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I've just made my first rope on my new Syren Rope Rocket and thought I'd share my experiences. 

 

First thing to say is that I was delighted with the result. I'd had a little previous experience with the more basic 'handraulic' version from Model Expo so I had some idea how to make rope, but even so I was surprised just how well my first efforts turned out.

Line.thumb.jpg.cac6797cc542bfe579beb5710d0af4a3.jpgRocket.thumb.jpg.3661bbd0af49ad39c540bce106478141.jpg

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

The line on the left was my first effort - three single strands of the thread Chuck supplied with the kit producing 10' of 0.67mm/0.026" rope.

The one on the right has 9 strands of the same thread. You can put multiple strands on the Rope Rocket, so I tried 3 strands between each pair of hooks. Apart from a minute or two more to set up, it takes no longer to produce 9 strand than 3 strand material. The resulting rope was just over 1.2mm/0.047".

 

A few suggested Do's & Dont's from my experience so far:

 

Do watch Chuck's videos (on the Syren website and YouTube). They're excellent, and I learned more from them than umpteen written descriptions of rope making.

Do take the time to clean off the laser char and varnish the headstock and tailstock. The cherry is a fine wood and it would be a shame not to bring out the best in it.

Don't do what I did, and varnish the ropewalk after assembly. I did this, and despite my best efforts I gummed up some of the moving parts. Easily sorted, but avoidable. It would have also been much easier to varnish the parts before assembly, but I was too impatient! Also don't get varnish on the underside of the assemblies, or if you do clean it off. I've found a lot of the art of rope making lies in getting a feel for how the headstock or tailstock wants to 'walk' along the table as you spin up the ropewalk, and to do that they need to be able to slide freely.

Do make sure you've got some very small hex keys (aka allen keys). I struggled to find one for the very smallest set screws. Until I eventually found one (1.3mm) I had to make do with a jeweller's screwdriver (the size used for adjusting the tiny screws in spectacles) but I wouldn't recommend that as it might distort the set screws.

Do follow Chuck's advice in the instructions and use a strong epoxy or a CA with good gap filling properties to stick the eye screws into the brass tubes in the headstock. This is the only part of the construction that makes me a bit nervous, as the fit is quite loose and the eye screws come under considerable tension. I've had no problems so far, but eventually I might replace the tube/eye screw arrangement with a single length of solid brass, with one end fashioned into a hook. Incidentally, like Chuck I opened up the eye screws slightly, making it much easier to set up the thread. However unlike Chuck I opened them before fixing them in place, as I was worried that too much twisting with pliers might weaken the glue joint.

Do check that everything spins freely when assembled. I found that the big central gear in the headstock tended to rub slightly against the washers under the smaller gears. This might be a result of some mistake on my part, but its something others might want to check for themselves. I found that an appropriately sized washer glued to the face of the headstock brought the big gear out just far enough to engage nicely with the small gears.

Do watch Chuck's videos again!

 

In summary, I'm delighted with the Rope Rocket and the rope it produces and would highly recommend it. I'm off now to experiment with different threads, 4-ply rope & etc. I've also got Chuck's Serv-o-Matic and am lookking forward to my first foray into serving.

 

Derek

 

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That rope looks EXCELLENT!!!!!!  Very well done.  :D I am so glad you enjoyed making your own rope.  I am busy as we speak laser cutting teh parts to restock the ropewalk right now.

 

Chuck

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Almost forgot,  I am now selling extra shaft hubs for those who wish to have them.  Some have found it easier to permanently glue the hubs to the cherry discs on the tail stock.  It makes switching from three strand to four strand even quicker.  Just as an FYI

 

Chuck

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Thanks Chuck. In my first post, I should have pointed out that, unlike other rope I've made and seen, the rope from the Rocket really doesn't untwist when you cut it. I know you say this in your videos, but I had to see it for myself to appreciate it:

Line.thumb.jpg.745cec5c381c48b31064627542474af4.jpg

I made this line from three strands of a slightly thinner DMC thread than you supply in the kit (#70). The resulting rope is 0.45mm/0.018" (it doesn't look as stark white as this in reality - it's more a pale tan).

