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Making Z bends in control rods

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Making Z bends in control rods

Old 08-09-2003, 02:10 PM
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tempus
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Default Making Z bends in control rods

Is there a way to make accurate z bends in control rods without the use of z-bend jig? I want to set up a plane without using servo horn connectors but don't own this jig.
Old 08-09-2003, 05:28 PM
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Hurri
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Default Making Z bends in control rods

Put the wire in a vice [smooth jaws preferred] , bend it with hammer so you have some 1/2 -3/4 " at a right angle . now with the angle in vice take it so that you have the servo arm thickness height just below top of vice . bend it across vice with hammer , then get an adjustable wrench & twist the wire that it is in line , or how it should look like . ok?
Old 08-09-2003, 10:05 PM
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flianbrian
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Default Making Z bends in control rods

I do the vice and hammer thing too, but I usually don't bother twisting the second bend to line up with the rod. There's no danger of it twisting out of the servo arm hole (unless your hole is simply way WAY too big), and (Bonus! ) if you have to, you can remove it from the servo arm without having to undo the connection at the other end.

Want the bend at a particular place? Practice on a scrap rod, mark it where it is at the edge of the vice. Do the hammer thing and see where the bend is in relation to the mark.

flianbrian
Old 08-10-2003, 02:51 AM
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Azcat59
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Default Making Z bends in control rods

Make it easier on yourself....put a 90 degree bend in the rod, run it up through the servo arm, and put a 1/16" wheel collar on it. If the push rod is larger than 1/16" drill it with the next size drill bit (5/64"). This doesn't stress the wire, or your nylon servo arm by forcing it around the bend, and is easily removed if needed.

Is it strong enough? Holds your tail wheels on, doesn't it? I have been doing this for 26 years with no failures. It works well, guys...

Clair
Old 08-10-2003, 05:05 PM
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Hurri
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Default Making Z bends in control rods

AZCAT , afraid I wouldn't trust a wheel collar on the bend , think you have been lucky , I used to solder a small washer on top , same idea , as long as a GOOD solder joint & have heat sink on the wire . How about the plastic clip one can get , ok you make a right angle bend & this thing goes over the wire & sevo arm . they are really good . Don't know who makes /sells them
Old 08-10-2003, 07:46 PM
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DBCherry
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Default Making Z bends in control rods

Here's how I usually do "Z" bends. You have to 'twist' the wire once, but it makes getting a tight, accurate bend easier.
Dennis-
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Old 08-10-2003, 09:18 PM
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Azcat59
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Default Making Z bends in control rods

Hurri--your quote: "AZCAT , afraid I wouldn't trust a wheel collar on the bend , think you have been lucky "

Well, I've sure been lucky for a long time then! Just finishing up my 111th RC airplane over 26 years, including 11 years in pattern, and haven't had one fail yet!

I don't mean this disrespectfully, but think about it. If the pushrod alignment is decent, there is no stress in the direction of pulling the rod out of the hole in the servo arm anyway. And, as I said, if a wheel collar will hold on our wheels under substantial stress, it will hold on a pushrod.

But, there are many ways to skin a cat, so to each his own. Makes the hobby interesting, there is always something new to learn.

Clair
Old 08-11-2003, 12:02 AM
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lownslo
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Default Making Z bends in control rods

Hello AZcat, I don't think Hurri was speaking about the collar not holding against the pull or stress of the control surface pressures. I am just reading between the lines and I think he was refering to the collar coming loose. (set screw).
I have a 4*120 and sent in a tip with a picture of the radio gear area. I got ALL kinds of replies, NOT to my tip, but to the connectors I was using on my servo arms. I was using 4-40 E-Z screw lok connectors. I did change to good ball link connectors after reading all the replies. I guess better safe than sorry. I still have some screw lok connectors in my 40 size planes and I will not be concerned about them as I usually do good maintainance and "keep an eye" on things...
lownslo.....

Bob

PS. Ive got a good friend in Sun City Grand.
Old 08-11-2003, 03:06 AM
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Azcat59
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Default Making Z bends in control rods

Thanks, Bob. I don't trust the EZ connectors except for throttle and retract arms, having been bitten once by test flying a plane and having the elevator connector decide to quit gripping the pushrod wire......things got a little exciting!

Trust your buddy is staying nice and warm, like I am, at 114 or so today!

