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Thin safety wire

Old 01-31-2019, 10:44 PM
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CARS II
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Default Thin safety wire

Where can I get it? and what's the gauge I should be looking for to wire the Ts on the airlines.

Tks.

Last edited by CARS II; 01-31-2019 at 11:14 PM.
Old 02-01-2019, 01:54 AM
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gunradd
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.020 is what you want. I seem to have a never ending supply of it around me being an aircraft mechanic lol so not sure where to buy. I would think aircraft spruce would have it.
Old 02-01-2019, 03:00 AM
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Harley Condra
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Here's what I use.
http://www.aircraftspruce.com/catalo...safetywire.php
Safety wire pliers are not a necessity, but they do make the job easier.
Old 02-01-2019, 04:14 AM
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https://www.amazon.com/Malin-Safety-...21+safety+wire
Old 02-01-2019, 04:28 AM
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I highly recommend safety wire pliers. I must also say that DO NOT GET THE HARBOR FREIGHT crap ones. I was working on a friends plane and he has them and I wanted to throw them out the window. I ended up doing the job by hand. You don't need to get the ones I use from snap-on but you cant get crap ones either. Middle of the road ones will work fine.
Old 02-01-2019, 04:42 AM
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Re wire pliers.

I have built loads of jets for customers in the past and have always found safety pliers to be too bulky for use on our kits, often access is tight and the need for a more agile tool in needed. I made a safety wire tool which I have used for 10 years without fault and its cost me a few cents.

Find a steel solid rod around 4mm in diameter, file or Dremmel one end to a flat, about 20mm in length so it resembles a flat head screwdriver when looking on end - about 1mm thick should be fine. Then drill one hole near the tip (round off the tip edges) about 1.5 - 2mm in diameter (enough to pass two pieces of safety wire through with some spare room) - thats it.

To secure pass the safety wire round your connection, forming the loops round a pencil etc before can help, then the two tail ends need to be passed through the hole in the tool in opposite directions, one in from the left and one in from the right, pass the tails up along the rod shaft and hold with your fingers as you rotate the tool, once the wire twists a few times the wire self locks in the tool. Twist until you have the desired number of twists and use a small wire snipper to free the tool. Dress the ends around the pipe as required and remove the cut ends from the tool and you are ready for the next. The tool will get into the tightest spaces and will never break as there are no complex moving parts.

Hope that has explained it OK, may be able to find a picture of my tool if needed.

marcs

Last edited by marc s; 02-01-2019 at 04:45 AM.
Old 02-01-2019, 05:55 AM
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You can get galvanized steel wire at Home Depot, Lowes, or at most hardware stores. It doesn't have to be stainless or say "aircraft" on it.
https://www.lowes.com/pd/Hillman-20-Gauge-175-ft-Galvanized-Picture-Hanging-Wire/50029238

Also I use a large hemostat to reach into tight spaces and twist it.
Old 02-01-2019, 06:04 AM
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Originally Posted by marc s View Post
Re wire pliers.

I have built loads of jets for customers in the past and have always found safety pliers to be too bulky for use on our kits, often access is tight and the need for a more agile tool in needed. I made a safety wire tool which I have used for 10 years without fault and its cost me a few cents.

Find a steel solid rod around 4mm in diameter, file or Dremmel one end to a flat, about 20mm in length so it resembles a flat head screwdriver when looking on end - about 1mm thick should be fine. Then drill one hole near the tip (round off the tip edges) about 1.5 - 2mm in diameter (enough to pass two pieces of safety wire through with some spare room) - thats it.

To secure pass the safety wire round your connection, forming the loops round a pencil etc before can help, then the two tail ends need to be passed through the hole in the tool in opposite directions, one in from the left and one in from the right, pass the tails up along the rod shaft and hold with your fingers as you rotate the tool, once the wire twists a few times the wire self locks in the tool. Twist until you have the desired number of twists and use a small wire snipper to free the tool. Dress the ends around the pipe as required and remove the cut ends from the tool and you are ready for the next. The tool will get into the tightest spaces and will never break as there are no complex moving parts.

Hope that has explained it OK, may be able to find a picture of my tool if needed.

marcs
Marc I hear you about tight spaces but 90% of the safety wire work can be done before you install it in the plane with proper planning. I guess I'm also used to tight spaces on the full scale aircraft so I don't really have any problems doing it in the plane.
Old 02-01-2019, 06:21 AM
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Originally Posted by marc s View Post
Re wire pliers.

I have built loads of jets for customers in the past and have always found safety pliers to be too bulky for use on our kits, often access is tight and the need for a more agile tool in needed. I made a safety wire tool which I have used for 10 years without fault and its cost me a few cents.

Find a steel solid rod around 4mm in diameter, file or Dremmel one end to a flat, about 20mm in length so it resembles a flat head screwdriver when looking on end - about 1mm thick should be fine. Then drill one hole near the tip (round off the tip edges) about 1.5 - 2mm in diameter (enough to pass two pieces of safety wire through with some spare room) - thats it.
marcs
So this looks like a screwdriver with a hole in the flat part of the tip?
I have several donor screwdrivers in mind.
Sparky
Old 02-01-2019, 06:24 AM
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Pic of the pliers I use. Have a set at home and work. they are reversible and have rubber on the cutters to catch the pigtail when you cut it so it does not fall into the plane.
Old 02-01-2019, 06:24 AM
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BikeMaster Safety Wire Pliers...
https://www.amazon.com/dp/B002W2A0MW...p_mob_ap_share

Malin Safety Wire / Lock Wire &...
https://www.amazon.com/dp/B01BDVX34O...p_mob_ap_share

i recently ordered both from amazon. These pliers are way better than the Harbor Freight pliers, ask me how I know..

