July 3, 2005

The weather lately in LA has been a marine layer sandwich, low clouds in the morning followed by a beautiful sunny midday, followed by low clouds in the evening. I got up with the clouds and got ready to glue another frame lamination for when the sun came out. I made some spacers to raise the mold off the backboard with the scraps from the plywood molds I cut out yesterday. The plywood spacers won't split like the last spacers I used. I'll be able to reuse then as well. I screwed the mold down to the plastic covered spacers and backboard and then trial fit the wood strips with the clamps. This time I also included some plastic covered cardboard strips in an effort to try to pad the spruce strips on the inside where the clamps put a lot of pressure on the wood and dent the inside strip.

The fuselage frame laminations come in two different thicknesses. Some are 20 mm and some are 15 mm. The last frame I did was a 20 mm one. This one is a 15 mm one. The mold I'm using is made from 15/32" plywood. I was supposed to use 1/2" plywood but the hardware store messed up and I didn't notice until too late. I didn't think this wood (haha, get it...wood...) be a problem but I'm worried because there is quite a bit of the strip raised above the mold. I'm concerned because I don't want the clamps to put uneven pressure on the strips. The top part might not be getting enough backing pressure from the lack of a high enough mold. I guess I'll see tomorrow when I take the dried piece out of the mold.

The gluing procedure went pretty much the same as before. The differences this time were due to the tighter curve and the thinner strips being a little more flimsy. The tighter curve required more clamps in that area in order to force all the glue to have even pressure around the curve. The thinner strips also seemed more willing to slip up and down requiring more effort to keep everything flat while clamping around the curve. It wasn't as smooth as it was last time but I still got everything settled in good and went back over things a few times to make sure it all looked good. I guess we'll see tomorrow if it was a success. Here is the only shot I got today before the batteries died in my camera.

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