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HomeAircraftHelicopterMain Discussion › Using stainless steel for feathering spindles
02-03-2010 06:55 PM  8 years agoPost 1
Andy from Sandy

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Bedfordshire, UK

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Will stainless steel with these properties be strong enough for a feathering shaft?

303 stainless steel (cold drawn annealed, room temperature)
Minimum Properties Ultimate Tensile Strength, psi 89,900
Yield Strength, psi 34,800
Elongation 50%
Rockwell Hardness B83

I can buy this stuff at about £6 / metre. Cut off the required length and drill and tap it on a lathe.

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02-03-2010 07:00 PM  8 years agoPost 2
jschenck

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La Vista, NE.

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Good enough for QUK by the looks of it! I've used their R50 spindles, they are nice. Wish they'd hurry up and make a spindle for our 700's

http://www.quickuk.eu/products/281/...dle_r6h-01.html

http://www.quickuk.eu/products/143/...2__rh-01v2.html

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02-03-2010 07:06 PM  8 years agoPost 3
Andy from Sandy

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Bedfordshire, UK

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This was my thinking. Why wait for Q Uk when the material is readily available though? If a 10mm rod will definitely be strong enough then this will allow me to use normal bolts.

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02-03-2010 07:11 PM  8 years agoPost 4
jschenck

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La Vista, NE.

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yea, why not if you have the facilities to manufacture them. Make a lot though, you are going to get a lot of friends if you make them available

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02-03-2010 07:15 PM  8 years agoPost 5
hootowl

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Garnet Valley, Pa.

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Actually case hardened 440C stainless is what I would use. It has an outer hardness with a softer core so it can easily be cut to length and very easy to tap.

http://www.emachineshop.com/machine...ys/page515.html

http://www.eshaft.com/index.php?p=metric

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02-03-2010 07:15 PM  8 years agoPost 6
Darkplague

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Adelaide, South Australia

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If you can source Silver steel, I would go with that.
Comes in 1 metre lengths.

I make all my own shafts with it including main shafts.
Comes in 6,8,10,12 mm precision ground sizes.

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02-03-2010 07:23 PM  8 years agoPost 7
Justin Stuart (RIP)

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Plano, Texas

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There's nothing like stainless steel for strength and durability.

Avant RC
Scorpion Power Systems
Thunder Power RC
Kontronik Drives

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02-03-2010 07:24 PM  8 years agoPost 8
hootowl

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Garnet Valley, Pa.

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Careful, stainless has it's faults. If you ever installed stainless self tapping screws you'd quickly find out how easily they twist off compared to standard steel screws.

Wolves don't lose sleep over the opinions of sheep

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02-03-2010 07:31 PM  8 years agoPost 9
Andy from Sandy

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Bedfordshire, UK

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If you can source Silver steel, I would go with that.
Just a quick google for companies in the UK found a couple of potential suppliers very quickly. Precision ground to be within .010mm at 10mm diameter.

I reckon that will do nicely in a T-Rex 700.

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02-03-2010 10:07 PM  8 years agoPost 10
Peter Wales

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Orlando Fl

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Be careful when buying precision ground steel. Bearings usually have precision ground holes and so you will be spending a couple of happy hours with a piece of steel in the lathe, taking off a thou or so with some wet and dry to get it to go through the bearings. If you can get to see it before you buy it, take a bearing with you and see how it fits first.

Otherwise, stay away from precision ground stuff, unless you like oily bits of wet and dry emery paper.

Peter Wales
http://scalehelicopters.org

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02-04-2010 02:31 AM  8 years agoPost 11
w8qz

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Grand Rapids, MI - USA

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303 stainless is a pretty 'soft' material - but is easy to machine. The screws we use at my work are that material, and they will twist off easily. I'd at the least do some 'back of the envelope' stress calculations, and try to account for the effects of the tapped holes in the ends. I'd assume a minimum of 2 or 3X safety factor - you don't want a spindle to break in flight! From what I've seen of the standard 'Raptor' spindle (in trying to straighten them) they're made of stronger stuff than 303 annealed CRES.

A really great material would be 17-4PH stainless, heat treated to H900 after machining. (We use this for some special parts at my work, that have to take a heavy impact.)You could get it from McMaster-Carr. The 900C heat treat might be hard to do without a controlled furnace, though.

http://www.mcmaster.com/#type-17-4-...el-rods/=5nwzdn

200,000 PSI yield strength!

http://www.matweb.com/search/DataSh...438dc76c1e0b49e

"The helicopter is much easier to design than the aeroplane, but is worthless when done."

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02-04-2010 03:03 AM  8 years agoPost 12
TMoore

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Cookeville, TN

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303 is way too soft to be usable for feathering spindles.

W1, O1 or silver steel is preferable IMHO as it can be drilled and tapped as well as polished to fit the bearings that we use for blade grips. It only takes minutes with 360 wet or dry in a lathe to polish a shaft for the bearing fit. I make a lot of feathering spindles when I need to and W1 is what I use.

17-4PH or 440C are good choices too but unnecessarily expensive and more difficult to source. W1 is easily obtainable and cheap.

TM

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02-04-2010 04:19 AM  8 years agoPost 13
Darkplague

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Adelaide, South Australia

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To the guy saying stay away from precision ground stuff:

Most of my shafts have fitted perfect, some of them have needed a light rub on the lathe or drill with 600 paper,5 minutes at the most, but to say it takes hours on the lathe, come on, you must be very crap on a lathe then.

Ive bougth original shafts that havnt fitted and needed a light rub anyhow so whats the difference?

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02-04-2010 04:23 AM  8 years agoPost 14
Darkplague

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Adelaide, South Australia

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Question to Peter Wales:

What are you doing exactly that its taking "a happy couple of hours" on the lathe to sand down a thou on a shaft?

Pleas explain.

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02-04-2010 07:57 AM  8 years agoPost 15
Andy from Sandy

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Bedfordshire, UK

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303 is way too soft to be usable for feathering spindles.
I have to respect your answer because I don't know.

How is Quick UK getting away with using this material in a Raptor 90 though?

I am not a politician; I am not asking questions I know the answer to.
W1, O1 or silver steel is preferable IMHO
What is W1 and O1 please? If you used silver steel would you then harden and temper it after drilling and tapping?

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02-04-2010 10:05 AM  8 years agoPost 16
hootowl

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Garnet Valley, Pa.

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W1 and O1 is standard water (W) or oil (O) hardening drill rod you see sold at McMaster Carr, MSC and other metal supply houses. It comes unhardened but is harder and stiffer than 303 stainless.

Tmoore is correct. You can cut a piece to length and chuck it in a drill, spin it inside some emery cloth and before in literally a minute or so it's sliding into a bearing. Not much work or mess at all.

440C stainless is harder to find but it's about the most durable of all of them. It does not like to bend. It's like a spring.

Wolves don't lose sleep over the opinions of sheep

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02-04-2010 12:35 PM  8 years agoPost 17
Busher

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Manchester, England

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I have always used silver steel, and never had a problem with having to fit for bearings. Try a piece of silver steel it machines ok.

Good luck
Busher

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02-04-2010 12:39 PM  8 years agoPost 18
hootowl

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Garnet Valley, Pa.

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Silver Steel is a UK designation for drill rod. Similar to W1 or O1 in the US.

"Silver steel is common tool steel in the UK that is supplied as a centerless ground round bar. It is roughly equivalent to drill rod in the US."

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Silver_steel

Wolves don't lose sleep over the opinions of sheep

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