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Balsa wood Answered

Is there a way to make balsa wood stronger? I was thinking I could put a layer of wood glue on it and let it soak in but I wanted to know what you all think.

Tags:wood

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Weissensteinburg
Weissensteinburg

13 years ago

the best way seems to be encasing it in steel plates. Try karate chopping that!

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whatsisface
whatsisface

Reply 13 years ago

Does that not at the same time defeat the entire object of balsa wood?

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Weissensteinburg
Weissensteinburg

Reply 13 years ago

"Object of balsa wood" What a weird way of saying "balsa wood." Yes, steel>balsa wood. Encasing balsa in steel would make it steel-like...which is the entire purpose of the topic. Now if you had said the purpose of balsa wood..that would be an entirely different story ;)

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whatsisface
whatsisface

Reply 13 years ago

Fine I'll correct that:

Does that not at the same time defeat the entire object of using balsa wood?

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whatsisface
whatsisface

Reply 13 years ago

*Attaches steel plates to wings of R/C aeroplane* *Attempts to fly* *R/C Plane crashes into a wall* *Screams "DAMN YOU MICAH"* *Sues*

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Weissensteinburg
Weissensteinburg

Reply 13 years ago

*picks up your plane* *bends nose back to normal* *tapes rocket engine to plane* *Grabs controller* *Flies in to all other planes...destroys them* *lands gracefully* *leaves*

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whatsisface
whatsisface

Reply 13 years ago

*Begins standing ovation for Weiiensteinburg managing to land a big lump of steel under no power*

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Weissensteinburg
Weissensteinburg

Reply 13 years ago

No power? I taped a K model rocket engine onto that plane.

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whatsisface
whatsisface

Reply 13 years ago

I was working on the assumption that the rocket engine burned out before landing.

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whatsisface
whatsisface

Reply 13 years ago

Pure skillz =]

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whatup.dub
whatup.dub

Reply 13 years ago

Did you roll for initiative?

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Weissensteinburg
Weissensteinburg

13 years ago

I'd be afraid to be in the same field as someone like who's launching rockets. You're making hugely unqualified assumptions..tell me, what do I know about rocketry? ..I really wouldn't trust you as source, seeing as didn't even know they made K engines, and then denied that high speeds generated heat.

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Kiteman
Kiteman

Reply 13 years ago

Oh, can I join in?

  • Both Concorde and the SR71 are significantly longer in flight than when stationary, due to expansion of the airframe caused by the heatinf of air-friction.
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Tool Using Animal
Tool Using Animal

Reply 13 years ago

nitpicking (because that's what this thread 's turned into) "were" not "are"

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Kiteman
Kiteman

Reply 13 years ago

I picked "are" because SR71 still flies, and Concorde should still fly.

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KentsOkay
KentsOkay

Reply 13 years ago

I agree, if there not going to build hypersonic, suboribital hoppers, they should bring back the Concord. Oh yeah, check out my Launch It instructable, it's got your name in it.

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Kiteman
Kiteman

Reply 13 years ago

"Prime competition", eh? Damned sneaky way to increase your view-count, by the way ;-)

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whatsisface
whatsisface

Reply 13 years ago

I NEVER MEANT FOR THIS TO HAPPEN *Cries*

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Goodhart
Goodhart

Reply 13 years ago

Don't look at me, the only rocket I ever launched, lost a fin on take off, loop-de-looped to the height of about 50 feet, lost another fin, dove straight downward and buried its payload into the soft earth. I am sure you all know what happened next.....the model rocket (plastic) blew itself into a million pieces because it could not kick out the parachute, the nose being underground.

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zachninme
zachninme

Reply 13 years ago

Wow! This is the farthest over comment that actually isn't going off topic! ... Well, except for this comment here....

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KentsOkay
KentsOkay

13 years ago

You can cover model airplane parts with tissue paper or silk to strengthen it. what you do is coat the part with dope (25% elmers, 75% water), lay the tissue on, and brush more dope on top. Why are you trying to strengthen balsa wood?

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CameronSS
CameronSS

13 years ago

I think I'll add in a little intravenous injection of fact here.

Weissensteinburg, you have made a total of two incorrect statements in this argument. First, good luck controlling an airplane powered by a K engine. You would have full thrust until you ran out of fuel. Secondly, I read an article in High Power Rocketry magazine, which I didn't subscribe to, but got a free copy at an airshow, about a quarter-scale V-2 made of 3/4" plywood and fiberglass. It was powered by a seven-foot-long P motor.That's one size up from an O, and I think, but am not sure, that I saw an article about an R motor rocket. To quote your Wikipedia article, "The letter-scale continues past class-O..."

kruzer495: Six or seven pounds? That would hover a rocket that weighs six or seven pounds. Quite a bit more thrust than that is needed to get massive high power rockets to high speeds. Thrust is not the same as lift; the aircraft might be doing loops due to uncontrollability, but not because of high thrust. In addition, large rocket motors burn for much longer than a second. Try closer to 10-15 seconds. Finally, I quote, "Apparently i do.... i know alot more about the rocketry field than you." Ignoring your lack of capitalization, as Micah said, how can you claim to know so much about rocketry if you didn't know what a K motor is, or how much thrust they produce, or how long they burn? The only knowledge of model rockets you demonstrate is your Instructable on the Patriot, which I question how well it would work with such a heavy, overbuilt body tube.

