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Axle - knowledge !

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  • Axle - knowledge !

    Just trying to gain more and more basic knowledge, and I'm quickly learning, that this is THE Place !! I am aware that it is somewhat frowned upon, to use 3/32 piano wire, for front axles in 1/32 slot car scratchbuilds. I suspect that I may know one of the answers to the following question, but again, I want to learn from a community of experienced hobbyists : Why are rear axles not ever done with 3/32 piano wire ? I know stainless steel is much better. But you could cut many axles, out of economical piano wire. And just attach the set-screw crown gear, and set-screw aluminum wheels. Just wanna know, about this !

  • #2
    Piano wire is softer than the set screw. So when the set screw is tightened it will "burr" the axle, making removal of the part very difficult. If you use push on plastic pieces it works well.

    HTH
    Randy
    Randy C
    Grindrod B.C.
    Canada

    Comment


    • #3
      Piano wire works fine for axles for home racing. Some of us having been using it for 20 years. Most of my 3DP builds using 21K motors have piano wire axles and they run fine.

      As the cars get faster and you move to larger tracks, you will find that you want the increased stiffness and hardness of drill blanks or other available options.

      And if you grind or file a small flat on the axle, you will give set screws a place to grab.
      Come Race at The Trace!
      Timberline Trace International Raceway - SW of Mpls, MN
      https://cults3d.com/en/users/chappyman662/creations

      Comment


      • #4
        Piano wire is not as precision as hardened steel axles. A couple of thousands of bend or looseness will cause wheel hop. I do use piano wire for front axles because I tighten the axle down so it doesn't turn and use retainers on the outside of the front wheels so they turn independently. I use piano because it's hard to unsolder the retainers so I just cut the axle in half and throw it away.
        Butch Dunaway
        Oxford, Ohio

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        • Aptosc6
          Aptosc6 commented
          Editing a comment
          This is the correct answer to your question.

      • #5
        I have no problem with piano wire for front axles
        But I use hardened steel for the rear
        Dave
        Peterborough Ont
        CANADA

        Comment


        • #6
          Not sure why anyone would go to all the work of building a chassis and then use piano for an axle. The cost of a harden axle is less than $2.00 for a real axle that is true and hardened. You can't be saving anything especially when you add in the time it takes to cut it and clean up your cut.
          Mike
          Clover Leaf Racing 7746 Clyde Road Fenton MI 48430 U.S.A. 313-473-SLOT
          web site: https://cloverleafracing.com Facebook: http://www.facebook.com/cloverleafracing
          YouTube Chanel: http://www.youtube.com/user/CLR132slots?feature=watch

          Comment


          • 6666hotrod
            6666hotrod commented
            Editing a comment
            Thought I'd ask, since I purchased a bunch of it in two sizes, at the beginning of my trying scratchbuilding : decided not to use it. So it's just in my supplies stash.

          • 4424ever
            4424ever commented
            Editing a comment
            Depends on how serious you take a toy car and how long shipping from outside the country is going to be
            Especially when you have a chassis under way and one axle on the bench
            This is why my wife gets upset at another package at the door (I tend to stock up but it doesn’t last forever)
            I refuse to tear down any previous builds for parts but I have sacrificed a slot it or 2

          • Pappy
            Pappy commented
            Editing a comment
            In Retro racing everyone uses piano wire for front axles.
            It takes me 1 minute to measure, cut and clean up a piece of piano wire for a front axle. When I have to cut it in half to get it out of the chassis I lose 20 cents worth of piano wire. When I cut out a hardened drill blank I lose $2. Mike, if I had your money I would probably use hardened drill blanks. : )

        • #7
          1. piano wire isn't round
          2. piano wire isn't hard
          Kevan - Isle of Man
          Life is like a box of Slot cars...🚓🚗🚚🚜

          Comment


          • #8
            Mike is correct. I do have 3/32 oil hardened drill rod which I have used successfully in a pinch. Works well and can be had from McMaster Carr for short money….HOWEVER…if you’re going to the effort to build a competitive car….spring for pre done axles
            Brian Mc
            Minnecrapulous, Mn

            ”Machinist: One who does precision guesswork based on unreliable data from those of questionable knowledge.”

            Comment


            • #9
              For hardness, and precision in diameter and straightness, you want to use drill blanks. How precise? Diameter tolerance +0.0000/-0.0002 inches. Straight to within 0.012 inches per foot.

              https://www.mcmaster.com/drill-blank...-steel-rods-9/

              Take note -- you want drill blanks, not drill rod. Drill rod is usually not hardened.

              Ed Bianchi
              Ed Bianchi
              York Pennsylvania USA

              Comment


              • 4424ever
                4424ever commented
                Editing a comment
                Thanks for that info I have searched for a local to me supplier of drill blanks and ended up with a big fat OH WELL

            • #10
              I use the same drill blanks as Ed does. There used to be mom and pop industrial supply places all over, but most of those are gone now. McMaster-Carr does give great service and their catalog has a lot of valuable information to help you to pick the best products.

              Comment


              • #11
                Just a note about McMaster-Carr. Aside from the fact they list an insane number of items on their website, you can call them -- on the telephone! -- and ask them for an item they might otherwise carry but not have listed. I've done that, and been able to buy such an item. For real!

                My brother tells a story about a colleague who spent so much time calling McMaster-Carr that he got to know the woman who frequently took his calls. They ended up meeting in person, and eventually got married. So my brother says he knows a man who got his wife from McMaster-Carr!

                YEMV...
                Ed Bianchi
                York Pennsylvania USA

                Comment


                • Pappy
                  Pappy commented
                  Editing a comment
                  Sounds like a good reason "not" to shop there. Take my wife, somebody please take my wife. Just doing my imitation of Henny Youngman. LOL

              • #12
                Wow they really do have everything
                Dave
                Peterborough Ont
                CANADA

                Comment


                • #13
                  I'm totally in agreement with chappyman66 and have no problem with using piano wire axles for toy cars with plastic hubs, bushes etc. front and rear, but for serious stuff like Slot.it, NSR etc I stick with their products. Where I race the guys aren't too serious, which is nice, and we don't even have scrutineering but occasionally joke about the fact that we should because someone's car is lapping the others. Basically we do Home Racing in someone else's World.
                  Bram,
                  CHCH NZ

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