We’ve now received the drawings for the plane’s test rig (the whiffletree!) and are gathering the materials we need and making parts for the rig.
All parts will be made at the AMRC and some have been designed in-house too. The clevis; which fastens the plane to the strong floor (a large robust floor used in structural testing); has been designed in-house by Steve Partoon – our project set designer. The part has also been machined in-house by AMRC apprentices.
The clevis will form part of the whiffletree – a commonly used testing mechanism. See our first blog post to learn more about whiffletrees. In this instance we will use several whiffletrees in series to distribute the force further.
The rig (the whiffletree) moves with the plane to replicate how it will behave in the air – the wing tips will deflect more whilst the part of the wing closest to the fuselage will be more rigid, despite the load being distributed evenly across the whole length of the wing. Tests of this nature need to be performed a number of times to replicate how the plane will be loaded when doing loop-the-loops, inverted barrel rolls and the like in flight.
By testing in this way we’ll be allowing the aircraft to respond in the way it wants to – pretty important as aerobatic planes carry huge loads and need to be able to resist too much bending!
Other parts that make up the whiffletree are currently being laser cut out of flat sheet by the AMRC Design and Prototyping Group (DPG). These have also been designed by Steve P. Once all the parts are cut they’ll be assembled and welded together by Samantha a former Nuclear AMRC apprentice.
Come on plane – we’re almost ready for you!!!
Top right: A clevis – designed and made at the AMRC
Bottom right: Other parts that make up the whiffletree, also made in-house at the AMRC