mounting the Rear Defense Pods, I had a few details to add on the
wing. The Navigation lights were part of these additions.
They were angled ones from SSM-Helitechnik, but I got around that by
mounting them from the rear.
Here you can see the twin
air tanks (selected as they were easier to fit than a single, large
one), as well as the CO2 extinguisher / Sunburst launcher.
Working in the fuselage
leaves absolutely no room to have the mechanics mounted. Using a
25 pin RS-232 connector to link the fuselage to the mechanics allows me
to use a 3 or 6-foot extension to get the mechanics out of the way while
I build the fuselage systems!
Here is some of the wiring
during the "clean-up phase. Some wires are left undressed, as
they will become part of the harness that is not yet complete.
Yet, I had to do as much as I could, just so I can get my hands in
As you saw in the Rear
Defense Pod construction phase, I used a tube and rod hinge mechanism,
so there would be zero slop or drop in the doors. I manufactured
these hinges out of brass stock.
Here I am showing the relative placement
of the hinges inside the fuselage. The screws are just there to
maintain their position until the epoxy cures. They will
come out and the holes will be filled later...
Here is the first pass at
making the doors flush. A bit of grinding on the door sills, plus
a little heat and bending makes them fit like the doors on a safe!
In order to actuate the
doors, washout arms from an old T-Rex 450 come into play. First,
they are machined down and cut, then screwed into the bottom of the Rear
Defense Pod Assembly.
Below, you can see the
servo mount and actuating mechanism. I really like the ball links
from the Trex 450 Pro. They are molded in one piece, and if you
have the right length, you have zero assembly, and they always match
Here we have a bit more
cleanup, and the CO2 lines are considerably neater... Do I have
enough servos in here??
After a TON of sanding, I
put on another coat of 2-part primer so I can do the detail around the
doors and hatches. I need them to be exact and precisely parallel,
or they will stick out like s sore thumb after the color coat goes on:
Here is what it looks like
from the rear with the pods firing. You can see the CO2 plumes
coming out of each pod. Those darn .177cal bullets are making
dents in my LCD TV screen! First I was ticked, but then sort of
proud that the system performed so well!
Finally, here is a
video of the systems working (to date), but this was taken prior to some of
the cleanup and the last layer of primer.