Refit USS ATLANTIS build

Discussion in 'Mid Power Rocketry (MPR)' started by JJSR, Jan 1, 2020.

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  1. Jan 1, 2020 #1

    JJSR

    JJSR

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    Though I've already started this kit. I thought I'd share the build. It's a COOL looking rocket for sure, let's see if I can build it to fly. I'm some what apprehensive about working with the vac-form parts.
    20200101_130147.jpg
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    Here's where I'm at with the kit so far,
    I have the motor mount and shock cord glued in. Pylon slots cut, side decks panels on, antenna dowel glued.
    20200101_132219.jpg
    I'm gluing the Side decks on now. I like to drill into parts like these thinking it helps to hold them on.
    20200101_133718.jpg
     
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  2. Jan 1, 2020 #2

    neil_w

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    Hey Joe, nice to have you back! How's everything going? Rad Rocks launches not the same without you there...

    Always have loved the Atlantis design. Looking forward to this.
     
  3. Jan 1, 2020 #3

    mbeels

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    Looks like a fun to build kit as well!
     
  4. Jan 3, 2020 #4

    JJSR

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    Hey, hi Neil, it's going good. We're pretty much settled in.
    Work is work :(
    Just better views here lol
    20190830_053926.jpg
     
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  5. Jan 3, 2020 #5

    JJSR

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    Last nights work, glued the side decks onto the side deck panels. I kept these back a hair, thinking to sand them to a angle/point later.
    Also the belly fin dowel, I wrapped some fine sandpaper around the dowel and sanded a slight grove in the top of the belly fin giving it a little more glue area.

    20200101_141705.jpg
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    20200101_141024.jpg

    I'm only going to get this antenna on tonight. (tip of pencil)
    20200102_203820.jpg
     
    Last edited: Jan 3, 2020
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  6. Jan 11, 2020 #6

    dpower

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    Haven't seen a thread about this kit in a long time - it's a great looking rocket, Sirius Kits are really high quality. Dave @ Sirius is really good about answering emails if you have any questions about the kit.
     
  7. Jan 15, 2020 #7

    JJSR

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    Ok found time to take another bite out of this kit. I'm not liking the antenna, seems like it could use something else.
    20200114_231652.jpg
    20200114_231606.jpg

    On to the pylons, again I made some holes in the root edge for the glue.
    I found if I hang the aft end off the table with a piece of balsa (from the scrap) under the antenna. It seems to hold the pylon in the vertical position we want.
    20200114_233914.jpg
    20200115_004331.jpg
     
  8. Jan 15, 2020 #8

    BBowmaster

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    Watching this carefully. I recently finished my morerockets.com version of the original Atlantis. I’ve been looking at the Sirius refit version for years but I’ve been afraid of the vac-formed parts (never had success with those when I was a teen in the 70s).
     
  9. Jan 15, 2020 #9

    Jim Hinton

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    Hi Folks;
    I recently built this kit. I am intrigued to see if Joe has the same issues with the 'engines' that I did. I was able to assemble it, but I had to use some serious persuasion on the vacuform engine parts.

    Jim
     
  10. Jan 15, 2020 #10

    JJSR

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    To be honest, I'm dreading the vacuform parts also.
     
  11. Jan 15, 2020 #11

    Jim Hinton

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    Hi Joe;

    I've built a few of the other Sirius kits, most of their vacuform parts are no big deal. They are pretty well molded and generally fit without a lot of persuasion. The engines on the Atlantis are formed around two pieces of BT-5 tube. Great idea from the standpoint of strength. I found the vacuform shells to be a little too small to cover the BT-5 tubes. That left a fairly obnoxious gap at the seam. I resolved the issue by gluing in thin strip styrene (.010 x .25 as I recall) to close the gap. I dressed the edges with Tamiya's model putty. A couple of applications and sanding and it came out fine. I hope your kit fits better than mine did, but if not, the issue can certainly be resolved. I have flown the rocket twice, It flew pretty well on an E 30-4. It wants to 'corkscrew' on ascent. It weathercocked pretty badly on an E 15 -4. I added no nose weight, it doesn't seem to need it.

    Jim
     
  12. Jan 16, 2020 #12

    JJSR

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    Some progress has been made today.
    I got the main side decks on, found that I missed fillets on the engine pylons. It's a really tight squeeze between pylons and the main side decks. I think I can get some epoxy in there using the corner of a baggie like piping a cake.

    20200115_185451.jpg
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    Conduit dowels went nicely, I sanded a slight flat side to them for gluing. Rounded the ends over for a better look to them.
    20200116_091628.jpg
    Now time for the top deck and bridge.
    I have a question, what glue would work better on the bridge??
    20200116_175200.jpg
    20200116_181924.jpg
     
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  13. Jan 17, 2020 #13

    Jim Hinton

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    Hi Joe;

    All of those glues will work. I would lean towards the 'tacky' type white glue on the right. That produces a flexible bond, unlikely to fail in that application. Q-tips and 'cottontail' swabs can be real handy for fillets in tight areas. It looks like you are progressing very nicely. It's already looking good. Have fun!

