On February 26th the theme was black. I installed the ‘windshield’ and by that I mean I ironed on a piece of black covering trimmed to be flush with the side edges.
Afterwords I painted the nose of the fuselage, which is a solid balsa block I sanded into shape, matte black. You can see the result of these two things in the featured image above.
March 3rd was about covering the sides of the aircraft from the tail to the front of the ‘windshield’. The reason you start at the tail and work your way to the front is that each piece covers about a quarter inch of the previous piece. This allows the wind to flow over the covering, if you were to do it the other way the wind would slowly works its way under the edge of the covering pulling it back, undoing your hard work!
Just like my previous build I’m doing the fuselage white. I’ve basically settled on a color scheme that I like for my aircraft’s, which is:
Green for the control surfaces
Yellow for the top of the wing and stab
Orange for the bottom of the wing and stab
White for the fuselage
The only deviation from this I foresee in the future would be for scale builds where I want to keep the colors (exterior of the plane) modeled after the real deal. 🙂
On February 3rd Peter and I took a field trip to Mark Bayes place who generously let us use his massive workshop to paint the fiber-glass surfaces.
The first step was to prep the fuselage so I could paint the bottom. Using Frog Tape, another great tool of the trade, attached newspaper to the bottom edge of the fuselage on both sides to flop over and cover the sides (and top) of the fuselage to ensure no paint accidentally splatters on those surfaces. Also used wax paper to cover the tail area that is not being painted.
I then turned the fuselage onto its top and painted the entire bottom red. I worked the paint from front to back, ensuring no globs existed along the way to help ensure a smooth finish. The painted bottom can be seen in the featured image above.
The last task for the day was painting the floats, you guessed it red :). As I completed a floats paint job I hung it up to dry.
On January 16th I continued work on fiber-glassing the bottom of the fuselage. This day was focusing on applying fiber-glass all around the edge of the bottom of the fuselage as well as on the nose. This ensures the seams, spaces between where the bottom connects to the sides, are thoroughly covered.
Also fiber-glassing of the nose of the aircraft to help ensure water tightness there too, preventing the balsa from getting soaked since this will be in the water, partially, and leading the way.
On January 14th I continued with the fiber-glassing process. This time, seen above, I applied fiber-glass to the keel of the fuselage. The process was similar to before, this time cutting strips that would wrap over the keel and about equal parts on each side. This is done prior to the remainder of the bottom to ensure there is good coverage along the joints / corners where the keel is attached to the fuselage.
Afterwards I started wet sanding the wing tips. For this I used special sand paper that I dipped into a small bucket of warm water. This keeps the fine fiber-glass particles being sanded away from becoming airborne, you want to avoid breathing these in!
You can see the finished sanded product of one of the floats below: