Circle tow hooks

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As someone just getting into the F1x class of models I am going to use the simplified classes proposed by the BMFA FFTC. To that end I am building a F1B low tech but with carbon etc in the flying surfaces. I want to do the same for an F1A,  and have some designs I could optimise. The main thing is what to do about timer and circle tow hooks. Is there a source for flat scroll F1a type timers and circle tow hooks in the UK?? Any of you in the wonderful world of flyquiet know what I should buy or make.

I have a full workshop with lathe/mill/band saws/slitting saws/drill press etc so making one is a definite option, however time suggests buying one could be easier.



Russ Peers used to have the M&K bits but I'm not in touch with free flight so much at the moment so I'm not sure how to get hold of them.

Quite a few people are going to electronic timers now so there may be some second-hand clockwork scroll timers and 'matching' hooks about.  (Electronic timers need hooks with switches on them)


Mike F


Mike F & CHE are the clear experts here, however I have bought some of the bits you refer to in anticipation of getting to the F1A on my build list somewhen ::)

I suggest that you have a look at Mike Woodhouse's Free Flight Supplies website, as he sells a wide range of clockwork timers (including from memory a flat scroll one), and also a circle tow hook. Another source of timers is Jaromir Orel of OK Timers in the Czech Republic (although the exchange rate is not good for us at present).

I seem to recall seeing articles on home built circle tow hooks, and if you are intent on going down this route, I'll happily ask around - in fact, if StevieB reads this, he may have something to hand.


Mike Woodhouse does still have a flat scroll timer listed and his Czech tow hook is pretty inexpensive.  It's primarily made of plastic but does appear to be intended for F1A size gliders.

I think Russel Peers acts as UK agent for someone although I'm not sure if it's M&K but believe he sells F1A components.  You could try WHobby in Lithuania who list an aluminium hook and do post to the UK.  I'm not sure if it's the same as the one included in the Sija kit as I believe that one to be steel but can say that the kit hook is very well made.

As for home made hooks I'm afraid I can't claim to have made one but do have a few in my possesion passed on by club mates one of which is installed in my latest F1H.  I was given a pair of small F1H size hooks that were made with nothing more than a hack saw and a pair of pliers and are still equiped with timer start and zoom rudder functions.  You'd have no trouble creating something like that in your work shop.

Mr Bag,

I have some previously-loved flat scroll timers that may suit - please PM me if you're interested. I did have some flat scrolls made that can be used on most timers (they were desiged for a Seelig) which also may suit you or others out there. The guy who made then had to grind a curved cutter to make them and said it wasn't a trivial or cheap job !

Hooks are a problem. I've made my own but now tend to use the Stamov hook; I do however have one model with an M&K hook. I'd suggest they are expensive for what you want to do with them but are both very good. The Woodhouse sold hook mentioned is plastic and simply not worthy in my view.

I did find the W Hobby hook (see here :-   ) which looks good and much better than their past efforts. It will take a bit of work to integrate it in to a model (ie hook mount, adjustment screws etc) but may be your best option.



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