Tuesday, March 6, 2012

Dr.1 kit development update

In the prior posting, I said I would be working on the wings.  But instead, I have spent the last month detailing the fuselage as there have been some challenges in getting rib test parts made. 

The Dr.1 had a fuselage constructed of welded tubing.  If I was just building a model for myself, a one-off, I would solder or glue tubes together.  However, this won’t work for a kit.  I need to break the fuselage into sub-assemblies that can be produced and is constructable by someone with reasonable skill.  The first figure is of the basic fuselage structure. The seat bracket is on Frame #5 and the Ammo can is in place. 

What I have chosen to do is make some of the sub-assemblies Britannia cast parts and others of tubing.  The second figure shows the parts in an exploded view.  The front sides and each bulkhead frame are to be cast.  Some of the frame members are shown in the third figure silver soldered.  These serve as both prototype and as masters for the casting molds.  They are in different states of completion in the photograph.

In photo 4, the prototype parts are shown in a building jig.  This is a work in progress and the first version has already been scrapped.  The goal is to hold all the parts in place so a good looking fuselage can be easily assembled.  The fuselage is the only hard assembly on the plane.

I took a risk in making the tubular structures 1/16” diameter  as it wasn’t clear if the casters could produce tubing-like structures this fine.  However, I just received in the mail the first test pieces (photo 5) and these look great.  Now I can finish the other fuselage parts.

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