MID-STAR 40 RC56 FUSELAGE

Before starting fuselage construction, there are a few subassemblies that should be built and set aside until needed. This is done to avoid interruption during the flow of the fuselage construction.

26.

  1. Glue together the two die-cut plywood F-1 pieces using Kwik-Set epoxy or slow CA. Use a heavy weight of some kind to hold down the two pieces perfectly flat while drying.
  2. Mark the vertical centerline and thrust line on the F1 assembly using the cross-section on the plan as a guide.
  3. Determine the spacing that will be necessary between the two glass filled engine mounts to fit your engine. Position the mounts on F-1 accordingly. Mark the location of the four mounting holes and drill them out with a 3/16" drill bit.

    27.

    Lightly hammer four 6-32 blind nuts into the back of F-1. Bolt the engine mounts to the front of F-1 using 6-32x3/4" mounting bolts to align the blind nuts (see note below). Apply medium or slow CA around the edges of the blind nuts to hold them in place. Be careful not to get any glue in the threads.

    NOTE: The shank of the 6-32 blind nuts may extend too far through F-1 and interfere with the back of the engine mounts. To avoid any conflict, drill a 1/4" dia. relief partially through the back of the mounts at each hole.

    28.

    Position your engine on the mounts far enough forward for the propeller to clear the fuselage "cheeks" and mark the engine mounting holes. Remove the mounts, then drill at the marks with a bit that's just large enough to clear your engine mounting holes.

    29.

    Re-intall the engine mounts, then bolt the engine in place. Use 3/4" long bolts (4-40 or 6-32, depending on the engine) and matching aircraft lock nuts to fasten the engine to the mounts (engine mounting bolts and nuts are not included in the kit). Locate and mark the best spot on the firewall for the throttle pushrod to exit and line up with your engine's carburetor control arm. Drill at the mark with a 9/64" drill bit. Remove the engine and engine mounts.

    NOTE: If you are building the optional taildragger version of the MID-STAR 40, skip steps 30 & 31 and proceed with step 32.




    30.

    1. Carefully center the molded nylon nose gear bearing over the center line on F-1. Be certain that the bottom edge of the bearing is flush with the bottom edge of F-1. Mark the location of the four mounting holes through the holes in the bearing.
    2. Remove the bearing and drill at the marks with a 5/32" drill bit.
    3. Lightly hammer four 4-40 blind nuts into the back of F-1 at the four holes, and secure them with medium or slow CA.

    31.

    1. Bolt the nose gear bearing to F-1 with 4 4-40 x 1/2" mounting bolts.
    2. The Sig Pushrod Connector included in the kit is used to connect the flexible cable nosewheel pushrod to the molded nylon steering arm. Snap the pushrod connector onto the outer hole of the s teering arm, then assemble the steering arm and formed nose gear strut into the nose gear bearing (as shown in the "Nose Gear Assembly" drawing on the plan).
    3. Turn the steering arm back against F-1 and mark the location of the nosewheel pushrod through the hole in the pushrod connector. Remove the nose gear assembly, then drill at the mark with a 9/64" drill bit.


    32.

    1. Carefully center the aluminum landing gear over the 1/4"x1-1/2"x3-1/4" plywood landing gear mount and mark the location of the four mounting holes through the holes in the landing gear and drill at the marks with a 5/32" drill bit.
    2. Lightly hammer four 4-40 blind nuts into the holes and secure them with medium or slow CA.

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    33.
    1. The die-cut Lite-Ply former F-2D has a dimple in the center to mark the correct position of the hole for the wing hold-down dowel. Glue F-2D to the front of die-cut Lite-Ply former F-2 so that the dimple remains showing.
    2. Carefully drill at the dimple with a 1/4" drill bit. Use a chunk of hardwood behind the former to keep the wood from splintering as you drill through.

    34.

    Glue the die-cut fuselage doublers to the die-cut fuselage sides using slow CA or Kwik-Set epoxy, and allow to dry. Be sure to make one left side and one right side!




