Earlier this week I finished skinning the foam stabilizer tips with fiberglass, and last night I glued one of the tips onto the stabilizer plug. This afternoon I went over to the garage where I'm working, and checked it, and the alignment looked good. So I went ahead and duplicated the setup and glued the other tip on.
Both of the tips are glued on with a slurry of glass microballoons and epoxy. Cotton flox would have been better structurally, but I didn't have any flox at hand. Since it's non-structural tooling, I think that the micro will do just fine.
The next step will be to sand the plug smooth to prepare it for a fill primer like Stitts Smooth Prime.
I've pretty much developed a workable set of techniques for handling ruled surfaces using a combination of CNC hotwiring and vacuum bagged fiberglass skins. So, going forward, I might start applying those techniques to the aft fuselage plug. I'm thinking I might make the plugs for the vertical fin and the aft 72" of the fuselage (which is conical), and then hand them off to the composites shop in Tehachapi. They'd fabricate the missing 5 feet of fuselage plug between where the current molds end and my aft fuselage plug begins.
Tomorrow morning I'm off to Reno to spend the 3-day weekend soaring at Air Sailing. Saturday should be good, Sunday flyable, and Monday will probably be washed-out.
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page updated 23 May 2003 all text and graphics copyright (c) 2003 HP Aircraft, LLC