Monday, 15 July 2013

Making Wheels Part 1

In this post and the next, I will illustrate my method of making spoked wheels for use with early armoured cars and trucks.   The tyres are made from plastic conduit and the spokes themselves from various thicknesses of Evergreen styrene strip.

The tools:


Precision Mitre Hand Saw.
Stanley Knife.
Emery Paper.
NWSL/Micro Mark Chopper – optional but definitely a should have.
I have since updated to the next generation of "Chopper" (metal based, replaceable cutting mat)
A Bench Sander/Linisher - again optional but very handy.

The Materials:

Electrical Conduit 25mm and 32mm  
Evergreen Styrene
214    1/8 Rod  - for axle
226    3/16 Tube  -   for hub
228    ¼ Tube   - for hub slices
242    2mm Half Round -   for fancy bit on end of spokes (if required)
294    3.2mm Angle  -   for fancy bit on end of spokes (if required)
143    .40 x .60 Strip   - for front spokes (trucks)
147    .40 x .156 Strip   - for rear spokes (trucks)
222   1/16 Rod   - for Model T spokes ?
Tamiya Extra Thin Cement
Pegs, mini clamps etc.

2 x 6mm MDF 5”x 5”
1/8 Nail with head removed.
20 thou plastic sheet with hole just larger than your wheel rims.
Small metal washer(s).

Making up the Jigs

Find the centre of both pieces of MDF and mark.   Draw circles of diameters suitable for sizes of wheels you intend to make.
With protractor divide circle into eights (or divide the circle by the number of spokes required), drill 1/8 hole in one jig and 1/8 hole for headless nail in other jig.   Insert the nail into one of the jigs.   One jig is for wheels that require a hub to take a 1/8 axle and the other is for wheels that have a 1/8 hub i.e. like a model T Ford wheel.

Now that we have assembled the tools and the materials in the next post I will describe the actual construction.

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