 

Derek

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I have also purchased the Rope Rocket.  I will echo the comment and advice of Derek above.  It is super easy to use and the results are great.  I have been trying out some different brands of thread, I will post some images of the results soon!

-Rafael

p.s. I was a member of V.1 of MSW years ago, but when the forum crashed I was too discouraged to come back!

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Glad to have you back!!!  Please do post pictures and I hope to see you active on  forum once again.   :P

 

I would love to see what you are working on now as well.

 

Chuck

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Hi Chuck

I Just watched your videos of the Rope Rocket. Thanks for doing this, I was curious at the point where you just pushed the drill up to the back of the headstock and started Spinning. Later I realized that you are using a Phillips Driver bit in the drill to mate with the center bolt. A change I would make when I buy one of these is to change the bolt to a torques one. I personally have an aversion to Phillips screw and bolts.....Must be a British/Canadian ex pat thing... or just me.  That said I have driven thousands of Drywall Screws.

A great video and clear information, I particularly like the aspect of telling us that we need to practice to get the "Feel" of making the rope. This speaks to Craftsmanship and a knowledge that can only come from time at the task.

 

I also downloaded the scale rope chart, very nice. One thought occurs to me is to have a separate chart for each of the common scales, so that when one prints off the chart for say a 1:96 scale model the size of the real full size rope matches the model rope. or the chart for a 1:48 rope the sizes would be matched for that scale. I think that this would make deciding what rope to use easier for the novice who is reading information about the ropes and lines on their model.

 

I only offer these comments because in reading about blocks and lines there always seems to be some question about what these sizes are.

 

As soon as I get back from Whitehorse I will be ordering your rope rocket.

 

Michael

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I think even better would be a hex ball drive,but they're not so easy to come by,unless of course one were to be supplied. ;)

 

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Yupp...that would work.  But I lose those bits all the time so I keep a bunch on hand.  The machine itself is so simple but makes awesome rope.  

 

Here is the size chart you are talking about.

 

 

 

ropesizechart.pdf

 

ropesizechart.jpg

 

 

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Posted (edited)

Hi Chuck, I was thinking that for the scales chart that if the full size rope was 3/4 inch in say 1/2 inch scale or 1:24 then the appropriate rope diameter would be .031

or if we used 1/8th scale or 1:96 then 1/32 or .031" = 3" in full size and 1/64 or .015" = 1 1/2 inch diameter rope full size.

 

This was the reason that I thought that a separate chart for each scale would be easy to understand so each diameter of your rope would be clearly stated as to the diameter in full size for the stated scale.

 

Scales are one of the most confusing areas of modelwork in my opinion.

 

Michael

Edited by michael mott

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Michael,

The chart Chuck posted does exactly what you said.  But you just have to pick the number closest to the size you want.  He has his chart graduated in the sizes of rigging he provides that is available on his website.  Your eye won't pick out a few thousands difference in your rigging. 

 

Besides, Its impractical to get rope diameters in an exact size.  One must work with the yarns or rope diameters you have available to spin, thus the finished rope has the finished diameter from those yarns. 

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Thanks and I understand what you and Chuck are saying. My point was that to make it clear for the novice a simple notation beside each of the rope on the diagram and a separate page for each scale. So for instance for the :24 scale page

.008 = 3/16 rope

.012 = 1/4 or 5/16 rope 

And so on.

 

Michael

 

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Here are my rope samples using the Rope Rocket so far using some few different threads,

 

From left to right;

 

1. Londonderry Linen size 4, 3-strand, final size 1.3mm.

Starting thread was fuzzy.  I used extra beeswax, and burned off some of the fuzz(which is why it looks a little sooty!)

 

2. Corel kit supplied thread(it looks like linen, .4mm) 3-strand, final size 1.1mm

I like to look and feel of this one.

 

3. Londonderry linen #3095, 30/3, 3-strand, final size .85

Fuzzy and lumpy, disappointedin this thread.

 

3-6. Rope Rocket supplied thread; DMC Cordonnet Specia(cotton), no. 40, ecru, final sizes 1.3mm, 1mm, 65mm.

This thread makes really sharp rope!

