Building Aero 3D Day 59: Hinging Control Surfaces

Stabilizer Leading Edge Rounded

Thursday, utilized the slot machine (motorized hinge slotting machine by Great Planes) to make hinges in the following control surfaces:

  • Ailerons
  • Elevators
  • Stabilizer

I definitely need more practice with this as I always have a tendancy to tilt the machine towards me causing me to come out the side. That said though, made some solid good ones too, but in most cases takes me a second run to get the slot proper.

Due to the angled portion of the elevators I needed to do the hinges up close to the angled part by hand, using an exacto-knife. For this you go straight in and push along the slot, up and out as you need to get the pieces of balsa out of the hole as you go. I trial fit a hinge along the way to avoid over cutting the hinge slot. I also verified previously cut hinges and made adjustments with the knife where necessary.

In the featured image above you can see where I rounded the leading edge of the stabilizer for a nicer, more aerodynamic, look.

You can see the hinged elevators in the top image below and the hinged ailerons in the bottom image below. You can aslo see where I have done some angle sanding along the hinge edge of the elevators to allow the elevators movement once hinged to the stabilizer. I still need to do this to the ailerons along with rounding the trailing edges.

We were looking at doing the rudder and vertical fin too; however, something wasn’t looking right when we were putting the pieces together for a look so need to figure that out first.

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