This photo is of the prototype during the
earlier phases of construction.
January 19 2012 1.0hrs - 1540.0 total.
Attached hinge brackets on stab trailing edge
spar before glue was completely dry in order to
create slight depressions or "beds" for the
brackets to rest in. Worked great! Stab is
essentially done now. Pulled out elevator and
attached to stab. Fits very nice, hinge brackets
line up well and movement is smooth. Temp
attached port trim tab and got out new trim
motor. Determined 1/2 travel of tab motor and
positioned actuator there. Temp installed
push-rod on trim tab horn. Discovered motor
actuator arm is offset from center of motor, but
trim tab horn is centered between ribs - per the
plans - which means they don't line up! Will
have to remove tab horn, reposition, and patch
up old slot and holes.
|Starting work on trim tab
motor mounting plate.
|Scarf edged patch to allow
relocation of tab horn.
January 20 2012 3.5hrs - 1543.5 total. Cut slot for trim tab push-rod to penetrate elevator
surface. Made cardboard template to determine correct shape for tab motor mounting plate. Made
plate, drilled mounting holes and nut plate rivet holes. Marked trim tab for correct location of horn - its
only about 1/2" off - then removed horn and beveled area for a scarfed patch. Made scarfed patch to
January 21 2012 6.0hrs - 1549.5 total. Fabricated elevator rib#7 fore and aft sections for port and
SB sides - 4 pieces total. Dry fit, marked for rough size and cut in lightning holes. Glued in place.
Sealed trim tab motor mounting plate and placed un-pulled cherry rivets in holes to keep them open
while sealer dries. Glued in patch on trim tab horn plate. Cut inboard end-cap pieces, fore and aft for
both sides - four total. Found elevator outboard end-cap that I cut out a long time ago, but for some
reason I only have the port piece? Rough cut a SB one.
|Port elevator rib#7
rough cut to shape
being glued in place.
end-caps, stack of nose
"D" ribs, and rough cut
|Control column with
spade grip attached.
Still need a gun button!
January 22 2012 4.0hrs - 1553.5 total. Riveted nut plates to tab motor plate. Enlarged slot in
elevator for push-rod. Cut new slot for tab horn through patch I glued in yesterday. Trial fit trim tab
motor, cut push-rod to length and hooked up to tab horn. Used a 9volt battery to run motor -
actually moved the trim tab! Full range of movement on tab motor far exceeds the downward range
of the tab itself. Hopefully the "center" position can be adjusted on the indicators? Either that or I'll
need a limit switch. Removed motor and started prepping area to glue in mounting plate.
January 28 2012 1.5hrs -1555.0 total. Sanded several of the glue joints on the elevator to prepare
for sealing the whole structure. Sanded the bottom side of the new #7 ribs to shape. Need to finish
shaping them and do the top side. Decided to remove the elevator from the stab for now to make it
easier to work on. Put the stab on the fuselage primarily so I can align the inboard end-caps on the
elevator, but it looks like I might be able to leave it on there for good. Its just loose clamped in place
now and needs some skin trimmed back to get it into final position, but I can't think of why I'll need
to pull it off the fuselage again.
January 29 2012 1.5 hrs - 1556.5 total. Marked and trimmed skin on bottom of stab where it sits
on the fuselage to allow it to seat itself fully. Fits nicely now. Temp installed elevator onto stab to
allow alignment of in-board end caps. Started aligning SB end cap.
February 2 2012 1.0hrs - 1557.5 total Leveled stab and clamped in place. Clamped spacers to vert
stab post for aligning inboard end caps on elevator. Covered them with wax paper so end caps won't
get glued to them. Started leveling elevator.
February 3 2012 4.0hrs - 1561.5 total. Finished fitting elevator inboard end caps according to plans,
but I don't like how they look. Went back and reviewed photos of Spitfires and verified that they
shouldn't be flat vertical plates - as called for in the plans. Decided to re-engineer them and make
them more accurate. Finished making all the pieces and have them dry fit and clamped in place.
|Close up of elevator inboard sections on a MK-V at
Oshkosh in 2008. Notice how they transition into a
pointed wedge rather than being a vertical plate.
|Changed the design from the plans by
adding the long diagonal rib, changing
the forward plate to taper to a point
and adding the spruce trailing edge.
February 4 2012 1.5hrs - 1563.0 total. Glued in the pieces I dry fit yesterday.
February 5 2012 1.5hrs - 1564.5 total. Removed clamps, blocking, etc from glue area. Pulled
elevator off stab and clamped to bench. Started sanding new pieces to shape.
February 6 2012 2.0hrs - 1566.5 total. Final sanded the rib # 7s to shape. Final sanded port side
in-board trailing edge pieces to shape.
March 2 2012 2.0hrs - 1568.5 total. Final sanded SB in-board trailing edge pieces to shape. Started
final sanding of entire elevator aft of the spar in preparation for two coats of sealer.
March 3 2012 2.0hrs - 1570.5 total. Continued sanding glue joints on elevator. Started making
blocking pieces for butt joints on rib #7s on both ends.
March 4 2012 3.5hrs - 1574.0 total. Finished making all 16 blocking pieces for rib #7 on both ends
of the elevator. Glued in place. Also glued trim tab motor mounting plate in place in elevator.
|Rib #7 on both ends of the
elevator, both in front and
behind the spar, are installed
with butt joints so require
blocking all around. Photo
shows starting to make
pieces for starboard side.
|SB rib #7 blocking
freshly glued and
clamped in place.
March 16 2012 4.0hrs - 1578.0 total. Removed clamps. Sanded new blocking pieces to shape.
Made spacer discs to go under the large washers that go under the eye bolts that form the hinge
points. Dry fit them in place. Mounted trim tab motor.
March 17 2012 3.5 hrs - 1581.5 total. Fit elevator onto stab to check alignment of hinge eye bolts
with new spacers. Temp installed trim tabs and measured amount of weights that will be needed for
control counter weight. Looks like between 2 to 4 lbs. Tried local shops but they only have 25lb bags
of lead shot. Went on-line and ordered a 5lb box of 00 lead shot. Removed elevator from stab and
removed trim tabs from elevator. Cleaned up slots in elevator web for leading edge D ribs. Dry
mounted all D ribs then put elevator back on stab to check spacing. I left a lot of skin overhang on
the trailing edge of the stab so it could be trimmed to the right size when the elevator was
mounted. There's so much overhang that I can barely get the elevator in place. I'll need to trim
some of it off before I can make any progress on the spacing..
|Elevator leading edge "D" ribs dry fit in place.
You can see here that I can't get the elevator
close enough to the stab to get the hinge pins in
place because of the excess stab skin overhang.
The "D" ribs are a little over-sized also.
March 18 2012 2.0hrs - 1583.5 total. Re-checked the plans, looked through photos of Steve's
project and got out the original paper templates for the D ribs. Re-measured and reconfirmed the
existing gap between the elevator and the stab spar and it isn't quite as bad as I thought. Looks like
I just need to trim the stab overhang to be consistent on all four edges and shape the outboard
most two or three D ribs and everything should fit OK.
March 22 2012 1.5hrs - 1585.0 total. Marked and trimmed all four trailing edge skins on stab to
same overhang length. Still need to work on D ribs a little.