    Jim
     
  14. Jan 25, 2020 #14

    JJSR

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    20200125_105110.jpg Hey guys, here's an update
    Did all the filets on the
    pylons, main side decks, conduits, belly fin.
    This morning I glued on the top deck
    View attachment 404533
    20200125_104208.jpg
    20200116_181350.jpg
     
  15. Jan 26, 2020 #15

    JJSR

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    As I'm reading up on the next few steps, I find there's no instructions on cutting or gluing the vacform parts.
    Also seems the vacform parts are mis- molded
    20200125_204744.jpg 20200125_203959.jpg

    I think I'll clean up these curled edges.
    Then glue the halves together leaving the edges untrimmed. Keeping the longer tabs I hope will allow me to get a better glue joint.
    20200125_205032.jpg
    20200125_205632.jpg
     
  16. Jan 26, 2020 #16

    neil_w

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    Looking good Joe. That’s quite a model...
     
  17. Jan 26, 2020 #17

    JJSR

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    I think with a couple of clamps, 4 pieces of wood I can slather some plastic weld on there and just trim it up after. No doubt there will be sanding lots of sanding,,,,
     
  18. Jan 26, 2020 #18

    JJSR

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    Here are a few pictures of what she looks like so far

    Aft
    20200125_233415.jpg
    Top
    20200125_234917.jpg
    Bottom
    20200125_234632.jpg
     
  19. Jan 26, 2020 #19

    Jim Hinton

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    Hi Joe;

    The molding on the engine shells is problematic. Leave an excess of plastic until shells are bonded together. The fit at the seam is still pretty tough. Be ready to lay in some strip plastic over the seam.

    Jim
     
  20. Jan 27, 2020 #20

    JJSR

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    Thanks for the heads up Jim.

    Originally I was going to use a couple piece's of wood. (sandwich stile) but I found these paper clamps that go right up to the edge where the halves meet.
    Seemed to be the better option.
    We'll see how well it'll work out. I do half at a time long ways, then mess with the short ends.

    20200126_032715.jpg

    20200126_102236.jpg

    20200126_110101.jpg
     
  21. Jan 27, 2020 #21

    BBowmaster

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    Goodness that’s a lot of clamps. Now I’m seriously scared of this kit.
     
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  22. Jan 27, 2020 #22

    JJSR

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    It's not so bad, you could probably get away with two paint sticks and 2 clamps.
     
  23. Jan 27, 2020 #23

    Jim Hinton

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    Hi Joe;

    I clamped mine in a similar method. The clamps and paint stick method that you had mentioned. They tend to come out quite strong, the seam jerked me around, but that can be solved as well.

    Jim
     
  24. Jan 28, 2020 #24

    JJSR

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    Okay, lesson learned,,,,,,,,
    Don't spill the plastic weld on your cutting mat.


    20200128_054406.jpg
     
  25. Jan 28, 2020 #25

    JJSR

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    So far, NOT so good,,
    Well, really, it turned out a little better than I thought! Once I removed the clamps, I was expecting the glue to have missed some spots.
    But to my surprize, not very much of it didn't adhere.

    20200128_054350.jpg

    Above is fresh out of the clamps, below is after I used scissors to cut off about 1/4 inch of the mold and sanded. (I have a few other pictures that I can't load cause of file size)

    20200128_074824.jpg 20200128_074929.jpg

    Lower engine sanded
    20200128_074643.jpg
     
  26. Jan 28, 2020 #26

    neil_w

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    Looks good from here.

    I have to say, the rest of the build, all that woodwork, looks like fun. These engine pods... well maybe "fun" isn't the right word. :eek:
     
  27. Jan 28, 2020 #27

    Jim Hinton

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    Hi Joe;

    That's looking really good. Time to start sanding. If you get tempted to break out power tools, stop and take a break. I know of no good way to speed this process up. It looks like a real clean bond. Proceed patiently.

    Jim
     
  28. Jan 28, 2020 #28

    JJSR

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    I don't think I'll sand any more off, there just isn't any more "meat on that bone". I don't want to sand through and have to repair it. it's not molded at a 90* angle it has a radius to it, so getting the halves glued close enough together as not to have a lip is impossible...
    20200128_102238.jpg
    20200128_074442.jpg

    so these detail rails are not going on her

    20200128_100655.jpg

    I wouldn't know how to get it smooth enough ?????

    20200128_100655A.jpg
     
  29. Jan 28, 2020 #29

    Jim Hinton

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    Hi Joe;

    This is definitely a matter of 'builder's choice'. Sure, you can get all of the lip sanded off, and due to the nature of the part and the molding, there will be voids left. I took mine down all the way to a smooth flow between the parts and the seam line. I had many voids to cover and fill as a result. I mounted the detail rails, and they actually look like they belong once the model is painted and finished. From what I have seen, they will have no effect on flight. I thought that mine might have a stability issue, but these models seem to be a long way from tail heavy. Mine needs a pretty high average thrust to avoid weather cocking.

    Jim
     
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  30. Jan 29, 2020 #30

    JJSR

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    Jim it'd be great to see a picture or 2 of your refit engine pods. The more I look at it the more I'm considering flattening out
    (running a band around) the pods.
     

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