    Basic Fuselage Construction

    35.

    1. Tape or rubber band the fuselage sides together at the rear.
    2. Working from the rear forward, slip all the fuselage formers (F-6 thru F-1) into place. Put a rubber band around the fuselage at each former location to hold it tightly together.
    3. Slide the die-cut Lite-Ply part FBR (fuselage bottom, rear) under the rubber bands until it snaps into its proper location between the fuselage sides.
    4. Slide the die-cut Lite-Ply part FTR (fuselage top, rear) into place under the rubber bands.
    NOTE: The "Tee-Lock" tabs on the formers, FBR, and FTR are made oversized to protrude past the fuselage sides. These will be sanded off after the fuselage has been completely assembled.

    36.

    1. Place the fuselage over the top view on the plans to check its alignment. Correct if necessary by twisting gently before proceeding. View the fuselage directly from the rear to be certain that the joint where the fuselage sides meet is square with the fuselage bottom.
    2. Carefully glue all of the parts permanently in place, preferably working from inside of the fuselage, using medium CA. Start with small patches of glue in the corners, checking the fuselage alignment as you go. Then go back and glue all of the joints on both sides. Leave the rubber bands and tape in place until all of the glue has dried completely.

    37.

    Glue the die-cut Lite-Ply cockpit former #2 (CF-2) on top of FTR using the 30 deg. side of the Dual Tool to get the correct angle. Don't bevel the bottom edge of CF-2, and make certain that it is flush with the front edge of FTR.




    38.

    1. Glue the two 1/4" sq. x 18" special shaped balsa stringers into the notches on the formers.
    2. When dry, trim off the ends of the stringers flush with the front face of CF-2 and the rear face of F-6.
    NOTE:If you are building the optional taildragger version of the MID-STAR-40, skip step 39 and proceed with step 40. If you are building the standard tricycle gear version, perform step 39, skip step 40, and proceed to step 41.

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    39.
    1. Install the landing gear mount in the rear notches of the fuselage doubler by gluing it firmly to the sides, the doublers, and FBR.
    2. Tape the die-cut Lite-Ply piece FBF (fuselage bottom, front) in place, recheck the fuselage alignment over the plans, then glue it using medium CA. Be sure to firmly glue the joints between FBF and the landing gear mount, F-1 and F-2 from the inside of the fuselage.
    3. If necessary, use a modeling knife to trim the back edge of the hole in FBF so that it's flush with the front face of F-1.





    40.

    1. Install the landing gear mount in the front notches of the fuselage doubler by gluing it firmly to the sides, the doubler, and F-2.
    2. Cut the die-cut Lite-Ply piece FBF (fuselage bottom, front) into two pieces as shown in the diagram.
    3. Tape the two pieces of FBF into place on the bottom of the fuselage, recheck the fuselage alignment over the plan, then glue it all using medium CA. Be sure to firmly glue the joints between FBF and the landing gear mount, F-1, and FBR from the inside of the fuselage.

    41.

    1. Cut two 1-1/2" lengths from the 1/2"x30" balsa triangle stock to serve as braces for the landing gear mount. Notch both braces to clear the blind nuts, then glue them in place.
    2. Cut two braces for F-1 from the 1/2" balsa triangle stock and notch them as necessary to clear the blind nuts on the back of F-1. Apply slow CA to the braces and press them firmly in place.
    3. Install the die-cut Lite-Ply tank floor so that it is sealed on the fuselage doublers and against the back of F-1, then glue it in place.

    42.

    1. Glue the 1/4"x1"x3-5/6" balsa nose brace to the top of the fuselage and F-1.
    2. When dry, hold the die-cut 3/32" plywood hatch tongue in position and draw a line on the tongue at the back of the nose brace.

    43.

    1. Remove the hatch tongue, center it on one end of the 1/4"x4"x6" balsa hatch, and glue it so that the line on the tongue is flush with the end of the hatch.
    2. Glue the two die-cut Lite-Ply hatch plates (HP) into place.

    44.