 

7. Gutterman Quilting thread(cotton,) CA 02776, 3-strand, final size .5mm

I like the color, gloss and smoothness

rope.jpg

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The only one I didn't like was the Londonderry #3035 due to the fuzziness and lumpiness.  The larger size Londonderry looked decent after the extra work involved.  The DMC Cordonnet cotton makes quite nice sharp rope and is very reasonably priced and comes in many thread sizes. 

I was surprised how nice the Corel thread turned out.  I found it labeled as hemp thread online, but I am not so sure due to it's sheen and smell when wet.   

I like the Gutterman quilting thread, no fuzziness whatsoever, and have been using it for serving rope using the Syren Serv-O-Matic.

 

I am partial to linen due to it's longevity, it seems very difficult to find good quality though(anyone have a source?)  I might buy some vintage linen thread via ebay/etsy and see how it works just for fun.

-R

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Thanks Rafael, that is very helpful.  Its nice to find sources of thread that produce a nice sharp layup in suitable color and quantities that's is also inexpensive. 

 

The DMC Cordonnet comes in large spools in multiple colors and sizes which is nice and is available at local shops.  I just need to figure out which thread number (10, 20, 40 , 80 etc) corresponds to what actual size.  I think the larger the number the smaller the diameter.  I've seen DMC thread as small as size 100 which is pretty small.

DMC.jpg.2dcec74e66d8f092429f989d0d6d8b5a.jpg

Lizbeth (pictured below) is another brand that is also available that might be worth trying.  Available at Amazon or local craft stores in various colors and sizes.

 

 

Lizbeth.jpg.1bd718c2f70345ab152c1b4e21760f29.jpg

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The larger the number, the larger the diameter on DMC thread.  When I started making my own line I purchased all of the sizes 20-100 and made test line do determine the diameter of the completed line.  (All you need is a few feet.)  The diameter will be different for right-hand vs left-hand line so if you plan on having the correct lay for the different lines you will need to lay up both left and right-hand test line.  Remember, the line diameter will vary a little based on your individual technique.

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Having fun experimenting with different threads and lay-ups.

 

On the left; Fil de Lin au Chinois, #40, ecru(an expensive waxed linen thread often used in high-end leather working, think Hermes) 3-strand, final width ~80mm

very strong, no fuzz whatsoever, minimal lumps, maybe a little too waxy!

 

On the right; Londonderry Linen size 4 again, 6-strand(two per hook,) final width ~2.25mm

Burned the extra fuzz off again.  This is starting to be real rope size, no longer miniature!

linen threads.jpg

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Posted (edited)

lol @Chuck

5ani7rP.jpg

It's nice that you send a full roll along instead of some small 20' roll or something, though.  On a side note, on your serv-o-matic, you might want to package these guys a little differently. Maybe cling wrap them to the main board? The way they were in the zip lock put a lot of lateral force on them causing them to break.

n3aW5bz.jpg

I've glued them together, I think they'll be fine. And I'm not posting this to try and shame anyone, just giving you a heads up. 

 

Edited by rtwpsom2

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Cuck,

 

Your products are fantastic and I am probably stepping on myself won't be the first time, accidents always lead to improvements:)

 

You have a an A1 rep and maybe you would want to go ahead and re-place those 2  gears I can see RT in the middle of running rope and they break on the repaired crack, in addition the extra weight or change the balance from repair may affect winding.

 

Absolutely no criticism intended.

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They are allready bagged up and awaiting shipment for tomorrow.    I was hoping he would be pleasantly surprised to just see them show up a few days later!!!!!  But you ruined the surprise!!!!  😏

 

Rob....they will be shipped out tomorrow.

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Posted (edited)

I wasn't too worried about it.  If the glue doesn't hold I could always ask for more, or I have a 3D printer, or I have a mini-lathe and a mini mill.  Something would have worked out.  Anyway, being a CAD Designer, I could offer some suggestions to improve the part if it happens too often, Chuck. The main point was how funny it was that you sent me the same roll of stuff I've had sitting on the shelves waiting for a project for several months.

Edited by rtwpsom2

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Well you should have it in a few days at any rate.   Have fun with it.   

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Chuck, here's why I didn't ask for replacements.  Once it's glued up and sanded you can't even see where they broke.  So I really wasn't worried about it, that much.  I hope no one thinks I am disparaging the quality of the product, I think the quality is just fine.

0nifBIq.jpg

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