PROJECTS: MODEL AIRPLANE
Time: 3 Weeks of Evenings Complexity: Moderate
1. CUT THE SHEET PARTS
This is the tedious part. Do not attempt it while feeling impatient or agitated.
1a. If you’re building from plain wood rather than the kit, download and print the plans from makezine.com
/17/model_airplane. Trace the patterns onto the sheet using carbon paper, making sure the wood’s grain
runs in the piece’s dominant direction. Mark some pieces multiple times, following the plan. I offer the kit
because patterns can be frustrating to a beginning builder.
1b. Cut out each piece using the knife. Cut them slightly oversize, particularly on mating portions, so
you can sand them down to a firm fit later. Don’t cut through the piece all at once; allow about 9 passes
( 3 per 5" of thickness). Where parts are mirrored right and left, cut one and then flip it over to use as
a pattern for the other. Old magazines are good for cutting on top of.
1c. After cutting out each part, number it with a pen. Then trim the parts down and refine their shapes
using sandpaper. Save leftover wood.
2. BUILD THE TAIL
2a. Start with the tail, which is the
simplest part. Follow the general
building advice on page 110 to trim,
fit, glue, and pin down all the pieces.
The wax paper will ensure easy
removal. Spray with warm water
to relax the wood.
2b. Let the tail assembly dry overnight and remove it from the plan.
TIP: Add 25% rubbing alcohol to the
water to relax the wood even more.
112 Make: Volume 17