Wing Rigging #3

December 31, 2010

This is a two day roll up up 31st and 29th of Dec. I had just got back off a great vacation to Costa Rica to get warmed up and away from all this cold. Anyway I started by doing some measuring for flying wires. I wanted a 0.5 deg dihedral in the lower wings but I had to first level the upper wing and to do that I needed to level the fuse. I had already leveled the fuse laterally before I left for vacation but I had to let a lot of air out of the tires to get it right because I over did on both sides. Anyway I got he wings leveled and set the lower wings at 0.5 deg. I measured the flying and landing wires lengths. I found that www.flyingwires.com had my landing wires available for a great price of $98 a piece which is far less than $170 a piece from other vendors. Anyway all this measuring had taken approximately 2 hours.

On new years eve I spend several hours out at the airport but this time I took the air compressor and several more long pieces of wood with the goal of prepping for I-struts and finalizing the measurements for the flying and landing wires so i make that purchase. I re-inflated my tires and re-leveled the fuse longitudinally and laterally. I leveled the top wing and set the tip AOI on each side of the top wing to 1.5 deg AOI to match the cabane AOI. I also reset the lower wings dihedral back to 0.5 deg and set the AOI of the lower right wing to 1.5 and checked the root which was at 1.5 deg. The right side was also set to 1.5 deg AOI at the root and tip and that lower right aft spar wing root bracket need to be re-drilled because the AOI was 0.7 deg. I got everything set perfect and started measuring to see if I had enough stream line tubing to make the I-strut. As it turns out 36 inches is damn close to not enough so I have to be very careful to cut it right the first time.

Time spent today and on the 29th 5 hours
Total time spent 396 hours

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Wing trial fit #2

December 13, 2010

Tonight I braved the cold and went out to the airport anyway. It is 26 deg outside and windy but in the hangar it’s a balmy 34 deg, yay! I started off by leveling the fuse and wings. To level the fuse you will need to prop the tail up and you will have to let some air out of tires until it it level laterally. I already had a stand that was in the ball park for longitudinal leveling so that went pretty quick. I wanted to get the lay of the land so I started by checking the angle of incidence of the upper wing. I did this by using my Livingston wing rigging jigs to set the cord line of the upper wing and then I set the level on top of the the jig. As it turns out I have exactly 1.5 deg of AOI which is excellent since the drawings call for that! I then checked the lower left wing at the root and found it to be exactly 1.5 deg of AOI also great. The lower right is not so great at 1.1-1.2 deg of AOI which will need to be adjusted. The bolt holes on the lower wing fitting don’t line up anyway and I would like to reinforce them so I will just weld new fittings on and call it a day setting the AOI when I do. It will also help with me fitting the root rib without having to file a bunch off of it to make it fit. All this measuring and tweeking took all I had to give in the cold and I called it quits at 1030 and 22 deg harumpf.

Time spent today 2.5 hours
Total time spent 391


Wing delivery and Trial fit

December 12, 2010

I guess you can mark this down as a momentous day in the making of a set of wings, the trial fit. I started the day with installing the hardware, brackets and other required items to install the wings. I then ran out to the airport and picked up my friend’s 22 ft long enclosed trailer and and brought it back home with me. It was raining that day so I had to cover the wings in plastic to keep the water off of them. Anyway I was able to transport them in the trailer uneventfully to the airport 10 minutes away. I used foam left over from my carpet replacement years ago as padding on the floor of the trailer, it worked very well.

I got the wing to the airport and nearly immediately installed the upper wing on to the fuse. It fit perfectly. It will need some spacers but nothing some spare steel tube or washers can’t handle. I then started in on the lower wings. As it turns out the lower wing rear spar is slightly bigger than the stock (wider) and it fits but it’s extremely tight. I gave the lower aft wing fitting a couple of wacks with a piece of 2X4 and a normal hammer and and they move around a bit for min. However, I wasn’t able to install the wings with out first removing the most inboard rib. Once I removed the rib I was able to install the wings as they flex a bit more. I was able to install the forward bolt on both wings but the aft bolt holes didn’t line up very well, about a 1/4 to 1/2 bolt hole off on the rear side. It is almost certainly due to the installation of the rear wing fittings. I think what will end of happening is I grind off the old fittings and weld on new ones and the correct AOA and fit.

After that I was able to try my old I-struts to see if I was in the ball park, turns out yup I was was. I also did a little measuring on the trammeling I did at home and I was only 1/2″ off on the left wing which is pretty damn good if you ask me, easily adjustable with drag wires. It was getting late so I called it quits, overall a great day.

Time spent today 7.5 hours
Total time spent 388.5 hours


Old Wing Removing and More wing tips

December 10, 2010

I had a fairly productive day today. I headed out to the airport to remove the old wings in preparation for a trial fit of my new wings. I had the root fairings and javelins already off so I started with removing all the cotter pins in the safetied bolts. I then started loosening the flying and landing wires. I had to remove the flying and landing wire nuts on the lug side of the wing which is something I haven’t done since I installed them about 5 years ago so it took a little longer. After that I removed the I-struts and slave struts. I then got a friend to help me get the top and bottom wings off the plane. They are now resting happily in the wing cradles.

I headed back home to do a bit more work on the wings. I wanted to clear coat the lower wing spars at the mounting lugs so that when I rig the wings and lock down the wires that I don’t have to loosen the inboard drag wires on the lower wings. Anyway I brushed a light coat of epoxy to protect it when I install the metal fittings.

I also profile sanded the lower left and right wing tips and cut and fitted the lower wing fiberglass tips.

Time spent today 6.5 hours
Total time spent 381


More wing tips

December 5, 2010

I only had a few hours tonight. I finished the upper right wing fiberglass tip by trimming 1/4″ off to make room for the wooden leading edge. I then moved over to the lower wings and trimmed and fit the lower tip bows to the extra nose pieces I added. I predrilled and then screwed in the SS 1-1/4 screws to hold everything. I then marked the centerline of the tip bows. Tomorrow I will shape the tip bows and glue on the spar caps and tip bows.

Time spent today 1.5 hours
Total time spent 374.5 hours


Upper wing tips

December 1, 2010

This is a roll up of the last two days of work. I had a couple of hours the last two days to work on the upper wings. I decided that after talking with Rob at Raven it would be ok to go ahead and attach the wing tip bows. I pretty much already had the tip bows temporarily attached with small aircraft grade brads but they have been failing to hold the tips for some time now. So I decided to go ahead and pre drill the holes with a 3/32 drill bit and then I followed it with a #6 1-1/4 in SS wood screw like the plans call for. The screws seem to hold them nicely and will be really attached once I add some glue to the joint. With the tip bows attached better I want to profile them so i could fit the leading edge fiberglass. I marked the centerline on the tip bow and using my jitterbug sander I started the profile using 60 grit sand paper. It took a little while even with the 60 grit but the profile was starting to look good. Once I got it down to the centerline of the bow I flipped the wing over and did the other side. As I final blend I used the sander to round the bow at the centerline. This took alot of rotating motion of the sander. I then started to fit the leading edge fiberglass tips. I marked the edge of the nose at the full size rib with masking tape to keep it straight and using my cut off wheel on my die grinder I cut the nose straight. I then trimmed the back edge. The inside of the fiberglass tips isn’t that smooth because they are made with a chopping gun not biweave fiberglass, so I needed to smooth that out with my drum sander attached to my battery drill. After two nights I was able to get both wing tips attached and profiled and the tip caps fitted.

Time spent 5 hours
Total time spent 373 hours