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Janus C is flying

After 14 months of work (okay, there was really about a 3 month period of no real work) the Janus passed it's inspection of condition, and was returned to service.  Refinishing the tops of the main wing panels was... quite a chore.  The gelcoat was stripped by chipping, not sanding.  This went amazaingly quickly.  I would estimate under 40 man-hours per wing. I had really expected to spend a lot more time than that getting the old gelcoat off. There was a large delay, waiting for the CNC cut profile templates.  During that waiting period, my brother and I bought a place at Sky Ranch.  A 1400 sf hangar, with a 1110 sf house.  Shortly after moving the project there, I got my templates and started really putting in the hours.  There was some repair work to some previous repair work near the root of the left wing, then I had to build up (with Super Fill) some parts fo the wing where the gelcoat had been particularly thick. There was quite a lot of work to do right around the spoilers.   After the profiling, I tackled filling the pinholes.  I used PCL Polyprimer, a brush, and a six inch wide bondo squeegee to squeegee the primer into the holes.  After three passes, knocking down the ridges left by the squeegee between each coat, the pinholes were gone.  Then I sprayed a heavy coat of Polyprimer on, let it cure, and knocked it down with 150 grit on a 48" x 2" wide sanding bar.  I used 3m Dry Guide to mark my progress and reveal the low spots.  Two more coats of Polyprimer later, and a final sanding with 220, I felt the wings were ready for the PPG Concept.  Wow!  That stuff is pricey!! Shooting the paint took about 4 hours for each wing.  The subsequent sanding and buffing took...... a lot more than that!

In all, it was worth it.  I'd do it again, but I'd probably be able to do it in about half the time.

Posted: 7/30/2012 By: James Wynhoff


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