Friday, March 26, 2021

The last of the plans

There are still a ton of tasks to complete on the airplane but I've started the last untouched item on my RV-10 plans, the wheel pants and gear leg fairings.  These little buggers are particularly "fun" because they have to be aligned perfectly for the airplane to fly cleanly.  That requires jacking up the airplane at the spar to level the fuselage both laterally as well as longitudinally.  Once its up on jacks you have to snap a chalk-line on the garage floor that is in the exact center of the fuselage.  Then you use that snap line to measure out and align the wheel fairings.  Oh and don't forget that your garage floor has a built in slope (for water drainage) that you have to adjust for so that the trailing edge of the wheel pants are parallel with the airstream in flight!  Sometimes it really feels like I am rubbing my tummy and patting my head while doing the boot scoot boogie.  :-)

Ok, anyway this is a pretty fun stage and there are a ton of other smaller projects that I managed to accomplish in the past couple of weeks.  Including....

  • Replaced #2 cylinder injector boss.  There was an issue with the fit that needed remedied.
  • Printed up and installed some ABS spark plug wire separators.  Since I'm using auto plugs the wires are not shielded like aviation plug wires so they need to be separated from each other as well as other metal objects.
  • Installed some heater hoses, and ordered more scat hose since I didn't have nearly enough.
  • Fabricated and installed the spark plug wires and the lower plugs.  
  • Installed the backup battery on the firewall.
  • Installed the oil cooler scat hose.
Ok, on with the pictures.

Plug wires cut to length, terminated, and routed with some wax corded separators installed.  The 3D printed separators are not installed in this picture.

This is the first wheel pant I started with.  I realized early on that holding the wheel pant in position long term is going to be key to getting these things aligned properly.  So I fabricated wooden jig with 1/8" holes in each end.  Then I drilled 1/8" holes in the exact center or the front and rear wheel pant halves.  I used a drill bit on both ends to hold the pant in place, measured until I was happy with the location, and then I marked my garage floor with a pen at a few locations on the base of my jig.  This allowed me to move the jig and return it to the proper location each time.  These wheel pants were installed and removed many times (with more to come) so these marks were helpful in making sure I was in the same spot each time.

Exciting huh!  That was the first hole I drilled and you can see the LED light I used to locate it.

The plans call for a 1.25" block to hold the wheel pant up off of the tire while the fitting process occurs.  I used my 3D printer to print up a block just for fun.  I could have used the table saw to cut a piece of 2x4 down but this worked and was much easier to get to.

Sunday, March 7, 2021

Wings and things

 The endless list of tasks to be completed got a little shorter this past couple of weeks.  Some of the big items included mounting both wings, setting the incidence, fitting the wing root fairings, a little finish wiring, and fabricating the wing fuel supply and return lines.  I also fabricated the fuel tank vents but added a small modification to those. 

I read back through my blog from about 6 years ago when I was going through this same stage with the 9A and found that I'm actually further along now than I was when I took the 9A to the airport.  I regretted taking the 9A to the airport because that meant a lot of traveling to get it ready for flight.  This time I am going to have pretty much everything done that I can before it goes to the airport.

For big picture items yet to be done before we go to the airport I have the following:

  • Fit the wheel pants
  • Fit the interior pieces
  • fit and cover the overhead panels
  • several miscellaneous wiring tasks.
  • hooking up the heater servo's.
  • finish the interior of the cowling with some primer and heat shielding.
  • Install the rubber baffling material on the baffles
  • A few interior panels need to be primed and painted.
  • Install seat belts

There are a lot of individual items in that list so its going to be a bit until I am ready to go to the airport.

Ben was a huge help when mounting my wings and of course it wouldn't be right if he didn't hop in and make some airplane noises.  :-)

Finishing up the wing root connector for the left wing.

This is my little modification to the standard vent line.  The black piece you see in the middle of the vent is a vacuum breaker.  The idea is that if the vent line becomes blocked by ice/debris the vacuum breaker will allow venting of the tanks so the fuel continues to flow.

Ben took this picture of me working in the wing root area.  Only one wing at a time would fit in the garage so we finished up this wing, then removed it, turned the airplane around, and did the left wing.  Worked great.