Searching for rectangular aluminum tube for the 1/100th scale, Apollo-era LUT scratch-build...

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Ralph M Bohm

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Hi all,

I've been searching and searching, looking at places like Aircraft Spruce and Specialty Company, McMaster-Carr, metalsdepot.com, etc. and just can't seem to find the correct item.

Here's the challenge:
I am searching for rectangular tubing to begin my build of the Apollo-era Launch Umbilical Tower (LUT) in 1/100th scale. This tubing would represent the vertical "legs" of the LUT. If I am not mistaken, I am searching for tubing with the dimensions of ~5/16th" x ~1/2" and would need enough tubing for four >45" lengths.

Actually, while I am on the subject, I would also be needing scale sections to represent the horizontal girders for each of the levels and probably would need the equivalent of several feet. And then, there are the diagonal beams to work out.

The reason for aluminum is to make sure the tower will survive the momentary blast of the rocket motors on the associated 1/100th scale of the Saturn V vehicle during launch. I could (and would) even go with brass or some such metal. Weight would be no problem and in fact, the heavier, the better for stability while doing the launches.

Another consideration is my plans to incorporate the simulation of the 9 movable swing arms that would swing away at the correct time during launch countdown. And that would involve weight and movement so strength and stability would be needed as well hence the desire to go with a metal.

Any thoughts and ideas from where I may obtain the necessary materials?

Ralph
 

Bowman

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Hi all,

I've been searching and searching, looking at places like Aircraft Spruce and Specialty Company, McMaster-Carr, metalsdepot.com, etc. and just can't seem to find the correct item.

Here's the challenge:
I am searching for rectangular tubing to begin my build of the Apollo-era Launch Umbilical Tower (LUT) in 1/100th scale. This tubing would represent the vertical "legs" of the LUT. If I am not mistaken, I am searching for tubing with the dimensions of ~5/16th" x ~1/2" and would need enough tubing for four >45" lengths.

Actually, while I am on the subject, I would also be needing scale sections to represent the horizontal girders for each of the levels and probably would need the equivalent of several feet. And then, there are the diagonal beams to work out.

The reason for aluminum is to make sure the tower will survive the momentary blast of the rocket motors on the associated 1/100th scale of the Saturn V vehicle during launch. I could (and would) even go with brass or some such metal. Weight would be no problem and in fact, the heavier, the better for stability while doing the launches.

Another consideration is my plans to incorporate the simulation of the 9 movable swing arms that would swing away at the correct time during launch countdown. And that would involve weight and movement so strength and stability would be needed as well hence the desire to go with a metal.

Any thoughts and ideas from where I may obtain the necessary materials?

Ralph
Try Onlinemetals dot com
 

heada

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Does it have to be tube or can you use solid? If solid is an option, you can always have it milled to the dimensions you need.
 

Ralph M Bohm

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Does it have to be tube or can you use solid? If solid is an option, you can always have it milled to the dimensions you need.
That might make the project prohibitively expensive.
 

heada

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5/16" by 1", 6' long 6061 bar stock. $16.87 each.


Mark a line down the center, cut with a hacksaw and then clean it up with a file. You now have 2 sections, 72" long by 5/16" thick and just under 1/2" wide. Could take it to any metal shop and run it through a metal cutting bandsaw and get a thinner kerf and cleaner cut so less waste but they'll charge some fee for it.

There are cheaper options than McMaster-Carr but that is the easiest one to look up online.
 

Ralph M Bohm

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Thank you to all. I am still searching for the exact dimensions of the diagonal braces as well as the vertical and horizontal beams so as to be close as possible to what the real thing was during the Apollo era. I want to make this a functional LUT on a functional mobile launcher that can withstand the thrust of the scale Saturn V and other vehicles.
 

rharshberger

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Have you tried K&S Metals, they make metal tubes, brass and aluminum for model builders?
 

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