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Lightning Build

Old 03-17-2011, 12:01 AM
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Default RE: Lightning Build

Starting to look like an airplane. Nice work Jeff.

Alan
Old 03-20-2011, 07:42 AM
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Default RE: Lightning Build

The rudder is built up using 3/32” balsa ribs, 3/16” balsa leading edge, 1/8” balsa trailing edge, sheeted with 1/16” balsa. I use a jig that is incorporated in the structure for alignment. The leading and trailing edges are cut in 1” strips. I mark the centerline on the leading and trailing edges. The ribs are glued to the leading and trailing edges, lining up the centerline of each rib with the centerlines I had drawn. Then the entire assembly lays flat on the building board, the excess LE and TE are sanded flush, and the sheeting is glued on. Once dry, I tack glue balsa blocks on the LE and TE to make the jig for the other side.

Up next, everyone's favorite part of the first Lightning, the balsa canopy.
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Old 03-20-2011, 07:51 AM
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Default RE: Lightning Build

Nice comment on the plans Jeff!!
Old 03-20-2011, 10:51 AM
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Default RE: Lightning Build

Hey Bill.. what was it we use to say to each other years ago... OHYEAH, SHUTUP! haha

Dad and Ijust might make it to your pattern contest this year, will be great to see you again

Jeff, cant wait to see that together. Are you going to paint, or iron on cover it?
Curious if your painting, what kind of paint combonations you had in mind, and what you cover it with prior to painting...

Or you can just leave that answer for when you get to that stage too i guess
Old 03-21-2011, 03:58 AM
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Default RE: Lightning Build

Dad, happy to hear you agree with me.

JR, the wings and stab will be Monokote. Everything else with be fiberglassed with 0.75 ounce cloth and then painted with PPG autopaint. I will post some pictures of that process. You and your Dad should make it to Dad's contest!
Old 03-21-2011, 03:31 PM
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Default RE: Lightning Build

Hmm? Ducks what?
You guys should be ashamed.
Alas, I believe I agree[]
BTY, It really is looking very good; The whole package is good.
Mel
Old 03-21-2011, 03:47 PM
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Default RE: Lightning Build

Go Aztecs!
Old 03-26-2011, 04:39 AM
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Default RE: Lightning Build

The canopy construction starts off 1/8" balsa rails, 1/8" balsa formers, 1/8x1/4 balsa stringers, and a 3/16" balsa spine. I build the canopy frame directly on the fuselage. All of the attachment hardware is installed at the point. I use two 4-40 screws at the front, two carbon blades in the middle, and carbon pins at the rear. The front of the rails is 1/8" light ply, grafted on, to make hard points. 1/32" regular ply is used to reinforce the slots for the blades. The rear pins are glued into the canopy and slide into plastic sockets in the fuselage. Not very high tech, but quite rugged.

Once the frame is glued together, it is removed from the fuselage and is ready for sheeting. This is where the fun begins!
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Old 03-26-2011, 06:00 AM
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Default RE: Lightning Build

I thought you were going with a glass canopy on this build?
Old 03-26-2011, 06:08 AM
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Default RE: Lightning Build

I was going to make a composite canopy, but I decided I could do the wood one in much less time. Also, I have some ideas for the future that would not use the same canopy mold.
Old 03-26-2011, 08:58 AM
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Default RE: Lightning Build

Ahhhhh the canopy! The one piece to a ship that makes or breaks its character and profile..

Ithink yours made it, thats looks sweet. From an image view, id swear those were lazer cut pieces. damn nice work,Jeff
Old 03-27-2011, 04:58 PM
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Default RE: Lightning Build

Looking great Jeff! Nothing wrong with a wood canopy


-mark
Old 03-29-2011, 04:40 AM
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Default RE: Lightning Build

You're right Mark, stick with the organic composite!

The canopy frame was removed from the fuselage and mounted to the building board. The frame is planked with 1/8" balsa.

Now, a little bit of my wood canopy history. One Lightning #1, I had to remove it took two attempts to get the planking close to correct, and even then, I had to graft sections of sheeting in to get the shape right. It was not the best experience to say the least. I was bound and determined to have this one turn out right on the first try.

I started with strips on both sides of the bottom edge, which were pretty straight forward. Once those were dry, I did two strips along the top seam. The complex curve required use of the pre-molding technique used on the fuselage. Once those were glued down, I did one strip on each side at a time. I used regular wood glue for this, so this was done over about four days. The finished product came out pretty nice. The entire surface still needs to be sanded to final shape, but even without it looks about right. It came in at 65 grams, about a half ounce less than #1.
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Old 03-29-2011, 11:23 AM
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Default RE: Lightning Build

Jeff, Mark is ordering me a new canopy kit as i type. it is being drop shipped to your house asap.

Thanks and best of luck,

Chuck
Old 04-08-2011, 02:04 PM
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I have not progressed much in the last few weeks. A family visit and a work weekend back to back didn't leave much time in the garage. What I have done is sand, sand, sand! More work and PRACTICE this weekend!
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Old 04-08-2011, 02:38 PM
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Default RE: Lightning Build

Jeff,

Looks great. Wish I could make Green Sea next weekend, but unfortunately not this year,

Arch
Old 04-08-2011, 05:33 PM
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Default RE: Lightning Build

Arch,

Sorry to hear you aren't going to make it, we will catch up later on the contest trail.

Jeff
Old 04-08-2011, 06:36 PM
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Default RE: Lightning Build


ORIGINAL: rcpattern

Jeff,

Looks great. Wish I could make Green Sea next weekend, but unfortunately not this year,

Arch
Arch, sorry you won't be at Green Sea this year. You going to make Winston-Salem?
Dave
Old 04-09-2011, 03:22 AM
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Default RE: Lightning Build

Nope, our club has a community day that day, plus I have 2 D1 contests back to back after that, then flying to Chicago for the classic pattern event,

Arch
Old 04-09-2011, 05:18 AM
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ORIGINAL: rcpattern

Nope, our club has a community day that day, plus I have 2 D1 contests back to back after that, then flying to Chicago for the classic pattern event,

Arch
I'm planning to go to the Chicago Classic too. See you there.
Dave
Old 04-09-2011, 06:26 AM
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ORIGINAL: rcpattern

Nope, our club has a community day that day, plus I have 2 D1 contests back to back after that, then flying to Chicago for the classic pattern event,

Arch
Look forward to meeting you at the Classic pattern event in Chicago Arch, and Dave too. It was a great time last year.

hook (Mark)
Old 04-12-2011, 06:08 PM
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Default RE: Lightning Build

The nose is capped off with balsa and then sanded to shape. This is where a little artistic skill is required. Visualizing how the spinner flows into the fuselage and chin, and then how the balsa blocks will be sanded to create that flow took some thinking. The nose ring is made from 3/16" in quarter sections, which is to limit the amount of cross-grain to sand. All that is left to complete the nose is to cut the cooling hole.
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Old 04-13-2011, 04:27 AM
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Default RE: Lightning Build

.
You need to put your work in the Louvre . . .
.
Old 04-13-2011, 09:33 AM
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Default RE: Lightning Build

Hello

Awesome job. I registered every picture (tells a story, don't it !) on my PC.
Excellent idea in the Louvre. So I could see this Lightning when I will go to Paris (the town, not Hilton !)
Claude
Old 04-13-2011, 10:32 AM
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Default RE: Lightning Build

Great work Jeff...you better get to work though, you have a contest in 2 days...going to have to pull an all nighter to be ready to fly. Just kidding, great work. Can't wait to see it later this summer,

Arch

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