Building the Estes Xarconian Cruiser (part 9)

Cold week, cold basement. Busy with other things. Excuses excuses.

I cleaned up the pod ends with sandpaper. They were kind of gloppy. I should’ve waited until I got new thin CA instead of trying to use the thickened stuff.

Then I did a dry fit. The slots in the pods were too narrow, which is good; I like too narrow, too wide is what I don’t like. I widened them a little with a hobby knife and the fit looked good.

IMG_3300 But a couple things had to happen before gluing. First I had to cut out the detail pieces for the outsides of the pods. I tried using repositionable glue stick to attach the pattern pieces to the tubing scraps but that wasn’t secure enough. So I figured, why not: I used permanent glue stick. Another layer of paper won’t hurt. I glued the patterns printed side down, so as not to have as much trouble painting over the center lines. Then I taped everything to a spent E motor. It looks kind of ugly here but it was better after the glue stick dried.IMG_3301 Then I cut the pieces out and treated them with thin (really) CA. Immediately the center lines bled through and you can see them a mile off. Well, it’ll be okay.

Once the CA dried I sanded the edges and the surface, then glued the pieces to the pods. While that dried I filled the balsa center pieces — just the ends, no one will ever see the middles — with thinned CWF. Then I sanded them and mixed up a little epoxy. The slots in the pods and balsa pieces have to line up, and I wanted to be sure I’d be able to adjust the balsa’s position freely. I put epoxy on the balsa edges and stuck them in the pods, put wood glue on the fins and attached the pods, and glued the transverse, um, thing onto the top fin. Which got me to here.


IMG_3302Close to done! Done assembly, I mean. Painting will be a major undertaking but not until spring. For now I just need to do some fillets, glue in the motor mount, modify and attach the tail cone, and add nose weight. Is that everything? Think so.




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