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Makeshift Wing Spar for Bixler Clone

earthsciteach

Moderator
Moderator
#1
I destroyed the carbon fiber spar in my Wing Surfer from Nitroplanes (Same thing as a Bixler) when I borrowed someone else's tx and neglected to check that the control directions were correct. Since then I've been using a large bamboo skewer (about 5mm dia and 30"ish long). This works, but is quite flexible.

I managed to snap the bamboo spar while out flying this evening. I was puttering around at low speed and near ground level when I decided to go full throttle, pull up into a loop with a snap roll at the top. The snap roll broke the spar in two, the wings came out of the fuse, folded back and she went down from about 50 feet. Surprisingly, damage is very minimal.

I've had no luck finding a 6mm CF rod locally and am wondering what I can do to stiffen the bamboo. I've already tried covering with gorilla tape, but that didn't work so well. Thought about wrapping with thread and covering with epoxy, but that is A LOT of wrapping! Any ideas?

Thanks!
 

aiidanwings

Senior Member
#2
Ramon wood dowels from Walmart crafts; heavy but strong. Can be straightened with steam. Note- These have a strong side and a weak side. The grain edges are the strong side.

Aluminum arrow shafts. Light, straight, cheap'ish.

Poor mans fiberglass- wrap the wood tightly with any cotton thread, saturate with thin super glue. Extremely strong, light, but rough. Though it can be sanded.
 

xuzme720

Dedicated foam bender
Mentor
#3
I think it will be pretty hard to stiffen the bamboo that way. What about a flat carbon spar? If it's put in vertical, it will give you the rigidity you're looking for and the wing will keep it from flexing too much fore and aft...
I'm not sure what kind of access you have to carbon fiber but it's sometimes easier to find flat stock.
Or, another option might be to add a second bamboo spar back an inch or two. That would give you greater strength and keep some flex in the wing for those less than perfect landings....I don't know, just spitballing here.
 

xuzme720

Dedicated foam bender
Mentor
#6
Same here...FFF builds and such, mostly. Sadly, they don't last long enough for me to say how long the carbon will hold up. But I can say it lasts me for quite a few airframes!