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F-32AX Building Near Seattle

Rod Tharp is progressing well with his F-32AX at Olympia, just south of Seattle. Rod had previously built an F-9A which he has now successfully raced for many years, but now wants the extra room and load carrying capacity of the F-32AX for cruising.

Two floats have been completed so far, using vertical foam stripping which Rod agrees is much faster than the cedar fore and aft stripping of his F-9A. Foam is also much lighter, and combined with carbon fiber reinforcing as being used by Rod, this is going to be a super light boat.

Rod demonstrating the lightness of his new F-32 float (with a little help from Photoshop)

Rod is using a quick and easy way to heat the foam strips with heat
lamps, when required for bending the foam around tight corners.

Rod has also developed a unique method for the foam strip edge joins, as shown above.
Each strip is glued to the other when fitting with a slow setting hot glue on the center flat
surfaces, leaving a small slot on each side of the join. This gives an immediate strong bond,
and the slots are later filled with an epoxy putty just prior to fairing. Seems to work well.

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