T&F Fabrication Practice Jig

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Little Scrapper

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Wanna experiment with something? On that .035” tube cluster try turning your amps down to 45 and slow down a little. You may benefit from going a bit slower. I blew up you images and there’s sign of cold spots on those edges (lack of fusion).
Please don’t let that comment scare you, this is part of learning. I’m starting to wonder if your style of welding at the moment would lend itself to going a little slower which of course means you need to dial down the amps a bit.

I’m serious when I say it looks good, just trying to fine tune this a bit.

Often times when the person welding feels they are gonna burn through they develop a temporary anxiety of sorts so they hurry up and go too fast to prevent it. That’s not the solution.

Of course this conversation is all dependent on your foot control. If you can hold that little sweet spot we talked about you know pretty quick what your amp setting should be.

You machine is different than mine and your style is different than mine. One simple way to do this is hold a weld puddle for 15 seconds and just ply with your foot. Cause there’s no hurry here man, you have all the time in the world. It can be a real soothing affair to just make a weld puddle and see if you can stay still and hold that puddle. It’s a heck of a confidence booster and will knock out that anxious feeling that’s so often felt when learning to weld.
 

wwalton

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Yeah that sounds like something to try out. I definitely get that middle of the tight rope feeling and just leap for the other side. I will turn it down and slow it down.
I was just working on the practice jig, building a jig for the jig. Where does it end? LOL20200601_123948.jpg20200601_130338.jpg20200601_130927.jpg20200601_130946.jpg
 

wwalton

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That one spot weld may look easy but it took me about 45 mins to set it up and then get into that slot between the C clamp and the fitting. Great skills building...I think.
 

wwalton

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20200601_144930.jpg20200601_144946.jpg

Well everything is tacked. So I started on the tubes and used 45 amps. So far I like it a lot better. Plenty of juice to make a puddle with around 50% pedal. Not quite as falling off the cliff feeling. I'll take pics of my tubes when I get more than 5 beads done.
 

Little Scrapper

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Looks good. Remember the cooling / heat sink effect?

keep those tacks as tiny as possible because when you roll over them they immediately cool your puddle which means you’ll pause and stomp on the pedal, which means you’ll overheat, which means you’ll burn through, so you add more filler which will cool the puddle so you’ll stomp on the heat which means .........

Ok, maybe not that bad. Haha.
Small tacks are easily absorbed and don’t disrupt your action.

Looks great though! I’m having fun watching this! You’re improving rapidly!
 
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wwalton

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Thanks again Scrapper, yes I had to "floor" it on those tack so it does disrupt things. Not that my flow is that great yet anyways. I ran out of Argon but I did get that tube joint done.
20200601_154937.jpg20200601_154927.jpg
I like the lower amps it gives me more time to think. Looking at it afterwards it seems a bit thin on filler? Should I slow down and add more? or something else going on there? I know it's only one example.
 

Little Scrapper

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Besides just lack of experience which takes care of itself you’re having position issues. That’s it. Shore up your position and make the agreement short, then reposition.

I still say you’re doing great, above average work so far. Be proud of that.

Here’s one I whipped up before heading out for calls. Success starts with tiny tacks that don’t pull heat out. What’s my next thought? What is consuming my head right now? Position!!!! It’s what allows me success. It’s the gateway to low anxiety.
Tack one up and let’s do this together. One focus, one mission, tiny tacks.
E0195796-785E-44F8-946E-6E6747CAAAAC.jpeg
 

wwalton

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I really appreciate that. Yes I can see why it's all about position now. I'll work on tiny tacks. Have to get argon but I'll be back at it again in a few hours. I have the start of another jig fitting so I'll get it ready.

Thanks for the encouragement. I have to remind myself it isn't a race and I have as long as I need. Still want results fast. But I'm having a blast with it all.
 

Little Scrapper

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Dude you’re killin it! Very impressive!

Instead of looking at 47 look at 12. Get to 12. Then start in on the fuselage. Like I said in the video by the time 12 hits you’ll be so darn ready you’ll just instinctively know it.

How about this? In between practice sessions open up the Skybolt plans and make parts. Find the easiest part you can. Get busy making them. Start with a simple flat part.

This was the first part I made for the Baby Ace. By the way, you’re officially a home builder. Congrats!
9C1D49D2-B6DD-40E1-8A77-C80B7FEF599A.jpeg06C02E0F-D715-4E4D-91ED-5A233F8C01C8.jpeg
 

wwalton

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Haha Thanks man, I don't know about killin it but I'm still going and having fun.

Just tacked the second one with smaller tacks. Your right just 12 or 11 more then fuselage layout and tacks. Wow that just got real.

That's another great idea I'll find some simple parts to make now. Seems like Steen didn't do a lot of flat parts but there has to be some. Actually turtle deck and stringer lugs are very similar...

And thanks again I like the sound of being a homebuilder. Don't think I would have tried this without your help Little Scrapper just too daunting. Baby steps seems to be working.
 

BJC

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I think that TFF recommended the biplane forum. If he did, I second that recommendation. If he did not, I first it.


BJC
 

wwalton

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Oh Yeah I should have mentioned it. I subscribed to the biplane forum and I've been lurking there reading all about the Skybolt and others. Seems like a great group of people obviously some of the same people. Thanks
 

BJC

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I don’t go there any more, but there is lots of good stuff there.

The premier expert on the Pitts (the Skybolt is a Pitts knock-off) is a friend and neighbor. If you get stuck on some detail, let me know, and I’ll ask him.


BJC
 

wwalton

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Wow awesome thank you. I'm sure it's just a matter of time and I'll be stuck.

I'm actually still pretty conflicted on the 3 piece or one piece top wing. So lots to read and plenty of time before that decision but I would love to hear arguments for each. I have been searching for that and it seems there isn't many Skybolts built yet with the 3 piece upper wing.

Thanks BJC
 
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