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Old 31-12-2011, 05:31 PM   #1
CF104
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Default AB 22" Eagle Build with scratch built spine.

Hi All,

Hope this is in the proper area.

I'm starting work on the AB 22" Eagle I recently acquired from Jon Wilson. This kit is going to be a bit of a bugger to build and am hoping I can do it justice.

First off I was going to clean up the kit spine but I decided to scratch build a replacement out of brass tube as it will take less time and look better. The tricky part is making a jig for the frame trusses so they all turn out the same and are symmetrical. The brass sizes are 3/32", 1/8" and 5/32".

Once I was happy with the jig, the actual cutting, shaping and soldering takes little time. I have about 10 hours invested in the jig/spine at this point and all that remains is final assembly of the trusses to make the basic spine framework and then fit the diagonal braces. I'm figuring about another 4-6 hours work and the spine should be complete.

Here's some pictures of my progress so far.





















Thanks for looking.

Cheers,

John
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Old 31-12-2011, 05:42 PM   #2
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Thanks for sharing !

What a beauty !
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Old 31-12-2011, 06:27 PM   #3
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Nice work - perhaps when you have finished you could carry on and do the end cages too.
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Old 31-12-2011, 07:18 PM   #4
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Time well spent John, very nice work.
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Old 31-12-2011, 07:19 PM   #5
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Thanks for the comments.

Mark42, I am definitely thinking of doing the cages as well. The major setup is making the jigs but once completed the actual job is pretty straight forward. I'll see how the white metal cages clean up first and if I'm not happy I'll make my own.

Cheers,

John
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Old 01-01-2012, 02:44 AM   #6
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Nice work! I have an AB 22 as well, so I'll be following this build for sure. Where did you get those plans?

Have a good one.
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Old 01-01-2012, 08:22 AM   #7
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What do you use to cut the tubing so square and tidily ? I see a razor saw in the first image, so presumably it's that. I've tried a fine hacksaw in the past and the cut ends never seem to come out properly squared off.

Cheers,

Phil Young
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Old 01-01-2012, 07:24 PM   #8
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Nice work! I have an AB 22 as well, so I'll be following this build for sure. Where did you get those plans?

Have a good one.
The plans are by Daniel Prud'homme. Here's a link to his site. Eagle Blueprints

Cheers,

John
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Old 01-01-2012, 07:42 PM   #9
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Quote:
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What do you use to cut the tubing so square and tidily ? I see a razor saw in the first image, so presumably it's that. I've tried a fine hacksaw in the past and the cut ends never seem to come out properly squared off.

Cheers,

Phil Young
Hi Phil,

I am using a razor saw with a duplicating jig from Micromark. Makes perfect cuts and consistent lengths an easy task.

Duplicating Jig

Cheers,

John
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Old 01-01-2012, 08:39 PM   #10
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Thanks, I knew there had to be a trick to it, more toys to buy then......

Cheers,

Phil Young
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Old 02-01-2012, 10:59 PM   #11
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Hi.. John...


Good job... Nice craftmanship...

Happy new year ...

Last edited by MADsen; 02-01-2012 at 11:04 PM.
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Old 03-01-2012, 03:07 AM   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by CF104 View Post
Hi Phil,

I am using a razor saw with a duplicating jig from Micromark. Makes perfect cuts and consistent lengths an easy task.

Duplicating Jig

Cheers,

John
Or,

http://www.micromark.com/mini-tubing...city,6728.html

It won't GET any cleaner than that cut!

John, you've chosen a great Eagle to build!

Rob.

Last edited by Eagle-1; 03-01-2012 at 03:14 AM.
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Old 03-01-2012, 08:21 AM   #13
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Or,

http://www.micromark.com/mini-tubing...city,6728.html

It won't GET any cleaner than that cut!

John, you've chosen a great Eagle to build!

Rob.
The problem with those is that they slightly flare in the tube at the cut. So if you want to fit another tube through (as in the eagle spine) you have to deal with that. I've just used a length of the smaller tube as a drift which seems to work. But normally the cut end is now back to being slightly ragged where the cutting wheel went through unevenly (which it will always do to some extent). That can be quickly cleaned up and ends up a lot better that using a hacksaw/razor saw free-hand (since the basic cut is square to the tube).

Nothing's ever easy is it ??? (bit then what would be the point...)

Cheers,

Phil Young
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Old 03-01-2012, 08:57 AM   #14
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The problem with those is that they slightly flare in the tube at the cut.
Yes, they do, that's a fact Phil. I apologize for not mentioning that, good point. One swipe around the cut with an exacto knife and that ridge/flare will be gone. This is brass we're dealing with. It also won't matter much except where two pieces of brass will be sliding through each other and shaving that ridge down with your exacto works perfectly.

One other point. You will either be making notches in 90% of the brass and making butt solder joints OR drilling holes and inserting your brass and then make your solder joint, of which, I have always preferred the 'hole' method. I have used the hole method on several brass tubing builds already and the joints are MUCH stronger. The very much added plus is that you won't be making all those notches. Notches which take a great deal of time and have to be measured JUST right and nearly perfect to get a good joint for soldering. With the 'drill a hole' method, you drill a hole, insert the tubing and stick a small amount of solder to it.....DONE.

