Earlier this year I was given a Tiger Moth propeller to repair, and modify, to enable it to hang upon a wall as a display piece. Not work I had ever done before, though not so dissimilar to many strange pieces which have found their way through my workshop over the years.
This one, manufactured originally from South American mahogany, had served firstly upon a Tiger Moth, and then upon another aircraft, not a Moth but obviously of similar characteristics and fitting arrangement. The prop had subsequently been damaged on one of its trailing edges.
So the commission was to splice a new piece of similar timber into the damaged area; then devise a means by which the propeller could be mounted for display upon a wall.
The following are shots of the prop in varying stages of repair and modification
click on any image to enlarge & the ‘back-button’ arrow to return
the repaired trailing edge
the original prop as it was when I received it
the eight bolt holes to attach it to the engine mainshaft flange surround the mainshaft aperture.
the new nosecone, turned on the lathe from in-stock African mahogany of approximately the same era. The spigot is a tolerance fit into the mainshaft aperture.
the finished prop – the oak mounting ring on the rear is to screw it to the wall & the nosecone fits onto the front, covering the fixing bolts which hold the prop to the mounting ring
the full length of the finished propeller. It scrubs up pretty well, for an old ‘un, doesn’t it?
large as the propeller is, I always find it difficult to imagine how something this relatively small can power a twin wing plane, with a pilot and a passenger, hundreds of feet into the air.
I enjoy doing this sort of work – relatively simple, but not a common commission. :-) A bit out of the ordinary. It requires a little thought and the ability to work with quality hardwood species, involving conventional bench joinery, wood-turning and, carving when necessary. As well as working with the appropriate polishes and finishings.