Featured Article from Pre-1922 Newspapers
Model Airplane Building
November 11, 1922, "The Daily Times," Davenport, Iowa
How to Make the Propeller
This is lesson 2 of 8 which will tell how any boy can make a complete model airplane which will fly under its own power. 'Warren DeLancey, writer of the articles, was formerly president of the Illinois Model Aero Club, a group of boys who build and fly their own models and who hold nine of the ten world's records for model airplane flying. Clip these articles until you have the complete set, including the directions for flying your machine.
The propeller for the model airplane should be made of a piece of clear white pine, free from knots such as can be fond at any carpenter shop or lumber yard. From this cut a rectangular block, 6 inches long, 1 inch wide and 1/2 inch thick, and plane the sides smooth and square.
Any good water or air propeller looks as if the center had been held firm and the ends twisted into position. The easiest way to cut this is to make from your block a propeller blank like Fig. I by drawing lines on the block crossways from corner to corner on the top and bottom. Where these lines cross should be the center of the block, but measure to see that these points are at an equal distance from the ends and sides. Here drill a small hole through the block the size of a needle. Leaving a hub around the hole 1/8 of an inch thick, cut or saw of all the wood outside of the diagonals you have drawn, and the blank will look like the solid lines in Fig. I.
Cut Blades Carefully
Fig II shows one end of the blank carved on top and bottom and one end about to be cut. Notice that the blades are cut in opposite ways. Carve slowly and carefully, leaving the wood about as thick as a heavy piece of cardboard. Cut down to the edges of the blank, but do not cut below them.
Now round the end of each blade as shown in Fig. III. The easiest way to do this is to first to mark it off with a pencil, being careful to make both ends alike, and then cut away the wood with a sharp knife. Go over the entire propeller with sandpaper, smoothing it off and rounding all the edges.
Make Wire Shaft
Fig. III shows the finished propeller with the shaft to which the rubber is attached. This should be make from piano wire, about No. 10, which can be had at any music store. Bend one end of this into a round loop of not over a quarter inch diameter, and leave the rest in a straight shaft an inch and a half long. Push this through the hole you made in the propeller and bend the end around as shown. Now push the end of this second loop into the wood so that the shaft cannot be turned without turning the propeller.
A good deal of the success of your model will depend on how well the propeller is balanced. This is done by holding the propeller by the shaft in an upright position and allowing it to turn freely. The heavy end will move to the bottom and should be sandpapered until both ends are the same weight.
(Copyright, 1922, Associated Editors.)
Posted January 14, 2018