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Old Jan 16, 2009, 11:52 AM
Bill Scott
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Video's 3 & 4 are currently unavailable anybody know why?
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Old Jan 16, 2009, 12:26 PM
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Someone out there voiced concern with me divulging trade secrets and when I failed to comply with their wishes they sicked youtube on me. I'll be uploading them again shortly.
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Old Jan 17, 2009, 04:09 AM
Bill Scott
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Thanks
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Old Jan 24, 2009, 11:45 PM
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Over the course of the last month I've been spending my spare time on some of the areas on the underside of the wing plug that need special attention with respect to draft/release considerations. It's one thing to decide to mould wheel and flap bay details, but it's quite another thing to maintain a level of calm persistence as you spend hour after hour after hour holding a little tiny sanding block as your fingers lock up and eventually refuse to hold the darn thing forcing you to stop until the next day.
At first I spent a great deal of time building up draft in the wheel and flap servo recesses with glazing putty. It was boring, but my 4" wheels fit the bays like they should, and release shouldn't be a problem. It's taking some time, no question about it, but every day it moves closer. One of the things that consumes time is the method that I'm using to build up fillet radii in the the tight spots.
In order blend everything in the flap bays, I'm brushing on a light coat of thinned finishing epoxy. I leave it for 8 hours and then sand, prime, and repeat. The thinned epoxy flows very nicely into the corners and has a self-leveling characteristic that just can't be beat. You spend an inhumane amount of time sanding - but what you don't want is a beautiful wing plug sitting in the corner trapped inside a fibreglass sarcophagus
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Old Jan 30, 2009, 05:18 AM
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Since my last post I've done some more work in the flap bays but to be honest, I woke up one morning after having sanded all night in my dreams and was very disheartened to find that it was still the way I'd left it the day before. LOL So I figured that a break from that task was in order, and I moved on to something else that had been aggravating me for some time now.

Overall this kit has been a joy to build, but if there was something that I would improve it would be the wing fillets. The precut ply fillet bases need to be extended further out the wing near the leading edge. There's nothing I can do now with the fuselage complete and it slipped by me or I'd have fixed it. So having stared at this annoyance for months I needed to do something to ease my mind. I decided that with no options for achieving a scale look, I would improve the fit so that when someone noticed the form deficiency they could comment on how I tried to fix the fit instead! lol

There's still some finish work to be done obviously, but it's shaped in for the most part. So now I can go ice fishing this weekend and at least feel like I made a little progress.
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Old Feb 20, 2009, 03:23 AM
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Slow and steady wins the race.

I've been delaying this post primarily because it's difficult to demonstrate progress at the rate that I know others enjoy watching. However, I've been asked to put down my sanding block and share; so share I will.
As many of us know any good finishing job goes through an alternating state of ugly, better, ugly, better, ugly, better until you decide at some point that better is just not going to happen again. I tend not to like to share pics of the ugly, but I suppose it does provide some insight into what a blended surface looks like under that final coat of primer, and that is what you're getting tonight.
I've been working away steadily on the mounts for the mains. This is an area which will never been seen after the exterior pods containing the doors have been installed, but none the less it deserves proper attention as it will form deep cavities in the finished mould which will need to release. I've tried to show pics which give an overview of the process, but won't bore you with the repetition that's actually involved. In order to achieve a final blended look, I've now applied thinned finishing resin and then sanded it level three times now. I know it looks ugly, but it's getting pretty close. Hopefully the next series of pics will be nice and shiny!
It's worth noting that over the years I've learned that this is not something that you can power through and get done properly in a week or two. It's tempting to think that with constant effort you could get this sort of thing done in short order but in fact what time has taught me is quite the opposite. It sounds corny I know, but when you want something you can be proud of, you don't build it; it builds itself through you. You have to work in short spurts and then just walk away. Don't worry about walking away, it will call you back and when it does you'll be at your best. You can't force your will on something like this and that's the point. It's not a project to be managed, it's a manifestation of something intangible. I know what it sounds like and twenty years ago I'd have been laughing out loud for sure. Live and learn I guess, live and learn.
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Old Feb 22, 2009, 10:06 AM
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Looking good Low & Slow. I hear what your saying when it comes to mold making. My mold making experiences have also reinforced the saying that "taking your time is faster than rushing it". I hope your prepared to sacrifice the wing plug when it comes to separating the mold. It'll be worth it though.
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Old Feb 22, 2009, 06:01 PM
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Yes, sadly one day it will die a horrible death. But don't they all!? This wing will leave a long lineage of clones to ease my pain. lol
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Old Feb 22, 2009, 08:20 PM
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Better Safe Than Sorry

