Chapter 11
Elevator Construction
 

6/4/01

This chapter was relatively trouble free and chocked full'o fun. We, (Epoxy Woman and I), cut the cores prior to startung the canard, (a move I whole heartedly recommend because you end up wasting less foam getting up the Hot Wire Learning Curve.), so when the parts arrived from Brock, we were ready to go.

I was very pleased with the fit and finish of the Brock parts for this chapter. Very minor grinding in the NC2 hinge insert were required to get them to slip right in. The reason for any grinding at all was the torque tube cutouts were made using rounded corners, as opposed to strict right angles, ( Which I liked, because round corners are less likely to form stress cracks.) I spent a lot of time trying to find the "Hot Stuff" super glue to fill the cracks in the hinge inserts. It turns out that any old super glue gel will work just fine. If you can locate a spray bottle of "kicker", that would be helpful in getting the stuff to set up quicker. Any local hobby store should have it.

I used the "Plastic Peel-ply" method on the elevators due to the need for getting the lightest possible. They weighed in at 24 & 26 ounces. Close enough for Government work.

Here's a shot of the setup for getting the NC12a's lined up.

This one of the many times a flat and level work table will save your bacon. I had a little trouble drilling the holes straight through for the bolts to hold the elevators to the torque tube. I'm learning, though.

A little micro on the trailing edge and we're in "bidneth". Note the depression 5" from the end of the elevator. I put it there so I won't create a bump when I place the mass balance. (I got this tip from Jeff Russel via John Slade.)

Note the Fein Sander top right. GET THIS!!!

Setting up to cut and rout out the hinge slots. Proper spacing of the canard/elevator are important here

I Alodined all aluminum hardware. (Not sure if I'll be able to afford an enclosed hangar after completion, so, I want to head off corrosion wherever I can.

I know this image is a little washed out, but, I wanted to show how I used 4 L- templates, ( made of 3/4" wood), and the angle template to get everything set just right. You don't see it here, but, I used an assortment of 6 - 8 clamps to make things stick  during hinge flox cure-time. With some minor persuasion, the elevators moved freely after cure.

I won't go into the making of the wing tips. They're pretty straight forward and simple to complete. I'm really looking forward to the "Mounting the Canard" Section

At right, the rig I set-up to eliminate all of the water from the beautiful Florida air. I consists of a Depot plastic filter/separator, 50 ft of A/C copper tubing, and assorted fittings.

Total = $50.

This would mark my first attempt at the dreaded SANDING/FILLING stage. On the advice of Jeff Russell of AeroCad, I decided to use Alphapoxy and micro, sand to contour, then skimcoat Alphapoxy to give a bit of a hardshell.

        I decided to use UV SmoothPrime, and applied it with my spray rig. I didn't roll the first 3 coats, as recommended in the manual. After lightly spraying the first 3 coats, I was more than mildy dissapointed in the quality of my workmanship. In other words, it looked like CRAP!!! Back to sanding and filling for me. I ended up sanding the vast majority of the first 3 coats off.  After a ton of work, I finally got to the point where I felt confident with the look. I fires up the spray rig and got to work. I first tried painting the whole works as you see at right. I just coudn't get the accurate coverage I felt I needed. So, for the rest of the coats I laid the parts flat, sprayed the 6 coats, flipped them over, and sprayed again.      Viola!!!

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