The first pieces of the actual, final shape of the glider are comming off the CNC machine now. These pieces will be assembled together to make a “plug” which is used to make the carbon fibre mold, which is used to make the real fuselage.
This multi-step process is necessary to meet the quality and strength specifications required by this project. The pre-preg process used by Windward Performance involves “cooking” the final part in an oven while it is supported by the mold. The mold needs to be made from carbon fibre and it needs to be able to withstand the high temperatures of the oven. It would be cheaper and faster to carve the mold in foam and then lay up the fuselage directly but the foam cannot go in the oven.