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Bending with heat only


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34 replies to this topic

#1
michael mott

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A recent tool acquisition and remembering Chuck's tutorial on planking, and Druxey's question regarding the hot air soldering station for bending wood.

 

I can say that the tool works brilliantly for this task.

 

The photograph shows a strip of hard maple .041"  x .125"  using the middle sized nozzle 1/4 inch diameter and using the highest temp setting the strip became very pliable in seconds

 

The other strip is .o41" x .2" Castello and it was the same in seconds it became very flexible and bent very easily.

 

IMG_8368x1024.jpg

 

Obviously there are all sorts of other tests that can be done at varying temps etc but I have a feeling that this tool will be a very useful one in the tool kit from now on.

 

Thanks again to Wefalck for putting me onto this tool.

 

Michael


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Current builds  Bristol Pilot Cutter 1:8

 

                                Skipjack 19 foot Launch 1:8

 

                               Herreshoff Buzzards Bay 14 1:8

 

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                         Maria, Sloop 1:2

 

Restoration      A Bassett Lowke steamship Albertic 1:100

 

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#2
SpyGlass

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Er what tool is that Michael - the hot air soldering thing ??

 

I just using the Admirals number 2 hair drier which works quite well !!


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#3
michael mott

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It is one of these

 

IMG_8360x1024.jpg

 

the unit on the left is the hot air soldering handle mine came with three nozzles 1/2 inch 1/4 inch and 3/16ths

 

The air can be dialed from very low to quite high over a scale of 1-8 the temperature can be adjusted in 1 degree increments from 100c to 480c

 

This temp range also applies to the soldering Iron side on the right hand side this is the unit that I purchased.

 

Michael


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Current builds  Bristol Pilot Cutter 1:8

 

                                Skipjack 19 foot Launch 1:8

 

                               Herreshoff Buzzards Bay 14 1:8

 

Other projects  Pilot Cutter 1:500

 

                         Maria, Sloop 1:2

 

Restoration      A Bassett Lowke steamship Albertic 1:100

 

Anything you can imagine is possible, when you put your mind to it.


#4
donrobinson

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That looks like a must need piece of equipment, Thanks for the link Mike


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#5
Jaager

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The components of the wood are not soluble in water.  The function of

water in bending wood is:

to transfer heat more efficiently

to retain the heat longer

to inhibit the cooking or charring of the surface of the wood where the heat is applied.

 

With thin wood, the difference in heat transfer with and minus water may not be significant.

The balance is to apply enough heat to liquefy the lignin  without oxidizing the wood.

 

The negative effect of water is that it swells the wood fibers and leaves a previously sanded

surface uneven.  Most of the time, this swelling effect only occurs with the first exposure to water,

if water is applied, allowed to dry and then sanded - subsequent water usually does not swell the wood

any further.

 

To readdress a subject of folklore: aqueous/household ammonia does not help in bending - other than what

the water it is in does.  The ammonia part only has negative effects.

It takes liquid ( anhydrous ) ammonia to debond lignin for bending.  This is an industrial chemical: even if

a civilian could obtain it -  that would be a really bad idea.


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#6
druxey

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Brilliant, Michael! Looks like a must-have. I simply have to persuade the Admiral....


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#7
J.P.

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LOL...That looks like a unit that would add some legitimacy to any ones work bench.... darn,....decisions, decisions.....???

 

JP


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#8
Sunsanvil

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Just be sure to unplug it when not in use.  There is a youtube about the blower element turning on, even when the unit is switched off, due to a failed triac.


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#9
allanyed

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Michael,

 

Maybe I missed it elsewhere, but what temperature are you setting it for when bending the planking.   I know auto-ignition of wood varies with species, but was curious as to what temperature settings you have tried for the Castello.

 

$99 does not seem terribly expensive and is worth the tranquility derived from not using her hair dryer!

 

Allan


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#10
Bruce Evans

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Was interested but some of the experiences related in the amazon reviews (US) were downright scary!
Will keep using a hairdryer.
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Bruce Evans

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#11
Maurys

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Michael, do you have a chart of temperatures for various woods or thicknesses?

Maury


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#12
michael mott

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Hello all

I have only done one test so far, it is my intention to do some extensive testing across a range of Temperatures and times with different thicknesses and types of wood. as soon as that is complete I will publish a chart of my findings here.

 

Michael


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Current builds  Bristol Pilot Cutter 1:8

 

                                Skipjack 19 foot Launch 1:8

 

                               Herreshoff Buzzards Bay 14 1:8

 

Other projects  Pilot Cutter 1:500

 

                         Maria, Sloop 1:2

 

Restoration      A Bassett Lowke steamship Albertic 1:100

 

Anything you can imagine is possible, when you put your mind to it.


#13
probablynot

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Real yacht builders, back in the days when the yachts had to be planked rather than coated with resin, used to use steam boxes. That was how they made the planks conform to the needs of the hull.
When I soak my planks in boiling water, I'm doing the best I can to emulate the methods of the old builders. Hell, they weren't even all that old. I actually witnessed the procedure less than ten years after WW2. Hair dryers, or the similar-but-more-lethal hot-air paint strippers, might be a more modern way of bludgeoning our micro-planks into submission, but sorry, I'm just a backwards-looking traditionalist,

Edited by probablynot, 19 November 2016 - 12:36 AM.

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Brian

Current project: - Constructo "Silhouet" 1893 (Dutch barge) http://modelshipworl...constructo-160/

Some previous builds - HMS Bounty Launch [Model Shipways kit] http://modelshipworl...s-116-smallish/

Corel's Half Moon (lightly 'bashed')  http://modelshipworl...scale-150-wood/

A 1:12 scratch-build of 'Anastasia', my old sailing kayak from back in the 1940s. http://modelshipworl...by-probablynot-a-18-re-build-of-my-1949-kayak/

Next project: - I'm thinking.   Might be Victory Models' HMS Fly.  A pretty ship - miles of rigging ...


