December 27, 2005

Well, as always, things don't go exactly as planned the first time around. I took the glued ribs out of the jig and held them up to compare with the blueprints. First, one of the cross braces near the leading edge was in the wrong place on all three ribs. It turned out that I labeled the dimension wrong on my printout. Also, I didn't like the shape of the leading edge as compared with the plans. It was just a little too far off.

So I cut off the wrong cross piece on all three ribs and filed it down to look like nothing was ever there in the first place. I also cut off the very front connecting piece so I could redo the leading edge curve. In doing this, I learned that these cross pieces aren't really that strong in holding the leading edge together. It's pretty fragile.

I decided to try something a little different this time. I traced, by hand, the exact inside shape of the leading edge on the blueprints (after checking to make sure the blueprints were still accurate) from the very front connector piece almost back to the first cross piece. The paper I traced with was glued to a 6 mm tall board with zapagap essentially making it one with the board. I bandsawed the shape out and sanded it to the exact shape. I checked it on the plans to make sure the shape was perfect. I essentially made a larger wedge acting as an inside mold for the tricky curve up near the leading edge. I figured it needed to be much larger to get the shape right. Also, I decided to glue the plywood gusset covering the front piece at the same time as I glue the leading edge to add extra strength up were all the pressure is. I'd like to do all the gussets on this side at the same time but I don't have my staple gun's coming. I used whatever I had lying around to weigh down the plywood gusset. This should hold the shape and be accurate. Again, I'm leaving for a week and a half soon, so I'll check to see how this went after I get back.

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