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Mindwarp's Journal: It's bleedin' typical, innit! 1

Journal by Mindwarp

Bloody typical. I waited a whole two weeks to go to the flying club last Thursday, and on the evening in question it was foggy, rainy and windy! Honestly, I moved away from England just to get rid of this weather crappiness! Admittedly, some question the sanity of moving to Chicago...

The covering of the LT-40 is going well. I've managed to get the fuselage covered completely now, with only one minor mishap along the way. IMPORTANT NOTE TO SELF: Do not use a craft hot-air gun to shrink monokote covering film tight. They run a little bit too hot, and have a tendancy to flame-thrower a dirty great hole through your previously perfect covering job if you don't whip 'em away from the newly taut surface fast enough.

Lessons learned:

1) Never cover your aircraft near your three year old daughter. You'll end up accidentally melting a hole through the covering, and then your daughter will end up accidentally learning a whole bunch of words that you don't want her repeating in polite company.

2) Dime sized holes are easy to cover will small scrap pieces of covering using judicious applications of your covering iron. However, the small scrap pieces of covering will be fundamentally changed during the process. They will gain the ability to attract your eyes directly to them with an as yet undocumented physical force akin to magnetism.

3) Don't try to save money by using your wife's craft supplies when building your plane. Spend the extra $20 on getting a heat gun that's actually going to work.

Oh well, back to covering the stabiliser I guess...

Edit: Spent a few hours in the basement tonight and got the stabiliser and the elevator control surfaces covered. Don't like the covering job that I managed for the stabiliser; there are a few too many wrinkles in it that I just can't seem to shrink away. There's a lot to learn about this covering lark.

Edit: Just found out from a far more experienced builder that you solve this problem by drilling 1/32" holes through all the internal spars in your wing/stabiliser/fin. If you don't do this then when you heat the Monokote to shrink it, the air inside the sealed compartment expands and balloons the coating out. This stops the coating from shrinking, and therefore preserves the wrinkles for all to see. Since I've covered the structure already, drilling the holes in the struts is impossible. Instead, I'm going to try using a pin to poke pilot holes from the surface of the struts, through the strut, and out the side at a 45 degree angle. Hopefully that won't look too ugly, and will provide enough venting that the compartment can 'breathe' during the shrinking process.

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It's bleedin' typical, innit!

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