11.3.2 Counterweight Fairings

These fairings are installed in front of the openings for the elevator counterweights to prevent ice buildup on the counterweights, at least according to the manual. I guess that makes some sense, although I seriously don’t plan on flying through ice with this airplane! They also add some aerodynamics to this section of the canard and just generally make things look better. (Remember, what you are looking at here is the bottom of the canard.)

The manual recommends that these just be siliconed to the bottom of the canard after painting! Honestly, that makes no sense. I don’t see any reason why these would ever need to be removed, plus, just sticking them on like that not only would be ugly but I’d be afraid that they’d end up blowing off. So, I’m epoxying them down. The screws are being used to temporarily hold them in place while the epoxy cures. I’ll do some sanding to smooth the edges, then fill the holes and apply one layer of fiberglass around the edges to lock it all in place. Of course, I’ll also need to do a bit more finish work to blend the fairings in.

IMG 2388

Photo showing the counterweight fairing being held down while the epoxy cures.

After removing the temporary screws I filled in the holes and smoothed out the gaps with Micro, then covered everything with one layer of BID. I also used some peel ply to soak up the extra epoxy and to help smooth out the layups. 

IMG 2389

Layups used to hold the counterweight fairing in place.

After the layups cured I applied more Velocipoxy + Micro to blend in and smooth out the transition. The finish has yet to be sanded in the photo below.Once sanded I’ll be ready to apply primer to the canard. In fact, I’m working on that right now

IMG 2392

With the fairings locked in place it's time to smooth out the junction between them and the canard.

Unfortunately, there’s no overall section of the manual that discusses final finishing work, so let’s jump back to Section 3.4.3 where I’m showing the process for prepping the canard and elevators for priming.

ui© John Trautschold 2018