Wednesday, March 30, 2011

Fixing a cracked GW aluminum leg

Here's a sight you don't see everyday. A droid leg full of holes. What a mess the welding on both sides are cracked. As of yesterday I only saw 1 side cracked, now I see both are. I wasn't looking forward to performing surgery on this droid. So I put some aluminum L bracket in there, put 5 screws per side and counter sunk the heads. The main problem is going to be how do I fasten the nylon nuts that far in the leg? My hand isn't going to fit in there so I'm going to have to McGyver something together.
So with a torque wrench I can reach deep inside the leg and bot together the screws. But that only works for this angle. I have to make something up to do the other side.
Inside the leg I staggered the bolts. I learned from building 30 foot walls with aluminum and drywall you stagger your sheets and screws to add more power to the bonding all of it together. Fun, fun, fun.
Here's the two tools I used to reach inside and hold the nylon nuts while I fastened the 10-24 counter sunk screws. I used a 10 mm wrench hammered inside a cheater bar. Then I blue taped the nuts to the wrench so I had something reliable to secure the nut while I ran a screw driver. I was kinda of surprised it worked! Here is one side all bolted together and ready to hold the leg from falling apart.

I have to do the exact same thing to the other side tomorrow. All this because I looked at the paint and wasn't happy with the grinder marks you could see under the paint. Now all this work is involved over cosmetics. Being picky can be very costly on how accurate you want your droid to be.

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