I'd originally moved away from work on the flap bays because I was beginning to have dreams about it. This is usually a good sign that a break is in order, so the gear mounts got some attention. Well I made enough progress on the mounts that today my eyes moved back to the flap bays and I quickly remembered what it was that I found discouraging enough at the time put me off.
There's a lesson here. As you spend more and more time on something you naturally get more and more emotionally involved with it. This is what a little time and perspective helps to diminish. After glassing and then finishing every corner of those flap bays, the last thing I wanted to do was apply some more epoxy and do it all again. I knew it needed doing, but instead I sat there for a couple of days with the wing in the corner just looking at it dreading the thought. Meanwhile nothing was happening except that I was reinforcing the notion of my dread. I decided to move onto something else. Today it happened - it started calling my name. It never ceases to amaze me how the biggest obstacles seem to be self-realized and if you can find a way of moving on, time will often erode them.
After taking a good hard objective look at the situation with fresh eyes I can see that most of the corners that I worked so hard to get clean are not conducive to the moulding process. I knew this - I've locked things in fibreglass before - but I sure didn't want to come to terms with it because I'd just spent all that time getting them "darn near perfect" lol
The pictures should speak for themselves. What they won't tell you is that there's eight hours cure time until they can be blended before flipping the wing and repeating. It may take two applications to get things good and uniform, so that's likely three or four days of patient waiting, and I suspect that that may also have had something to do with the hurdle. All in all, it's a "better safe than sorry" situation!
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Old Mar 06, 2009, 01:09 PM
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The Saga Continues

...just some quick pics today of the ongoing saga in the flap bays
I need to do something else for a while again, so I'm headed into finishing the flap servo bays before coming back to finish this area.
2 weeks - 6 coats of epoxy - one side and then the other - much sanding

Upside:
1 - ease of mould design/construction (might have had to split mould down centre of each rib)
2 - ease of part release
3 - ease of mould prep (waxing)
4 - improved rigidity of wing structure through form in a high stress area of the wing

Downside:
SANITY ;-)
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Old Mar 08, 2009, 11:16 AM
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The dearest woman in the world stands behind me as I type this morning. She would like you all to know that if any of you ever find yourselves doing anything like what you see in these pics, alone before breakfast on a Sunday morning, you should re-evaluate your priorities.
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Old Mar 09, 2009, 09:00 AM
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After yesterday's episode, I found myself immediately speechless when asked to explain my compulsion on the spot. To that end, rather than pour salt on an open wound, I decided to put some creative energy into effect and revamp the welcome video on my youtube page. No comments required, but I do think it helped a little. You may not find me online next Sunday morning, but everyone needs a little structure I suppose! LOL
I do have some fun with these videos and I can hardly wait to finish this wing plug so that I can get another one up!
Nothing new, but if you're bored with a minute 45 to kill you can check it out here
Welcome - Yes, it's a tongue-in-cheek situation! ;-D (1 min 46 sec)

Until next time...
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Old May 07, 2009, 11:05 AM
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Time Tide and an Iron Will

Although I haven't been able to spend the kind of time that I would like on the P-40 project lately, I do try to take a couple of minutes each day to make a little headway. It's slow going, but I'm closer than I've ever been! lol
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Old Aug 01, 2009, 05:18 PM
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How to Fibreglass a Sheeted Wing Video

Bored today.

How To Apply a Fiberglass Finish To Your Scale RC Airplane (7 min 45 sec)
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Old Aug 08, 2009, 07:04 AM
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P-40 Panel Lines

The work on panel lines has begun. Warning - if you are not a patient individual then this is not a technique for you to try on a wing that you've just made nice and shiny
Better to tape off 5 or 10 linear feet on scrap board stock to develop your technique first.
Epoxy is thinned to 50% with Methyl Hydrate (denatured alcohol)
Microballoons are suspended in thinned epoxy
150, 220, 400, 600, 1500 grits with a block (1"X3/4"X3/8")

Why thin and then add microballoons?
The thinning is so that the epoxy lays down like water. This will make it easier blend towards the inside of the panel. The microballoons will migrate toward the edge of the tape as the surface tension in the curing epoxy causes it to hump up and over the edge of the tape. Because the epoxy has been thinned, you must continue stir the microballoons into the epoxy as you dip your brush into the mixture. The microballoons tend to fall out of suspension and float to the surface much more quickly with the reduced viscosity. Apply initially with the wing laying flat and then after about an hour of a 6hr cure lift the wing up and allow gravity to help the microballoons migrate over the tape edge. (you can see some of this effect in the pics but I actually fell asleep and waited too long this time - just more care required when blending later)

Good pictures are difficult because of the glare, and there is still some work to be done on this seam but hopefully some of the effect can be seen.
How long will this take you? I spent 5hrs sanding along this length of seam for a quick picture.

Is it worth it? In a word - YES, so please no insults about my sanity. I know I have issues. lol
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