Tag Archives: Building Aero 3D

Building Aero 3D Day 61 – 63: Wing Work

Balsa Leading Edge Molding

Early last week Peter was over and we sanded the previous application of filler. Then thursday mixed up another batch of filler and did some, hopefully, final touch-ups in a short session preparing for covering. This included the leading edge touch up in the bottom image. In that image you can also see some wires, the smaller one with the ends bent in the same direction is the piece of wire for connecting the two elevators.

Today, seen in the featured image, we worked on the leading edge. For this cut a 4″ 3/32” balsa sheet in half (length wise) and then marked the center at the edges after cutting it length wise to fit from the edge of the WC assembly to the the end of the leading edge and repeated for the other sheet.

Next, I soaked the piece of balsa with hot water and pinned it in place while Peter folded it over and held it in place. Started by pinning down the center line and then the edges. Once that was done realized needed some additional help to keep the shape and duct taped it down. You can see how we left it to dry in the featured image above.

Building Aero 3D Day 60: Wing Bottom Filler

WC Assembly Front

Thursday, Peter brought over his epoxy and filler powder so I could mix up a batch and smoothen out the surfaces on the bottom of the wing.

First, finished sanding the W-ST-2’s to be as flush as we could to the W-SH-6 sheet. Then using a popsical stick I applied the filler thick and Peter smoothed it out with a plastic smoothing tool. This process was repeated multiple times to get the following key areas:

  • Sheets meet the bottom of the wing
  • W-ST-2s meet W-SH-6
  • Edges of WC where the W-SH-6 sheet and W-ST-2s should meet to smooth it out
  • Various other areas on the bottom of the wing to fix dips, etc.

You can see the majority in the image below and the WC portion in the featured image at the top. Next step will be to sand it out smooth.

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.

Building Aero 3D Day 58: Hinging Wing & Ailerons

W-ST-2s Planed

Thursday, I got my hands on the hinging tool again, and this time it worked!

Started by verifying the hinge locations and making clear center marking on both the wing and ailerons… verifying we were using the correct aileron for the side we were working with. Once that was done used a centering tool to mark the center line on the trailing edge around the hinges and along the length of the ailerons.

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Building Aero 3D Day 57: WC Aseembly “Sides”

W-ST-2s Glued & Pinned

Yesterday I got the the W-ST-2s that I previously made glued and pinned as part of the WC assembly. For this I needed to make sure they sat flush on top of the WE’s (outer pieces of the assembly) and fully covered the angled WC.

To improve the fit I sanded off some of the sides of W-SH-6 at a bit of an angle to get a tighter fit. Wood glue was then applied along the edges, on top fo the WE’s, and in the appropriate spots, including excess on the sides, of the W-ST-2s. Better bonding experience when all pieces that are part of the “gluing experience” contain glue.

Doing one at a time, ensuring everything was in place, started pinning from the back of the wing towards the front, verifying the W-ST-2 remained in place.

You can see how I left things to dry in the featured image above.

Building Aero 3D Day 56: Assembly Sheetings

W-SH-6 Holes & Tubes Glued & W-SH-7 Glued

Monday, worked on getting the W-SH-6 sheeting in place which invoked getting the 3/4” holes drilled. The process was as follows:

  • Hold sheeting in its proper place
  • Bring wing bolt up from the bottom of the wing and make an indentation in the bottom of the sheeting
  • Mark the centre of the indent with a pen
  • Drill 3/4” hole using my drill press
  • Place tubbing in the ‘support’ previously glued around bolt holes on wing
  • Slide sheet over the tubing and into place
  • Mark on tubing where the top of the sheeting meets
  • Cut tubing along the mark
  • Repeat steps with tubing in place for second hole
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Building Aero 3D Day 53: Wing Bolt Holes

Wing Bolt Holes Top

Wednesday, made some more progress on getting the wing bolting system in place.

First thing was to get the hole locations marked on the wing hold down plate (FUE). Since I already had the holes drilled into the wing I used the 1/4” bit to place through the holes, while the wing was held in place on the fuselage with clamps, to make markings on the  hold down plate (FUE). Next, I put the fuselage, with some support, on the drill press and made sure the plate (FUE) was perpendicular to the drill bit (size 5/16“) and drilled the holes.

Once the holes were drilled I filled the T-Nutts with vaseline to ensure no glue got inside and mixed up some 30 minute epoxy, which I applied all along the buttom of the nutt and up the shaft before pushing it (from the bottom) into the previously drilled holes. Used a C-clamp to squeeze the nutt into place. Checking and adjusting the clamp as we went. You can see the result in the featuerd image (top view) and right imge below (bottom view).

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Building Aero 3D Day 51: Bolt Holes & WF Assembly

Bolt Holes Drilled

Yesterday afternoon I made minor progress on the aircraft. I started by continuing with work on the wing. I marked the center between the outter and inner WDs on the previously marked line indicating where the wing lines up on the center of the ply wing bolt plate in the fuselage.

I also cut 1/4” x 1/4” balsa stringer, FU-ST-2 to a length of 23 5/8“, to see how it would fit into the bottom of the fuselage and into FU6B… it isn’t perfect but workable once we touch up FU6B, the angled ply piece I put in with the WD assembly since their angles need to match up. I didn’t glue this piece into place yet as the other tasks still required on the fuselage will be easier with the spaces open.

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