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Tuesday, May 19, 2015

Nose and nose gear - part 21

Fwd nose compartment - inner sidewalls (5.0 hrs)

While the nose appears to be such a small part of the plane, it seems to be taking quite some time to complete, no doubt due to my other interests loosely related to this project.

This time around I worked on the inside surfaces of the forward nose compartment. I decided it would be easier for me to follow the same path as with the main part of the nose, glassing the sidewalls and the floor separately.

This straight forward task was somewhat complicated by my long period of fiberglassing inactivity. Because of this, the pump ended up needing to be thoroughly cleaned, since the hardener had gelled up a bit, the resin had crystallized, and the pumped ratio was all out of whack.

This is about as much fun as scrubbing public toilets!

Resin crystallized

This crystallized resin was later melted back

After consultation with Aircraft Spruce, I ended up heating the chemicals to 160℉ for half an hour as I have done in the past, and pressed on.

Before finalizing the inner nose structure, I wanted to make sure that the battery I have selected (Odyssey dry cell PC680) would fit, so I built a fake one out of cardboard to the proper dimensions (7.15" x 3" x 6.65" or 18.2 x 7.6 x 16.8 cm), and placed it in the nose. 

Cardboard getting glued together...

... and taped.

Here's an exact representation of the battery size

Plenty of room to spare

Since, that turned out not to be an issue at all, I moved on to glassing. First, I worked on the right side with the fuselage laying on its side.

2 BID sheets cut to size

Masking magic

Curing overnight

Then, I rolled the fuselage over to the other side, and glassed the left sidewall.

Left  side ready for glassing

Left sidewall finished

Both sidewalls fiberglassed

Next time I'll be doing some finishing work on the strut cover, then mount it.

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