The weather here at the Tinker's Workshop finally cooled down enough today to get some work done on the TerraTrike Velomobile project in the garage. The work that I completed today does not look like I accomplished much but it is a good step toward on the project. I double checked all of the ribs and stringers and hot glued them all together. This being only a temporary solution to hold everything together until I am ready to fiber glass all of the joints for a more permanent assembly of the parts.
With the simple step of hot gluing all of the parts together the structure already is started to be much more solid as a light weight assembly.
I only had a couple of joints that needed tender loving care to persuade into position but all looks good at this point.
With the addition of the upper lip of the front wheel cavities the structure is already looking much more complete.
In this shot you can see the protruding edge of one of the horizontal stringers before I trimmed it down to the correct shape using a hot wire tool. This over sized stringer like all the other stringers in the assembly was purposely made this way so that all the individual parts that would end up between each rib could be aligned correctly in the assembly.
The stringers were fiber glassed and left to cure overnight. Then the excess fiber glass was trimmed and removed from each stringer. This left a bare foam section that was removed on the final assembly that I did today. The hot wire tool then was able to cut the excess Styrofoam away and not remove the remaining fiber glassed foam that was left behind between the ribs. A nice clean effective way to get the structure the way I wanted it.
I also cut over 100 of the 1/4 inch eight foot long Styrofoam strips that I will use to skin the velomobile once I have all of the joints fiber glassed together and some miscellaneous parts added to the assembly. To make the foam strips I first cut up a 4 x 8 foot panel of Styrofoam into pieces 9 - 10 inches wide by eight feet long. Then set up the band saw so that I could pass these smaller panels through to cut the 1/4 inch strips. Much easier to work with the smaller panels than trying to cut a 4 x 8 foot panel into strips by itself. Just to awkward to handle the large panel alone.
Hopefully tomorrow I will get the velomobile framework joints puttied and glassed so that the inner panels for the mounts can be added next. These are nothing more than small glassed Styrofoam panels that are fitted between two of the front and rear ribs so the body can be mounted to the TerraTrike itself. Again this will make more sense once I get that far with the assembly to show you more detail in the process. After that is completed then the foam strips can be added to the assembly to skin the framework like a cedar strip canoe. Hope you are having a good holiday weekend. Mine is already shaping up nicely.