Refueling Probe and Pitot Tubes


First, I made the Refueling probe and Pitot tubes out of brass and aluminum tubing.  The end of the refueling probe was machined out of a bit of resin from the unused Cine-Scale machine guns (they were static, and WAY too big)  Once I had penciled in lines on the fuselage, I cut elongated holes- a bit at a time until the tube was parallel to the centerline in both axes:




Once each Pitot tube was cut to length, and placed properly- at the right angle, I "tacked" them in with a few spots of thick CA.  This held them in position and gave me a way to insure they were "just right" before locking them in.





A small glob of Aeropoxy locks the tubes in place so they can be worked on.  Naturally, this takes a day to cure.





While the epoxy is curing, I start making the bezels by cutting out the slots for the tubes on the mill.  The mill lets me make a perfect, straight oval opening in a styrene panel.





Once the bezels have been attached, I mask them off for filling.  I fill the gaps with "Green Putty", which dries quickly, and is very, very easy to sand.  I use the Evercoat Metal Glaze for large or deep fills, and the Green putty for small nicks, or detail filling like this.





It will take a couple of "passes" with the green putty to get it just right, in the meantime, you can see I have tacked down the Refueling Probe..





Finally, all three of the tubes are set into the fuselage, bezels installed and filled.  Now, back to the inside.





Since these tubes are certainly, sometime in the future- going to be bumped, hit, or otherwise accidentally abused, we want them to be mounted securely.  To do this, I use a steel brush in a dremel to take the surrounding area down to the carbon around the spots where the tubes were Aeropoxied in.





Finally, another layer of Aeropoxy / Hysol firmly bonds the tubes to the carbon shell, while distributing any impact over a much larger area.  Hopefully, this will prevent them from breaking loose if there is a mishap.  Having to fix the "Hangar Rash" on the Coast Guard Dauphin has taught me to make sure even the smallest detail is as secure and properly mounted as the mechanics!  In order to keep the delicate aluminum tube ends of the tubes from bending (they are sticking out and inviting damage0, I cut off some old 1.5mm Allen keys and Aeropoxied them into the tubes (recessed of course).  Ever tried to bend an Allen key?  Those things are TOUGH!




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Professional Photography by Les Bidrawn    |    © 2010