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Horlicks Hero
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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Hello. Many times I've seen scratch build threads where the creator has "turned down" a set of plastic wheels to turn them into inserts for, I assume, a set of fancier metal wheels. I get the general idea, but what exactly is involved in achieving this ? How do you actually go about trimming off enough plastic ? What is the tool of choice ? How do you know when to stop ? How are these inserts fixed into the metal hubs ?

Thanks,
Stuart.
 

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Ey Up,

It depends what equipment one has !!.

If you have a drill then chuck up a 3/32 axle, superglue the suspect wheel to the axle and "machine" away.

The idea is to reduce the diameter of the plastic wheel so that it fits into the alloy hub on the car.

When first doing this you should stop frequently to check diameter achieved.

When satisfied that you have achieved a good fit, then "part-off" the insert.

This means cutting off carefully the thinnest section to retain the depth of detail.

All this is easier if you have a small lathe, but is achievable with a simple electric drill !!.

vbr Chris A.
 

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Eddie Grice
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2,295 Posts
Before I got the mini lathe I used my Hudy tyre truer to reduce the diameter down to what was required to fit the wheel rim.
Works but knocks hell out of the Hudy abrasive drum!
Whatever method, be careful not to get too much heat into the plastic as it then goes squishy & distorted

Eddie
 

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re member
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I use a slightly different method.

Slice the back off the wheel to be changed into an insert.I use a razor saw (Xacto)
Then using a dremel sanding drum (on slow) sand the edge of the now disc of plastic.

I sand and turn,sand and turn,sand and turn while holding the insert (to be) in my fingers.

When I get close to the diameter I want I put the dremel away and finish by hand sanding the edge using an emery board.
 

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Premium Member
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Start with something coarse to remove the bulk, them go to a finer grade of paper.
As Chris says keep checking the diameter.
I do it slightly differently as I use an old car, glue the wheels onto the axle then run the motor letting the wheels drag onto the sandpaper which has been glued onto a board. Once at the right diameter use a knife blade/saw blade to remove the part you dont need as the wheel rotates, hopfully the bit you dont need is the bit glued to the axle

Practise on some that dont matter to master the technique.
 

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Horlicks Hero
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Discussion Starter · #8 ·
QUOTE (SplitRim @ 1 May 2012, 08:42) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>Practise on some that dont matter to master the technique.
Always a good bit of advice. Does anyone have any before and after pictures of a completed insert ?

Cheers,
Stuart.
 

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Here's a before and after...



I used the method above with and axle in a drill but also used it against a linisher for double quick sanding!!!

 

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Al Schwartz
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3,378 Posts
Nothing to add to the above so far as reducing the size is concerned (I have a small lathe that I use for this) So far as fastening the insert is concerned, either I try to achieve a medium "press fit" or use a couple of very small dabs of silicon adhesive. The latter will hold the insert but allowed to be removed for repaint, repair or reuse.

EM
 

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QUOTE (MAF @ 1 May 2012, 10:47) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>Here's a before and after...


Mega impressed with that!
 

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Horlicks Hero
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Discussion Starter · #13 ·
Thanks, everyone, this has been most enlightening.

MAF, how did you know it was minilites that I had in mind ? That's just freaky. Perhaps I should put my tinfoil hat back on
 
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