fasted58 MegaDork
July 11, 2017 5:48 p.m.

Got interested in contour gauges after a recent thread.

In pipe fitting and sheetmetal there are formulas for templates n all that but it involves a lotta maff. Most of the time in the field for irregular fits we trimmed down cardboard templates or cut/ fit, cut/ fit s'more... it did work tho.

Home brew gauge methods found online were interesting tho. Spaghetti w/ ty-raps, corrugated cardboard w/ welding wire. Didn't wanna cut up my welding wire or cut the straights oughta coat hangers FTM.

Was ready to buy spaghetti at the grocery store today when I found wooden skewers at the end of the aisle, 1/8" X 9-3/4" long, $1.99/ 100. Bingo!

Cut the top flap off a cardboard shipping box in the shop, 4.5" wide. Rolled it on a smaller diameter tube then turned over and rolled again to limber it up.

fasted58 MegaDork
July 11, 2017 5:58 p.m.

Fit the cardboard around the 3" tube I was gonna test fit and trimmed the cardboard to the tube OD. Rolled the skewers out on a flat surface, pretty true except for a few. Added skewers inside the cardboard, maybe 60 of 'em. The tapered skewer ends made loading easy.

Once loaded, rolled the cardboard around the smaller tube again to keep it limber.

fasted58 MegaDork
July 11, 2017 6:05 p.m.

Used rubber bands around the cardboard to hold it on the tube. Ty-raps or velcro oughta work as well. Not too tight tho.

Tamped the skewers flat on the bench, as shown. Skewers need to be able to move to the object contour. Cardboard sleeve needs to slip on the tube as well, so again, not too tight.

fasted58 MegaDork
July 11, 2017 6:16 p.m.

First test fit on an air tank. Just push in and let the skewers adapt. Didn't mark the tank as I just painted it last week. If I was cutting in, mark the skewer gauge OD then mark again inside the first to compensate for skewer diameter. That'll ballpark it.

Contour of the tank on the gauge.

Keith Tanner MegaDork
July 11, 2017 6:19 p.m.

Bonus points for making one out of a spaghetti noodle box and the spaghetti, then eating it when you're done

I like this. You could make it a lot more complex, but I don't think you could make it simpler. That's a compliment.

fasted58 MegaDork
July 11, 2017 6:23 p.m.

Another test fit on the tank w/ compound curves. The weld bead was just a little bump

Shown removed.

fasted58 MegaDork
July 11, 2017 6:30 p.m.

Scoot the sleeve back and there's the contour of the tank to tube to mark. That's a pretty damn good rough in. I'd allow a little extra material tho for final fitting.

fasted58 MegaDork
July 11, 2017 6:43 p.m.

First attempt wasn't bad at all. Coulda used cardboard w/ larger opening in the corrugation for these 1/8" skewers to slip through once rounded. Asian food stores usually carry a variety of bamboo skewers in smaller diameters that could be used w/ lighter cardboard. Lighter cardboard is more flexible for smaller jobs.

No reason why this wouldn't work on square or rectangular tubing as well. For single plane surfaces like in body contour work it'd be hard to beat something like the HF gauge.

Pretty cool tho for stuff just sittin' around the house and garage.

Gonna try this on my keg foundry build.

You'll need to log in to post.

Also on Grassroots Motorsports

From the GRM Vault: Subaru Bounces Back

23 hours ago in Articles

Proof that motorsports involvement can lead to corporate success.

Your Projects: SkinnyG's V8 Pontiac Firefly

1 day ago in News

Talk about a sleeper.

Calling All LS-Powered Track Machines to Holley LS Fest

1 day ago in News

Holley LS Fest will once again feature the Grassroots Motorsports Road Course Challenge.

From the GRM Vault: A Dual-Engine Honda CRX and 10 Other Cool Cars Hit the Dyno

1 day ago in Articles

Back in 1997 we put 11 cool cars on the dyno in search of horsepower and truth.

You Need This: Our Mustang GT CAM-C Project Car

2 days ago in News

Soon for sale: Our Mustang GT autocross project.

Deal of the Month: Christmas in July!

2 days ago in News

Get a year of our magazine for just $10.

Your Projects: Smith College's $2017 Challenge Miata

2 days ago in News

Smith College is entering the Grassroots Motorsports $2017 Challenge

Big News From Mazda's Prototype Racing Effort

2 days ago in News

This just in: Mazda's prototype racing effort is changing hands.

Grassroots Motorsports LIVE! on Wednesday, July 19: Track Prep Your Daily Plus a Look at the Only Stick Shift GT3 RS

3 days ago in News

Tune in as we discuss pre-event inspection and prep. Also, a special appearance by a very cool Porsche.

Project Ridgeline Tows Home Another Project

3 days ago in Project Cars

We may or may not have gotten sidetracked on our Smoky Mountain Tour.

You Need This: Supercharged Toyota MR2

3 days ago in News

Rebuilt engine? Check. Extra power? Check. Early MR2 cool factor? Double check.

2017 Volvo V90 Cross Country T6 AWD

3 days ago in New Car Reviews

We're keeping the all-wheel-drive wagon theme rolling. We reviewed the Subaru Impreza last week and the Volkswagen Golf SportWagen before ...

OUR SPONSORS

Grassroots Motorsports Magazine

Subscribe Today

Also get your instant access to the digital edition of Grassroots Motorsports Magazine!

Learn More
OQJAvYggKSicRYTKgo0ZqkZ2t7yVFdNI