Introduction: Decoratieve Airplane Propellor

Picture of Decoratieve Airplane Propellor

My first instructable, here we go! I always wanted to have a old wooden airplane propellor just for show. It's something every guy needs in his mancave. To bad the real thing is pretty costly so why not make my own? I got plans from a site (witch is in fact a walkthrough on making a propellor) and I went to work.

Note that I made my prop with 2 types of cheap pine wood. Making it out of oak or maple was to expansive. We got pines enough in Holland so I went with that.

Little disclaimer: This propellor is ment to be a decorative showpiece. Not a real propellor to use on a plane or something!

Step 1: Printing the Plans and Drawing Them on Wood

Picture of Printing the Plans and Drawing Them on Wood

First I printed the different layers on normal A4 paper. I changed the measurements in Photoshop to get a ruff 1,5 meter long propellor. This was all done without a ruler a tapemeasure. I kinda eyeballed it. Then I traced them over on the wood. I used 2 different kinds of pine so it would look nice.

Step 2: Sawing and Gluing

Picture of Sawing and Gluing

Then I just sawed all the 8 pieces out with a jigsaw. Gluing them together was a pain but I managed by gluing them in sections. Note that you need to glue them in a spiral.

Step 3: Sanding, Sanding and a Litle Bit of Sanding...

Picture of Sanding, Sanding and a Litle Bit of Sanding...

Ok this is by far the longest part of the build. Right of the bad I noticed that with normal sanding this would take eons. So I tried 'sanding' with a anglegrinder. This worked pretty nice! When the rough shape was done I took a palmsander with grid 40, 80, 120, 180 and 220 to finish it off.

Step 4: Staining

Picture of Staining

The last step was staining. I just took a dark color i had lying arround and slapt it on. You could use polyurethane aswell. Since this project took long enough I didn't bother. Done!

Step 5: Update

Picture of Update

Update! Its been a year but I just had some free time to update the prop. The dark staining didn't sit well with me. The woodgrain is hardly showing and overall it was to dark in my opinion. I sanded the whole piece done with 220 grid and gave it 3 layers of PU clearcoat. Now the 2 different types of wood realy show! Then I added some red spraypaint to the tips of the prop. Lastly I threaded 6 M10 'acorn' or 'cap' bolts in the base to give it that finished look. Done!


jompon2547 (author)2017-11-06

can this be use on an real airplane?

Meglymoo87 (author)2016-05-19

Great job :)

You also might want to drill 6 to 8 holes around the hub for the wire and pin that holds the prop in place and locks the nut so it can't come loose. You can see them here, I will be making one for my den with all the airplanes RC and static displayed in it. Great job for you first instructable.

Awesome video! Makes me wish I had a CNC machine. (or whatever it is called) The holes you mentioned where also on the plans. I'm actually thinking about screwing on a round steel plate with a 8 holes in it. There would be also a hole in the middle that would fit neatly arround the hole on the hub. To top it of I would use 8 round shaped bolts. I'll update this instructable when that is done!

Yep it would look great like that and take a do a few scratches on the leading edge to make it look old.

CraftAndu (author)2016-05-11

Looks great!

ClenseYourPallet (author)2016-05-09

Great looking prop. Very nice first instructable

CaptAmazing (author)2016-05-08

Excellent project! Well done.

aisi25 (author)2016-05-08

I like it, well done.

BeachsideHank (author)2016-05-08

To the untrained eye, this looks like the real thing. For added realism, sheath the leading edge in metal, beat it up and ding it, then you have what looks like a prop from an old Stearman trainer.

Very nice reproduction!

thx for your comment! The beaten copper or metal realy makes it look old and rustic. I'm not sure what material to use but I sure want to use your idea. I also saw a prop made into a sealingfan on Instructables so i might want to do that aswell.

jcaroca (author)2016-05-08

amazing project!!! so easy and wonderfull! definitely for the man cave!! thanks to share it!

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