Friday, August 11, 2006

I took delivery of the flaperon / slats kit on Wednesday. The crate is still closed and an inventory has not been taken. While waiting for the crate I worked on the hinges for about an hour and cleaned up the garage to make room for the new crate.

When I skinned the elevator I went ahead and drilled the elevator channels not realizing that the horn brackets would go there. When it came time to put the horn brackets on I needed to drill out a few rivets and fit the brackets through the existing holes. That worked for the bottom, but for all four brackets to join nicely I had to drill new holes into the spar. One of the holes was a little close to the new hole, so I fashioned a "patch" that goes over the the previous holes and restores any strength that may have been lost without affecting the fit of the horn brackets.

Initially I thought I borked the newly received center hinge by drilling the hinge hole too early. I had measured the 135mm from the bracket flange tip up the centerline. When I did a quick test fit against the bracket it attaches too I freaked out when the hinge hit against the elevator spar and was at least 1/4" away from the desired hole.. After calming down a little I realized what needed to be done was the following procedure: I clecoed the center hinge to the bracket on the outside of the flange and rotated the brackets. While rotating I used a Sharpie to determine the area that needed to be ground away. After fifteen minutes of using the rasp I had the correct fit.

The next step is to deal with the outside hinges and make sure everything is co-linear. Yeah.

I hope to have a completed tail section on Saturday with the flaperons starting on Sunday.

Google Sketchup is a cool tool I've used in the past. When we moved I spent a few hours with it and made a mockup of our new dwelling along with the major furniture with real measurements. This worked better than the old graph paper alternative because the digital objects gave a better sense of volume. I'm taking the same approach to designing my paint scheme. I spent about an hour making a digital elevator and horizontal stabilizer. The next step is to create a texture to be applied over the base "paint". The paint scheme I have in my head is fairly grand. Spending at least 400 hours on construction and then not taking that extra step to make my plane stand out is inconceivable to me. I want to make sure that the paint job looks good from several conceivable angles and translates well.

Project Status:
Paint Design: 1 hour spent ( 1h )
Elevator: ~25.5 hours spent ( 3h, 1.5h, 3h, .5h, 3.5h, 2h, 4h, 1.5h, 2h, 4.5h, 1h )
Horizontal Stabilizer: ~28 hours spent, 3 pieces replaced ( 3h, 2h, 2h, 2h, .5h, 1.5h, 3.5h, 1.5h, 5, 4.5, 2h, .5h )
Rudder Done, minus horn : ~16 hours spent, ( ~8h, ~8h )
Total Done: ~71.5 hours

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