Sunday, March 3, 2019

Steps are in

After spending at least two months on section 29 I felt kind of weird when I was able to finish up section 30 in just a few work sessions.  Section 29 is not technically complete but its close.  This week I did get the gear weldments bolted in and that was quite a project.  Those weldments require a little "persuasion" to line up properly but I had already created a small AN3 persuasion tool (AN3 bolt with the threads removed and a tapered end) so I was ultimately successful. 

The steps were not too terribly hard to install.  I did remember to install those bushing I turned on Ben's lathe a few months go.  They fit nicely and I think the steps will stay nice an tight....or at least I hope so because getting those bolts back out will be a bugger with the floor installed on the baggage area.

Finally I finished off the week by building a fuselage stand that I will use for the remainder of the build (until I finally get it up on the gear).  I had grand plans of building a all metal adjustable stand that would last generations but after a few hours of cutting, a few welds, and a trip or two to the welding supply store I gave up on that project.  The design I used will allow me to use jacks to raise the entire fuselage high enough to put the gear in and that's all I really need.

The next section I am going to complete is the tail cone attachment.  Unfortunately that also means I may have to move to the larger bay in the garage.  I did a little measurement and its going to be darn tight in the smaller bay once the tail cone is attached.  I may be able to do a little rearranging and get it to work but its going to be very tight no matter what.

One of the first tasks to installing the steps is to cleco the baggage floor into place to hold the ribs in the proper position.  Once cleco'd in you bend them up and cleco them to the seat brace.  I did a modified version of this.

Next step is to install the step and the support block so you can drill the block into the rib.  I stopped taking pictures at this point because there wasn't much to take pictures of.

Oh yea, I had a little help from Jeff to get the tail cone down from the hangar ceiling sling I had it stored on.  Then Harry helped me load it up into Ben's Suburban.  Finally Ben came over and helped me unload it.  Now it sits in the ever shrinking garage waiting to be installed.  That is the next section.

Pilot side gear weldment installed.

Co-Pilot side gear weldment installed.

And finally, the new fuselage stand sitting under the aft end of the fuselage waiting for some help to lower it down.