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Plastic Tube Connectors

Posted: Fri, Mar 30 2007, 09:35 PM
by Babbman
After building my tetrahedron and getting it out to fly, I have a serious issue with how I did the tube connectors... Basically, I followed the directions from Tetralite and used nylon ty-wraps to hold the connectors together...

after taking it out and setting it up, I was finding that the connectors were loosening up and allowing the tubes to slide... made it a real pain to assemble and disassemble... I needed to find a way to fasten them together better.

So today, while the crickets were chirping here (WHERE IS EVERYONE?), I raided our shop and found a solution... or at least something to try..

I grabbed some 2/58 screws and nuts, made a hole in the center of the tubes and shoved the screw through and tightened it up. At first glance, it looked as though the screw head would pull through the tubing... I considered a washer but didn't want to use anything that would possibly cut through the tubing.

I pulled everything apart to see what the screw did to the tubing and realized that there was no way it was going to pull through.. I also had a few people pull on it very hard in an attempt to pull everything apart... it didn't...

I'm sure this will add a few oz's to the weight of the kite but better connections makes a better kite...

[albumimg]746[/albumimg][albumimg]747[/albumimg]

On the left is the new connector. To the right of it is an old one with a ty-wrap... at the bottom is the screw... it's stainless so it should hold up well.

This is also nice because it allows the tubing to swivel in order to orient itself better to the layout of the spars... I'll dab a bit of locktite on it to hold it in place...

I'm also going to work out how to connect sets of cells together using these...

Re: Plastic Tube Connectors

Posted: Fri, Mar 30 2007, 11:32 PM
by Chris
Believe it or not, I'm still here! :wink: I've been so busy working in my basement, I haven't really done anything else :doc: I will be flying SOMETHING SOMETIME this weekend (I need a break...)

Re: Plastic Tube Connectors

Posted: Sat, Mar 31 2007, 09:53 AM
by Mike
I like the screw connectors. What did you use to make the hole?

Re: Plastic Tube Connectors

Posted: Sat, Mar 31 2007, 11:22 AM
by Babbman
just using a sharp awl... if I poke it through about 1/4", it makes a perfect sized hole for the screw..