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Crash resistant model box

Building a lightweight model box.

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Martin_H22/09/2013 10:53:53
128 forum posts
57 photos

I have been searching for a model box that I can safely transport my electric gliders and DLG's, in my car, on top and by air.

My first search had me looking at ski cases, but the cost was excessive and not big enough for more than one or two models.

I thought of using a long punching bag with a rolled ply insert. Has merits, especially if there was an old punching bag handy, and may still make a good solution one day.

Then I found a product in a local hardware chain that opened up a range of possibilities. This is a series of plastic joiners that fit 25mm square aluminium tube that can be used to construct space frame shelves etc. So if you can build space frame shelves you can build a space frame model box?

Then a recent event in Australia clinched the design. We have had an election - lots of corflute election signs littering the neighbourhood and often plastered with unsuccessful candidate's smiling mug. At least the rear of the sign is unpainted!

So an aluminium spaceframe, corflute inside and out? Nice and light, corflute is tough, but the whole thing seemed to be lacking a bit of rigidity. And solidness. Plus there was the question of attaching the corflute to the aluminium frame.

Finally the idea of cutting styro sheet to fit inside the space frame, then bonding the corflute and styro fixed the design. What I have ended up with is a space frame aluminium frame, that will have an insert of styrofoam and corflute laminate, the corflute covered with vinyl schoolbook covering. I chose blue to contrast with the aluminium. The corflute is 5mm thick so I used 20mm styrofoam board, hot wired to size,which will be gooped into place. The vinyl covered corflute will then be attached to the styro with double sided carpet tape. The inside will have an internal 3mm corflute box, to give extra strength and tougness, plus protect the styrofoam from being damaged by the contents.

Having settled on the design, the size was next. Lots of limiting factors. Ideally, it would to be good to transport my glider fuselages complete with rudders and stabilisers attached, but that would make the box excessively large. So that came down to the wingspan of my DLG's (1500mm) and the length of the electric glider fuselages. The next limiting factor was the size of the back of my Subaru Forester with the rear seat down. I ended up with a box 1550mm long, 475mm wide (which will allow two boxes side by side between the wheel arches, or the use of the split rear seating to accomodate another passenger) and 350mm high. These final sizes were tweaked by calculating the best economical use of the aluminium tube and sheet styrofoam sizes.

I will get some photos up soon.


Edited By Martin_H on 22/09/2013 12:57:53

MaxG24/09/2013 16:56:02
176 forum posts
5 photos

This may also help


Vecchio Austriaco24/09/2013 20:10:14
1498 forum posts
707 photos

A more taditional method is to use lightply on a spruce frame. Made a large one for a rremoval (Italy to UK) and recently a smaller one - again for a removal and to keep the models (2 large helis) dust free in the workshop.

This is the Italy-UK box. All models survived.


8 month brake

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