Testing ironing board fabric

Discussion in 'Recovery' started by JoeTekcor, Aug 11, 2019.

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  1. Aug 11, 2019 #1

    JoeTekcor

    JoeTekcor

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    Looking for a cheaper alternative to buying nomex blankets. My wife is willing to sew some for me so I picked up some ironing board fabric. Folded it on half and pushed it into the tube.
    Did a small scale test and it seemed to hold up just fine.
    IMG_6963.jpg IMG_6961.jpg
     
  2. Aug 11, 2019 #2

    crossfire

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    Blue Jean fabric works well also.
     
  3. Aug 11, 2019 #3

    rharshberger

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    Canvas treated with borax and boric acid (roach killer) solution to be fire retardant does as well, but for about $15 you can buy a yard of nomex from Ebay and have enough material to make a bunch of chute protectors. Dont know what ironing board fabric costs so it may be cheaper....or my preferred method purchase them from Top Flight Recovery.
     
  4. Aug 11, 2019 #4

    JoeTekcor

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    Picked up the fabric at JoAnns for just under $7/yard.
     
  5. Aug 12, 2019 #5

    Nick Hutton

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    I spent $20 on eBay for a bunch of Fluoro yellow nomex and had a crack at sewing. Fortunately when they deploy at 2000ft no one can see my crooked seams!! For the sake of a few bucks would you risk a rocket with hrs of blood, sweat and tears to a fabric that might combust?
     
  6. Aug 12, 2019 #6

    JoeTekcor

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    You make a great point. It wasn’t necessarily that I was trying to save a buck. It was the convenience of just going to the store and picking it up.
    I found a yard of nomex on eBay for $12. I’ll use the ironing board fabric for some of my low power launches and use the nomex for high power.
     
  7. Aug 12, 2019 #7

    Steve Shannon

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    I know a young man that used ironing board fabric for TARC very successfully. It worked just fine.
     
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  8. Aug 13, 2019 #8

    Handeman

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    Check the junk yards. You can usually get expended air bags free or very cheap. They work great and are designed to contain a strong ejection charge!
     
  9. Aug 15, 2019 #9

    ebruce1361

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    Airbag material is regular nylon. It is indeed strong, but airbags deploy with an expansion of nitrogen gas from a chemical reaction. If you use airbag fabric, you run the risk of the hot ejection charge melting it just as if you had an unprotected nylon parachute.
     
  10. Aug 16, 2019 #10

    Handeman

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    They must make different kinds then. I've been using several for about 4 years now and they've never melted or burn through yet.
     
  11. Aug 16, 2019 #11

    ebruce1361

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    Now that I think about it, maybe they treat the airbags with some kind of fire retardant. It would make sense since they are only deployed in an accident when a fire is most likely to occur.
     
  12. Aug 16, 2019 #12

    AfterBurners

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    Why not just use the fabric and make a chute from it?
     
  13. Aug 16, 2019 #13

    ebruce1361

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    If the fabric were a bit thinner, that might work. Airbags, ironing board fabric, even nomex are heavy enough fabrics that you will end up adding excessive weight for an appropriate sized parachute. That being said, I have contemplated a thin nomex parachute with kevlar shroud lines to experiment with wadding-less deployments like for gap staged boosters where packing a parachute is tricky.
     
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  14. Aug 17, 2019 #14

    JoeTekcor

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    Got the nomex fabric from eBay. Thick stuff but it seems to work. Tested it with a lighter. I’ll test with a motor later today.
    Looks like the ironing board fabric is much lighter and more flexible. I’ll use it for my small to mid power rockets and save the nomex for the high power stuff. I have a yard of each and it doesn’t look like I’ll run out anytime soon.
     
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  15. Aug 17, 2019 #15

    Handeman

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    I would think they would have to treat it with some kind of fire retardant. The explosive charge puts out a lot of hot gas. People have been burned by the air bags. I would suspect the internal gas temps wouldn't be much different than the BP charges we use.
     
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  16. Sep 9, 2019 at 5:51 AM #16

    AlphaHybrids

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    I've used ironing board fabric for over 15 years for high power rockets. Works great.

    Edward
     

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