Builder Tip #46 from HomebuiltHELP 
Fast Aluminum Sheet Cutting using 
a Brake and Olfa Knife
When cutting aluminum parts from a large sheet, this technique is fast and precise for those straight cuts.

Making long, precise cuts in aluminum sheets is a common task for those making their aircraft parts "from scratch". Using hand shears is not practical, it cannot hold a perfectly straight line and the curling of a cut edge cannot be tolerated. 

An inexpensive knife (Olfa) can be used to score the aluminum sheet for a straight cut of any length. However, the disadvantage shows up in the large number of knife strokes required to break thru the aluminum.  The technique we show in the video uses a bending brake to provide the straight edge for scoring. The brake then separates the aluminum along the score line with only a few strokes of the knife. This really speeds up an otherwise tedious task. 

Watch the short video to see how this process works!

Above: Fast cuts using a bending brake and knife
    Unique Olfa knife for scoring aluminum sheet
What is the most Challenging and Rewarding type of aircraft build?

Answer: Building your Aircraft from SCRATCH!  (plans-built)

A special class of builders demand to construct their aircraft from "scratch"  (otherwise known as plans built).  This means that they create the parts from raw materials: aluminum sheet, steel tubes, etc. instead of purchasing the parts from a kit manufacturer.  

The first step in the process is to purchase a set of engineering plans which details the dimensions of the parts to be created. Several kit companies provide these type of plans for this purpose. Then, the fun begins!  Tools, techniques, and perseverance come next.  Visit our webpage detailing the  Scratch Building Basics DVD to see if you might interested in learning about this elite group.
  Above: Cutting a Rib blank using a router
    Home made Bending brake

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