The Paint Zone

The Paint Zone
Photo by Simon Kadula / Unsplash

After much wailing and gnashing of teeth I decided that I will need a paint booth in order to prime the interior parts of the aircraft. This is the subject of a lot of debate on whether it is needed or not but I decided that since I'm scratching up the aluminum enough anyway, it is probably better that I prime it to give it a better chance against corrosion when I'm done. It is true that it will take some more time but it is my airplane and I'll feel better having it than not.

The first steps had me hack-sawing some 1/2" PVC into the sizes I wanted until I had the base frame. The sections are each four feet wide. So the overall booth is 4'x8' on floor space. The entire booth is about six and a half feet tall.

A basic framed in area made of PVC

While I was building the frame, I made some orders to get some ventilation equipment, spray paint, and plastic drop cloths. I plan on routing the flexible duct through an insulated door piece into my garage so I don't freeze while using it.

Plastic drop cloth, rattle cans of primer, and a ducted vent motor

With that settled, Christmas happened and I was busy seeing family and being merry. After that I decided to add some places for filters on my paint booth so I can keep ventilation good while painting and prevent dust. I purchased a PVC cutting tool that made cutting it much easier, cleaner, and accurate.

PVC frame with labelled areas for intake and exhaust filters

Once I had the frame basically finished, I realized that taking it to pieces is going to get me pretty confused when I want to put it back together. So I got some PVC cement and decided to weld it into five parts instead of the 50 different parts.

PVC cement next to some PVC pipe

Since the PVC will never carry water, I wasn't worried about doing a particularly good job at this point. Honestly I could have just used silicone or some glue and I probably would have not hated this so much. But given enough stubbornness and time, eventually I had my sections done.

PVC frame sections welded together

I did a test fit earlier today and it all still fits together. My next steps are to clean up the aluminum for priming and then I will get to see how well my paint booth actually works. I will probably paint a test part first to save myself from a bad time.

A short update for now, but I hope to get back into the swing of things and get to riveting soon.

Picture of me wearing a respirator and ear protection