Florida International University (Christian)

  • anchor

    piano wire and plexi blues

    By Christian Hemrick
    Oct 31, '06 8:13 PM EST

    We're constructing our second model of the semester, (the matrix and itinerary) with music wire and plexi glass. When executed properly, our professor said the two materials complement each other extremely well. So far I've tried everything, and all I can come up with is something that looks like egg whites fried in asphalt using a tin foil spatula.

    Is there any way to avoid that greasy, rusty, look? I've used a 40 watt and 80 watt soldering iron, as well as a butane torch, and all three yielded the same result. Sand paper and rubbing alcohol don't seem to be helping either. I've also tried two types of flux, in multiple quantities, to no avail.

    The plexi is somewhat of a bitch too. Plexi Zap adheres but leaves behind a foggy residue. What's with that? I heard a few students talking about acetate being a lot easier to use. Does it have the same affect as plexi glass?

    No need to call the wambulance, but I will say it's frustrating not feeling confident with the materials given, especially when you have a narrative on the tip of your brain.


    • Arnaud M.

      As for plexi, the best way to bond it is to use res'n'bond (maybe it's cales weld on in other parts of the world). If your seals are crystal clear sanded, your joints will be as transparent as glass.

      Oct 31, 06 9:11 pm  · 

      yes, we called it plexi-weld.
      put it in a syringe for improved control...

      sodering: if the wire comes with an oily coat, sand it first, at least at the ends. if you put a very small amount of flux on the joint, and apply very little sodering wire, the joint should be clean. also, try some super thin wire (typically used for intricate circuit board work)...

      Oct 31, 06 11:46 pm  · 

      I don't know about all the work of sanding elements, but AP's right - keep it clean. you can remove the oil with something more elaborate like turpentine or paint thinner (something that will eat at the oils and then evaporate), on a cloth. then keep soldered ends clean with a clean (as new as possible) pink eraser. keep the eraser clean by rubbing it on canvas (or your jeans). even oils from skin contaminate solder areas, so rub the joint ends with the eraser just before you apply the solder. also, keep the solder iron clean. even with flux, tin the tip and rub the tip on a clean, slightly moist cloth before soldering a joint. swear this works...I made a voltmeter with 80 solder points just with the alcohol, the pink eraser (and of course, the components) SO long ago that still works (solder points never micro-fractured or anything). the cleaner the parts before the solder, the less junky reside after you solder the joint.

      remember solder is an impermanent fill-type joint. if your piano wire or round rod gets too large, the much softer solder will not hold. go to a weld at that point for permanence, a true connection (making the connected wires ONE wire through the weld), and a former, more wokrable ability to finish (grinding wheel, hand grinder or file).

      for acrylic-to-acrylic, nothing beats methylene chloride. but that's a silent killer...highly toxic with only a faint smell. don't get it on you and stay well ventilated. is that the same stuff as some end-product named plexi-weld or res-n-bond? anyway, make sure your joints are flush and clamped well...usually applied with a syringe-type dropper/applicator. Here's something I did with clear acrylic and nylong filament (fishing line - a replica of a Naum Gabo Linear Construction.

      Nov 1, 06 12:21 am  · 

      I second the methylene chloride, but be careful. Its really made for corners more so than sandwhiching it face to face. And be sparing. A little goes a long way, but a lot makes spider-marks and clouds.

      Nov 1, 06 2:43 am  · 
      Arnaud M.

      Res'n'bond = Methylene Chloride.

      Nov 1, 06 7:10 am  · 
      Christian Hemrick

      thanks for the info guys. i know practice is huge, but i don't think i would ever have stumbled across those tips. pretty slick l8rpeace. ur light years ahead...

      Nov 1, 06 11:24 am  · 

      The cornea allows light to enter the eye. As light passes through the eye the iris changes shape by expanding and letting more light through or constricting and letting less light through to change pupil size. The lens then changes shape to allow the accurate focusing of light on the retina. Light excites photoreceptors that eventually.
      Florida Alcohol Addiction Treatment

      Aug 26, 08 9:55 am  · 

      Block this user

      Are you sure you want to block this user and hide all related comments throughout the site?


      This is your first comment on Archinect. Your comment will be visible once approved.

    • Back to Entry List...
  • ×Search in:

Affiliated with:

Authored by:

  • Christian Hemrick

Other blogs affiliated with Florida International University:

Recent Entries