic Building board sheet gauge

This may help.

Greg
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Old 09-25-2009, 10:58 AM
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Default RE: Magnetic Building board sheet gauge

I used 18 gauge steel for my magnetic building system. I put it down over a hollow core door to keep it flat.



I've been using a magnetic board for about 5 years now, and there is no way I would ever build anything again without one ever!!!!!! First of all, don't mess with the one from Great Planes. It's a lot of money for a little bit of board. The board isn't really big enough, the fixtures aren't very sturdy, and you don't get enough fixtures. So, where do you get one??? Build one yourself. RCU member Caffeenman has a complete how-to on building your own system. I followed his instructions to the letter and I have a system that serves me well. I have 3 seperate building areas. The main one is 8'x3', and then I have a 24"x48", and a 12"x48" board. I use the smaller boards for smaller builds, or for building smaller assemblies on whatever plane I am working on. I started off with about 250 magnets and that's more than enough to work a pretty big build. As I said above, after you build with the system you'll never do without one again. So.... here are the links I mentioned.



Caffeenman's how-to



A few years ago I did a build thread here on RCU when I built a Sig LT-40 for a charity project. I used my magnetic board for the build, which is very well documented in the build thread. Read through my thread and you'll see the system in use. Hopefully it will help you decide to build your own. You can find my build thread here:



"Pay It Forward build thread!! LT-40 build.

Ken

Old 09-25-2009, 11:45 AM
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kargo
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Default RE: Magnetic Building board sheet gauge

Thanks for all the great input/info gang. When I ran my search I came up with a lot, but didn't find anything using a 16 gauge sheet. Caffeenman's site has lots of great info, it takes a while to go through it all but is worth it.

I'm still concerned about the perfect flatness of my building surface, I know I'm into overkill here, but if I'm going to invest in this board I want its quality to far exceed my level of building skill[8D].

I mentioned the granite as a completely flat surface, would a formica countertop be just as good? Would I be able to get a masonry bit/etc and drill through the granite/formica to hold the steel flat?

Thanks again for the input.
Old 09-25-2009, 12:30 PM
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Default RE: Magnetic Building board sheet gauge

If granite is the route I was going to take, I don't think I'd chance detroying it by drilling near the edges. I think contact cement or spray adhesive is the better choice. Of course, with contact cement once it's on it's never coming off! But, there's no drilling and no screw heads in the way... just what I think.
Old 09-25-2009, 01:00 PM
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Default RE: Magnetic Building board sheet gauge

I started with the Linde magnetic system (now Great Planes) but long ago upgraded as follows:

I had the local steel works cut a sheet of 20 gauge steel to fit a SOLID core 32" door. The solid core
door is mounted on top of two kitchen sink cabinets (Lowe's unfinished) that have drawers. I glued the
steel top to the door with tightbond and weighted it while it dried then primered and painted the steel
white.

Now, the reason I used a solid core vs hollow core is the word HOLLOW! It is possible that the door skins
will sag a little between the door framework. Not ever going to happen with a solid core door. And,
don't forget if you use steel plate you are adding weight to the door and that is before you start to build
anything. It does not take much of a sag to screw up your project so I decided not to take the chance.

Downsides of the solid core door:

1. They are HEAVY
2. They are more expensive (I paid $45.00 for mine at Home Depot but it had a surface flaw on one side)
3. No worries about sag or flatness
4. Did I mention that they are HEAVY?


Been using this setup for over 15 years without a problem. Now and then I surface sand the top and
re-paint.

My .05

Dan
Old 09-25-2009, 02:19 PM
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Default RE: Magnetic Building board sheet gauge

I tried 2 solid core doors, but neither was perfectly flat, at least not to my standards. I now use a 22 gauge sheet of galvanized steel on a 1/2" sheet of glass measuring 72" x 48". Can't get flatter than that! There is not need to affix the metal to the glass since the gauge is thin enough that allows it to conform to the surface below, yet it is heavy enough that it will not lift when removing magnets. It works great!

