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Member postings for Mark Elen

Here is a list of all the postings Mark Elen has made in our forums. Click on a thread name to jump to the thread.

Thread: Grumman American Cougar
13/05/2020 20:20:07

Hi Andy,

Sorry for that!

I got a bit more done the last couple of days. Work got in the way though.

I got the front and rear wing hold down plates epoxied in, it was good to see that the fuselage is pretty square:


I ended up re-drawing out the plan straight onto my board, that way, at least the centre line is in the centre (it isn't on the plan) I then made up the rear formers by measuring from my plan with a pair of calipers for the widths and from the fuselage sides for the heights. I left them all a bit oversize on the bottoms so that I can sand them down to finish:







11/05/2020 19:02:49

I got a load done today:















10/05/2020 20:13:27

Thanks Dannyyes

I got a fair bit done today. Starting with getting the doublers evo-stuck onto the fuselage sides:


Then I actually remembered to draw on the locations of the formers. I always seem to forget this step:



Then into the bender:


Excuse the mess!

They came out not too far off:


I then got on with the 3/32 square on the top and bottom and the wing seat 1/4" treblers:



The next job is to draw out the plan view onto my building board. The plan view and the side elevation on the plan do not match up. The former drawings are also wrong. F10 and F11 are a long way out.



Thread: Gary's Ballerina Build
09/05/2020 18:12:41

Hi Gary,

That looks superb. Nice work with the covering!



Thread: Grumman American Cougar
09/05/2020 18:11:06

I got a bit more done today. Starting with making a big enough piece for each fuselage side:


I then used my tried and tested way of making 2 doublers that are exactly the same. Take 2 blanks, stick them together with upholsterers spray adhesive, then using the same adhesive, glue on a tracing of the doubler. This can then be cut and shaped to the correct dimensions. Once done, the sides can be easily pulled apart and the glue can be removed with thinners:


In amongst todays work, I made up a test piece to try out the bender. I was concerned that the bend will be on a part that has a tiny sliver glued on and that the wetting of the balsa would weaken the aliphatic and release it. I didn't need to worry:


I glued the test doubler piece onto this (using evo-stick the same as the sides will be using) and wetted the outside, then using a scrap piece of 1/32 ply to protect the balsa, it went in the bender and was left for an hour or two:



If anything, it has worked a little too well, as the expected spring back hasn't happened. This is it pinned into place where the fuselage side will end up:




08/05/2020 10:50:41

Many thanks gents for your kind comments.

That looks superb Danny. Yes, the bending tool is to pre-bend the fuselage sides just behind the wing seat. Dennis Tapsfield suggests this in the build article.

Thanks Garyyes

This morning, I have got the fuselage sides traced out:


and re-designed the wing hold down plate, so that it is at 90 degrees to the wing bolts:


I bought 48" x 4" 1/8 sheet for the fuselage sides, it is about 4" too short and 1" too narrow:


so, I'm going to have to join it. The current thinking is to splice 2 pieces together over 6 inches or so, with the join falling on the flat part of the front fuselage where there is a 1/32 ply doubler. There will also be a 1" strip along the bottom. Is this the best way?



07/05/2020 20:41:53

I got the fuselage side bender completed today. I had to make a new set of vice jaws first to screw the bender to:







Now I just need a pair of fuselage sides to go in and try it.



06/05/2020 21:30:32

It’s ok Chris. I’m not sure I know what I’m doing either....

I can see some testing going on soon, before I try to bend the fuselage sides.


Thread: Chris McG F-86 Sabre Dog build blog
06/05/2020 20:19:44

Hi Chris,

Stunning work mateyes



Thread: Grumman American Cougar
06/05/2020 20:17:19

Not had a lot of time today, as I have been at work...hurrah.

I finished off the female part of the balsa bender last night, and this afternoon when I got home, I got the male part made. I have made the male part .5mm shorter than the female. This is for a cross piece that will align the bend to 90 degrees. Its coming together slowly...





05/05/2020 21:04:29

Bit more done today. I got those formers out of the jigs and got the ends brought down to size and the angle sanded onto F3A.

The formers on the plan do not match the drawings... F3a needed 3mm off the bottom to match the side elevation, the box of F6 is shown 3mm too wide on the former drawing, as opposed to the plan. I have decided to measure each former off the plan and build to that. more on this later.




Here is F6a traced and flipped over. Its miles out. I ended up doing the same with this, rubbing the wrong looking side out, flipping over the tracing and then tracing the same side twice, once on one side and once on the other.