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Weissensteinburg
Weissensteinburg

Reply 13 years ago

Make that one incorrect statement. The average man may not be able to control it, but as I demonstrated in the seventh comment in this mini-discussion, I obviously can. Don't be hatin cause you can't control it like I can. =]

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CameronSS
CameronSS

Reply 13 years ago

You could not make a graceful landing. Any aircraft that would be controllable at full thrust would have far too high of a stall speed to "land gracefully." Rather, you would skid into the ground at blistering speeds. No. Wouldn't work. Shut up.

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Weissensteinburg
Weissensteinburg

Reply 13 years ago

No, I could. Just because you've never seen it, doesn't mean it's impossible.

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CameronSS
CameronSS

Reply 13 years ago

Kind of like unicorns?

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CameronSS
CameronSS

Reply 13 years ago

Good. *mockmockmockmockmockmockmockmockmockmockmockmock*

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CameronSS
CameronSS

Reply 13 years ago

Hee hee...we pushed the limits, and it got cut off.

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westfw
westfw

Reply 13 years ago

Representative K motor The Animal Motor Works K700. That's about 160 pounds of thrust, average. It burns about 750g of fuel in 2.25 seconds. Don't forget the engine letters are logarithmic (each letter is twice as powerful as the previous letter), so a K motor is some 330 times (between 256x and 512x) more powerful than the B motor mentioned in the "patriot" instructable.

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CameronSS
CameronSS

13 years ago

I said, " I question how well it would work with such a heavy, overbuilt body tube." I think that it would work better with a lighter tube. Also, how did you obtain your 700ft estimate? Did you actually check angles and calculate the trigonometric functions of three separate measurement points, or did you use cheap altimeter, or did you guesstimate? And as for your statement about using C motors, that is low power model rocketry, all of the parts for which are available at Wal-Mart. K motors are used in high power rocketry, which is a completely different ballgame. Having knowledge of C motors relates in no way to having knowledge of K motors. As for heating, it depends on the shape of the aircraft.

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lemonie
lemonie

13 years ago

You could make your own balsa plywood, by alternately layering sheets @ 90o with epoxy resin.

L

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Pat Sowers
Pat Sowers

Reply 13 years ago

good idea but wouldnt that be heavy?

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lemonie
lemonie

Reply 13 years ago

Depends upon how much glue you use. Much of the strength comes from the complimentary angles gmoon refers to.

L

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gmoon
gmoon

Reply 13 years ago

Absolutely, L. And the issue with highly porous woods like balsa isn't just the weight of the glue they absorb. It's their tendency to 'starve' the joint--sucking up the glue and leaving an insufficient bond. You could experiment with ways of priming the balsa, I suppose...

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gmoon
gmoon

Reply 13 years ago

Balsa is so porous it might be heavier than other plywoods. This is, in fact, the way custom wooden rowing shells are built (money is no object.) Except not with balsa, but with other lightweight veneers.

Strips are applied in layers at complementary angles (not necessarily 90 dg, but close enough) and the whole thing is vacuum bagged until the glue is set.

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Kiteman
Kiteman

13 years ago

I was told by an employee of the Natural History Museum that fragile fossils and bones can be strengthened by painting with dilute PVA glue and letting it soak in then dry thoroughly. Undiluted PVA (i.e. woodglue) is too thick, and merely makes a surface seal.

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NachoMahma
NachoMahma

Reply 13 years ago

. OK. I figured out CA (cyanoacrylate), but what is PVA? Polyvinyl acetate? Polyvinyl alcohol? Polish Veterans Association?

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Weissensteinburg
Weissensteinburg

Reply 13 years ago

Polyvinyl Acetate..better known as Wood Glue

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NachoMahma
NachoMahma

Reply 13 years ago

. Thanks

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Kiteman
Kiteman

Reply 13 years ago

They often don't call it woodglue, though, since they sell it for gluing paper, keying walls and adhering small children to the furniture in school.

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Weissensteinburg
Weissensteinburg

Reply 13 years ago

Let's go into the city and take a poll as to whether people call it wood glue, or Polyvinyl Acetate.

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Kiteman
Kiteman

Reply 13 years ago

Or just "glue"?

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Pat Sowers
Pat Sowers

13 years ago

Thanks to all of you. There are lots of ideas for me to try out on some scrap wood before i go all the way with it.

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Weissensteinburg
Weissensteinburg

13 years ago

Apparently you don't know how strong a K engine is.