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Making a tail with glass and kevlar/homemade peelply

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Making a tail with glass and kevlar/homemade peelply

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Old 12-05-2009, 11:05 PM
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vicman
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Default Making a tail with glass and kevlar/homemade peelply

This may end up moved to the composite forum but since I developed it to play with the fast prop jobs I'm starting here.
The inspiration for this goes to Daven's tutorial on NMPRA's site about making skinned hinge V-tails.
If this works I will have made a tail one step further and come up with an alternative to peelply.

I'm working on a Seeker so this is the tail we are looking at. I've already set .016 ply around all the edges and sanded it to the shape/airfoil I want. The pics show how I have cut the 2 oz glass and kevlar for the hinges. Two more tips I learned from watching the Combat Models vids about glassing are these. Keep a bottle of baby powder handy to apply to your gloves, this will neutralize any glue on your hands giving you dry hands to work with anytime you want. The other is to lay your glass mat on cardboard and run an xacto knive where you want and it cuts thru it like you don't know it's there. No more scissors and stringies.

The homegrown peelply comes from cheap old plastic drop cloth you get from a DYI store and backed with paper towel.
The piece of drop cloth gets woodpeckered with a bunch of holes so the excess epoxy can weep thru to the paper towel which acts as a blotter. The drop cloth plastic won't stick to your glass giving you a relatively smooth surface to peel off.

I laid another piece of drop cloth on my work surface to keep things clean.

Wet the wood and put the glass on.
Put woodpeckered drop cloth over wet glass followed by paper towel.
Flip it all over and repeat but putting Kevlar down where the hinges will go (do this under the glass).

The last step is to put it into a bag for vacum. I use drop cloth and the cheapest caulk I can buy for the bag.
Since this is my first tail using this method I'm going with 10#.

Now I'm finishing my drink and going to bed. I'll report how it worked tomorrow.
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Old 12-05-2009, 11:20 PM
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Default RE: Making a tail with glass and kevlar/homemade peelply

That's way cool Vicman. I hope the flowers transfer to the stab.

I rely on Staples ClearView packing tape for those 2" and narrower release jobs. Or in overlapped layers for wider in cases where the little ripples don't matter, like on parting boards where it is my standard surface finish.

And lately, I have fallen in love with green rubber cutting mats and rotary cutters. I didn't know that rotary cutters cut glass cloth so neatly and easily, and I especially didn't know until lately that a Dollar store disposable rotary blade cutter could cut so many linear feet of glass cloth and so neatly. It really works like a charm. Haven't used scissors in a while now. They cut thin wood nicely too, though using a straight edge is an acquired skill. And rotary cutters cut off fingertips very easily, so careful.. [:'(]

Edit: of course forget Kevlar

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Old 12-06-2009, 12:34 AM
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Default RE: Making a tail with glass and kevlar/homemade peelply

Thanks for showing how you do it Vic. With all the building you're doing you might as well take up RC Combat while you're at it!

I picked up a "how to" book 20 years ago about composite built models.......what a horrible book, so full of junk that I'll bet the author dreamed up as he wrote it, just for filler. At the time, I thought it was full of The Gospel. Anyway, one of the tips in that book that look kind of good is about cutting kevlar. The book says to use a broken piece of glass over a cutting mat. Sounds Neanderthal, but the price is right.
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Old 12-06-2009, 01:26 AM
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Default RE: Making a tail with glass and kevlar/homemade peelply

That might be the same book I got from someone's collection recently, and it's a stinkeroo. It's the same vintage you're talking about. I'll look it up tomorrow..

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Old 12-06-2009, 08:48 AM
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Default RE: Making a tail with glass and kevlar/homemade peelply

sounds like jeff foxworthy's book on redneck composite fabrication, funny what mjd said about cutting kevlar, most guys who use kevlar in commercial fabrication, comments arent printable on this forum[>:]
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Old 12-06-2009, 01:59 PM
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Default RE: Making a tail with glass and kevlar/homemade peelply

I use the special scissors for kevlar, they work great.

So here are the results. The concept of the papertowel as a blotter behind woodpeckered plastic works. However I'm not too keen on the finish at the moment. I think it could've been a little better. One side looks much better than the other. I'll try a few more things next time around.

Dave, it kinda looks like the golfball divots but in reverse LOL.
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Old 12-06-2009, 02:25 PM
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Default RE: Making a tail with glass and kevlar/homemade peelply

Here is another pic showing the stubble. Other than the imprint of the papertowel (sorry no flowers Mike) I'm pretty happy with it.
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Old 12-06-2009, 02:36 PM
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Default RE: Making a tail with glass and kevlar/homemade peelply

Vic, did you do both sides at once?
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Old 12-06-2009, 03:11 PM
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Default RE: Making a tail with glass and kevlar/homemade peelply

Yep.
Using West epoxy gives plent of work time to do anything you want and if you don't mix enough, just mix up another squirt.
This only took about 2/3 of the one squirt mix. No weight or anything just pull it all down in the bag on a flat surface. I have seen where guys even put the top of a bag down on a piece of flat glass (not fiberglass but a window) and pull the vac. The way I did this allows the bag to form up around the edges real tight.
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Old 12-06-2009, 05:14 PM
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Default RE: Making a tail with glass and kevlar/homemade peelply


ORIGINAL: vicman

...the papertowel as a blotter behind woodpeckered plastic works. However I'm......
That'd be peckerwood plastic if this was a true redneck effort..

