Using the new router, Hugh Simons has started some new F2C fuselage prototyping seen here machined from foam using NACA sections. No finishing was done after coming off the machine. It took appoximately 10 mins to machine each side..
Grant writes: "We are now able to machine wooden wings to within 0.1mm accuracy. The first attempts shown here are done in two halves. Next attempts will be from one piece of wood by machining the first side, and then machining a negative bed for this to sit in while the second side of the wing is machined. The wings require no sanding after they come off the machine, ready to be glassed. It takes roughly 1hr to machine each side of the wing."
The CNC router project has been something of a team effort. Ray Harvey built the machine using Skateboard bearings, MDF wood, threaded rod, stepper motors and some extruded aluminium. Hugh has been doing the drawings and driving the machine. He is still playing around with the various software packages available for driving the machine. The wing and fuse were drawn in Solidworks, with CNC code generated by EdgeCAM.
The machine works extremly accurately. Ability to machine wooden wings to within 0.1mm accuracy all over is not something that even an expert modeller can expect to achieve using hand carving and sanding techniques.
Same view from further away.
Preparing to shape a wing. The flexible black tube shown crossing this picture applies the vacuum used to hold the work down whilst being shaped. Adding vacuum dust extraction is a refinement next on the agenda.
View rotated 90 degrees.
Machining a fuselage half.