Tuesday, December 16, 2014

Fillets! Tips, Part 1

At a club launch I was asked how I got fillets that were thick and smooth.
Like everybody else, we all used white glue fillets, that's what the instructions told us to do.
White glue shrinks and bubbles will form, especially in deep fillet areas around the launch lug.

I glue the fins in place and apply the first fillets with white glue.
After those dry another fillet is applied using Titebond Molding and Trim Glue. I always refer to it on the blog as T M&TG.

The fillet at the bottom is a smoothed Titebond M&TG fillet.
The top fillet is the T M&TG right out of the bottle, not smoothed yet.
TIP: The Titebond nozzle top spreads a glue bead that is too wide. Replace the Titebond nozzle with a orange top from a bottle of Elmer's glue. You do have to squeeze harder to get the thicker T M&TG out of the orange Elmer's nozzle.
You won't need any more glue than what is shown here. Too much glue makes a wider fillet pool when spread with a finger.
Start smoothing the fillet from the center to the ends.

Don't wait too long before smoothing out the just laid down glue. The T M&TG skins over pretty quick.
Instead of smoothing the entire fillet from top to bottom -
Start at the middle and go to the top. Go around the front of the rounded fin tip leading edge.
Wipe off your finger and smooth again.

Then go from the center to the rear of the fin.
Why two steps?
If you were to smooth the entire length of the fin root you end up with a good sized bead or pool of glue at the bottom.
Doing it in halves keeps a smaller amount of glue under your finger at the end of it's "half travel" down the fin root.
Continued on next blog post . . .

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