    1. The hatch is cut oversize so that it can be sanded to match the fuselage. Spot glue the hatch in place using two spots of slow CA on the top edge of fuselage sides.
    2. The fuselage is now ready for final sanding. Sand off at the "Tee-Lock" tabs then round the bottom edges of the fuselage, the fuselage nose, and the sides of the nose brace and hatch. Use a sanding block, starting with 80-grit sandpaper. Switch to 150-grit sandpaper for the final sanding.
    3. The balsa stringers already have an angled side, but for the smoothest finish you need to sand the angle slightly. Wrap one end of your sanding block with paper, then slide the wrapped end against the top edge of the fuselage as you sand. Once you've sanded the angle, round off the top outside corner of each stringer with your sanding block.

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    45. With the hatch still spot glued to the fuselage, use the plan as a guide to carefully mark the location of the two hold-down screws. Drill completely through the hatch and hatch plates at the marks with a 1/8" drill bit.

    46.

    1. The aft end of the hatch needs to be beveled at about a 45 deg. angle to allow the wing to slide into place. Mark the hatch on each side and along the top where it is to be cut off.
    2. Remove the hatch by carefully cutting at the glue spots with a single-edged razor blade or modeling knife. Saw off the excess material at the aft end, then sand in the bevel using your marks as a guide.
    3. The holes for the flat-head hold-down screws can be countersunk using a sharp 1/4" drill bit. Strengthen the countersunk area with a few drops of thin CA.
    4. Redrill the two hatch plates with a 5/32" drill bit, then install two 4-40 blind nuts in the holes from the bottom. Secure the blind nuts with medium or slow CA.




    Mounting The Wing To The Fuselage

    NOTE: The wing must be finished through step 10 before proceeding.







    47.


    1. Locate the 1/4" dia. x2-1/2" dowel and cut off a 2" long piece to serve as a wing hold-down dowel. Save the remaining piece for the canopy hold-down dowel.
    2. Sharpen one end of the wing hold-down dowel to a point - keep the point symmetrical and centered. With the hatch removed, push the dowel into the hole in F-2 so that only the point sticks out into the wing opening. Slide the wing into position, making sure it is centered on the fuselage. When you remove the wing, there should be a small indentation in the leading edge. (If not try using a drop of paint on the pointed dowel, which will transfer to the wing L.E.)

    48.

    1. Drill a 1/4" dia. hole through the L.E. at the indentation.
    2. Remove the dowel from F-2, then reinsert it from the wing opening about 5/16".
    3. Trial fit the wing in position, sliding it onto the dowel. Check to see that the wing seats properly on the fuselage. If not, slowly enlarge the hole in the L.E. until it does seat properly. If necessary, sand the back edge of the basswood torque rod blocks to allow the wing to seat firmly on the fuselage.
    4. With the wing still in position, apply medium CA or epoxy to the wing dowel and W-1 wing ribs by working through the openings in the wing. Be careful not to allow the glue to run down and bond the dowel to F-2.
    5. When dry, remove the wing and fill any gaps around the dowel with another application of glue.

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    49.
    1. The 1/4"x7/8"x2" basswood wing hold-down blocks key into notches in the fuselage doubler. To accurately fit them, temporarily tape or pin the wing in place on the fuselage.
    2. Working through the lightening holes in the fuselage, install the wing hold-down blocks in the notches, making certain they are in full contact with the wing bottom surface. Tack glue the blocks to the fuselage to hold them in position, then remove the wing. Finish gluing the blocks in place using medium CA.
    3. Cut two 2" lengths of 1/2" triangle stock to brace the wing hold-down blocks. Glue the triangle braces firmly to the hold-down blocks and the fuselage doublers.

    50.

    1. Fit the wing in place on the fuselage and check its alignment (see the General Alignment Drawing on page 20 of "The Basics of Radio Control" booklet). When you are satisfied that it is aligned correctly, tape it so that it can't move.
    2. Carefully mark and drill locations for the wing hold-down blocks at the same time with a #7 (or 13/64") drill bit. Keep the drill perpendicular to the top surface of the wing so the heads of the nylon bolts will seat flush against the plywood plates.

