After my first inflation, I did not get much time in on constructing the balloon. In one way, it was a shame to stretch out what was a few days worth of work over a period of several months. However it was during winter, and I really needed to spend more time with my wife and daughter. The baby sleeps where I work on the balloon. This is a bad arrangement since the only time I have to work on the balloon is when the baby sleeps. And when the baby sleeps, I can't get to the sewing machine. Sigh.
While replacing the damaged portion of the balloon, I managed to learn several things. First off, even during the first inflation, the sizes of the panels near the mouth will change because the heat will shrink the panel. So don't, as I did, cut out a panel to its original dimensions and assume that it will fit. The second thing I learned, it that it is a lot easier to build a section balloon than repair that section. The hardest part in repair for me was sewing the corners where the new panel goes in.