Sunday, April 27, 2014

Windscreen Fairing

Earlier this week I came down with something that could only be described as...the plague....I felt awful, worse than I have felt in a long, long time. I'll save you the gruesome details, but rest easy because I have made a full recovery and am back to building the plane. 

This weekend I made the windscreen fairing. A tedious but easy job. It took an entire day to prep the windscreen and an entire day to lay the fiberglass and smooth everything out. 

Date and Time
Sat-Sun 26-27th -9.0hrs- All was fairing work except a little less than an hour trying to get some string to go through the conduit. I tried blowing it through with a bit of wadded tissue....didn't work...tried again...didn't work....tried again....huh, didn't work.....what if I just blow the string through without the tissue....that did I make that more difficult than it needed to be. I now have string through the conduit to pull the wires from the tailcone!

First I marked 1in from the bottom of the windscreen. I made a little jig to help make a perfect measured line. 

Then I taped off the windscreen and scuffed the exposed edges with 80 grit. The tape I used is a 20mil PVC tape.....awesome stuff. It'll curve to the window and is very adhesive and durable. 

Here is a close up of the radius I will be making at the corners. 

I cut all the strips out using one of those "pizza cutter" style fiber glass cutters, they are well worth having. 

All the layers went down really easy. I did one constant strip across the entire width. That seemed easier to me to do it this way instead of splitting them as the instructions show. The epoxy is black from the dye. You only need a very small amount of that stuff in each mixture. 

The shape turned out really nice. I first layed down a bead of flox resin with a syringe at the edge of the windscreen. I then started applying the strips as a wet layup. The resin was thickened to a syrup consistancy with flox. As I started getting closer to the last of the ten layers I would try and smooth things out and fill areas with flox that weren't shaping the way I wanted them to. On the last layers I started using regular cab-o-sil as the thickener since it's a bit easier to sand. For a final shaping I made a big batch of epoxy mixed with the lightweight faring thickener and smoothed that on as evenly as I could using a flexible plastic scrapper. I'm pretty happy with the results but the true test is when I start sanding. 

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