Band Clamps or Ratcheting Tie Downs

Before we start mounting skins we should talk about some of the tools that will help the process of mounting your skins.

I had a set of band clamps that I used to hold sheet styrene to the roof of my station wagon. I also found a set at a garage sale. You are going to need at least three, more would be better. Don't spend more than $3/clamp. If you can't find them locally cheaper search for " Everest Model # S1001 ratchet tie down". It's a 6ft x 1in tie down available from either Home Depot, or Amazon, and other suppliers. If you are working alone, you'll need either a strap with a quick connection or a bungee cord to hold the skins while you put the band clamps in place. Metal bars or pieces of angle iron (even if it's aluminum!) to put additional pressure along the ribs will also be necessary - for those go back to the skin mounting instructions to see how they are used.

I've always called these band clamps. However, you'll want to search for "ratcheting tie downs" to find the best bargains.

Here are some tricks to use when applying these to a Driod

This was originally a luggage strap. I use it in place of a bungee cord to hold the skins in place while fitting the band clamps.

normally you start the strap at the end

and them click the ratchet to start winding it up on the barrel

A Driod's circumference is ~56 inches. If you've got a 6ft band then you have ~15 inches to wind onto the ratchet.
There's a good chance you'll run out of space on the ratchet before the band is tight. If your band is longer then it's almost a certainty.

One solution is to pull the excess band thru the barrel until the clamp is almost tight and then start tightening with the ratchet.

another trick is to tie the band around the hook on the ratchet end.
Right & Below: there's a specific way to make the tie
Left: And, naturally, if you aren't that clever [this was my first attempt because I didn't bother to think up the other ways!] you can always cut the band.

Keep in mind that it's a permanent solution as replacing the bands is as expensive as buying new clamps.