the fun begins! First, we have to cut the gun pod doors. In
order to make the doors even, I constructed a jig with 2 scraps of wood
and a mechanical pencil lead. Running this around the pod, while
holding it against the end of the pod insured two identical cuts.
Before actually cutting, I
outlined the cut lines with fine-line drafting tape to make the cut line
There is a blue light at
the front of each gun pod. I wired them in with wire wrap wire,
and will run these to the two brass rods used to extend the pod.
This way, I get power to the LED without having to run any wires, and it
will look that much cleaner!
Here you can see the tubes
that the rods will move back and forth in. Prior to building the wing
sections, and knowing that I was going to do retractable guns, I drilled
the holes for these on a drill press so they lined up perfectly.
I cut down some extra
plywood formers from the Vario kit to make the "core" for the
pod cap these get tacked in with a teeny drop of CA.
The brass rods get their ends threaded
so we will have something to "grab" onto!.
Now, the trick: We
insert the rods into the guide tubes, and coat the nuts on the end with
the soot-like 3M Guide Coat. When the end cap is perfectly
aligned, each rod is pushed out and spun to make perfect, circular soot
marks on the plywood! This marks the exact point to drill.
The cap formers are
drilled, and Aeropoxied into place. Inserting the assembly into
the guide tubes to dry ensures that they are at the proper angle and
will continue to slide easily when the assembly has cured.
On the inside, we have an
8711 servo connected through a T-rex 700 pitch linkage to a ball link on
an assembly I made on the lathe. Nice and compact, it moves the
arms out with authority. A JR Matchbox gives me fine control over
the throws and limits for these 2 servos.
Somehow, one of the LED's has stopped functioning.. I have to mill
out the area to remove the old LED (they are all encapsulated in
Evercoat Metal Glaze and epoxy now), reinstall a new LED, and use a
Dremel with a diamond wheel to cut channels to run the wires to the
All's well that end's well,
I guess. The Gun mount actuation system is functioning perfectly:
Well... Not quite the
end! Les (my photographer friend came by, and I was showing him
how the pneumatics and lights were going to connect, and before you knew
it, I had the port side all connected up! So, I decided to give
everyone a sneak peek of the pod in actual operation! Hopefully
the wiring will be neater before I fly it!