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Metal Tanks

Ideas for making one......

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Steve Hargreaves - Moderator10/01/2012 13:10:22
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I'm planning on building an Eric Clutton Sharkface....a 1/2A design from the 60's.
 
The plan specifies a 15cc "team race" tank but I quite fancied a go at making my own & was pondering how to go about it.
 
I'm thinking that forming two "U" shapes out of thin tin that will slide together at 90 degrees to each other before soldering all the seams might work but I just wondered if I could pick the collective brains & knowledge of the RCM&E Parish for any ideas or tips....
 
All thoughts greatfully received....
Ben B10/01/2012 13:30:01
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All I know is that you have to drill the holes for the fill and vent tubes before you try and solder the two U's together. If you try and solder it without the holes the air inside the box will expand and blow out your solder
Steve Hargreaves - Moderator10/01/2012 13:34:29
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Thanks Ben....thats one "Gottcha" I already know about.......
 
I did find this which makes it look pretty easy......
Myron Beaumont10/01/2012 14:20:00
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You can make one out of one piece of baked bean tin or similar .with 45degree angles on every corner .Team race tanks are designed to pick up fuel when hurtling round in a circle .NO GOOD . Difficult to explain 'cos I can't "do" photos but basically unwrap the tank in your minds eye & cut it out leaving a1/4 " extra all round -bend over the edges and then shape and solder the edges together .Drill holes -put in the pipes and job done .Simples !

Edited By Myron Beaumont on 10/01/2012 14:21:36

Chris Channon10/01/2012 17:16:19
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Hi all, i don't drill the holes for the pipes, i punch them through, this gives a bit more support to the tubes when soldering them.
Make sure you use a largeish iron, the tin will eat the heat !
I use the tin plate from the K&S stand in the local model shop, this stuff will take solder really well, i use solder with a silver content ( the car racing guys use it for their connectors SMC stock it).
Hope this helps a bit
Regards
Chris.
Simon Chaddock10/01/2012 20:49:56
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You can certainly used backed bean can material.
A variation on the two "U" shaped pieces but not aerobatic. Designed to fit in a particular space it even retains the can ribbing.

 
 
Steve Hargreaves - Moderator11/01/2012 11:49:38
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Well I had a spare hour last night so I thought I'd give it a go.....
 
First off a "bending tool" to ensure straight bends & sharp corners. This is some beech engine bearer that has been threaded M3 to allow the metal to be clamped between it
 

Next I made a card template to test the theory....I aimed for a tank of 25cc reasoning that I can always under fill it to give a shorter run if necessary. This equates to a rectangular tank 40mm long by 25mm square (4 x 2.5 x 2.5cm = 25cc)
 

It seemed to work OK.....so I glued the seam...just to see.
 

Next out with the metal K&S sheet.....40mm wide x 105mm long (4 sides at 25mm = 100mm plus a 5mm overlap for soldering. Again bent in the bending tool....
 

Looks OK.....
 

Clamped ready for soldering...I used the bending tool to give a good even pressure on the seam
 

Standard 60/40 cored solder was used with a 60 watt iron.....the solder flowed into the joint very nicely. Next the tank was pressed against some more sheet metal (note the ply behind to act as an insulator & stop the heat disappearing into the vice.
 

TBC.....
 
Myron Beaumont11/01/2012 11:59:34
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You could have built in the ends on your original template and sheet metal shape and the 45 degree corners on the overlaps I mentioned earlier & would have made life easier
Now your end pieces will not fit without a lot more solder / filler & bodging up 'cos the lengths / sides etc aren't square . You will learn from your mistakes -Don't we all ? 
Now scrap it and do a "proper job"
Only slightly joking ---But  ??

Edited By Myron Beaumont on 11/01/2012 12:04:33

Steve Hargreaves - Moderator11/01/2012 12:00:23
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All the joints were soldered & the excess metal cut away......

Looking inside the tank the solder seems to have penetrated the gap quite well (you can see the flux residue in the top joint.....

 
Next some holes were made for vent, fill & feed pipes & some brass tube cut to length & soldered in place.....


The view from behind.......the pick up is fixed so won't work too well inverted!!! I extended the fill pipe to the bottom of the tank so I can use it to empty the tank too.......
 

Repeat for the back of the tank........
 
 
Cut away the excess material from the edges & then a few minutes with a file to take off any corners/shorp edges & voila......

The tank certainly seems airtight & will maintain a vacuum so fingers crossed.....
The acid test.....will it leak when I fill it with this....
 

So there it is.....took about an hour & a half from start to finish......it won't win any concours d'elegance competitions but it certainly seems up to the job.....I just have to build the model now!!!



Steve Hargreaves - Moderator11/01/2012 12:04:32
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Posted by Myron Beaumont on 11/01/2012 11:59:34:
You could have built in the ends on your original template and sheet metal shape and the 45 degree corners on the overlaps I mentioned earlier would have made life easier
 
 
True Myron but it would have made the metal a bit harder to cut out in the first place & made accuracy (not my strong point..) essential if big gaps were to be avoided.
 
The method I used seemed to work well & was very easy.....I commend it to you.....
Myron Beaumont11/01/2012 12:06:57
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Posts must have crossed whilst telling you off ! Tell me , How many pounds/ kilos does it weigh ?
No wonder the Chinese are so successful

Edited By Myron Beaumont on 11/01/2012 12:09:31

Steve Hargreaves - Moderator11/01/2012 12:10:21
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Do you know I haven't actually weighed it but it is very light......I had to tie it to my bench to stop it floating away as it filled with hot air.....
Danny Fenton11/01/2012 12:19:18
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Nice one Steve, any trouble while soldering the end pieces, causing the already made solder joints to melt?
 
Cheers
Danny
Steve Hargreaves - Moderator11/01/2012 12:25:45
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Nope...none at all Danny....I was expecting it to happen & it turned out not to be an issue.....swift & deft work with a hot iron was the order of the day......obviously a lot of the excess heat was conducted into my fingers which helped keep the original joints cool.....
 
I are a metal tank maker.....
Danny Fenton11/01/2012 12:29:48
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Coool er.... or hot lol
 
Do the fingers lose their heat sink properties if soaked in
a. dope (I am still peeling dope from mine.
b. old diesel fuel
 
I only have some old fingers in stock, must order more from Hobby City.....
Steve Hargreaves - Moderator11/01/2012 12:34:19
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Dope is actually a great insulator & prevents that sizzling sound you get with bare flesh.....
 
Cyano is much the same but smells worse....
 
Old fingers tend to be more resilient than new ones but take longer to heal......it is best to use someone elses fingers for this job if you can.....
Danny Fenton11/01/2012 12:35:50
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Excellent idea, good reason for having kids, knew there was a reason....... (only joking before any body jumps on me )
Martin Harris11/01/2012 12:42:09
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No mention of Colmans Mustard tins?
Steve Hargreaves - Moderator11/01/2012 13:29:48
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Do they still sell em?? They would work I'm sure.....A bit big for a 1/2A jobbie anyway Martin!!!
 
@Myron.....just weighed the tank...its 13grams or 0.5oz or 0.03125lbs......thats empty obviously!!!
Martin Harris11/01/2012 14:00:00
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I believe they are - and you won't need all of it!
 
Talking to the old boys at the club, they always seem to fall in to reminiscing about making their control line tanks from old Colmans mustard tins - I, being a mere whippersnapper, used to buy mine ready made from KeilKraft...
 
Just thought some of our regulars would have mentioned them!

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