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Building board help

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Iain Marshall21/02/2018 20:07:25
22 forum posts


Making BB from some 19mm ply, it's pretty flat. I intended to glue & screw some 1x2 battens to underneath to help keep it rigid and flat.

Problem I have is that the 1x2 & 2x2 stock I have is banana shaped in all directions. Wasn't that bad when I got it.

I don't want to fix this to board as it will probably induce twists etc. All sources of wood here seem to have similar levels of crapness sad

Any suggestions on how to overcome this problem would be much appreciated.

I'm fairly new to working with wood, but have built a number of balsa kits in the past.



cymaz21/02/2018 20:15:17
7597 forum posts
981 photos

Beg borrow or steal some laminate kitchen work top. It is usually good and flat. Then screw some 12.5 mm plasterboard on top. Job done. Apologies for not using your plyblush

Denis Watkins21/02/2018 20:16:30
2725 forum posts
137 photos

The ply itself should be flat enough, but it is too hard for pins

You could lay a sheet of plaster board onto the ply and that would be it

If you want to use curvy battens, and your ply edges are straight

Then glue and screw the banana wood into a straight line, and it will stay straight

flight121/02/2018 20:45:58
514 forum posts
32 photos

Laminate kitchen work top is best laid on old kitchen units or bench to support it, it comes in nice long lengths to!

lay some plaster board on top which can be replaced each build or as needed or you can go the magnetic jig way which requires a metal sheet to be laid on you flat serface and magnets squares as clamps see here for one example obvisously you gan make your own a pice of steel sheet is cheap and easlily obtained and neodymium magnets can be obtained to make

Iain Marshall21/02/2018 21:29:42
22 forum posts

Thanks for replies so far.

Would the photo mount card from art shop work over the ply for sticking pins in? Got some spare.

Had building work done a few months ago, should have knobbled some of the p/board sad


Nigel R22/02/2018 08:48:42
1219 forum posts
275 photos

"1x2 & 2x2"

Personally, I would forget these and cut some 2" wide strips of 1/2" or 3/4" ply. If you buy a fresh sheet it already has two long factory cut dead flat edges.

Plasterboard on top for the pins, works very well, cheap enough to be disposable - one piece will probably last two or three models before showing its age around the corners.

Don Fry22/02/2018 09:30:23
2399 forum posts
30 photos

Iain, anything will do, as long as it is flat, and will take a pin. But you can be sure the worktop, plasterboard route is the end result of hard bitten and painful experience.

I'm a bit concerned by your opening remark, your 19 mm ply is pretty flat. It has to be flat. Period.

Excuse the Trumpism.

Simon Feather22/02/2018 09:40:19
194 forum posts
160 photos

I use some offcuts of 3/4" oak veneered MDF (posh, eh!) left behind by the company that did my kitchen, to which I have glued two thicknesses of cork bathroom tiles using evo stik. I have a couple of different sizes - but crucially the same thickness - so I can use one board or the other or both together depending on the size of thing I'm building.

Also not yet mentioned yet is a fuselage jig - invaluable for getting your fuselage straight, but requires a small investment. The SLEC jig **LINK** is used by many builders but be aware that you might need to keep the tops of the jig angles held together with elastic bands as they tend to flex a bit.

Iain Marshall22/02/2018 22:55:59
22 forum posts

Thanks guys.

The ply board is dead flat & a SLEC jig kit has just arrived smiley.

Idea now is to have the jig on one side with the captive nuts recessed slightly. On other side glue some 5mm ply, for use as a board without bolt holes, that I can have as a board for sticking plans on for building over. Maybe faced with some photo mount board.

So, one board, 2 uses, less space. Workshop is small !

If I need another board, I will make another ply one.

Sound like a reasonable plan?thinking


Martin McIntosh22/02/2018 23:52:10
2424 forum posts
935 photos

2 1/2 x1 1/4" Dexion or similar screwed to each edge plus another piece across the centre diagonally could work. I am lucky enough to have obtained three 6ft x 3ft all metal benches, to which two have now got 3mm light ply glued to the surface to take pins. Previously I used an old office table top with cast iron bed frame parts fitted as above.

onetenor23/02/2018 05:29:49
1647 forum posts

Any metal angle beneath will do the job but if using photo mount card use at least 2 ,preferably 3 layers to take the pins properly. Btw welcome to the forum.

Peter Miller23/02/2018 08:35:42
9065 forum posts
1042 photos
10 articles

The best thing for sticking pins in is self adhesive 10 mm thick cork tiles. You can find them on EBay. they are fairly expensive f

I use Melamine covered shelves 48" X 12" as the board. Buy two and you can work on two wings at once and stand them up and work on the bench while the glue dries.7.jpg

This is the complete SWamp Rat wing on one board

Bob Bertram23/02/2018 09:29:38
259 forum posts
20 photos

I used the angle iron from an old metal bed base that came from the local tip under the ply and two layers of cork tiles glued on top.

Jonathan M23/02/2018 10:08:52
470 forum posts
258 photos

I use Sundeala 9mm thick pinboard, glued to a stable flat substrate like 3/4" MDF or chipboard and cut to whatever size needed. It can also be sanded (easier with a random-orbital) to restore a well-abused surface. Piccie below is my small board for indoor models.

8'x4' sheets are expensive at £62, but one sheet is effectively a lifetime's supply: **LINK** or can be shared with a mate.

kk auster arrow.jpg

kc23/02/2018 11:33:27
5473 forum posts
161 photos

I suggest that several boards suited to the job in hand might be handier than one large board. A board for fuselage and or wings, and several smaller for tailplane, rudder etc plus another for the fuselage jig will enable you to work on several items whilst waiting for glue to dry etc.

Spar Fixing

However just using several bits of plasterboard is all you need and just store them vertical will save any problems. I find that using a few screws with homemade clips is the best way of holding spars onto a board. Pins tend to pull out when working. Clips are shown in my photo - made from wood same thickness as spar with , glued with a ply cap then drilled and finally sawn into individual clips. ( I have used this photo so many times that forum members must be bored - but it's an idea that works and it's not in any books!)

Iain Marshall23/02/2018 21:26:20
22 forum posts

Thanks for all the ideas.

I've got photoboard anyway so will give that a go. Not sure what glue to use to stick it to board though, maybe tape it on.

Reserve the right to use the plasterboard idea smile

Toodle pip!

Denis Watkins23/02/2018 21:30:50
2725 forum posts
137 photos

Contact adhesive Iain, very smelly and expensive, so buy a tin

John Stainforth24/02/2018 23:09:09
192 forum posts
38 photos

I am a convert to building on glass that is dead flat, a la Dave Platt (see his videos), with no pinning down. As Dave joking says in one of the videos, if you like building with pins you will find it "hell on the thumbs"!

Iain Marshall24/02/2018 23:32:30
22 forum posts
Posted by Denis Watkins on 23/02/2018 21:30:50:

Contact adhesive Iain, very smelly and expensive, so buy a tin


onetenor24/02/2018 23:41:13
1647 forum posts

BTW talking of Dexion small sections of it can be used as jigging blocks. Screwed to wooden or similar board or magneted to steel plate. Loads of cheap magnets on Gear Best or E Bay/Amazon if you can't wait a week or two. Use weights if you can't even wait that long.clockdevil

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