Saturday, August 18, 2012

The dome is ALMOST DONE!

Been awhile since I have had some real updates, so I am going to provide a picture heavy post here to thrill you all! To start with, the aluminum Holoprojectors are truly a work of art.....had I known they were THIS nice, i'd have bought them a long time ago. To start with, everyone says you need to JB weld the screws for the HPs in place so that you can install them. However, after playing around with the HPs, I realized I could fit the outer dome over two of them, so I didn't need to JB weld those......then, upon further examination, I realized I can simply insert the screws into a blank hole, and then secure the outer dome. This way, i'll have the screws in place, and they'll be loose so that I can arrange them to fit the cowls for the HPs. Then, when I went to install the HP cowls, I simply placed a washer/nut combo on the screw, hand screwed it in most of the way, then took a pair of pliers, held the SCREW with them, and then used a wrench to turn the nut and make it nice and tight. It worked flawlessly and I guarantee you these beauties aren't going anywhere. Next on the list was bonding the domes. I had decided that I was going to use a lighter VHB tape to hold all of the panels that I had required to eventually open. My thought process was that the tape would be easy to remove. However, when I actually installed this tape, because of it's thickness, it caused these panels to barely stick up above the surface. Because I have no immediate plans of making the panels open (because there are other priorities to finish with R2), I decided to go an alternative route. A call to my friend Victor yielded some great advice.....he suggested I use clear Silicon II from GE. I went and bought two tubes of this stuff (although only one was needed). I started with the blue ring along the bottom....I made sure it was nice and level, and then secured it with many clamps. Once it was dry, I did the outer dome. This was one of the most rewarding moments of the whole build, finally, two domes, became one. At this point, I slowly started to install the panels. It's not perfect, but it's very good for my first dome. I am going to present to you a lot of photos of the'll see that some panels are not yet installed, and you'll also see that some panels are still taped in and have not yet been converted to the silicon. As I type this, 3 more panels are drying!
All that's left to do this point is obtain my aluminum radar eye and this dome will be 100% complete~!

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