Clair
Old 08-11-2003, 01:40 PM
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MinnFlyer
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Default Making Z bends in control rods

I saw this post over the weekend, and I was going to draw up a diagram today, but thanks to Dennis, now I don't have to!
Old 08-11-2003, 03:15 PM
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aeroman
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Default Making Z bends in control rods

I use the needle nose plier on my Leatherman tool, and haveŽnt had any problems.
Old 08-11-2003, 03:22 PM
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Hurri
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Default Making Z bends in control rods

Azcat, sorry if you took offence at the "lucky " on the wheel collars , was on about it coming loose of course . The allen screws
tighten onto a piano wire , & I always put a flat on the shaft where w/collar goes to keep a wheel on . Like you say , "lots of ways to skin a cat" Amazed you have kept a tally as to how many planes you have built , I have been into R/C for 33 years , Know I build 2- 3 a year, aso how many that is not sure . Regards Hurri
Old 08-11-2003, 03:33 PM
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pinball-RCU
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Default Making Z bends in control rods

I still use Z-bends occassionally, but for 2-56 push rods, I prefer these nylon gadgets from Great Planes. You make a 90 degree bend, stick it though the servo hole, then these little nylon thingys hold it in place.
Old 08-11-2003, 04:58 PM
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Nuker
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Default Making Z bends in control rods

I've used those nylon gadgets the last year or two and have had no issues.

I still use z-bends on my throttle arm on the small engines for combat though and found the z-bend wrench invaluable as a timesaver. For the amount of time you'll probably need it though, you might just want to try and borrow one from a buddy at the field.

Bob
Old 08-11-2003, 10:12 PM
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Azcat59
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Default Making Z bends in control rods

Hurri, no offense at all. And with my inclination to keep records (see profile....) I have always kept a log book--two sections, one simply listing the date and number of flights that day, my plane or others, and the other section containing data on each airplane, date, number of flights that day, and anything of value that should be noted for later info. When I finish a plane, I make up the page for it, name of plane, engine used, date started and date finished, weight RTF, and any info re: RX used and battery date. Takes about a minute to do. Then just keep a list of the planes you've built. Number 111 is just about whipped, a Goldberg Sukhoi. I also list any info on the plane's end, either crashed or sold.

Sounds like more work than it really is, but not all guys are inclined to do it, and that's ok too--whatever is fun for you!

Clair
Old 08-11-2003, 10:35 PM
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Default z-bend jig

Here's what I came up with dealing with z-bends. Takes a couple of tries to get used to it but it works
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Old 08-21-2003, 12:34 PM
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tempus
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Default Making Z bends in control rods

Finally what I did was to find a metal plate about the same thickness as a servo horn and to drill a hole in it slightly larger than the pushrod. Then I made an initial bend of 90 degrees in the push rod. Then inserting it through the hole in the metal plate i could then bend the part sticking through flat to the plate making a perfect z-bend. see picture
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Old 08-21-2003, 12:40 PM
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Default Making Z bends in control rods

Originally posted by DBCherry
Here's how I usually do "Z" bends. You have to 'twist' the wire once, but it makes getting a tight, accurate bend easier.
Dennis-
Seems that "twist" would significantly weaken the connection, have you had any trouble/failures at that point?
Old 08-21-2003, 12:42 PM
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DBCherry
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Default Making Z bends in control rods

Hey Mike,
You've got more help with graphics.
Dennis-
Old 08-21-2003, 05:20 PM
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Ed Smith
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Default Making Z bends in control rods

What is the issue with Zee bends? Use the zee bend pliers, one squeeze and it is done.

Ed S
Old 08-21-2003, 05:23 PM
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tempus
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Default Making Z bends in control rods

It's only an issue if you don't have a pair of them.
Old 08-21-2003, 07:30 PM
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daven
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Default Making Z bends in control rods

I'm going to agree with Ed on this one (Don't show this to the pylon guys). Spend the $10-20 on a Z-bend plier. Try and find one with long handles, they make it much easier to bend. I like the new one from Great Planes with the pin locator for the servo arm.
Old 08-21-2003, 07:52 PM
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CRFlyer
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Default Get the pliers

I have to agree that using a pair of z-bend pliers is the way to go. They are not all that expensive, and save a lot of time.

Another option is to use a rod threaded at both ends with a clevis on each end. This makes adjustment easy from either end of the rod.
Old 08-22-2003, 10:37 AM
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Ed Smith
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Default Making Z bends in control rods

Another option is to use a rod threaded at both ends with a clevis on each end. This makes adjustment easy from either end of the rod.
Do Not do this. There is a danger, however remote, that the push-rod can turn in the clevises and alter its length. If this happens in flight the results are obvious. In the event I fly this is illegal, we have to have zee bends at the servo,

Ed S
Old 08-22-2003, 11:15 AM
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Jemo
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Default Making Z bends in control rods

Do Not do this. There is a danger, however remote, that the push-rod can turn in the clevises and alter its length
Ed,
this method (with ball links) is used all the time on helicopters. I have never had a rod change length and have never heard of one.

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