Tuesday, November 26, 2019

Vital Parts

They used to say in the USA, and perhaps they still do, that an idea's worth a dollar, a product's worth ten and a factory's worth a hundred.

One reason for this is that prototype construction proceeds in fits and starts, not least due the availability or otherwise of its 'nuts and bolts'.

I want to strap the two drones that together form the 'motor-head' of the prototype as non-invasively as possible. Every hole in an airframe ~ and not least the portholes, as proved by the De Havilland Comet ~ is a potential focus for failure.

Accordingly I consider those rubber bonnet-straps you see on rally-cars, but settle instead for sprung fasteners of the sort you see above (which is stressed to 90 kilos, incidentally).

Britain's richest native industrialist, James Dyson, has lamented the dearth of factories left in the UK producing these sort of nuts and bolts. Basically they've all gone west, and when in Shanghai I used to buy them by the sackful, they being 'cheap as chips'.

Good to see therefore that these are marked up 'Redditch UK' and therefore sourced from the Midlands, that great heartland of manufacture in this country.

It's not just me, either. Production of the Boeing Dreamliner has been held up at times due to a shortage of rivets...