The only places you have to pay close attention to would be if you make the sections of walkway cages and such removable. Then, you will need to drill those tube ends out and work on them a bit to get them to slide together, but there won't be many of those anyway.

A 44" Eagle frame can be built in 1/3 the time (at LEAST) that it normally takes. My first took weeks the traditional way.

Another big plus is that there is absolutely no need to use thick wall brass tubing, even on a 44". There are ONLY a few places where the thickwall tubing is seen (such as each support section of the spine longerons) and that can be easily simulated by sliding the next size tubing over the thin wall stuff to make it look thick walled. Solder will forever cover the fact it's not actual thick wall tubing.

Just the way I do Eagle builds anyway. By no means, the only one!

Rob.
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Old 03-01-2012, 02:44 PM   #15
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Quote:
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Yes, they do, that's a fact Phil. I apologize for not mentioning that, good point. One swipe around the cut with an exacto knife and that ridge/flare will be gone. This is brass we're dealing with. It also won't matter much except where two pieces of brass will be sliding through each other and shaving that ridge down with your exacto works perfectly.

<snip>

Just the way I do Eagle builds anyway. By no means, the only one!

Rob.
That's a good tip about using a knife tip as a deburring tool, I'll try that next time.

I wasn't building anything as involved as an eagle spine by the way, just a little display stand with 5/32 tubes into the model (so needed to be 'de-flanged') and 1/8 tubes into the stand (don't care about the flange here) with 5/32 round them as a depth stops (deflanged again).

As you say, "other techniques are available".

Sometimes I think we take a perverse pride in spending a huge amount of time doing something that looks like it should be quick (how long can it take to cut a few lengths of tiny brass tube?). I've just spent about 90 minutes removing two faulty 14-pin IC sockets off my 30-year old Acorn Atom, but we both survived unscathed....

Cheers,

Phil Young
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Old 03-01-2012, 03:35 PM   #16
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Originally Posted by Eagle-1 View Post
Or,

http://www.micromark.com/mini-tubing...city,6728.html

It won't GET any cleaner than that cut!

John, you've chosen a great Eagle to build!

Rob.
Hi Rob,

Also have one in my tool stock. I'm not fond of it on this project due to the need to reproduce several pieces with the same length. The flare it produces on smaller tubing also makes it a no go on this project for me. On 1/4" or larger tubing the flare is not as pronounced.

I can cut several pieces in very short order with perfectly square ends with the duplicating jig and the end cleanup is minimal. A matter of personal preference I would guess.

Cheers,

John
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Old 03-01-2012, 03:42 PM   #17
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Just a quick update from yesterday.

I was only able to spend a couple hours working on the spine yesterday. The trusses were assembled into the full frame and the end angle pieces fabricated and installed. I was only able to fit one diagonal brace before I had to stop. I plan on completing the spine today.

Pictures:







Cheers,

John
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Old 03-01-2012, 06:08 PM   #18
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Hi John,

Happy New year.

I have the feeling with your skill level you could produce a set of cages in about the same time as it would take the average modeller to remove the flash and try to create a round shape to the AB ones. No disrespect to Andy and Bob, they did an amazing job producing the kit in the first place. It will be a much better job all around really (pun intended).

I would look at the leg pods and feet, it's the next area to tackle from a structural point of view. Don't forget if you do go with new cages you may need to look at the CM clamps, plenty of people here can advise you on new ones. I will say that the original 22" Eagle that Martin Willey owns seemed to have the CM epoxied directly to the framework and not have a clamp arrangement at all. I'm sure you could do better though.

That is definitely some of the best soldering I have seen, the joints look really good, nice work.
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Old 03-01-2012, 10:35 PM   #19
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Originally Posted by Captain Sci-Fi View Post
Hi John,

Happy New year.

I have the feeling with your skill level you could produce a set of cages in about the same time as it would take the average modeller to remove the flash and try to create a round shape to the AB ones. No disrespect to Andy and Bob, they did an amazing job producing the kit in the first place. It will be a much better job all around really (pun intended).

I would look at the leg pods and feet, it's the next area to tackle from a structural point of view. Don't forget if you do go with new cages you may need to look at the CM clamps, plenty of people here can advise you on new ones. I will say that the original 22" Eagle that Martin Willey owns seemed to have the CM epoxied directly to the framework and not have a clamp arrangement at all. I'm sure you could do better though.

That is definitely some of the best soldering I have seen, the joints look really good, nice work.
Thanks for the compliments.

I agree as well that Andy and Bob did a great job producing this kit. The first one I owned was back in 1998 when it was first released. At that point my modeling skills were not up to the task of this kit. I'm glad that Jon Wilson was willing to part with his AB 22" kit as my skills have improved over the past 14 years to the point where I feel comfortable building kits like this now.

Thanks for the advice on the leg pods and CM clamps. I have the Chris Trice CM for this kit so the clamps will be a must. As for the cages I'm probably going to scratch build them as well. I have a few ideas on jigs to do the job.

Cheers,

John
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Old 03-01-2012, 10:40 PM   #20
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Hi All,

I completed the spine this afternoon. Just have to clean off the flux and do some touch ups. Then a couple coats of Tamiya white metal primer to protect the brass. There's a total of 16 hours work put into the spine so far.





Cheers,

John
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