As the 'words and music' call for pre-bending the sides and the doublers before putting them together, and, because I have been meaning to make one for a long time, I have finally got around to making a 'vice bending tool'. The plan is that each half will screw into a couple of new vice jaws, that I need to make, and will turn the vice into a bending tool. Lets see how this pans out....

Here is the start:



The cougar sides bend by 7 degrees, I have set this up at 5 degrees per side, to make 10 degrees included. Hopefully this will allow for any spring back once the wood is released. Its a bit of a shot in the dark...



04/05/2020 20:49:30

Today, I made a start on this.

I have decided to start on the fuselage, as I prefer to build wings. One of the things that I haven't yet done is to build a laminated structure, so this was where I decided to start. The two fuselage laminated formers.

I bought a roll of proper tracing paper from e-bay just lately, and put it to use on the laminated formers. I found that the plan is not quite right, I traced out the formers, then flipped the tracing over and laid it back over the former. The curves were not symmetrical. F5 was 1/16 out at the worst point, F3A was closer, but I ended up rubbing out one side, then flipping over the tracing paper and tracing the same side so that I had a symmetrical former.

I then glued these onto a couple of sheets of 1/4 ply with upholsterers spray adhesive and set to work with the scroll saw and made a couple of jigs.

Cutting 16 strips of 1/4 wide 1/32 ply seemed to take a while.




The other one is done as well, both now clamped up and sat drying overnight.



Thread: Tony Nijhuis Hawk - Build Log
02/05/2020 00:43:28

Looking good Geoff. Keep up the good work👍

Thread: Abused Laser
02/05/2020 00:42:25

If there isn’t....there should be....outch.

Thread: Mark’s Peggy Sue 2 Build
30/04/2020 23:10:21

Thank you all for your kind comments. I’m looking forward to getting back flying, once we are all let back out again.

I have made a start this afternoon on the Ballerina repair, that I mentioned a while ago, covering off, new wood glued in and now it’s waiting for sanding. Hopefully, tomorrow, I will get the covering on and it will be ready for getting my flying back up to scratch before trying to maiden this.

Thank you all for following along and your kind comments along the way. Much respect to the guru (Peter) for his design talent and his helpful words of encouragement along the way.

I will try to post up some flying shots here when I hopefully get it flying.



Thread: Gary's Ballerina Build
30/04/2020 22:58:54

Looking good Gary. Nice neat snake exits👍

Its all about the orientation of your phone when you take them. Landscape one way, they come out correct, landscape the other, upside down.



Thread: Mark’s Peggy Sue 2 Build
30/04/2020 10:27:04

Thanks Gents.

Other than a bit of plumbing and the final checking and setting of the linkages, it is now finished. I ended up with the receiver battery (2000mah 5 cell Nimh) under the tank to get it to balance correctly. No ballast necessary 😎 I still need to run the engine in, but that can wait until there is a possibility of flying.

Many thanks Peter, your design has given me hours of pleasure building.






29/04/2020 19:44:39
Posted by Nigel R on 29/04/2020 07:08:18:

That fin is a thing of beauty. It would never have occurred to me to tackle it like that.

You have an extraordinarily neat junction between tail plane and fuselage too. How on earth do you do it?

Hi Nigel,

Many thanks for your kind comments. I did that with lots of careful use of the iron, changing from cool, to just tack the covering to medium to stick it down, to hot to shrink it where it needed shrinking, being careful not to shrink the junction too much. If I had a pound for the amount of times the temperature got changed while I was doing that I would be a rich man.....

Today, I seem to have got a lot done. Starting with gluing all of the surfaces in, I like to use superphatic for this, flooding the hinge slot with it, then after carefully putting a little oil onto just the hinge pins, slotting them home.


I also got the other side windows in and the receiver:


A few days ago, I bought a vinyl graphic online, I got this put onto the wing today:



I then made up the loom for the aileron servos:



And I got the aileron loom, servos and linkages installed:


That's the wing finished, just a couple of bits now on the fuselage, then check C of G and position the battery, with a bit of luck, it wont need any lead. We will see.



28/04/2020 20:14:20

Hi Dan,

Many thanks for your kind comments. Today I have finished off the covering and made a start on gluing the glazing in with Pacer canopy glue. It takes forever to go off, so I have used some low tack masking tape to hold it in place overnight. I also got started gluing the hinges into the surfaces.





Thread: Chris McG F-86 Sabre Dog build blog
27/04/2020 19:35:51

Hi Chris,

That’s fantastic. Very well done.



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