Forward Belly panel/exhaust channel, fuel line, and fuel tank straps

June 29, 2012

My dad was in town this weekend so we decided to work on the plane a little. We did some cleaning of the new flying wire threads and then coated them with Molybdenum Di-sulfide lubricant. After that we measured out the forward belly pan/exhaust channel. I am making it in three pieces left and right sides with a center channel it out on to the sheet metal we set that asside a for a trip to the airport to shear and fold them. We then measured out the fuel line from the fuel valve to the gascolator put a bend in it and trimmed to fit. Once we had all that completed we took my pile of items to the airport. Once there we made the bends for the belly pans, flared the fuel tube, sand blasted the fuel tank straps. Once we got back home we fit checked the belly pan. The sides fit well but the center channel didn’t I mis-measured so I measured again and transfered that on to a new piece and I will fold that another day.

Time spent today 6 hours
Total time spent 1429 hours


Fit checking the left stab and elevator, fitting and installing the turtle deck floor and removable bulkhead

June 26, 2012

Tonight I started off by fit checking the left stab and elevator. After I got them into to position I hooked up the elevator push/pull tubes to see how everything felt, which was very smooth. After that I got the bug to finally finish off the turtle deck. I started by masking off the carbon I was going to keep “raw” (I have plans to clear coat that area which is in the cockpit only door and cockpit bulk head) and I was going to prime it to see where I was with my pin hole filling, but I stopped and decided that the floor and removable Lexan Bulk head had to be installed first. I had already drilled an fit the Lexan bulk head so all I had to do was installed the 1/4 turn camlocs. I drilled the lexan and bulk head out to 1/4″ for the camlocs and installed the camloc backing into the bulk head and back drilled the holes (makes for a quick drilling guide. I then counter sunk the rivet holes in the carbon and drilled out the carbon camloc main hole out to 3/8″. I installed the camloc backs and viola everying fits right and easy. After that I moved on to turtle deck and floor. I measured for the rivets to attach the floor the turtle deck and I drilled out the 3/32″ holes. I initially wasn’t going to install rivets as I was going to glue the turtle deck to the floor but I decided I needed some kind of mechanical back up. So anyway I scuffed the floor intersection with 100 grit sand paper to give it some “grit”. I then mixed up the left over 2216 B/A Scotch-weld glue I had left over from the ailerons applied it the the floor turtle deck/floor intersection then installed all the rivets to keep everything inplace. Turned out pretty good. Now that that is complete I can fill the rivet holes with filler and sand them flush prime and paint this sucker. Will be nice to have it painted.

Time spent tonight 6 hours
Total time spent 1423 hours

Fit checked right stab and elevator onto the fuselage

June 25, 2012

Tonight I finished unmasking the stabs and the elevators and decided that it was high time to permenently install the forward stabilizer spar. I measured and then melted a perfect 3/4 tube hole in the fabric using my now trusty method of a propane torch and heated exacto knife. This method doesn’t allow excess heat out into the fabric and cuts a very clean hole. Anyway I installed the spar with new hardware and then fit checked the right stabilizer and elevator. Turns out they still fit well after covering and painting. Not suprising though, just wanted to see what they looked like on the fuse.

Time spent 2 hours
Total time spent 1417 hours

Re-masking the stabs and painting the silver on

June 24, 2012

Today I spent most of the day working on the stabs again, this time re-masking for the silver. Once I got them re-masked, I scuff sanded the areas to be painted and I shot the silver on. Meanwhile I spent quite a bit of time cooking up an aircraft spruce order that I will place on Monday.

Time spent 7 hours
Total Time spent 1415 hours

Painting the blue on the stabs and elevators

June 22, 2012

I had the day off Friday so spent the day masking the stabs off so I could paint them blue. After I got them masked off I scuff sanded the areas to be painted then shot the paint.

Time spent today 6 hours
Total time spent 1408 hours

Removing the masking on the lower right wing and masking the horiz stab and elevators

June 19, 2012

Tonight I got home afterwork eager to remove the masking paper from the lower right wing to see everything after it’s finished. Although have seen this before, its always nice to see it again. As has been typical it has come out great. After that I temporaily connected the aileron to see hou the whole thing looks with the paint and it too, looks great.

After that I decided to that it high time to lay out the masking line on the horizontal tail and elevators. It didn’t take long as I have been getting pretty good at it now. I then transferred the lines over to the other stab and elevator to round out the evening.

Time spent 3 hours
Total time spent 1402 hours

Spraying the lower right wing and aileron silver

June 18, 2012

Tonight I was hell bent on finishing the paint on the wings so I had my work cut out for me. I quickly re-masked both the wing and the aileron for silver, sanded both cleaned and prepped and loaded them into the booth. Thank goodness I have wonderful wife that cooks dinner or I’d never eat. She claims she hasn’t helped much on the plane but I tell her taking care of me by cooking, doing laundry and making sure the house doesn’t fall apart is the only reason I can work on this thing at all. Without her I would be no were near where I am now. Anyway, I was able to get the wing and aileron sprayed silver and tapes pulled by midnight. The wings are officially painted! Major milestone. Some items I have left to paint are the the 1) Elevators and Stabilizers (blue and silver trim colors) 2) Turtle Deck 3)Forward belly panel 4) Gear leg fairings 5) wheel paints)

Time spent 5 hours
Total time spent 1399 hours