    51.

    1. Remove the wing and tap the wing hold-down blocks with a 1/4-20 tap. You can apply a few drops of thin CA to the holes to strengthen the threads.
    2. Redrill the holes in the wing with a 1/4" drill bit to pass the nylon wing bolts.



    52.

    1. The servos need to be mounted in the fuselage so that the nylon pushrods can be routed properly, with the least amount of curvature. Refer to Chapter 2 of "The Basics Of Radio Control" and the plans for information on where and how to mount the servos in the fuselage. Start by cutting two 3-1/4" long servo rails from the supplied 3/8" sq. basswood. Use the servo tray provided with your radio to properly space the rails along the "flat" edges of the fuselage doublers. When satisfied with their position, glue the servo rails in place.
    2. Lock the rails in place by gluing a die-cut Lite-Ply servo rail support (SRS) at each end of both rails.






    53.

    1. Locate the two .190 o.d. x24" nylon outer pushrod tubes, and roughen the last 3" of each with sandpaper to aid glue adhesion.
    2. Slide the outer pushrod tubes forward through the pushrod exit slots in the fuselage sides and the notches in F-6. Continue sliding the tubes until only about an inch of the roughened end sticks out of the slots.
    3. The outer pushrod tubes should meet (but not cross) at the notch in F-5. Glue a scrap of balsa below the tubes to hold them in place.
    4. Apply glue liberally (either slow CA or epoxy) to the outer tubes at the pushrod exit slots, from both the inside and the outside of the fuselage.

    54.

    1. Use a single-edge razor blade to trim the outer pushrod tubing flush with the outside of the fuselage.
    2. Install the die-cut Lite-Ply stab support (SS) so that it is flush with the top of the fuselage sides.
    3. When dry, sand the "Tee-Lock" tabs on the stab support flush with the fuselage sides.

    .



    55.


    1. The nylon pushrods must be supported at each former to keep them from flexing under load. Use the die-cut Lite-Ply pushrod straps, F-3S and F-4S, to support the pushrods. Notice that the pushrod straps haven't been marked for pushrod location because the routing of the pushrods will vary with different servo installations. Ideally, you want to have the pushrods to come through F-3S pointed directly at the servo arms of the rudder and elevator servos. Carefully mark drill locations on the pushrod straps for the two nylon pushrods. Drill at the marks with a 3/16" drill bit.
    2. Slide F-4S then F-3S into position on the pushrods, but don't glue them yet.
    3. Cut off the front ends of the outer pushrod tubes about 2" short of the se4rvo arms.

    56.

    1. Cut two 2-56 x10" threaded rods to an overall length of 2-1/2", measuring from the threaded end. Put a "Z" bend in the non threaded end of the rods. Of course, another type of servo connector may be used if you prefer (see page 7 of "The Basics Of Radio Control").
    2. Screw the threaded end of the rods completely into the two 130" o.d. x 30" nylon inner pushrod tubes.
    3. Slide the inner pushrod tubes into the outer tubes from the servo end. Install the "Z" bends (or your altenate servo connectors) on the servo arms and hook them into the servos.

    57.

    With the pushrods hooked up to the servos you can now glue F-3S and F-4S to the front of F-3 and F-4, repsectively, in such a way to keep the bends at a minimum.

    58.

    This is a good time to plan your fuel tank installation and routing of fuel lines through F-1 (see "Engine And Fuel Tank Installation" in the "Final Assembly" section of these instructions). Assemble your fuel tank (following the manufacturer's instructions and position it in the fuel tank compartment. Mark the locations of the fuel lines on F-1, remove the fuel tank, then drill holes through F-1 at the marks using a drill bit that's the same diameter as the fuel tubing you plan to use. You should also redrill the holes for the throttle and nosewheel pushrods (9/64" dia.), since they were both probably covered up by the triangle braces installed in step 41.


    Canopy Installation

    59.

