Wings...the final frontier

Wetting-out the multi-layer carbon fiber wing skins.

HOT! Very HOT! (And NO, the shirt and the towels on my head are not an attempt at a fassion statement) I think it was about 98 degrees when we did the spar cap and skin lay-ups. That was mistake in retrospect - the super slow epoxy still gelled sooner than I wanted it to. The result - it was harder to wet-out the carbon cloth resulting in excess resin being used on the wings (vacuum bag and heat tent to the rescue!).

The MANY layers of carbon spar cap tape were wet-out in the depression and taper from inboard to outboard and are bonded directly to the shear web. The wing foam was also slurryed with a wet mix of Micro and Epoxy. Spar cap and wing foam slurry picture Sorry, I don't have any pictures of actually skinning the wing with the big sheets of carbon cloth - all 5 pairs of hands were busy aligning and pulling the 4' X 12' cloth! In all, the entire spar and wing skin operation took about 11 straight hours (from cutting spar tape to zipped in the vac. bag). If that seems like alot of work, IT IS. Like I said, this is the largest and longest layups that ever has to be done. A word to the wise: PICK A COOLER DAY and invite lots of friends!

A common thread between all canard/composite builders is their pride in their you all know why. Here is something to look for: Next time you see a good looking Long-EZ or other canard type, sight down the wing, canard, or winglet's trailing edge and look for deviations or waves. About 75% or more of them will have waves. The techniques used for the Berkut eliminate the possibility of a deformed trailing-edge guaranteeing proper control surface responses.

But we are not finished yet - after bagging and curing, next comes the fun part...not!

NOTE: The jigs being used here are the very same jigs used twice before on wing. They are well documented in the plans and the same jigs are used on both wings. There is not much time spent on building jigs, but at least the ones you DO build are used at least 6 times before the wings are complete.

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