Get your long sleeve shirt and respirator out, it’s about to get itchy and dusty. In Let me be your wing man part 2, I pulled the carbon fiber wing out of the vacuum bag. Now it’s time to trim the wing and sand it down. You’re going to need a Dremel type cutting tool and a DA sander with 320 and 180 grit sand paper.
Let’s jump right into it.
I started off by rough trimming the wing.
Next, I cleaned up the edges with a DA sander.
Once I cut both sides of the wing, I ran a tape line down the back side of it. It’s critical that this is straight, and that you do not cut into the foam core. This is why, as I mentioned in part 2, I suggest building a “mini” wing to work out all of the kinks.
Next I brought out my DA sander with 180 grit sand paper.
The next step was block sanding the wing to make sure it was straight as an arrow. Then I followed up with 320 grit sandpaper.
To expose the mounting points, I simply sanded over them until they were visible.
After I exposed the mounting holes, I needed to fabricate some aluminum mounting plates. It’s critical that they are aligned perfectly to your specs. A misaligned wing will look odd, and (most importantly) will not function as well as it should.
Once I had the base plates sorted, I cut out my mounts. I made sure to give myself a ton of adjustability. And if you were wondering, yes, those are hand made.
Next I tacked them together with my tig welder to double check alignment and fitment.
If you don’t have the equipment or skill, you can still get a good finish with spray paint clear coat. It’s a good idea to top coat the wing since Epoxy resin will most likely “blush” or yellow over time. Automotive clear coat is a good option because it has UV protection properties. I brought out my trusty Sata Jet spray gun and laid down some clear.
Before I clear coated the wing, I needed to come up with a clever way to “hold” it. During that process, I also made it so I could flip the wing upside down. I didn’t do anything too fancy, but adding that ability made it really easy to spray the wing.
After a mist coat, a medium coat, and 2 full coats, and drying overnight, the wing element came out great!
Not bad for homemade.
So you’re probably thinking this is it, but I still have two more tasks before I can check the wing off the ol’ to-do list. I need to build carbon end plates and fabricate the brackets to mount the wing to the chassis. I’ll cover those projects in part 4. Hopefully this gives you guys the courage to build your own wing. Until next time, thanks for the read.