a big Gipsy Moth              

                                                                                                build log  page 2


December 2015.....

This aeroplane has leading edge slats on the top wing to increase lift at low speeds. I will make these out of fibreglass. To do this I have built a dummy wing leading edge which I will use as a former to lay up the glasscloth. Here three layers of cloth have been laid up.....





Here the fibreglass slats have been broken from the mould, trimmed to size, sanded and fitted to the wing.




Under the wing there are six small covers that hide the automatic slat mechanism, we will make these from sheet ABS  heated and pressed into a plywood former. The above shows four of these pressed out.



 finished product on the left has been trimmed to shape and fastened to the underside of the wing. The real one on the fullsize Moth is on the right.





The top wing center section has rivets, panel lines and filler cap added. This is the fuel tank for the Moth. It has been painted with black latex and clearcoated.


The Solartex covering is going on and the detailed rib stitching is also being cut and placed over the ribs. At 1/4 scale the stitches are at 1/2 inch spacing and the pinked tapes that cover the stitching are 1/2 inch wide. Sheets of ready spaced string lines are available from Ken Kosmenko at "Scale Rib-Stitch" The strings are spaced on two-sided adhesive tape and cut to strips the correct width. In the second photo the strips with the short bits of string are placed on the penciled rib locations.

Next the pinked tapes (from Gary Sibert at "Pink-It") are placed over the rib stitches.....I wet the strips with laquer thinner and press them tight against the stitch tapes while still wet. Some touch-up with a low-temp trim iron may be necessary..... Its a lot of work but the result is very good.

I love making these little detailed parts.....here is the rear dashboard and the little Moth decals on the outboard struts.


Here is the start of an engine cowling....The shape is taken from photos  and built up with layers of blue foam.....Lot's of crack filler to patch up the bad spots and lots of sanding. Below the foam plug is finished and painted with grey primer. A two piece fiberglass mould was made from the plug and the final cowling was cast from it.  I will be able to make multi-cowls from the two piece mould.



A plywood box has been fitted to the firewall and the engine centered on that. A Saito 180 will power the model which is a little overkill but I had the engine on hand and it will swing a nice big scale prop. The cowling fits nicely over the engine.

The Solartex covering is all on and painting is started.....It is important that the color is absolutely correct. I will need to prove my color in any scale contest so some research was necessary.....I contacted Mr. Henry Labouchere in Norfolk England who advised me that G-AAMY was painted in his shop using Randolph Aircraft Products "Lock Haven Yellow" #M-9521 butyrate dope. I was able to get paint chips from Randolph in the USA and matched the color exactly in latex.


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