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Completing the Aft Section.
The last few weeks have been taken up by trying to complete the fore and aft sections so that I can complete the first part of the build and have a completed hull. At the end of the last update, I mentioned that I had broken the dive planes in half. I checked the rigidity of the remaining stub and decided it had enough strength to stay. I prepared a 15mm length of 5mm brass tube which nicely fitted over the remaining lugs. I glued a piece of 4mm diameter aluminium rod inside so that I could drill a small hole in the middle to hold the control arm. I then glued the whole assembly together and had a nice strong dive plane again. I then filed out the bearing surfaces in the main sections to accommodate the larger shafts.
I finished of the whole assembly with control arms and proceeded to fit the prop shafts and the rear bearing assemblies. This took a fair bit of fiddling and reshaping of the angled hole through the hull but finally, after a few hours, I was happy with the results. I held the assemblies in place with elastic bands and then, when happy, used Stabilit Express glue to fix and fill. I make sure that I am fairly generous with the glue so that when I tidy it up, there are no holes left behind. I glued around the prop shaft assemblies on the inside as well and got a little bit of glue on the dive plane control arm. Whilst wiping this off, Disaster number 2. The control rod came out of its hole in the dive plane. This hole is 2mm diameter but 8” down inside of the aft section. Time for ebay. I found a pair of 11” long nosed pliers for £4.50. I bought immediately.
Today I decided to finish of the prop shafts by removing the excess glue. To do this I used small full round files, 240 grit wet and dry for roughing and 600 grit for finishing. This took a couple of hours but I am pleased with the results.
Now for the repair. I used the extra long nosed pliers and tried to find the hole whilst looking up the torpedo tube. Very difficult. I then noticed that if I shined a bright
into the section and looked at the side, the light showed right through the side wall of the model and the control arm pin could be seen as a shadow. With this, I managed to push the rod back into place. Phew!! I will have to think of a way I can get a little fluid super glue onto the rod without gluing the dive plane rigid.
My attention has now moved to the bow section. I have decided not to add retractable bow planes as this requires a lot of work for very little gain. I have, however, decided to fix the lift mechanisms in such a way that I can add retractable units at a later date. I hope for the next update I can complete this section and complete the hull section ready for splitting.
The WTC is still under construction but I am getting help from Doug (Mr Fleet Admiral SIR) for the electronics to get it to do what I want it to do. The next ballast unit test might also feature in the next update.
Thanks for reading.