Chapter 18: Forward Canopy Deck


Step 15:  Cutting the Forward Deck, Fabricating the Deck Drip Rail



I did a number of things differently than plans.  I did Step 15 before Step 14.  It's far easier to fit the forward deck and install all the hinges with it cut off from the rest of the canopy.  I also made my forward deck to be 1.5 inches longer than plans.  The points above the longerons extend farther aft than the plans dimensions.


I dreaded the thought of using my sub-standard jig saw to make this cosmetically critical 45-degree cut.  So I used my own method.  I used a 3.5-inch gage block and marked the external cut line around the canopy glass.  I used my dremel tool and JUST BARELY cut through the top skin at this cut line.  I flipped the canopy upside down and used a 2.5-inch gage block to mark a cut line on the inside of the canopy.  I again used my dremel tool to JUST BARELY cut through the inside skin.  I then used a hand-held hacksaw blade to cut through the foam using the outside and inside cut lines as guides.  The 3.5-to-2.5 relationships of the cut lines results in a nice bevel. 


I followed the plans to make the drip rail.  I helps to first prep-sand the area forward of the cut line before attaching the 1/8th inch foam aft of the cut line.  That way you won't ding up the foam.