Last edited by camss69; 02-01-2019 at 06:44 AM.
Old 02-01-2019, 06:25 AM
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A hole in an old small flat blade screw driver works great too
Old 02-01-2019, 06:30 AM
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Originally Posted by gunradd View Post
Marc I hear you about tight spaces but 90% of the safety wire work can be done before you install it in the plane with proper planning. I guess I'm also used to tight spaces on the full scale aircraft so I don't really have any problems doing it in the plane.
This is what I was thinking. Hell I think I have more room for my hands and pliers inside my JHH A-7 than the Yak-52 I work on.

Originally Posted by camss69 View Post
I have these too, they work very well for the price. Not as nice as the pair gunradd posted, but for a few fuel lines every now and again they work just fine.
Old 02-01-2019, 08:34 AM
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Twist the wires around each other once by hand, grab the wires at the twist with a pair of long-nosed pliers (which you have around anyway), pull, and twist...

Easy peezie.

Bob
Old 02-01-2019, 09:31 AM
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Originally Posted by gunradd View Post
.020 is what you want. I seem to have a never ending supply of it around me being an aircraft mechanic lol so not sure where to buy. I would think aircraft spruce would have it.
LOL we have sooo much at work production control was telling folks to make it vanish! I have a ton, will never need to buy any thats for sure!
Old 02-01-2019, 10:11 AM
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I think he wants the smaller size wire for air lines, not the regular stuff we use for fuel fittings.
Old 02-01-2019, 10:44 AM
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Originally Posted by causeitflies View Post
I think he wants the smaller size wire for air lines, not the regular stuff we use for fuel fittings.
The link to the stuff I bought on Amazon is perfect @ .020, easily go around air lines and fuel.
Old 02-01-2019, 11:51 AM
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Originally Posted by gunradd View Post


Pic of the pliers I use. Have a set at home and work. they are reversible and have rubber on the cutters to catch the pigtail when you cut it so it does not fall into the plane.
My wife got me a set of these for a present, probably after she heard the throw the harbor freight one for the 10th time. Best present ever
Old 02-01-2019, 01:57 PM
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Originally Posted by gunradd View Post
I highly recommend safety wire pliers. I must also say that DO NOT GET THE HARBOR FREIGHT crap ones. I was working on a friends plane and he has them and I wanted to throw them out the window. I ended up doing the job by hand. You don't need to get the ones I use from snap-on but you cant get crap ones either. Middle of the road ones will work fine.
Working on Hornets I always hated them. Usually all done by hand for me. Usually only used them for that little bit of tightening you cant get by hand.
Old 02-01-2019, 02:17 PM
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Army crew chiefs do it all by hand, not allowed to use the lockwire pliers lol I got good at in my crew days. It was nice to show the kids how’s it done once I was a test pilot, those impossibles got me a few cases of beer!
Old 02-01-2019, 02:17 PM
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https://www.dreamworksrc.com/safety-wire.html
Old 02-01-2019, 02:33 PM
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BVM carries it on their sight. So does Dreamworks.
Old 02-01-2019, 03:32 PM
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Thank all for the prompt replies, it has been years since I got my last roll of SW, so long ago, I don't recall where I got it from, I used up my last inch on my last project.


020 is what I'm looking for, it's a good gauge to secure the UATs sox, fuel lines, airlines.

About the twister pliers, I got me a HF ones around 2002 and have done dozens of jobs with it, agreed, not the best quality but it is still working for me, if I was looking for a new one, you bet your jets that I would buy one of the good quality ones, the screw driver with a hole is an excellent idea, very useful in those tight, hard to get spaces, I know

Hey! newbies, take notes, very good info been posted here.

Thank you all for taking the time to replie to my question.

Last edited by CARS II; 02-01-2019 at 03:43 PM.
Old 02-01-2019, 03:47 PM
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Originally Posted by FenderBean View Post
Army crew chiefs do it all by hand, not allowed to use the lockwire pliers lol I got good at in my crew days. It was nice to show the kids how’s it done once I was a test pilot, those impossibles got me a few cases of beer!
The place where I worked and got my A&P was exactly the same way. Twist the wire by hand and tighten it with a pair of duckbill pliers. I can still do that, but the Blue Point safety wire pliers like Gunradd pictured are the way to go, just get the small set not the big ones. Also, sometimes I'll use .025 rather than .020, it's a little more forgiving on cutting the lines and not that much harder to work with.

At the time I was having my issues with learning how to make it look neat and the older guy who owned the FBO, used to come out, look at some of my early attempts and he'd just cut the wire in half. He told me that safety wire was like your signature; if it is nicely done, you can pretty much figure everything else was done the same way. Over the years I spent with GA on everything from trainers to Gulfstreams, that proved to be true almost all the time.

Last edited by Zeeb; 02-01-2019 at 03:52 PM.

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