#14
michael mott

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Hair dryers, or the similar-but-more-lethal hot-air paint strippers, might be a more modern way of bludgeoning our micro-planks into submission, but sorry, I'm just a backwards-looking traditionalist,

Brian I take it then that you do not use scalpels or micro saws or modern glues, but  get out the adze  or take a spell in the saw pit then split up some treenails, oh and  heat up the old glue pot..... I couldn't resist Sir.

 

One has to accommodate all modes in this wonderful hobby of ours.

 

Pressing on, after an evening of cutting and testing a variety of width thicknesses and temperatures, I am not sure that a chart would be all that useful.

 

This is what I discovered though. I used my small clamp fixture to hold the various test pieces.

 

IMG_1389x1024.jpg

 

The smallest being .025" x .085" and largest being .125" x .280" of Castello

The smaller sizes worked well with a setting of 212f

 

It was better to use the hotter temperatures with the thicker wood. I was able to bend easily .060" x .225" with 300f and very easily with 450f  because the nozzle is so focused I was able to hold the  wood quite close to the bend area . All of the bends were free formed and let go a few moments after the heat was removed. I had 2 structural failures because I was too aggressive with those bends.

 

It was easy to char the wood at 400f

 

The heat gun is very easy to adjust and only takes moments to get to temperature, In my view the tight focus of the heat is the best feature of this tool

 

Here are a couple of shots of the tests, the five pieces on the left are yellow Cedar from .070" x .450"  and .162" x .10"

 

 

IMG_1394x1024.jpg

 

I would recommend this tool to anyone who needs to do any heat bending or soldering 

 

This was just done with the same hot air, the thin strip of flat stock .007" x .062" joined to a small section of 1/2 round .038" x .020" I placed a small piece of flattened solder between the springy flat piece and the 1/2 round.

 

IMG_8370x1024.jpg

 

IMG_8372x1024.jpg

 

Michael


Edited by michael mott, 19 November 2016 - 01:57 PM.

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Current builds  Bristol Pilot Cutter 1:8

 

                                Skipjack 19 foot Launch 1:8

 

                               Herreshoff Buzzards Bay 14 1:8

 

Other projects  Pilot Cutter 1:500

 

                         Maria, Sloop 1:2

 

Restoration      A Bassett Lowke steamship Albertic 1:100

 

Anything you can imagine is possible, when you put your mind to it.


#15
Sunsanvil

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Real yacht builders, back in the days when the yachts had to be planked rather than coated with resin, used to use steam boxes. That was how they made the planks conform to the needs of the hull.

 

Indeed... because it was, and still is, impossible to apply dry heat to such large real-world piece of wood.  But if it WERE possible, they probably would have done so centuries ago since, as has been well documented now, water and steam are only carriers of the heat which is what does the actual work of softening the lingnin.


Edited by Sunsanvil, 19 November 2016 - 03:18 PM.

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#16
Sunsanvil

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It was easy to char the wood at 400f

 

Perhaps a brief soaking, or even just wetting, of the wood before hand?


Edited by Sunsanvil, 19 November 2016 - 12:51 PM.

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#17
michael mott

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Perhaps a brief soaking, or even just wetting, of the wood before hand?

I shall also see how that works, thanks for the tip.

 

Michael


Edited by michael mott, 19 November 2016 - 01:47 PM.

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Current builds  Bristol Pilot Cutter 1:8

 

                                Skipjack 19 foot Launch 1:8

 

                               Herreshoff Buzzards Bay 14 1:8

 

Other projects  Pilot Cutter 1:500

 

                         Maria, Sloop 1:2

 

Restoration      A Bassett Lowke steamship Albertic 1:100

 

Anything you can imagine is possible, when you put your mind to it.


#18
probablynot

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Brian I take it then that you do not use scalpels or micro saws or modern glues, but  get out the adze  or take a spell in the saw pit then split up some treenails, oh and  heat up the old glue pot..... I couldn't resist Sir.

One has to accommodate all modes in this wonderful hobby of ours.

 

Well yes, Michael, I do use modern tools.  I'm no Luddite.  My workshop bristles with Proxxons!  My preference for using hot water (would like to use steam, but not a practical modus operandi) is little more than nostalgia really.  But it works.  And if it doesn't, I can (and I do) resort to lamination.

 

Perhaps a brief soaking, or even just wetting, of the wood before hand?

 

Wouldn't that be equivalent to just soaking in hot water?  Or perhaps steaming?


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Brian

Current project: - Constructo "Silhouet" 1893 (Dutch barge) http://modelshipworl...constructo-160/

Some previous builds - HMS Bounty Launch [Model Shipways kit] http://modelshipworl...s-116-smallish/

Corel's Half Moon (lightly 'bashed')  http://modelshipworl...scale-150-wood/

A 1:12 scratch-build of 'Anastasia', my old sailing kayak from back in the 1940s. http://modelshipworl...by-probablynot-a-18-re-build-of-my-1949-kayak/

Next project: - I'm thinking.   Might be Victory Models' HMS Fly.  A pretty ship - miles of rigging ...


#19
Chuck Seiler

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    One technique I have seen/used, particularly when a compound curve is involved, is to soak the plank and clamp it to the hull until dry.  I am tempted to use this method with a heat-gun, but am concerned with how it will affect the wood already in place.  Will repeated heating damage the wood?


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#20
druxey

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Chuck: Heat may make the glue release on planking (and other structural components) already in place. That would be a more likely risk than damaging wood. Of course, it's an alternative method of un-glueing joints without isopropanol....


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