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Old Oct 13, 2014, 09:49 AM
Registered User
United States, CA, Sacramento
Joined Dec 2005
106 Posts
Mini-HowTo
Bending DTF Fuselage Sides

I was at the park flying one of my foamies and a guy asked me how I figured out the bulkhead sizes and locations to keep the smooth fuselage curve from nose to tail.

Dollar Tree Foam was the answer.

I noticed some time ago that DTF has a tendency to bend away from the remaining paper if one side has been removed from the part. Seems to work best when the parts are cut from the 30" long direction of the foam board.

I keep the paper on the faces that are toward the interior of the model until I have the bulkheads that define the fuselage width at the wing saddle glued in place. Before glueing those bulkheads in place I remove enough paper to allow for a good glue joint. I always mark a verticle centerline on both faces of the bulkheads before installing them.

Once the glue has dried, or cooled for the hot glue folks, peel the remaining paper off of the inside surfaces of the fuselage sides. Place the partially completed fuselage on a building surface with a center line. Add some weights to hold the saddle area in place and watch the fuselage bend itself into a gentle curve.

Depending on humidity this can take a few minutes to an hour or so.

All you'll need to do now is measure the width and height of the fuselage at the selected location of each bulkhead. Use those measurements to cut the parts and glue them in place while keeping the fuselage square to the center line. Once the remaining bulkheads have been installed I remove the paper from the exterior surfaces.

If you'd like to have a fuselage with curves instead of straight lines give it a try. This isn't the only way to get it done but this procedure works for me.

Regards,

Connie
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Old Oct 13, 2014, 02:54 PM
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United States, CT, Hartland
Joined Jul 2011
162 Posts
Very nice, but how about the turtle deck? Is that DTF too (hard to tell in the pictures)?

Cool looking plane ... is that your own design or are plans available?
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Old Oct 13, 2014, 05:04 PM
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United States, CA, Sacramento
Joined Dec 2005
106 Posts
Quote:
Originally Posted by aymodeler View Post
Very nice, but how about the turtle deck? Is that DTF too (hard to tell in the pictures)?

Cool looking plane ... is that your own design or are plans available?
The turtle deck is poster board.

This plane is a one of a kind. I just sketched out the basics and started cutting parts.. I have some basic working drawings but no full plans.

Regards,

Connie
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Old Oct 20, 2014, 02:19 PM
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Joined Nov 2011
54 Posts
That is a really nice plane. I have experimented with DTFB the same way to eliminate using poster board and use all DTFB. It takes some practice not to get a lot of creases in tight turns or ovals, but it does work. I too would like to see some plans of this plane or even your sketches.
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Old Oct 21, 2014, 06:54 AM
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United States, CA, Sacramento
Joined Dec 2005
106 Posts
Quote:
Originally Posted by miss5031 View Post
That is a really nice plane. I have experimented with DTFB the same way to eliminate using poster board and use all DTFB. It takes some practice not to get a lot of creases in tight turns or ovals, but it does work. I too would like to see some plans of this plane or even your sketches.
I'll dig through the pile and see if I can come up with a working drawing.

Regards,
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