So one of the drawbacks of building a composite airplane is how finicky the epoxy can be about it’s environment. MGS doesn’t like to cure in an environment outside of about 77 degrees F + or – 10 degrees, and it becomes a huge mess in a humid environment. Frustrated with not being able to make any progress after about mid October, I set about fixing the situation.
The first thing I did was buy a bunch of PVC pipe and fittings, and then frame an area of the hangar about 25 X 12, big enough to fit the work table and the cozy fuselage. I then proceeded to hang the same Prodex insulation I’d been using on the hangar from the PVC and the rafters on the inside of the frame. Once that was complete and I had added a door, I wrapped the outside of the structure in 4 mil poly, to create an air gap and increase the insulation value of the structure.
Once the structure was complete, I took the small exterior door off of the hangar, which opens into the workroom. I then cut two sheets of plywood to size, and bolted them together, sandwiching the door frame. I cut a 6″ diameter hole through each sheet of plywood, and ran a duct through the door out to a 90,000 BTU Kerosene heater, which I had rigged an inline thermostat to, much like the hot box for the epoxy.
On the inside of the door I put a fan to circulate the hot air better. I had contemplated running ductwork along the floor, but it would have created a tripping hazard and taken up valuable workspace.
I am pleased to report that it works quite well! I am continuing to improve the insulation of the room, as there are several leaks to seal, but it is raining and 45 degrees outside right now, and the shop is maintained at 70 degrees and 46% humidity. Can’t ask for much better working conditions than that!