    NOTE: The wing must be finished through step 25 before proceeding.
    1. Trim the plastic canopy base to the molded-in trim lines. With the wing firmly bolted to the fuselage, tape the canopy base in position on top of the wing. Confirm that the front of the "console" is centered on the wing.
    2. Trim around the clear plastic canopy at the molded-in trim lines, then trial fit it on the model. Trim or sand the back edge of the canopy until it fits perfectly against canopy former #2 (CF-2).
    3. The die-cut Lite-Ply canopy former #1 (CF-1) has a dimple in the center to mark the correct position of the hole for the canopy hold-down dowel. Trim and bevel the bottom edge of CF-1 so that it sits on the back edge of the canopy base, dimple-side up, and rests directly on CF-2. Glue CF-1 to the canopy base using medium CA, being careful not to get any glue on the wing or fuselage.
    4. Drill through CF-1 and CF-2 at the dimple with a 1/4" drill bit.

    60.

    Push the 1/4" dia. x1/2" long canopy hold-down dowel (left over from step 47a) through the hole in CF1 until it extends just past the rear face of CF-2. Glue around the dowel to CF-1, being careful not to get any glue on CF-2.


    61.

    1. Carefully trim or sand the edges of CF-1 for a perfect fit with the canopy. You may have to remove the canopy base/CF-1 assembly several times during this process, to avoid altering the shape of CF-2.
    2. Remove the canopy base/CF-1 assembly from the airplane. Re-glue the canopy hold-down dowel from the back side of CF-1. When dry, sand the dowel off flush with the front face of CF-1.

    .

    62. The canopy interior is now ready to finish to your liking. Since it won't be exposed to fuel or exhaust, most any type of paint can be used on the wood and plastic. For best results, we recommend spraying light coats of Sig Supercoat Dope or Sig Skybrite. The wood can be covered with an iron-on plastic film, but don't try it on the canopy base (the heat from the iron will melt and distort the plastic). If you wish, you can add a pilot at this time - just be sure it fits under the clear canopy. A Williams Brothers 2" scale Sportsman pilot looks good, but needs to be sanded at the base to fit. Cut out the instrument panel from the decal sheet and apply it to the face of the console for that finishing touch.


    63.

    1. When you're satisfied with the finish of your canopy interior, tape the assembly back in position along the outer edges of the canopy base.
    2. Before gluing the canopy in place, make certain it's inside surface is clean - you won't be able to get at it later! The canopy can be glued to the canopy base and CF-1 with Wilhold RC-56 glue, Sig-Ment glue, or clear RTV silicone rubber. CA's will work, but will sometimes fog the plastic (CA accellerators will definately fog the plastic). Tape the canopy in place and allow to completely dry.

    64.

    1. Remove the canopy assembly from the model and trim away the canopy base flush with the edge of the flange on the canopy. Sand the edges smooth leaving about a 3/32" flange on the sides of the canopy.
    2. The canopy hold-down screw will pass through the extended front flange. Tape the canopy in place on the model and carefully mark the location of the hole for the canopy hold-down screw. Be certain that the hole will pass directly through the center of the canopy hold-down block in the wing.
    3. Drill through the canopy flange and canopy hold-down block at the same time with a 1/8" drill bit.

    65.

    1. Remove the canopy from the model, then redrill the hole in the canopy hold-down block with a 3/16" dia. drill bit.
    2. Assemble the 4-40 brass threaded insert, the 4-40 x 3/8" canopy hold-down screw, and the #4 flat washer as shown in the photo. Screw the entire assembly into the canopy hold-down block until the washer is flush against the top of the wing.
    3. Remove the screw and washer leaving the threaded insert in the wing. (You may have to hold the edges of the washer with a pair of pliers while loosening the screw.) Secure the threaded insert to the wing with a drop or two of thin CA.





    Tail Surfaces

    66.

