I started all over again...
New thread because the old one was just devolving into a endless stream of do overs.
THIS THREAD SHALL NOT BE WHAT CAME BEFORE...THIS ONE WILL BE A FINISHED PROTOTYPE MODEL!!
So a few months back my good friend Paul Fisher lost his home and wonderful workshop to fire in Paradise, CA. I am so happy he and his family escaped and in that light the mention of what comes next seems so trivial.
Paul was in possession of the masters I had completed at the time of the fire so an opportunity to build a better model arose.
Considering the magnitude of the work I previously completed, I started thinking about how to speed up the build. As many of you know I have turned to CNC and SLA type 3d printing to augment the hand building of the model. Until recently I had eschewed the use of FDM type printers due to the inaccuracy of the prints, and significant post processing required after printing model parts. Cost also was a factor, nothing was worth the investment versus the risk of poor parts.
Enter the Tiertime Cetus MKIII. This little printer was cheap, precise and worth a gamble. The main feature that attracted me to the printer was the linear guide rails and bearing blocks. These almost guarantee accurate movement of the axises of the printer. With a price in the $300 US range it was worth a try. With the printer in hand and after some tweaking with the assembly of the printer I managed to print dimensionally accurate parts. One inch cubes were printed and were measured by digital caliper only a few ten thousands of an inch from true, and square adjacent surfaces measured with a machinist's square.
So I ordered up 7,000g of PLA filament and started a-printing.
On a similar journey I ordered up an Anycubic Photon MSLA printer, though this journey was much longer because the Photon required much more significant modification to get true parts. Out of the box it made fantastic parts in terms of detail. However, they parts didn't fit with others, they were skewed in the Z or vertical axis. The modification was much too complex to detail in this post, suffice to say the machine was disassembled, parts were machined true, linear rails and bearing blocks added and a new parts were machined to make it all work. Parts that came out of the machine post modification were exceptional!
Now that I have three machines working simultaneously part production has definitely accelerated the pace of this build.
I have also made some design changes. Outside of getting another chance to improve the model's accuracy, simplifying and streamlining the build has been a chief consideration. So the model will still be "skinned" in aluminum sheet but only where there are removable panels, the remainder of panel detail will be scribed in to a layer of primer paint. PLA is a difficult material to sand and also hygroscopic and needed to be well sealed. I'm using 2 part automotive epoxy paint (paint and hardener) to fill and "glue" the PLA layers together. The result is a surface that is much easier to sand and finish. You can see a few of the PLA parts were the black primer has been applied and finishing has started.
Lastly my machining skills have improved to the point where the acrylic parts now have machined in details, rivets and reinforcing layers etc.
Here's a shot of the parts so far. These parts represent the main components of the fuselage from the nose to the engine faces.
More detailed photos coming as assembly commences. This will be a prototype model, so I will be finishing this one as I go, so you can look forward to finished assemblies going forward.
Thanks for checking in!