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|Updated May 29th, 2001
Work has started again on the hovercraft. I copied the bolt pattern off the lift engine onto an original lift duct disk and have set this in place in the duct. Now I have an idea of the true center of the duct, where to fit the mounting straps and how high to fit them. I have manufactured mounts out of steel and welded them in an I-------I shape to bolt to the wooden mounts. They seem to be strong enough, even when i jump up and down on them, and the engine is only 60lbs.
The skirt material has arrived - tis great stuff... $4.15 a yard at 61" wide. I got enough spare to remake several sections and glue and with shipping came out at about $75.
I found a throttle cable for the lift engine for $7 at Meijers, and a gas tank from there for $17.
I fitted the bilge pumps along with piping and through-hull connectors, one on each side.
We have an offer to go stay lakeside in Michigan in the first week of July! I HAVE to have it finished by then!!!
I have FINISHED THE THRUST DUCT!!!!!!!!!
Woooooo.... six months or more to get the first half done, then 3 days to finish it!
Next job will be to finish the rear of the cockpit and offer the duct up for fitting!
The duct is in place and I have made support fins and pieces to fit around the base. Some of these have been glued in place ready for a coat of fiberglass. I also reinforced some of the fin mounting points. Used some half round for leading fin edges.Adds strength and saves time.
Four fins are now in place and also a neat box around the underside of the duct to hold it stable and steady. More time spent sanding the lift prop - think its ready to balance now.
Made the hotwire, using some mig wire and a battery charger. ONe enf pivots and is tensioned by a bungee cord. Made two wooden aerofoil sections to guide the wire. It seem to work fine, though the dust from sanding makes you itch like crazy.
Rounded off the ends of the rudder posts - using a belt sander and a strip of sandpaper used shoe-shine style.
Cut two 13" disks out of 1/4 inch ply for the lift fan. Drilled carefully and glued and screwed it to both sides of the fan.
Also spent a while running stips of fiberglass along some unfinished seams.
Finished sanding both props. Balanced them using melted lead weights poured into drill holes in the hub areas. The lift prop is now 3/4 covered, the main prop awaits its first covering. I also started to glass the trim wing, having finished one side and over the lead area. It went surprisingly easily and seems quite smooth and light.
Progress will slow a little over the next few days as we have adopted a new PUPPY!