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#11 Re: My first skill level five rocket

Posted: Sat, 15 Oct 16, 04:53 am
by Commander
Grampie was an old world immigrant carpenter, Pappie and Uncle Joe took up the tradeand after the war (WW2) came back to the states, Pappie from flying a SB2C for the Marines (never saw action) in the Pacific and in China after the war, Uncle Joe from the 82nd Airborne (saw action at the bulge). When they came home, they built houses, lots of them. and not with all the mehanized tools of today. Their biggest assist was the venerable circular saw. Hammers powered by air or .22 caliper shots, You drove nails by muscle, all day long. Many years later, in the early 90's, after my father became an Air Traffic Controller in the early 60's, my boss at the time wanted to build a new garage, a suburban monstrosity three and a half car, one and a half story thing. He knew my father was a carpenter and wanted to talk to him about some concerns he had with the design. Long story short, he ended up having my father and uncle build the garage for him and even though as land surveyors we had seen a lot of construction, my old boss was amazed at the way my father and his brother built that garage and the time it took them to do it. These two old men, in their sixties, were tossing hammers back and forth to each other, carrying stacks of lumber around, and seemed to be having the time of their life doing it, I was told. What a testimonial to that generation.

Sorry for waxing nostalgic there, but there is a tie here. See, I didn't really get to learn the family trade that much. I helped build the family home in the late 70's and early 80's, but that was a long drawn out affair. Yes there was the occasional project around the house, but the most oft repeated phrase I heard was, "get out of my light!" Most of the stuff was done with hand tools, although after my mother's death in 1980, he started getting powered stuff. It is the hand tools however that I regret not learning about though. Especially the bench plane.

#12 Re: My first skill level five rocket

Posted: Sat, 15 Oct 16, 05:20 am
by Commander
Because of another project not rocketry related, I have been watching youtube videos on woodworking. I of course started watching videos about using a tablesaw and building the best table saw sled, blah, blah, blah.. I don't remember exactly when, I guess about two months ago, I came across some videos by Paul Sellers on woodworking. He is an old school carpenter, meaning he mostly uses hand tools (and also has some videos on "poor man's tools", tools created from scraps of lumber and other inexpensive items, to be used till you can afford to get better tools or in a pinch when you don't have them at hand). Paul is enamored by the no. 4 Stanley smoothing plane (he says it can do all the jobs of other planes). Of course when I could set the money aside, I went out to Lowes and bought a bench plane. I am now wishing I had my father around to teach me the touch skills this tool requires, but I am now slowly learning how to use it, picking it up and shaving something at least once a day. The main thing is to get the plane into shape, and even though it is brand new out of the box, don't trust it to be in great condition. After having the plane for a couple of weeks, I was rewatching video on sharpening the plane and checked my new one to find out the sole was anything but flat. All Sunday afternoon I spent flattening that plane's sole.

Back to building.

#13 Re: My first skill level five rocket

Posted: Sat, 15 Oct 16, 06:22 am
by Commander
A while back, maybe about about five years ago, I bought two of these
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Inside, besides a spokeshave (what?) and a balsa stripper (no, not the pole dancing variety), was a block plain. A miniature block plane. Well, I've been practing my technique with it's big brothers, so time to ignore post #6's advice again and let's see if I can even out the wing root edges without hacking the balsa all to bits. I clamped the wings together between two angle irons in my Workmate and get to it.
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Success :D A bare minimum touch up with some 320 grit sandpaper and the root edge is straight and true. I now take some masking tape and without releasing the vice, tape the pieces together.
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#14 Re: My first skill level five rocket

Posted: Sat, 15 Oct 16, 06:35 am
by Commander
Back to story time.

A couple of weeks ago, I needed to order some parts from the company I bought the set from. The total was about $15 plus shipping. The items were small and shipping was set unless I ordered a ton more, so I looked to see what else I could get with a small budget. In one of videos, Paul Sellers talked about using a scraper to touch up some work. I wondered how much some scrapers were. Good, not too much, they would fit the bill. Yes, a set of mini scrapers.
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These are about a third of a mm thick, and with a light, but firm touch, they made quick work of those little notches left over from laser burning/ die cutting.
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I think that's enough for one night. Let's hope it's not another four months before I post again.

#15 Re: My first skill level five rocket

Posted: Sat, 15 Oct 16, 18:42 pm
by Commander
By the way, those scrapers also work on plastic. Exceptionally well. I am using them now to scrape the seam lines on the plastic nose cone.

#16 Re: My first skill level five rocket

Posted: Mon, 17 Oct 16, 00:20 am
by Commander
So the more I get into this build, the more convinced I become that the reason this is a level five build is due to the instructions being so bad.
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It is my opinion that a reason there are not as many youth interested in Model Rocketry, is that the instructions are so poor that a youth would give up in frustration trying to decipher the hieroglyphics that Estes rocket instructions have become. I understand that the wordless instructions make it easier to become multinational, but frustrating youth and their parents worldwide is not really a good thing in the long run.

#17 Re: My first skill level five rocket

Posted: Wed, 19 Oct 16, 02:50 am
by Commander
Take a look at post No. 15. Third scraper from the left, the rectangular one. See the notches on the top? Guess what those can be used for?

Yeppers, One is about 2.4mm across and the other is about 3.2mm across. You can scrape rounded edges on 3/32" and 1/8" thick balsa!

#18 Re: My first skill level five rocket

Posted: Sat, 22 Oct 16, 00:31 am
by Commander
After scraping the nose cone seams, I give the nose cone a quick coat of silver aerosol can paint to really bring out the blemishes.
Xarconian nose cone above.JPG
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Xarconian nose cone underneath.JPG
Xarconian nose cone underneath.JPG (59.9 KiB) Viewed 5545 times
One can readily see some scratches needing repair on the above shot, but the underneath had a couple of small depressions that I filled with the Bondo Spot Glazing Putty. I use the Bondo for the scratches also by diluting it with Acetone and applying to the area with a inexpensive brush.

#19 Re: My first skill level five rocket

Posted: Mon, 27 Jan 20, 07:54 am
by Commander
Hard to believe almost 4 years have gone by since I started this build. I got back on the horse this weekend, and made good progress. The Fins were somewhat warped after I had tried filling them with the carpenters filler and i had just set the whole thing aside till this past week.

I'll load some pics a little bit later.

#20 Re: My first skill level five rocket

Posted: Tue, 28 Jan 20, 05:27 am
by Commander
In an earlier post I was discussing the poor instructions (especially for a level five rocket) Estes puts in the kits anymore. I came across another instance while working on the Cruiser this weekend. I will admit that in this case, I must take some of the blame for the near catastrophe.

I was working on cutting out the nacelles and shaping them and had cut one out. To keep my instruction sheet intact, I had made a couple of copies of the template sheet. I couldn't find the copy where I had cut out the first nacelle template, so I just grabbed the one nearest to hand and cut out a template. Fortunately, something in my brain signaled danger. I double checked and sure enough, the two templates where not the same and I had cut out the same one that I did initially.
nacelle wraps.JPG
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Could this not have simply been kept from happening by the addition of two words printed on the templates?
Template Sheet.JPG
Template Sheet.JPG (597.79 KiB) Viewed 2629 times