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Old 12-06-2009, 05:22 PM
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Default RE: Making a tail with glass and kevlar/homemade peelply

I'm thinking a name change might be in order for me eh?
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Old 12-06-2009, 06:13 PM
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Default RE: Making a tail with glass and kevlar/homemade peelply

carolina shine aviator?
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Old 12-06-2009, 07:29 PM
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Default RE: Making a tail with glass and kevlar/homemade peelply

I have been sipping some during this afternoon's build session.
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Old 12-06-2009, 08:34 PM
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Default RE: Making a tail with glass and kevlar/homemade peelply

vic,

let me give you a couple tips for the next one.

1. Skip the homemade peal ply.
2. pick up some mylar rougly .012 thick.
3. Cut pieces about 1/8" bigger than the size of your tail.
4. Wax it well.
5. Spray with rattle can primer or white rustoleum and let dry.
6. Cut your 3/4 oz or whatever light glass you are using the same size as the mylar and lay it up ON THE MYLAR (not the wood). With a squeegee you can get nearly all of the excess epoxy off with a scraper.
7. Lay the kevlar up on the wood tail.
8. Carfully center the wood tail on the painted, waxed mylar, making a sandwich (both top and bottom)
9. put it in the bag.

Should come out real nice, sometimes the glass/paint gets a little funky around the edges, but it cleans up easy with a little wetsanding. I did a lot of tails like this before molding them and it worked real good.
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Old 12-06-2009, 09:29 PM
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Default RE: Making a tail with glass and kevlar/homemade peelply

So much for the adventure of learning on my own

I got the tail cut and glued on 110 angle this afternoon and will try to do the torque rods this week. Hopefully I'll be setting it into the fuse before the week is out.

Thanks for the tips Dave, I was thinking that the next one would be with a mylar sammich. My wife was pretty impressed by my effort though. She said it felt like her legs when she doesn't shave. I don't think I need to tell you what test I performed to confirm her observations.[sm=tongue_smile.gif][sm=bananahead.gif]
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Old 12-06-2009, 10:04 PM
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Default RE: Making a tail with glass and kevlar/homemade peelply

How much of that white lightning have you been into?
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Old 12-06-2009, 10:11 PM
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Default RE: Making a tail with glass and kevlar/homemade peelply

Vic,

Check this out from 5 years ago...

http://www.rcuniverse.com/forum/m_14..._1/key_/tm.htm
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Old 12-06-2009, 10:21 PM
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Default RE: Making a tail with glass and kevlar/homemade peelply

Vic,

Check this out also in early 2004

http://www.rcuniverse.com/forum/m_15..._1/key_/tm.htm
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Old 12-06-2009, 11:03 PM
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Default RE: Making a tail with glass and kevlar/homemade peelply

Those made for great reading Dave!
I will definately give them a try on my next one. I'll be doing another one in a few weeks with the way I fly. Actually, I fly fine, it's just the landings that are wacked.[sm=bananahead.gif]

Not too much mountain juice...I gotta work tomorrow.[sm=stupid.gif]
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Old 12-07-2009, 11:21 AM
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Default RE: Making a tail with glass and kevlar/homemade peelply

Just out of curiosity, what are the benefits of the V-TAIL design over the conventional tail, I realize this might be a dumb question but I'm new to V-tails, and would like to know more. The only tail I've built that resembles a V-tail slightly, was a HOB f-86 a few years back, and I can remember the linkage being a real PITA.
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Old 12-07-2009, 11:34 AM
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Default RE: Making a tail with glass and kevlar/homemade peelply

- A primary benefit is that while the wetted area, the total surface area is the same, there are only two stab/fuselage junctions versus three creating extra drag, and two sets of tips suffering tip losses versus three.

- Because of the angular positioning of the stab surfaces they are more resistant to blanking or damping from mayhem ahead of them, as they are so far from being parallel.

- When used as R/E on small gliders, they are sometimes mounted on the bottom - this way when you add rudder, you generate proverse roll - helpful roll - versus adverse roll as a conventional V-tail or vertical stab does with rudder input. Most common on S8E rocket boosted gliders but true in any case. Kinda difficlut on prop jobbies and with any kind of wing loading.

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Old 12-07-2009, 11:35 AM
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Default RE: Making a tail with glass and kevlar/homemade peelply

I'm no expert, but it basically comes down to less drag (and don't ask if I'm talking induced or parasitic, cause I don't know). You have two surfaces vs 3, and less junctions between the fuse and the tail surfaces. Miniscule difference in most applications, but a well built V-tail should be faster than a well built conventional tail.

Linkage is just a different learning curve. I can bang out V-tail linkages as quick now as I can do a conventional tail. Its also very difficult to enclose the linkage to a rudder, where its pretty easy with a V-tail.

As to V-tail angles, lots of guys go with 110 degrees, I go a little more. Shoot for 115, and I'm normally within about 2 degrees which is close enough for me.
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Old 12-07-2009, 01:27 PM
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Default RE: Making a tail with glass and kevlar/homemade peelply

Hey, Vic....if your tail has bumps like a golf ball, will that make it less draggy? Oh, wait...you said inverted golf ball dimples....so draggier. Or maybe dimples period mean less drag.
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Old 12-07-2009, 07:32 PM
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Default RE: Making a tail with glass and kevlar/homemade peelply

LOL, I was thinking the same thing..."I've got the golf ball effect only in reverse" Don't think the thought of leaving it the way it was didn't cross my mind.
Dave, how are you doing with your dimpled covering?
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Old 12-07-2009, 09:15 PM
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Default RE: Making a tail with glass and kevlar/homemade peelply

lol vic, was hoping to find some sort of textured wallpaper that would mimic the dimples that I could adhere to the fuse sides and clearcot, but haven't found anything yet. I haven't looked to hard, maybe I'll make a trip to Lowes this weekend

Thats the fun part of this, experimenting, shouldn't have taken you through my learning curve 5 years ago
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