Using Rare Earth Magnets to Join Composite Structures

You know what I think is a little silly?  Using clecoes to join composite structures.  I mean, sure, they work, but unlike when you are working with sheet metal, at the end of it you have a bunch of useless holes that have to get filled in.  Also, multiple insertions/removals of the cleco tends to … Continue reading

The Method Part II – Demolding the Parts

Following up on my previous post on my method of making high quality, re-usable tooling with CNC machined foam and Stretchelon bagging film, here’s how things tend to go on the demold side.  First, turn off the pumps, and then remove all the secondary fabrics/films that are bagging the part: I’ve left the peel ply … Continue reading

Creating High Quality, Reusable Molds with CNC Machined Foam and Stretchelon Bagging Film – aka “The Method”

This post is really the culmination of a few years of research, research that I’ve decided to set loose into the world.  We call this “The Method,” or sometimes “The Stretchelon Trick” and it’s my primary method of creating tooling for composite parts these days.  As  an example, I’m using the Giles 200 gear leg … Continue reading

Giles G-200 Progress – Intersection Fairings

Moving along nicely now with the Giles G-200.  I realized that before I put any more time into the cowling, I needed to have all the rest of the intersection fairings finished up.  Really, the most complicated part, topologically speaking, is the intersection fairings.  Since the topology of the fairings must flow into the cowl, … Continue reading

Giles G-200 – Gear Leg Fairing Tooling Design

Making the overall shape for the gear leg fairings, as I described here, is really about 1/3 of the way to making the molds.  Granted, from my perspective, it’s the most fun part of the design process, but there is a lot of work that goes into taking that macro shape and turning it into … Continue reading

Finally, some Giles G-200 progress. Finite Trailing Edge Thickness Airfoils in Rhino3D

Now that we’ve got some projects cleared off, I’ve finally had time to return back to the Giles G-200.   It’s amazing to me how when you come back to a project after working on some truly difficult stuff, suddenly the things that were so hard on that earlier project are now much easier.  Such … Continue reading

Giles G-200: Cowling Design Progress

Well, I suppose this post is going to wrap things up for the year.  I’ve spent some time this week working on various projects, and also upgrading our office space (more on that in a week or so), but it feels good to be finishing out the last work day of the year making some … Continue reading

Giles G-200 – Laser Scanning

I returned to Sonora last week to re-scan the Giles G-200, this time with the Creaform EXAscan laser scanner.  I had previously digitized much of the Giles with the FARO arm, but once we decided to also do the plenums, I realized that a laser scanned model of the engine would be very helpful.  It … Continue reading

Giles 200: Titan IO-375 Engine Scanning – Part 2

I’m still working at making a nice engine model of the IO-375 for the Giles 200 project, and so I went down to the airport this morning to continue scanning.  I decided to take Jarrod’s advice from the comments on my first post, and break the scanning into two parts – a lower res scan … Continue reading

Giles 200: Titan IO-375 Engine Scanning

Hey what happened to that Giles 200 project?  Well once I figured out that I was getting a laser scanner, I put scanning the engine on hold, because making air cooled engine models with a mechanical arm is well, pretty awful.  So, now that I have the laser scanner, it’s full speed ahead!  I’m going … Continue reading