John Kahrs

Tail section, part I
So I got started. I've been trying to put some real time into it, working at night after the kids go to bed, usually from 10 until 1am, sometimes even later. For so long I've been collecting tools for this project, now that I've started, it's nice to just have everything I need right there. Band saw, drill press, aerolite glue, a scale for weighing it, compressor, three car garage . . .

It's been a couple weeks now of prepping the spars and ribs for the tail assembly. Mostly I've been gluing plywood skins on the faces of spars, drilling holes, and this past weekend, drilling and installing all the hinges for the elevator and rudder.

There is a trick from the Falco website I used where you put masking tape on each surface you want to join for alignment, then crazy glue the parts together. The masking tape stays put long enough to do the alignment and drilling, then you just peel off the tape from the parts and assemble them. It's amazing how well this works, and how simple it is.

I drilled a hole for the taillight wires to go through the main fin spar. As far as I can tell, it's measured correctly, but obviously it won't work like this:

I double exposed the hinge assembly on top. I put the question to Alfred Scott today in an email. This will probably end up being my first real error.

I did put all the hinges together, and aligned the fin and stab spars. Between the water leveling, plumbing, squares and trammeling, I am satisfied that they're perpendicular.

The hinges are swinging free. I have doubts that the alignment of the hinges will be as nice after I build the tail sections and reassemble them. That's one of the things I often wonder about- whether or not my standards are high enough to build tis thing. Sometimes I look at the kit parts, and they have little rough edges on them and sloppy glue beads squeezing out of them. Then I take a rule to them and they are absolutely accurate in every dimension, to like, the tenth of a millimeter. I could never build them that good.



Go back to John Kahrs