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Flight Equipment Plaque

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Project by DanaBabcock posted 05-04-2014 10:52 AM 855 views 1 time favorited 6 comments Add to Favorites Watch
Flight Equipment Plaque
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Just finished making this plaque for a retiring Flight Equipment technician who went on to become the State Command Chief for the CT Air National Guard. I cut the helmet in half freehanding it on a table saw. I couldn’t find my laser level to put a straight line across it to mark it for cutting so I had to improvise with a bright flashlight and a piece of cardboard to put a straight shadow on the curved surface to trace!

Once the walnut was cut and shaped I traced the outline of the helmet and freehanded a 1/4” deep groove to inset the helmet shell in with a dremmel tool and a wood grooving bit. Inset the helmet and attached the components using PVC glue, finished with three coats of poly, and added the etched plate from a local trophy store.

I think next time I may try using wood filled to fill the grain of the walnut and get a really smooth as glass finish on one. And if I do another one I’ll definitely be making a template for it so I don’t have to freehand it again! Good thing I’ve got walnut colored wood putty to fill the little shaky gaps between the helmet shell and the wood. On the plus side, the visor covers the worst of it at the top of the helmet where I was cutting against the grain. A plastic glue syringe definitely wood have helped too. It was pretty tough work getting the thick PVC glue into an 1/8” groove with a flatead screwdriver without getting it on the to-be-finished surface.





6 comments so far

View Ken90712's profile

Ken90712

15317 posts in 1940 days


#1 posted 05-04-2014 03:11 PM

Great job,,,, Congrats to him as well.

-- Ken, "Everyday above ground is a good day!"

View PaulDoug's profile

PaulDoug

628 posts in 454 days


#2 posted 05-04-2014 06:14 PM

Neat. I have to keep this in mind. My son is going to retire in the next few years, he is a F-18 Superhornet pilot. He may like something like this.

-- “We all die. The goal isn't to live forever; the goal is to create something that will.” - Chuck Palahniuk

View DonB's profile

DonB

296 posts in 1443 days


#3 posted 05-04-2014 07:18 PM

A unique plaque indeed. I’m sure he spend many a hour in the helmet. Well done. I thank him for his service.

-- DonB

View KayBee's profile

KayBee

1022 posts in 1997 days


#4 posted 05-04-2014 08:31 PM

Great memento! All we gave our retiring people was a good party, most of which they didn’‘t remember. Also easy to point to it, instead of trying to explain life support equipment.

-- Karen - a little bit of stupid goes a long way

View PaulDoug's profile

PaulDoug

628 posts in 454 days


#5 posted 05-04-2014 11:26 PM

I sent a picture of this to my son. He says he will have the helmet and mask for me. Guess I got my self committed to trying to make something similar for him. Well, I have a year or so to plan.

-- “We all die. The goal isn't to live forever; the goal is to create something that will.” - Chuck Palahniuk

View majuvla's profile

majuvla

3924 posts in 1618 days


#6 posted 05-11-2014 05:25 PM

Verry nice memory.

-- Ivan, Croatia, Wooddicted

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