TIP OF THE MONTH

Model Airplane News - - ENGINE CLINIC -

Every month, I usu­ally have four or five en­gines pass through my hands for a stripped glow plug or four-stroke ex­haust thread re­pair. It is sur­pris­ing how many of the en­gines’ prop drive wash­ers have been man­gled by be­ing held with reg­u­lar pli­ers, es­pe­cially the four-strokes. It was back in the Jan­uary 2013 col­umn that I brought to your at­ten­tion a nifty pair of chan­nel-lock-type pli­ers with ny­lon jaws. The tool was be­ing sold by Mi­cro-Mark and was re­ally great for grab­bing an en­gine’s prop drive washer to keep it from turn­ing when tight­en­ing the prop with­out dam­ag­ing the drive washer. This past April, I de­cided to give my son a pair for his birth­day only to find out that Mi­cro-Mark no longer has the pli­ers.

But I now have good news. I imag­ine that most of our readers, like me, re­ceive a large num­ber of mer­chan­dise cat­a­logs, which just get thrown away. This past month, how­ever, I was thumb­ing through one called “What­ever Works” while my wife was mak­ing lunch when I saw—guess what!—a dandy pair of plas­tic chan­nel­lock-type pli­ers with rub­ber jaws sim­i­lar to those dis­con­tin­ued by Mi­cro-Mark. So, rather than butcher up your en­gine’s prop drive washer with reg­u­lar pli­ers, get your­self a pair of these rub­ber-jaw pli­ers, called “Power Grip­pers.” They are a bar­gain at only $9.99 (plus shipping) and should be in every mod­eler’s tool­box. To or­der, visit what­ev­er­works.com or call 800-4996757 and ask for part no. KF6-634.

Above: Power Grip­pers, avail­able from What­ever Works, is a tool for every mod­eler; you should have a pair. Below: The re­sult of us­ing reg­u­lar pli­ers to keep the en­gine from turn­ing when tight­en­ing the prop is ob­vi­ous in this photo of a typ­i­cal prop driver.

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