In the Calm Before the Storm

Today’s weather forecast is for heavy frontal rain by about 1pm, so flying is cancelled this morning. Despite this, it’s a rather annoyingly lovely calm, bright, sunny morning when I get up. It doesn’t last though. Sure enough, the wind soon starts picking up and by 12:30 it’s overcast and the rain is here for the rest of the day. I wouldn’t have got much flying in, so it is definitely a building day.

The ATOM is coming along, honestly. I’ve sanded the front section between the cowl and canopy and I’ve started adding the side pieces to the back of the fuselage.


One bit about the fuselage still puzzles me though. In the instructions it mentions glueing a piece of soft 10mm balsa sheet behind the ply U/C mount on the bottom of the fuselage. There is no pattern for this on the plan, so I’m scratching my head wondering about the dimensions? It obviously blends the U/C mount into the fuselage base as you can see from the photos that there is no step, but I’m wondering whether this piece is supposed to go right to the back. Also, 10mm is a bit too big. The ply is formed of two 3mm pieces, so a 6mm bit of soft balsa should do fine. That is unless I’ve misread the plans completely?

OK, I did some Googling while I was writing this and my guess was right. There is another piece of soft balsa that needs to be added to the underside of the base to allow the ply U/C parts to be blended into a smooth curved fuselage. There’s a picture on the RCM&E building blog here:

I’m off to find some more wood…


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