by Frank Tiano
What does Spaghetti Sauce have to do with Model Airplane parts? Well, nothing really, but, that question does allow me to make a great analogy, and offers a fabulous way to get your attention! Almost everyone thinks the sauce they grew up on is the very best, regardless of whether it was made by Grandma or Aunt Mary, and that is what we remember for the rest of our lives. Until we taste a sauce made correctly, one that doesn’t need sugar, cooks in 2 hours instead of all day and one that doesn’t make you burp for the next 3 hours after eating it!
DaVinci Machining has done the same sort of thing with Model Aircraft Tires and wheels. While there are a number of great looking tire and wheel combinations available to us, some fall short of being perfect. Some come apart while taking off from a wet runway, some have treads that wear off with any kind of side load, scuffing action, some go flat under the weight of the model and some are so heavy that our retract units have trouble operating properly. Davinci has addressed all of that and offers what they consider to be the “Perfect” tire and wheel.
They may be correct. First of all, the Tires are specially molded from a soft, tough rubber, but with a hard skin. They feature a scale “diamond” tread pattern not found elsewhere, to my knowledge. The most common tire size is 5.5” diameter, the metal wheel diameter being 3”. They have brass bushings, stainless screws and accommodate ¼” axles. An intentional bonus is they will fit many current brands of tires already out there. Yes, more sizes coming; 4.5”, 5” and 6”. The Wheels are from 6061 T6 aluminum and are surface treated, not bead blasted, for an authentic finish and are offered in several spoke patterns, all scale. These are lighter than any other wheel of the same size I have owned to date. You will notice one really huge wheel in the photo. This is a 10” tire and wheel, with scale treads, that DaVinci made for a group of us building 143” P-47 Thunderbolts. The detail is incredible on all of DaVinci wheels and whether you need that detail or not, it is admirable!
Are they “Perfect”? Well, they just may be. They are certainly the closest resemblance to full scale I have seen so far. I have a set on my Ziroli Skyraider and Corsair, my Meister P-47 and the new 10 inchers on the big P-47!
DaVinci Machining, 6354 49th Street North, Pinellas Park, FL 33781; 727-5250070 www.davincimachining.com