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Cheapest way to make balsa nose cones?

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Hello,
Buying balsa nose cones for around $3.00 each can get expensive. What is the cheapest way to make balsa nose cones?

Brian
 

Ryan S.

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I have made little ones by measuring a block and sanding it out. for big ones you need a lathe, you can make one out of a power drill and some clamps if you dont want to buy one
 

rstaff3

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A hand drill clamped in a vise is a common method. Mark the center of a balsa block, drill a hole, glue in a dowel, hand trim the edges, insert in drill, and go for it. A slice of body tube over the chuck helps check the diameter. You can also make a cardboard form to check the overall shape, although I generally just eyeball it.

I think this had been discussed in more detail a couple of times so you might search the forum.
 

sandman

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It's easy!

Start out with a block of wood bigger than the cone and then just remove all of the wood that doesn't belong on the cone!:D

sandman
 

Ryan S.

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ha, if only it was that simple....well it kinda is....its just easier said than done
 

shockwaveriderz

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I have a 775KB pdf file that I received froma good friend that shows you both with text and pictures how to make your own model rocket size nose cones with foam....the techniques and steps are essentuially the same with balsa wood....

Its really a good step by step picture reference ....

If anybody would like it either PM me or email me shockwaveriderz@hotmail.com and I will email it to you direct..
 

Karl

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I have a lathe , and unless you have the right drill , and a drill that has a high torque , your going no where.
Ive made nosecones from oak as such ( Holowed out ), it takes ALOT more time than balsa , and ALOT more messy but it's worth it in the end , and its easyer to finish !
Take a look at my website http://karlsrocketry.tripod.com , and look under the 24mm/29mm AMRAAM section , that nosecone is made from oak , and just coated in wood filler and sanded down .
-Karl
 

Elbmod

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Originally posted by Karl
I have a lathe , and unless you have the right drill , and a drill that has a high torque , your going no where.
Ive made nosecones from oak as such ( Holowed out ), it takes ALOT more time than balsa , and ALOT more messy but it's worth it in the end , and its easyer to finish !
Take a look at my website http://karlsrocketry.tripod.com , and look under the 24mm/29mm AMRAAM section , that nosecone is made from oak , and just coated in wood filler and sanded down .
-Karl
if that is true perhaps you need to check the rest of your site the page at http://karlsrocketry.tripod.com/karlrocketry/id4.html says it has a plastic nose cone, and looking at the the pictures that seems to be true....
 

BlueNinja

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It depends on the length, they have "mini lathes" at Harbor Freight that are about 4 inches long, look underneath the full size lathes.
 

Fore Check

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Well, seeing that a lathe is an integral part of making a nose cone - and I have no lathe - the lathe itself would be part of the expense for me.

Therefore, the cheapest method that I've come up with:

E-Mail Sandman! :p
 

Karl

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Thats the type of lathe I have , and it works great ! All you need is that ,some sharp lathe bits and a steady hand ! And away you go :D
-karl
 

astronboy

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My drill press works for me!! I have made a few dozen cones!!
 

Steve

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I've been thinking about trying this one:


Fully assembled 11'' lathe is designed for precision crafting small hobby parts. Idea for dollhouses, models, model railroads. Includes carbon steel turning gouge, tailstock, rotating center, drive center, brass collet, steady rest, two hole clamps, center finder, hex key.

Anybody have any experience with it? $40 at Harbor Freight.

S..
 

wwattles

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I looked at that thing, but I decided not to get it because of the limited diameter of turning stock you can put into it. It sure didn't look like it could handle much beyond a BT-60. Look at how close the live center is to the base track... not much clearance there!

WW
 

Steve

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I thought the same thing. I saw one in the store, and it sorta looked like there might be a way to remove the motor/drive assembly thingie and maybe flip it 180° so you could turn larger stock. But I didn't wanna lay down the cash just to get it home and find out I was wrong. (I'd been there plenty o' times already).

That Grizzly setup looks like a smart way to go for nosecones, since I don't already have a drill press or lathe.

S..
 

powderburner

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Originally posted by Bushrat
I've been thinking about trying this one:
Bushrat,
Do you have a stock number or some kind of ident for this item?
Thanks ahead of time.
 
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