Sunday, January 25, 2015

The big move

It seems like I have been waiting for this day for so long now that I should have not slept at all last night.  Oddly enough I slept like a baby.  I have two additional major milestones to meet on this journey, first engine start, and of course first flight.  I had set a goal to be flying by mid march and right now that's about six weeks away.  Will I make it?  I don't know but I think its possible.  I think I mentioned in an earlier post about the DAR inspection being somewhat dependent upon the travels of the inspector.  In the grand scheme of things it just doesn't matter that much.  The airplane will fly when its ready and not before.

I did make yet another change this week that will set me back a little.  I decided to replace my existing comm radio with one that allows me to receive VOR/ILS/GS information.  If you don't know what those acronyms mean it basically means I will be able to travel in clouds safely with more than just a GPS.  My original plan was to get my instrument rating and only fly GPS but I recently found out that for my final check ride I need to have the ability to shoot at least one non GPS approach and since my airplane was not equipped with more than GPS I would not be able to train in my airplane.  Hence the reason I am opting for the Comm/Nav radio (Garmin GNC-255A).

OK on to the pictures of the week.  Obviously the big focus this week was getting things done to the fuselage that will be easiest to do in the garage.  I think I have met that goal.

As I have done in the past I am going to start this weeks update off with how we sit as of Sunday night.  Woo Hoo N1605A is in its new home!
This is the lower half of the engine cowling where the nose gear leg intersects it.  I had to fabricate a fiberglass fairing to seal this gap.  In this picture you can see the tape I added as a release agent and you can see the molded clay that will form the shape of the fairing.

This is a closeup of the shape of the clay.  It was actually easier to mold the clay than I expected.  A big thank you to my friend Daniel S for providing me with the clay.

This mess is what it looked like after I applied the fiberglass strips and topped it all off with some special cloth that helps leach excess epoxy out of the lay-up and also provides a nice surface to apply more fiberglass to if needed.
And this is the final product after I pulled the tape, did a minimal amount of shaping/sanding.  That large open area forward of the fairing will get covered in the coming weeks.  I plan on using a piece of fiberglass that fits exactly in the opening and then is held in place with a couple of  hinges, or a flange.

Since I will be mounting the wings I decided I better get my aileron push rod tube seals in place on the fuselage.  These are just simple home made seals that I fabricated out of rip-stop fabric and an aluminum ring.

One of the last steps required for the nose wheel fairing is to drill a hole on each side that will give access to the bolts that my "Bogey Bar" attach to.  What is a Bogey Bar?  Well its a device that slides over those bolts (one on each side) and allows me to steer the airplane while I am pushing it around.  In this picture I am using my laser level to mark the location of the bolt.

And here you can see where I need to drill with the wheel pant installed.  Nifty tool that laser level.


Moving out of garage and into the sun....yes the was in the 60's today.

Too bad we didn't get pictures of us trying to get the airplane onto the trailer.  But here it is all loaded up.  Jeff Bloomquist and Randy Albritton were my best friends today!

Tying it down tight.

Is there anybody in there?

Here we are at our first stop light.

And down the highway.

Arriving at the hangar in one piece!

Jeff took this picture of me holding the airplane to keep it from rolling down the ramps on its own.  Look how high that tail is!

Snug in its new home and ready for the next step.