    1. Locate the two pre-cut 1/4" balsa elevators and sand their trailing edges round, including their inner, angled edges.
    2. Draw a hinge line centered on the leading edge of each elevator. Use a sanding block to bevel the front of the elevators using the hinge line as a guide.
    3. Temporarily pin the elevators to the plans and mark where the 3/32" dia. music wire elevator joiner will attach. Remove the elevators, then drill and groove their leading edges to accept the elevator joiner. Sand the joiner wire and wipe it clean before gluing it to the elevators with Kwik-Set Epoxy. Be certain to keep the leading edges aligned as the glue dries.

    .


    67.

    1. Glue the 1/4"x1"x4-3/16" stab tips to the pre-cut 1/4" balsa stabilizer, and allow to dry. Sig Bond is recommended for this step because it sands easily.
    2. Use the plans to help align the elevators on the back edge of the stabilizer, then tape them together. Holding the die-cut Lite-Ply stab tip template (STT) in place, cut the curved tip of the stabilizer and elevator with a sharp modeling knife. Repeat for the other tip.

    68.

    With the elevators still taped to the stabilizer, use a sanding block to round off the stab leading edges, stab tips, and elevator tips. Notice that the short length at the front of the stab should be left flat to fit against the back of F-6.




    69.

    1. Sand the top front corner of the pre-cut 3/16" balsa fin to match the curve shown on the plan.
    2. Sand the fin leading edge round.
    3. Sand the trailing edge and bottom edge of the pre-cut 3/16" rudder round.
    4. Draw a hinge line centered on the leading edge of the rudder. Bevel the rudder leading edge using the hinge line as a guide.


    70.


    The top of the fin or rudder may need sanding so that they line-up when installed. Temporarily pin or tape the stabilizer and fin on the back of the fuselage, then tape the rudder to the fin so that its bottom edge is aligned with the fuselage bottom. Remove the fin and rudder (which are still taped together) and sand the top edges until they match.

    NOTE: If you are building the optional tail dragger version of the MID-STAR 40 proceed with step 71. Otherwise, skip step 71 and proceed to "Installing Easy Hinges".


    71.

    1. Notch and drill the bottom of the rudder to accept the tailwheel wire.
    2. Sand and wipe the tailwheel wire clean, then install it (without glue) on the rudder. Apply thin CA first (to penetrate) and follow up with slow CA to completely fill around the wire.
    3. Reinforce the tailwheel area with a 1-1/2" long piece of fiberglass tape wrapped around the bottom of the rudder. Use thin CA to completely saturate the tape and surrounding wood. A second coat of thin CA will help fill the weave of the fiberglass.


    NOTE: Epoxy may be used in this step, but CA is faster and penetrates the entire tailwheel area, making it rock hard.

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    COVERING

    General Instructions

    Before choosing the covering for your model, please refer to the list of approved covering materials that has been included with this kit. The open-structure design of the Mid-Star 40 wing relies partially on the covering to aid in torsional stiffness, so it is very important that you use an approved covering material.

    All of the Mid-Star 40 prototypes were covered with Sig Supercoat Iron-On Plastic Covering. Supercoat is ideal for sport models because it's lightweight and easy to apply. You will need two rolls of Supercoat to cover the model.


    We recommend that you cover the wing, fuselage, tail surfaces, and control surfaces all separately before hinging and final assembly. This way the parts are much easier to handle.

    The following instructions provide advice and procedures specific to the Mid-Star 40. If this is your first attempt at covering, be certain to read the two pages of step-by-step, photo-illustrated instructions included with each roll of Sig Supercoat. If you choose another brand of covering material, be sure to read the manufacturer's directions (supplied with the covering) and follow them carefully.

    Surface Preparation

    A good covering job starts with good surface preparation. Regardless of what type of covering you choose, it won't hide poor workmanship. Any gaps around the tabs and slots in the fuselage should be filled with medium or slow CA. Fill any small surface gaps or dents with a lightweight filler or spackling paste. Sand the entire model, including the ailerons and tail surfaces, with 220-grit sandpaper, then again with 360 or 400-grit sandpaper.

