Began wiring the panel

I’ve spent quite a bit of time researching and documenting a plan to make the wiring easy. I complied a list of wiring nodes in a spreadsheet that I can use as a checklist to work my way through the project. You can see my work here… Wiring Plan

Didn’t actually wire anything today but rather did a lot of the prep work. I fabricated a center panel that will hold the fuse block in the center pedestal. I purchased the power panel option from Van’s which included the sheet metal for the center console. I purchased the 32 position Busman fuse block from Waytek.

 

Prepped everything up and painted it to match the interior.

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Removed all of the avionics and the panels. I probably could have left the stuff mounted to the sub panel and left the panels in place. But when I had mounted everything with black oxide steel screws and subsequently learned that they would rust over time. So I purchased black oxide stainless replacements. This was the most opportune time to replace them all.

 

I installed a ground block being careful to remove all the paint and scuff up the sub-panel to ensure a good electrical connection. I re-mounted the backup battery, the GAD 27, GAD 29, and GEA 24 to the sub panel.

 

I drilled a couple of new wire holes through the bottom of the stand-offs and installed snap bushings. The original holes interfered with the GTX and the switches in the bottom of the middle panel.

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Today’s Time (hours): 8.0
Finish Kit (hours): 106.0
Total Time (hours): 836.0

 

Attached the canopy to the frame.

Riveted the side skins and canopy handles.

 

Tightened the screws and nuts holding the canopy to the aft frame in the middle section called out in the places. Tightened the screws and nuts holding the canopy and skins to the frame rails.

 

Fabricated and attached the canopy wear strips.

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Mixed up some epoxy resin with micro balloons and black pigment. Used the mixture to fill the void where the canopy and skin come together.

 

 

Today’s Time (hours): 5.0
Finish Kit (hours): 69.0
Total Time (hours): 799.0

 

Finished Seat Backs (Section 39)

I bolted together the lower corners of the seat backs. I drilled holes in the top angles using the template provided by FlightLine interiors. I blind riveted the snaps to the angles using those holes. I attached the seat back cushions to the seat backs with the snaps and the velcro provided.

 

Love the way the seats came out.

 

I also repainted the aft canopy frame. I wasn’t happy with my first attempt. It was splotchy and had spots of pretty bad orange peel. I wet sanded it and reshot it. It still looked awful. So I ended up stripping it down using acetone and repainting the bare metal. It came out quite a bit better. I’m wondering if the problem is the P60G2 primer. I’m going to shoot the remaining interior parts over bare metal.

 

 

Today’s Time (hours): 3.0
Finish Kit (hours): 60.0
Total Time (hours): 790.0

 

 

Finished canopy latching mechanism

Installed the lever and latch. I had to spend a bit of time finessing the lever to get it to sit properly when retracted into the skin. As it came, I kinda stuck out at the end. The scotch-bright wheel took care of the problem. Also note that yesterday I had painted these parts. That was before I realized that there was an interference fit and they were just going to get messed up anyway. So I unpainted them today with some lacquer thinner.

Installed the bell crank brackets and bell cranks. Installed the torque tube, pins, and pushrod.

On to the actual canopy next.

 

Today’s Time (hours): 2.0
Finish Kit (hours): 20.0
Total Time (hours): 750.0

 

 

Completed Aileron and Elevator Systems (Section 36)

Checked the fore and aft travel of the control system with a digital level using the top of the cover rib as a reference. Filed the control column bracket stops until I achieved the specified range of travel in each direction and the control column hit the stops on both side simultaneously.

 

Installed the control sticks and measured the distance between them. Thy were spot on so I guess I measured the control stick tie rod correctly. No adjustment necessary.

 

I double checked that I torqued all the hardware properly and marked everything with torque seal. I decided to wait on installing that aft elevator push tube until I reinstall the tail feathers at the airport.

 

Today’s Time (hours): 1.0
Fuselage Time (hours): 215.0
Total Time (hours): 670.5

 

Assembled and installed fresh air vents

I assembled the fresh air vents by sealing the vents to the ducts with silicone adhesive and then bolting them together with the mounting bracket. I then glued these assemblies in place on the side skins with tank sealant.

 

Assembled the canopy release mechanism. Used the jig that came with the kit to align everything and drilled the tube for the AN3 bolt. Then put everything together.

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Machine countersunk the doublers and top skin for AN426AD2 rivets using a #34 drill bit. These suckers are teeny tiny. Double flush riveted the doublers to the forward top skin with the squeezer.

 

Today’s Time (hours): 2.0
Fuselage Time (hours): 193.0
Total Time (hours): 647.5

 

Completed Flap Actuation System (Section 34)

Drilled the tiny hole in the linear actuator rod for safety wire. First attempt broke through. Second attempt, I ignored Van’s instructions and started by drilling a hole in the end. Then drilled a hole from the side to meet up with the first hole. Then final drilled at an angle to eliminate the right angle and allow the safety wire to slide through.

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Greased up the torque tubes and inserted into the bearing blocks on either side. Then I bolted them to the flap crank in the middle. Finally, I bolted the flap motor in place and tested with a 9-volt battery. Worked perfectly.

 

Today’s Time (hours): 2.0
Fuselage Time (hours): 173.0
Total Time (hours): 627.5