"Putting on the Game Face"
|I have not been a good blogger here of late. As a matter of fact it is fair to say that I have been a "lousy" blogger. Part of the reason is that Linda and I went to South Carolina (Myrtle Beach) and celebrated with family our 50th Wedding anniversary. It was a blast. The other part is that I've been to busy to bother. I find this worrisome not because I feel I'm letting down my readers but rather because when I write about something it gives structure to my imagination and thoughts tend to become a whole lot clearer... In my mind anyway.
As my readers must be aware I'm a Radio Control Model Airplane Enthusiast. What I'm enthused with at the present time is making camera models. I use a construction technique I call Dowel on Donut for the fuselage and Dowel on Rib for the wings. What this entails is inserting dowels through a bulkhead form in making a fuselage and doing the same thing with the ribs when making a wing. This allows me an opportunity to see very quickly what the end product is going to look like rather than finding out well into a project that I don't like where things are heading.
If something doesn't look right to me then even though it might meet a broad range of utility criteria, I slam on the breaks and go no further. A good example is period automobiles. To me there has to be something about the design of an old car or truck that catches my eye. Yes, it needs to run well and be maintainable but to begin with something about the appearance needs to jump right out and capture my interest. In clothes I appreciate a well fitting garment of material appropriate to the climate and conditions but when shopping for a winter coat I'm not wondering if it is going to keep me warm. That will be a follow on consideration but there are plenty of coats that keep a body warm but not all coats look elegant and stylish.
So, when I'm thinking about a new airplane project it has to be something with a good look, with balance, symmetry and good lines. I spent a lot of time on line looking at pictures of model airplanes, hoping that something will perk my interest or ignite my passion. We are fortunate in this day and age to have the Internet and U-tube. It is amazing how much you can learn from a little on line research.
Many of the things I see that perk my interest don't have plans, or kits. So I rely on my remedial drafting skills to make the plans for what I want to build. Hence, my construction technique that gets me quickly to a mock-up of fuselage and wing . Now here is an important thought. There is a synergism between a wing and fuselage. One can have a good fuselage design and without the right wing it just doesn't pop! So I start with an overall idea and build the fuselage mock-up. Then I try different wings until one laying around the shop comes comes close to making the right statement. Then I take the lines off the shop wing and use it as a starting point for the one I want for my airplane. Once they are both mocked up and fitted together I begin looking for the right horizontal and vertical stabilizers to complete the basic shape.
For example suppose that Batman wanted an airplane. You can imagine the look he'd be trying to achieve. That is sort of how it is with me. I want a camera plane that is more than something conventional that can be suitably adapted to the task. I want something that looks "Cool." Most of the designs I see out there simply make me want to yawn.