RE: Here's a Simple & FREE First Foam Build Plan! Cool Looking Plane Too...
This is a really bright bunch of people in these forums, it's rare you see people use this script/web portal system for constructive purposes. Truck guy, I hear and feel for you with the repairs, I'm also an entrepreneur and work on my own cars, it's such a pain to have to drop everything just to work on someone elses engineering, then again, the number of miles on that truck, it sounds like my 69 ranchero, keeps on going and going and going, so work on it remains minimal, the 89 cougar, well, that was one repair after another, needless to say, it's now highly modified from the electronics to the door panels to work regardless of it's crappy engineering, I've learned how to fix things even the mechanics were dumbfounded with, luckily g/f has a new rig so I don't have to drop everything to work on hers as well.
The guy that created the plans for that plane, I hit his site, wow, this guy is just hard core, what a volume of work, he even pursues designs regardless of past failures, that's just the "right stuff" I've been looking for, I emailed him a proposition if he wants to turn his hobby into a full time job he can work from his operation, building rc planes on a commercial level, of which I'm focusing upon getting into next.
Good job on the progress, I'm a new believer of foam based construction, balsa and paper is indeed lighter, but when you are in experiemenal mode, 6 months on a project that has no hope because it's base design is hopless, being able to do it in foam in 6 hours is much easier to deal with. I'm currently using the plain, bumpy stock foam you get with the sheeting from home depot, I use the same material for crating up the espresso carts I build, so it's just using up scrap for the most part. Without even researching it, I noticed a guy built a geobat using it, so just used my jig saw, belt sander and sanding block to delve into it, am fine tuning the technique and am getting excellent results. It's just too cool to just sculpt this stuff, creating any shape you can imagine and not be limited to traditional balsa construction. Using the current technique, I use a 50-80 grit sanding belt to get the rough form complete, "sanding lightly to avoid gouging too far into the material" then finishing it off with 220 grit sandpaper, "sanding even more lightly" to produce a smooth, even surface, it works and is the poor man's approach to getting into working with this stuff without having to invest in much more then the raw materials.
I used to build 120 foot fiberglass luxury yachts many years ago, we used a fiberglass based foam to create new components/crossmembers/spars, etc. and that material was very itchy, but I gotta admit, must less temermental then the current housing insulation/styrofoam, so it's a trade off, I just love being able to buy a 4 x 8 foot sheet 2" material that can make up "many" planes for about 10.00. Running along that tangent, I'm now looking into everything foam based we have at our disposal, again looking at the commercial application since it's going to affect the production costs, but also have another idea which may advance this material forward for our application exclusively. PM me for more info in that area, I need to run an experiement to see if it can be done cost effectively, but if it works, we'll have a new foam that for all practical purposes, has little to no weight what so ever.