Thanks to everyone who voted for me in the Vintage Contest!
Step 1: What You Need:
- 18" x 3" x 3/16" balsa sheet
- 9.5" x 3.5" x 3/32" balsa sheet
- 15" x 1" x 1/4" softwood
- 1/4" thick masking tape
- A metal rod around 5/16"
- An iron
- Coping saw or band saw
- Appropriate safety equipment
Step 2: The Template
- Cut out each template piece.
The Wing Templates
- Tape the wing templates face down to the 3/16" piece of balsa. Align the leading edges with the edge of the balsa sheet.
- Run the iron over the balsa about 5 times. Check to see if the pattern has transferred. If not, keep ironing. If it has, flip the balsa over and iron the other side to fix any warping.
The Tailplane & Fin Templates
- Do what you did for the wing templates for the tailplane and fin templates.
Step 3: The Wings
- Press the two wing pieces together and check if they are symmetrical. If not, sand them until they are.
- Tape the wings together. Flip them over and measure 3/4" down from the leading edge. Mark a line across the wings. Put a strip of 1/4" masking tape across the wings against the line.
- It's time to sand the wings into a flat bottom airfoil shape (see image 3). Sand across both wings from the tape down on both sides.
- Once the wings are shaped remove the tape. Run your finger along where the edges of the tape used to be. If you can feel raised edges sand them down.
- One wing should still have traces of the template on it. Take that wing and cut the wingtip off along the line perpendicular to the leading edge. Use the wingtip to trace the cut line onto the other wing. Cut the other wingtip off.
- Sand the part where the wingtip was cut away from the wing to a 45 degree angle on both wingtips. Epoxy them back onto the rest of each wing.
- Sand the part of one wing opposite to the wingtip at about an 85 degree angle. Epoxy the two wings together.
Step 4: The Tailplane
- Measure 1/8" down from the leading edge and make a line across.
- Put a strip of 1/4" masking tape against the line.
- Sand the tailplane to a flat bottom airfoil shape like you did with the wing.
- Remove the tape. Run your finger along where the edges of the tape used to be. If you can feel raised edges sand them down.
Step 5: The Fin
- Carefully cut the slot out of the fin.
Step 6: The Fuselage
- Cut out the fuselage with the coping saw or band saw. Sand it smooth.
- Round the bottom edge (the edge without the slant).
- Grab the fin. It should slide on to the end of the fuselage easily.
- Drill a hole around 5/16" in the nose of the fuselage.
- Cut a 1/4" long piece of metal rod the same size as the hole in the nose. Epoxy it in place. If there is any excess, file it off.
Step 7: Putting It All Together
- Epoxy the tailplane in front of the fin with the leading (rounded) edge facing the front.
- Epoxy the wing onto the fuselage 3" to 3.5" from the nose with the leading edge facing the front. Make sure the wingtips are the same vertical distance from the ground on each side. I found that the wing had a tendency to tip, so you may want to prop up one side of the wing.