Go through airfieldmodels.com as was mentioned above, it contains excellent information.
Old 09-25-2009, 02:26 PM
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kargo
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Default RE: Magnetic Building board sheet gauge

I thought about the glass until I found out it was $8/sqr ft. Used granite can be much less...
Old 09-25-2009, 07:06 PM
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Default RE: Magnetic Building board sheet gauge

regardless of what you use the kitchen cabinets are a great idea.
Old 09-25-2009, 08:38 PM
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Default RE: Magnetic Building board sheet gauge

Mine is a Lind/Great Planes system. You got to think of it as a "starter" kit. People cringe at the $130 price back then but heck I just spent $180 on 300 magnets and $50 on Oak fixtures. The Great Planes fixtures where junk though. LOL. They reminded me of the cheap toys you'd get out of cereal boxes as a kid. Remember the feet of the vertical presses that where held on with some clear fuel tubing? Now I cringe when I look at other people's build photos and see pins, needles, and tacks.

"Magnets, Bah Humbug! All you need to build a plane is a sheet of glass, a homasote board and 1,000 T pins!"
Old 09-25-2009, 10:39 PM
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Default RE: Magnetic Building board sheet gauge

I used 18 ga "paint lock" steel, contact cemented to a 1-3/4" lamination of MDF. It's extremely flat, stable, and HEAVY! Fixtures are cut from acrylic using Cafeenman's plans.

Old 09-26-2009, 12:26 AM
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Default RE: Magnetic Building board sheet gauge

When I built my building board I bought a 3' X 8' X 5/8th granite rem. from a local flooring/cabinet dealer for about 200.00 and then covered it with 16ga. electroplated cold roll steel some time's called paint lock. This matereal is used for sign's because you don't have to prime it and since it's galvanized. ( not shiny galv. it has a matt smooth finish) you don't have to worry about it rusting. No gluing, the sheet is heavy enough that it's not going to move. The hard part is not breaking the granite getting it home and laying it flat on your bench. When I ordered my first mag board from tower the box was open and all the assorted magnets were missing so I called customer service and told them the problem (each bag contained six magnet's & I think there were 4-5 differant type's of magnetic clamps & squares. So by mistake they sent me six bag's of each. This is the only time I said I'm going to not correct their error.
Bob
Old 09-26-2009, 01:05 AM
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Default RE: Magnetic Building board sheet gauge

Well, I did it. Drove out all the way across town and purchased a granite top table. Triple-A I hear you about the hard part being not breaking it on the way home, I nearly said hello to a nice 8 to 10 point buck crossing the highway, nose down in search of his girlfriend. That or he was just spacn' and didn't see the oncoming green pickup truck[X(] For you folks in the south we count both sides so don't think I just witnessed a record breaker crossing hwy 61... I don't think the granite is busted but we'll see tomorrow morning. Its 64"x35"x3/4". I bought a 3/4" piece of birch ply that I'll cut to size and place undernieth it. I'll use the dap weldwood contact cement and sheet metal screws (screwed into pieces of ply placed on the corners, flush with the top of the granite, the pic explane it better) to hold the steel sheet flat. Or just the cement, I don't know...

A few qustions;

Type of paint to use on the steel, my son requested skyblue. Would Rustoleum spray paint work?

RCKen, I notice some magnets on your pay it forward thread, the were used to hold the ribs upright and had a 90 degree piece of metal with a magnet on the bottom. Where did you find them?

