This photo is of the prototype during the
earlier phases of construction.
January 2 2010 3.0hrs - 791.0 total. Bought
some white base paint and used the various tint
paints to make a larger batch of pre-mixed
colored paint to use as tint in the sealer epoxy.
Unfortunately, when I mixed it with the epoxy,
it darkened it too much. I went ahead and
painted some test areas and it looks almost like
candle apple green. Need to work on this
January 3 2010 4.5hrs - 795.5 total. Talked
with a friend today about locating the right
color of tint and he mentioned a color of model
paint he had called "RAF Interior Green" - can't
get much better than that! I need to call West
Systems again and talk to them about exactly
how and what I can use for tint and to see if
there isn't something I can use to get it to not
finish up with a high gloss.
Continued gluing the starboard side. Only have a couple of joints left on that side. Sanded down one
of the first new joints I did earlier with the thinner glue and added a larger fillet to it. On my second
batch today I mixed it up very thick and was having great luck with it, but towards the end of the
glue job I noticed the glue was flowing and either making the fillets into puddles, or just running
dawn the bulkhead away from the joint. I added more thickener. Still doing it. Added more thickener
- still doing it! Made it so thick I could hardly work it, but once it got in place on the airframe in turned
very fluid and started running! Finally figured out that I was right in the airflow from the heater for the
shop and even though the room temp was 70, the heater was blowing very hot air right onto my
fresh glue joints. I clamped a piece of wood to the side of the heater to deflect the air away.
Another new experience!
January 7 2010 2.0hrs - 797.5 total. Added more thickened glue fillets on toward the tail on the
starboard side and started on the port side moving forward. Again toward the end of the batch the
glue started getting really soft and the fillets were melting and sliding into puddles. Had to turn of the
heater completely and open the door for a few minutes to get the temp at that end of the room
cool enough to stop "melting" the fillets. It has warmed up quite a bit outside to about +5 F, it was
-35 F a few days ago, so that probably has something to do with the shop heating up so fast. I'm just
surprised how much difference a few degrees makes in the consistency of the glue before it dries. I
think I'll also use another fan to try to keep the heat more evenly distributed in the shop. The good
news is that the new glue joints show no signs of cracking. I actually tried to break a couple of the
new joints, without applying excess force, and wasn't able to get them to break.
|Nicely thickened glue forming properly shaped fillet - with no "melting".
January 8 2010 1.0hrs - 798.5 total. Mixed up a double batch of sealer and dumped some model
airplane paint of the correct color into it. Applied with a brush to the back of the storage
compartment bulkhead - as a test.
January 9 2010 3.5hrs - 802.0 total. Went to paint shop and bought some black and white
pigment along with some properly colored "RAF Interior green" latex paint. Plan to tint the sealer
grey (using the black and white pigment) then sand, re-apply as needed, sand and cover with the
RAF green paint. Continued adding fillets to the glue joints on the port side moving forward. Also
cleaned out a couple of cracked joints that I missed before. After thinking about the "melted" glue
joints for a while, I determined that another common factor was that I had stopped using the
nested container of ice during the glue job. Tonight I tried using the ice again and it made a big
difference. In retrospect this probably had a greater influence on the consistency of the glue than
the room temperature or even the proximity of the heater. I'll keep trying it with the ice for a while
and see if that theory holds true.
January 10 2010 4.0hrs - 806.0 total. Did two glue batches and continued moving forward on
port side adding fillets. Am about 2/3rds of the way finished on the port side. Started adding fillets to
the bottom longeron from the back moving forward. Will also add fillets to the top longeron. Did a
little sanding on some of the dry joints to see how they will look. Once all the fillets are done I can
start moving forward on the project again.
January 11 2010 2.0hrs - 808.0 total. Did another glue batch moving forward on the port side
adding fillets. Did a couple joints on the bottom longeron and one on the top. Only seven big joints
left on the port side, then finish up the top and bottom and I can start making forward progress
January 14 2010 2.0hrs - 810.0 total. Did two more glue batches and put fillets on 5 1/2 of the
remaining port side joints. Only 1 1/2 left to go! Also did a couple more of the upper and lower
longeron joints. The remaining upper and lower joints all need to be sanded before they can have
January 15 2010 2.5hrs - 812.5 total. Sanded all remaining joints on upper and lower longerons in
preparation for adding fillets
January 16 2010 3.0hrs - 815.5 total. Two glue batches. Finished up side longerons and bottom
longeron. About half done with top.
January 17 2010 2.0hrs - 817.5 total. Finished up gluing top longeron which means I'm finished
re-gluing bad joints! Started sanding the outer edges of the glue joints to the profile of the outside
of the fuselage. I had started cutting thin plywood to glue onto the outside of the longerons to
sand to match the outer profile of the fuselage before all the cracks showed up. I had them
clamped in place and had to move these cut pieces when I was patching the joints. I noticed that
I've also covered up many of the marks I had made showing me where they needed to go. I'm
starting over with evaluating where I need to add theses shaping pieces. I also now have a LOT of
glue joints to sand either to shape, or to get a good texture for the wood sealer to adhere to.
Either way, I'm finally moving forward again!!! I originally noticed the cracks on November 7th so its
been almost 10 weeks dealing with this. Who'd have thought that humidity would have this much
of an effect!
January 19 2010 2.5hrs - 820.0 total. Continued sanding the outer edges of the glue joints. Did
upper and lower longerons on starboard side and upper on port side.