Dakota Hawk build - or 'the man who knew too little'

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dxlusby84

Member
Joined
Jun 1, 2012
Messages
13
Location
Lynnwood, WA, USA
Greetings HBA!

I just ordered my fuselage and wing kits for a Dakota Hawk from FFP and am looking forward to the build (and documenting it here!). I'm starting extremely green - no tools and no woodworking skill - it's an intimidating prospect! Most significant thing I've built from wood was four pieces of 2x4 screwed together with a mesh base to make a soil sifter for the garden - definitely not precision work ;).

While the kit is collected and shipped, I want to get started building the table. According to stories and other build logs, 4'x16' is needed. I was looking at the EAA workbench plans (http://www.communitygroundworks.org/sites/default/files/workbench_plans_SA1.pdf) and they're 2'x5' apiece. That's 6 tables (yikes!). Are there better ideas for such sizable work surfaces that folks have used for other projects?

Hope to start documenting the workshop build this or next weekend - really excited, but after this workbench I won't have a clue where to start! Any and all advice welcome - it's going to be a long haul that I hope to share with everybody!

-Devin
 

dxlusby84

Member
Joined
Jun 1, 2012
Messages
13
Location
Lynnwood, WA, USA
Hello again,everyone!

Cleaned out the'workshop' (garage) last weekend to give me the room I'll need, and made an unfortunate discovery - I have only a single usable outlet in the whole bloody garage! With that in mind, and because of a power outage over the weekend, I couldn't really start until the week. But off to home depot I went and picked up a cordless circular saw, set of dewalt quick grip clamps,some gorilla glue, combination square and speed square (I'm really loving the speed square). Initial tool investment was more than it probably had to be due to the cordless saw, battery and charger, but almost all of it has already been very useful.

Also picked up the materials for the workbench - and let me say that 4x8 anything is a pain in the backside to get home by yourself - I thought for sure the windstorms we were having were going to introduce me to flight as I hefted that sheet of plywood into the rental truck's bed! The 3/4 MDF was particularly heavy - going to have to find a better way next time. I hadn't the faintest clue how to pick good sheets or 2x4s, but tried to stay away from anything that had big chunks or gouges in it, or which appeared to be less-than-straight along its edge or face.

As of this post,I've completed (I think) the cut list except for the sheet cuts, and havelearned the hard way that marking and cutting is harder than it looks. Many of my boards are an 1/8th or 1/16th off in length and quite consistently my saw would drop on the trailing edge of the cut and put theslightest of bevels on one corner of the end. Should I worry about this? Should I go buy a few more 2x4s and re-cut to get a more consistent set? As I got better and researched my problems on the web, I got much better pretty quick - mark the wood with a 'V' mark, use the speed square to draw the crosscut line, re-measure to confirm whether to cut on the line or leave it,etc. etc.. I'm getting the idea that a circular saw is not the right toolfor consistent, accurate cuts, even though it is possible to achieve accuracy with a steady, strong hand and good technique.

Included some pictures of my garage and my progress so far for you to enjoy - will be grabbing some >24" clamps before I start assembling the tabletop frame over the weekend!

IMG_20150830_131531401.jpgIMG_20150831_082129320.jpgIMG_20150903_164104171.jpgIMG_20150903_164112039.jpgIMG_20150903_164129079.jpg
 

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