Author Topic: Turnbuckles  (Read 953 times)

Offline Mike Norris

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Turnbuckles
« on: January 08, 2022, 02:47:18 AM »
Hi all,
As some of you know I build specifically WW1 aircraft in 1:32nd scale.
I rig all of my models that had traditional wire wound rigging wires (not RAF streamlined wires), using mono-filament and 'GasPatch' sintered metsl turnbuckles.


Turnbuckles have two adjustable end fittings with 'cable eyes'.
One end fitting would be screwed in or out in a clockwise direction and the opposite end fitting in an anti-clockwise direction.
This meant one end fitting could be adjusted in or out without affecting the opposite fitting.
Once adjusted the two end fittings were locked in position either with wire wound clips or by being wire locked to each other through the centre barrel of the turnbuckle.

One thing I've noticed over the years is how many great modelers add good rigging and turnbuckles to their models.
However, many leave the turnbuckles in the steel coloured metal finish.
If the two end fittings and the centre barrel were made from the same metal, they would eventually get wet and weathered and would ultimately corrode together.
This would have rendered them useless for their intended purpose of adjusting the tension in the rigging wires.
Therefore the centre barrels were made from a different metal, I believe Bronze, with the result that corrosion was no longer a problem.

If desired and to replicate the different metals, the centre barrel of a turnbuckles could be painted with a Bronze colour, leaving the two end fitting as natural steel.
This is just my personal opinion, but I believe this small detail would further enhance WW1 aircraft model builds,

Mike






« Last Edit: January 09, 2022, 08:58:25 PM by Mike 'Sandbagger' Norris »


Served in the RAF for 27 years - now a retired Military Aerospace Technical Author/editor.

Bughunter

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Re: Turnbuckles
« Reply #1 on: January 08, 2022, 03:41:04 AM »
Good point Mike, but I wouldn't put my hand in the fire that it was always like that.

Today you can see a lot of turnbuckles (for example on sailing boats) looking like identical materials, but ok, today we have better materials like stainless steel.

But also in WWI I'm not sure. For example, Germany had a strong outage on non-ferrous metals. They even replaced the copper and brass by steel for the intakes of the Oberursel rotaries! The copper ones on German aircrafts are captured ones, or imported from Sweden.

As often, it depends. Really pity that such details are hard to detect on s/w ref pictures. Some museums pieces shows also a very dark brass or bronze so that it is hard to guess the real metal below.

Just my 2 Cents.

Cheers,
Frank

Offline Mike Norris

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Re: Turnbuckles
« Reply #2 on: January 08, 2022, 04:38:54 AM »
Hi Frank,
True but as you said, today we have better and different materials.
But back then maybe not.
Metals may have become difficult to manufacture so lesser steels could have been used instead.
I'm just going by those aircraft I've seen in real life and some originals, such as those from the Shuttleworth Collection in the UK.

But at the end of the day it's just an opinion,

Mike


Served in the RAF for 27 years - now a retired Military Aerospace Technical Author/editor.

Offline s.e.charles

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Re: Turnbuckles
« Reply #3 on: January 09, 2022, 08:07:44 AM »
seems like a valid observation/ suggestion.

variety adds interest.

Online macsporran

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Re: Turnbuckles
« Reply #4 on: January 09, 2022, 06:28:52 PM »
I'm sure you're right that steel/steel would lead to corrosion issues and an alloy would be used, but I'm not so sure a yellowish bronze would be employed.

I'm no metallurgist but I think the bronze colour comes from the percentage of copper in the mix, which is a fairly soft material. For a strong alloy I think you'd use harder materials, which may give a "whiter" tone than any adjacent steel components.

However painting individual parts of a turnbuckle is above my level of AMS (and probably competence,) and I'll happily concede that anybody who paints a tb cylinder bronze has at least as valid an opinion as me!

Offline KiwiZac

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Re: Turnbuckles
« Reply #5 on: January 10, 2022, 03:35:05 AM »
For me the clincher would be contemporary photos of high-enough quality to see a tonal difference. I personally prefer to build models of modern-day flyers so colour references are a heck of a lot easier to come by, but if one found a photo that clearly showed the parts being different colours that would (for me, anyway) decide the matter. As to what those colours then are, I would defer to those with the technical knowledge.

Offline PrzemoL

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Re: Turnbuckles
« Reply #6 on: January 17, 2022, 04:40:34 PM »
Very good observation, Mike. The argument of corrosion is definitely very important. Brass centre sections of turnbuckles is certainly something my models are missing, I will have to add this touch. Thank you for bringing this to discussion!
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Offline Mike Norris

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Re: Turnbuckles
« Reply #7 on: January 17, 2022, 08:58:19 PM »
Hi all,
Personally, I think it's probable that the centre barrels were of a different material, as the photos above show.
It seems the colour is close to bronze - brass and copper colour mix.
I do however, out of sheer laziness, sometimes use 'Tamiya' Hull Red (XF9),

Mike


Served in the RAF for 27 years - now a retired Military Aerospace Technical Author/editor.

Offline acewwi

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Re: Turnbuckles
« Reply #8 on: January 18, 2022, 12:38:23 AM »
Hi Mike
I present the following photo for help.

Spyros

Offline Mike Norris

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Re: Turnbuckles
« Reply #9 on: January 18, 2022, 01:04:19 AM »
Hi Spyros,
Thank you - that's very interesting.
So it seems French (at least Nieuport) turnbuckles were all steel, but British turnbuckles had Bronze barrels.

Mike


Served in the RAF for 27 years - now a retired Military Aerospace Technical Author/editor.