I needed a contour gauge a bit deeper than what is available (for a reasonable price) at Home Depot, Walmart, Harbor Freight, etc. Most have a measuring depth of around 2". Soooo... I made exactly what I needed.
A bunch of sticks.
(2) 1 inch to 1.5 inch x 1/4 inch strips. Whatever length you want the gauge to be.
(2) Machine screws with nuts.
(2) Plastic tubing cut to width of sticks. These slip over the screws, but are not needed for skewers or small sticks.
You can use skewers, popsicle sticks, stirring sticks, tongue depressors, etc. I found that tongue depressors are thinner than popsicle sticks, so decided they would be best for my application. I use it mostly for woodturning, but figured it would come in handy for copying other profiles.
Just cut your strips to length, drill holes for the screws, add the tubes and screw together. Then you can stack your sticks in and adjust the tightness. You want it loose enough that the sticks will move, but not so loose that they fall out.
Assembled contour gauge ready to use
It really comes in handy when you want the shape or measurement of a servo tray or bulkhead when you canít get inside to measure. Donít forget to subtract two times the wall thickness!
Need to get the airfoil shape for a specific part of a wing? Not many other ways to do it. The thinner the sticks, the smoother the contour. Really nice if you need to get the shape of a rib for a built up plane when you donít want to rip the wing apart or donít have the plans.
click on thumbnails for lager image