I intend to get several square magents as described in caffeenman's kits, but without the metal sandwhich, or is that not wise? Also the 4 pack welders magnets from harbor freight, rare earth magnets, and the round base magnets to put threaded rod through for clamping. Any type you guys can't live without?
Old 09-26-2009, 01:12 AM
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kargo
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Default RE: Magnetic Building board sheet gauge

our latest addition. when they say "craftsman kit" on the box they actually mean it'll take almoust two years and is probably beyond your skill level newbee[8D] I was extatic when it actually flew...
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Old 09-26-2009, 01:13 AM
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kargo
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Default RE: Magnetic Building board sheet gauge

Oh and RCKen the post number I saw the picture on your pay it forward thread was #65. Thanks for all your help.
Old 09-26-2009, 07:59 AM
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Default RE: Magnetic Building board sheet gauge


ORIGINAL: kargo

RCKen, I notice some magnets on your pay it forward thread, the were used to hold the ribs upright and had a 90 degree piece of metal with a magnet on the bottom. Where did you find them?
Imade those. If you go to Lowe's/Home Depot/Menard's/Your local home improvement store and go to the extruded aluminum display you can find the angle aluminum there. Icut it in 1" pieces. A chop saw or band saw is helpful here. Then go to the craft section of Wal-mart or Hobby Lobby (crafts store not the hobby shop) and buy roll of magnetic strip. It has adhesive on one side of it. Cut it to length, peel the paper off, and stick it to your braces. This won't have super holding power, but they will stay in place well enough to keep your ribs in place as you build a wing. You can also make some braces without the mag strip on the bottom and simply use a stronger magnet on top of the brace to hold it in place if you need the brace to have a little bit stronger holding power.

A great source for REALLY strong magnets is your local computer shop. Go in and ask them if they have any hard drives that have gone bad, or ask them to save them for you. Disassemble the hard drives and you will find two very strong magnets inside when you get it apart.

Ken
Old 09-26-2009, 08:07 AM
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RCKen
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Default RE: Magnetic Building board sheet gauge


ORIGINAL: kargo

I intend to get several square magents as described in caffeenman's kits, but without the metal sandwhich, or is that not wise? Also the 4 pack welders magnets from harbor freight, rare earth magnets, and the round base magnets to put threaded rod through for clamping. Any type you guys can't live without?
Sorry that Ididn't answer your question in my first post, but Imissed this part.

Anyway, these magnets that Caffeenman lists are the bread and butter of my building board. And you simply CANNOThave enough of these, especially if you are building a bigger model. And definitely get the metal sandwich type. This is because there are times you need the weaker magnet without the metal sandwich, and then there are other times that you need the extra strength from the sandwich. If you buy without them you will regret it later on, trust me here.

I have over 600 of the sandwich magnets now and feel that Ican pretty comfortably build just about anything. But you will find that once you havea magnetic system you will find that you are always on the lookout for magnets. As Imentioned above hard drives are a great source for really strong ones. But you will find all kinds of other sources as well. I'm lucky that Iown a computer shop, so Ialways have bad hard drives coming in. Several of my clients are doctor's offices and they have been a great source of magnets as well. The pharmaceutical reps are always leaving doo-dads at the doctors offices which include refrigerator magnets of all sorts. Most of my doctors offices have no problems giving them to me as they are usually thrown away.

Another great source of magnets is Harbor Freight. They have large welding magnets that are great when you need VERYVERYSTRONGholding power. But if you look around they also have tons of other tools that have magnets in them as well. Just have a walk through and you'll be surprised at what you find.

Ken
Old 09-26-2009, 09:01 AM
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Default RE: Magnetic Building board sheet gauge

Yeah get the pole plates. Magnets without them are good for holding small things in place or holding up free standing parts but you can't use them for clamping things into position. With the shield you can make gluing jigs that are rock solid. Great Plains had some BS in their directions about gluing the shields on with CA and holding them square wile you did it. This was a nightmare! The magnets and shields are different sizes. If you glue them with the magnets and shield flat on the board you wont be able to fit bolts though the holes. I ruined 20 of the 30 magnets that I got with my set that way. Then when you need less holding power you can't get them apart. Bottom line is that you need them square use a fixture or just put as bolt though the magnet and secure it that way.

I'm working on a Guillows Rufe right now and Don't need 12 pounds of holding power with the shields on. As you see I have a nice pile of shields next to the board. I'll put them back on when I done.

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