    Temporarily mount your engine on the model so that you can make cutouts as necessary in the side "cheeks" to clear the muffler and to allow access to needle valves, carburettor adjusting screws etc. When satisfied, remove the engine and touch up the cutouts with some sandpaper. Since it's too difficult to apply covering material inside the engine compartment, it must be fuel proofed using several coats of clear dope or two coats of polyester (glass) resin, sanded between coats. Finish off the engine area with a few coats of colored Sig Supercoat Dope. (Most of the Sig Supercoat Plastic Iron-On Covering colors have a matching Sig Supercoat Dope color).


    Covering The Fuselage

    The fuselage should be covered with seven pieces in the order described here:
    • Fuselage Bottom - 1 pieces
    • Fuselage Sides - 2 pieces, left and right
    • Fuselage Top - 4 pieces, nose brace, hatch, stringers, CF-2
    All seams should overlap about 3/16". When covering solid wood surfaces like the front of the fuselage sides, better results can be obtained by starting at the center and working toward the outer edges, allowing air to escape as you iron.

    The trickiest part of covering the fuselage is the stringer area. Start by ironing the middle of your material to the top of the stringers, then work with each side separately. Carefully tack the material to the top edge of the fuselage side, then trim off the excess, leaving a 3/16" overlap. To avoid slicing into the material underneath, slide a piece of thin cardboard under the excess stringer covering before cutting it with a knife. Use a straight edge to make a nice, straight cut.

    Go back over the side seams with your iron, then seal the material to the top edge of CF-2 at the front and F-6 at the back. Trim the excess at each end leaving an overhang of about 1/8" to iron around the corners. Seal down the 1/8" overhang to the front of CF-2 and back of F-6. Now you can use a heat gun or iron to shrink the rest of the material over the stringers. A small, separate piece of covering material can be applied to the front of CF-2 to improve its look and protect it from engine exhaust.

    .

    Experienced modelers know that oily engine exhaust likes to creep into every crack it can find, which means special care must be taken to keep the hatch area as fuel proof as possible. When you cover the hatch be sure to cover the front and rear edges, and wrap the material around both sides about 1/2". The bottom surface of the hatch and the plywood hatch tongue should be protected with a couple of coats of clear dope. The covering material on the fuselage sides should wrap around the top in the hatch area as well as the wing saddle area.

    Another area that needs some clear dope for protection from exhaust is the rear side of the canopy former #1 (CF-1). For a finishing touch on the canopy, use some 3/16" wide striping tape, such as Sig SuperStripe, around the rear edge and along the side flanges.

    Covering The Wing

    Begin the wing by covering the wingtips and plywood hold-down plates. Cover each wingtip with two pieces of material, first the bottom, then the top. Seal each piece securely to the end rib and wingtip edge before shrinking it tight. Later, when the main top and bottom covering pieces are applied, they will overlap the wingtip covering on the end rib.

    Cover the hold-down plates with a single piece of material, extending it about 1/8" past the outside edges of the plates, again to provide an area for overlap.

    Cover the main portion of the wing starting with the bottom and then the top so that the seams will be on the bottom where they will be less visible. The top covering should overlap the full width of the leading & trailing edge.

    Wait until both the top and bottom pieces of covering material have been sealed completely around their edges before shrinking the large open areas between the ribs. Alternate between the top and bottom surface to avoid uneven shrinking which could cause a warp. Your sealing iron or a special "heat gun" can be used (household blow dryers don't provide enough heat). Keep the heat gun moving at all times or you may burn a hole in the covering. If you notice the covering material "ballooning up", put a small pin hole in the bottom of each rib bay to allow the expanding air to escape.


    Covering The Tail Sufaces And Ailerons

    The stabilizer, elevators, fin, rudder, and ailerons should each be covered with two pieces of material - bottom first, then the top. Iron the material from the center out to avoid trapping air bubbles. Once the ailerons have been covered, cut away the material to expose the slot and hole for the torque rods.

    Applying The Decals

    We recommend hinging the control surfaces before applying the decals. Instructions for decal application can be found in step 82