Chapter 7
 
Fuselage Exterior
 
 
  NACA Foam 1          NACA Foam 2  
Foam is cut and shaped.  This picture shows the center line string I used. Overall view of foam in place.
 
  NACA Foam 3          NACA Foam 4  
Side view of foam sheets in place prior to micro-ing onto the bottom. Paper weights hold micro-ed foam in place.  Saran wrap keeps weights clean.
 
  Tank 1          Tank Fittings  
Five gallon (almost) tank in bottom  Note additional layering of foam and glass. This tank has a Princeton level gauge as well as a site gauge added. I drilled and tapped this tank drain.  Then glassed into the bottom. I also had a stainless outlet plate welded for me by a friend (sorry no pic).
 
  Side Jig 1          Side Jig 1  
Templates being made for checking the bottom and top side shapes. A jig for shaping the bottom.  Sandpaper will be glued to curvature shown.
 
  Side Jig in Operation          Antenna  
Shaping Jig in operation.  Whoops no operator?   Well you get the picture. Bottom shown with speed brake door and marker beacon antenna
 
  Pre Glass 1          Pre-Glass 2  
NACA Scoop taking shape and bottom ready for glassing. Looking from the bottom front.  Antenna, Speed Brake, NACA scoop.
 
  Pre Glass 3          Pre Glass 4  
Edge shaped ready to be glassed.  Foam patched with Glass/Foam mix. Back end of fuselage showing sump fuel inlet and shape of bottom end.
 
  Kevlar 1          Kevlar 2  
Kevlar and Bid bottom. Speed Brake door area.
 
  Kevlar 3          Side One  
Bottom is complete (for now). Top front side end ready for layers of glass.
 
  Things I learned:

I asked on the "abuser" group about reasons for the UNI  fibers to run at 30 degrees.  I wanted to substitute and use one layer of  BID Kevlar as well as the UNI. Many people objected and gave their arguments and suppositions about why the 30 degree direction was so structurally sound.  I was building a 4 inch wider fuselage and I wanted more strength as well as additional safety and friction wear for a gear up landing.  Besides I wanted it bullet proof if I ever flew over IRAQ.  :)   The answers I got were so varied.  I studied more.  I got some thoughtless answers.  I got some great answers.  I even got an answer from Nat Puffer and Marc Zeitlin.  It turns out that other than the additional torsional strength of applying UNI at 30 degrees is that it also has less waste. I ended up using two 45 degree BID Kevlar and also a regular Rutan BID at 45degrees.  Kevlar is lighter and stronger with more tensile strength, but, it is harder to sand so I put it on first then covered it with the regular BID.

With the use of the Infinity landing gear it is necessary to build a sump tank for even greater safety and range.  I learned the tank should have a vent and wide diameter inlet ports.  I am using 3/8" but now considering cutting them out and using 1/2 inch openings.  My vent will go to a future vent manifold for all tanks. My Drain valve may get relocated.  If it leaked it could blow fuel inside the cowl.  I may put a leak-proof cover over it and leave it where it is.

I learned to plan different phases of the project so I would never have a down time while waiting for some supplier to get me the parts, I could just go on to another part of the project and stay productive.

I had a hard time understanding the  "whys" of the speed brake layup.  I kept reading and I asked a few questions and even tried to think of better ways to do it my own way.  All reasons failed this time.  I stuck to the plans and the speed brake later turns out great.

Much of the perfecting of parts comes later in finishing or just improve as you go.  The NACA scoop was that way for me.  Finally it is looking quite professional.