Well, the Tehachapi trip didn't go through last weekend. I called Harald just before heading out on Friday, and learned that he wouldn't be finished until Sunday afternoon. So I made a last-minute decision to go home to the family instead of down to Tehachapi.
As it turns out, that decision put me right into one of the biggest snarl-ups in the history of the ACE (Altamont Commuter Express) train. It seems that that afternoon there'd been a fatality on the tracks in Fremont when a teenager got run over by a freight train. So the 5:30 train was late. Not only that, but the 4:30 and 3:30 trains had been held up as well. So all three trains ended up on the tracks in Newark stacked up against each other. Except that there was an Amtrack commuter train between the 4:30 and 5:30 ACE trains.
What they did was really interesting. They ran both the 3:30 and the 4:30 back around the 5:30 on a siding, and hooked all three trains together with the 5:30 at the front. I'm sure there are a variety of good reasons for that. It was kinda awkward though, since the train was three times as long as the stations. So at every station they'd park the train with the 5:30 trainset at the station, unload, move forward to put the 3:30 set at the station, unload, and then finally move forward and unload the 4:30 train. That added a bunch of delay to an already very very late train. I'm just glad I got on the 5:30 train, and didn't have to wait the extra hour or two the 4:30 and 3:30 commuters did.
So anyhow, now the horizontal stab molds are ready, and I'll probably go get them this weekend. Pictures follow.
Note that the mold embodies the external surface area of both the horizontal stabilizer and the elevator. When I get them up to my shop I'll scribe the separation lines onto the mold surfaces so that it becomes a raised trim line in the gelcoat of the finished parts. I'll either make another mold for a two-piece elevator, or more likely at this point, make another mold for a separate elevator leading edge nose that includes the hinge pintles and the sealing radii. In that scheme, we'll make both the elevator and horizontal stab skins together, then later trim them apart and then bond the elevator leading edge to the V-bonded elevator skins.
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page updated 23 March 2005 all text and graphics copyright (c) 2005 HP Aircraft, LLC