I finally made some new progress on the SA-1 model. I glued the top section of the first stage in place. I then also glued the second and third stages plus the nose cone together. The first stage needs more clean up and filling. I started where the tanks meet the boat tail. I thought about using my Dremel to get rid of some of the junk in between the tanks on the first stage, but it is such a confined area that I’m afraid that I’ll mess up the tanks on either side. I think I’ll be adding filler between the tanks to cover up the lumps an bumps there. The dummy upper stage assembly also requires some filling and sanding.
While waiting for some filler to dry I started scribing the panel lines into the base of the boat tail. I also drilled some holes to insert locator pins for the engine bells to be added later. Next I drilled a hole in the base of each engine bell. I also glued some 3/64 inch styrene rod into each of the locator holes in the boat tail.
The outboard engine fairings that come in the kit are too small and do not fit well on the boat tail. I instead used some 0.010 inch sheet styrene to make some replacements. I glued them on with Plasti-Zap CA glue. Since each curve on the boat tail is a bit different on this kit I numbered the edges of each fairing so I could get them in the right place. Plus I continue to add filler to the tanks on the first stage.
I also started making the inboard engine turbopump exhaust ports. I’m not that great at bending styrene rod, so when I can, I adapt other parts. I had some piping left from a Walthers Piping kit that I used on a steampunk rocket a while back. I pulled out the runners to see if there were some parts there that I could use as a turbopump exhaust. Sure enough I found some. I only had four pieces that I could use, so I had to make sure not to mess them up. After cutting them from the runner I carefully trimmed off the ends that I didn’t need. I then drilled out the ends that will be seen so they look more like pipes instead of rods.
That’s it for now. I have to make some brackets for the turbopump exhausts before they can be attached. I also have some more detail items that need to go on the first stage tanks, but first I have to finish the filling and sanding.
More to come.