April 30, 2008
Today I attempted to get the cross members that attached the gear truss to the engine mount. One sentence will sum this up. This is a pain in the ass. There are multiple compound angles and some weird orientations. I only have just enough steel tube to get this done with very little screw up. However I have some 3/4″ 0.035 left over from another project to practice with before I cut in to my thicker walled tubing. Anyway I managed to get the right long cross member pretty close and the left short cross member semi screwed up I will probably redo this one but with a fresh mind tomorrow. I will take some pictures tomorrow after i get some magnets to hold all the cross member in place.
Time spent today 4 hours time spent on the mod 37 hours
April 29, 2008
Today was a great day. I got my landing gear truss back from my welder and of course it was beautiful and perfectly aligned to boot. I started off by checking to see if the truss fit as I wanted it to between the lower engine mount bolts. I then relieved the lower firewall flange so that the gear leg could slide all the way back to the fire wall. I then made some blocks to shim up the axles and force the truss in to the lower engine mount bolts. Now the task is to make the four supports to keep the truss there.
Time spent 3 hours total time spent on the mod 33 hours
April 22, 2008
Today I decided to go home after work to eat dinner first then head to the airport so as to leave myself loads of time to get the plane up on my wooden stand before midnight. I started off by figuring out a game plan. I was very uncomfortable trying to stand the plane up on wood using the “jack the left then the right floor jack method.” finally I bit the bullet and went looking for another hoist, since my engine is currently hanging from the one I already have. I found one I could borrow for the evening. I hoisted up the plane from the engine mount which can was a little scary because it just teeters on the tail wheel. I attempted to keep it from teetering by making a small block stand for the tail that sits on the longeron where the two lower tails wire come together. This worked pretty good. I gave my best yikes face for the camera.
I then was able to remove the wheels, brakes, and finally the legs. After that I had all the room in the world to make a safe wooden stand for the plane to sit on. I have seen in the past people stand their planes on the lower longeron just behind the most forward bottom panel former but that is very unsupported and could bend your longeron or worst fail it. I didn’t want to take any chances and I was not in the mood to deal with that so I moved the support as close to sta 0 as possible to get the most support possible. Fiinally I built the stand 30.5″ off the ground and I picked the tail wheel up to level to plane. Everything was very sturdy and I was pleased. Job accomplished safe and sound. Now I just need to get that socket truss back from the welder.
Time spent today 5 hours total time on mod 30 hours
Oh BTW I desided to put my level on the bungee pegs and look it is exactly 0 deg. That is not the right place to level it but I thought it was cool. I need to cross check it in the cockpit upper longerons but I bet it is very close. I know who built the stand and Im sure it is perfect :).
April 21, 2008
Today my mission was to make a stand to hold the airplane while I remove the landing gear and install and weld the new gear legs in place. spent a few hours figuring out how I was going to rest the plane on it and concluded that I will need to hoist the plane up by a engine hoist and remove the gear then set the airplane down on the wooden stand I made tonight. Honestly kinda scary. I will keep you all posted on the happenings.
Time spent today 2.5 hours Total time on the mod 27 hours
April 20, 2008
Today I had the whole day to work on the plane. The Financee as I like to call her is off to California for 2 weeks for work so it was time to get crackin on getting the engine off the plane and cutting out the not needed cross members on the engine mount. After loads of hassle getting the oil cooler oil out and getting all the hoses and wires disconnected from the engine. I was able to get the mount bolts for the engine free and released the engine from the mount. This is always a pain in the ass no matter how many times I have done it. Anyhow I pulled the mount and started cutting and grinding away at the joints where the cross members used to be. All in all a productive day.
Time spent today 7.5 hours. Time spend on the mod 25.5 hours
April 12, 2008
Today I was able to finish up the last through bolt hole. Once again it wasn’t as hard as I thought it was going to be gotta love X bits. I finished up some loose ends like making new shims for the axles so they sit flat to make sure there is no toe in or toe out. I delivered the jig and legs to my welder and hopefully I will get them back in a couple of days.
Time spent today 2.5 hours Total time spent on the mod 18 hours
April 11, 2008
Today I embarked on the task of drilling through the socket and the gear leg. I have been dreading this for ever since I bought the gear legs. I was told these were hardened steel but I didn’t start looking up what kind of metal. In fact they are 6150 Tempered steel so a bit on the hard side. I consulted my local machinist/A&P/Engineer about drilling this in a drill press. He gave me 2-1/8″ X bits, 1/4″ X bit and and a quad fluted 1/4″ tip stepped to 3/8″ carbide bit that not only drills but reams. X bits are already carbide and eat most anything in their way but I was still prepared for the worst. I used loads of cutting oil and went at it. Truth be told they were really easy to drill and took no time at all as long as you cast your tailings and put lots of pressure in extremely short intervals and make sure to get those tailings out of there. All in all Set up and drilling took about 1.5 hours for the right leg tomorrow is the left then I will be ready for welding.
Time spent today 1.5 hours Total time spent on the mod is 15.5 hours