This photo is of the prototype during the
earlier phases of construction.
April 30 2016 6.0hrs - 2852.5 total. Sealed holes in backing plate with 5 min
epoxy. Riveted on nut plates. Pinned port top skin for elevator horn, traced,trimmed
to final shape and sanded in prep for gluing, including scarf joint. Sanded contact
areas on elevator and scarfed skin. Glued skin piece on top port horn. Also glued
backing plate on access panel on SB bottom skin. Went and picked up more rollers
for the primer, some 240, 400 and 600 grit sand paper and some sanding blocks
plus other supplies for fabric covering and painting.
May 1 2016 4.5hrs - 2857.0 total. Removed staples and clamps from yesterdays
glue job. Made up metal cover for SB bottom elevator horn hatch. Drilled and
countersunk holes. Made form for epoxy /lead to go into SB elevator horn. Hung
|Top skin glued onto port
end of elevator.
|Backing plate glued into SB
bottom elevator horn skin.
elevator back onto fuselage to check balance. Adjusted amount of lead to use. Removed elevator and clamped back onto bench. Mixed
up epoxy and lead and poured into SB form. Got out orbital sander and tried it out with 240grit paper on the small areas that have been
primed on the SB horiz stab. Works very well and creates incredibly smooth surface. Started planning out where to mount the terminal
strip for the elevator trim motor wiring in the elevator. Will also need to create an access panel for this terminal strip.
May 2 2016 2.5hrs - 2859.5 total. Removed form from SB elevator horn tip. Cleaned up tape residue. Cleaned up hatch cover and
insured glue didn't bind up nut plates. Decided to use two 1.5mm ply pieces laminated together over the instrument panel instead of
continuing to try to get 3mm piece steamed into correct shape. Measured and cut 2 pieces of 1.5mm ply to size. Trial fit and
determined I'll still need a form. Was planning to use the sheet metal over the forward section, but decided to make ply form as it can be
used for clamping when the pieces are glued in. Made up form from 1/8" non-aircraft plywood. Started scarfing skin edges and shaping
forward canopy rails in this area. They are at a slight angle here so quite a bit of material needs to be removed to get correct shape.
May 4 2016 2.5hrs - 2862.0 total. Sanded and scarfed the other side (port) forward canopy rail. Sanded all contact areas on fuselage to
prepare for gluing on skin piece. Shimmed up the form I'd made and covered contact areas with duct tape so it won't stick to epoxy.
Anchored form in position, pinned and marked one of the 1.5mm skin pieces. Trimmed skin piece to final shape and scarfed joint areas.
May 5 2016 1.5hrs - 2863.5 total. Started working on the terminal strip for the elevator trim tab. Made up a mounting plate for the
terminal strip, drilled and countersunk mounting holes. Made up piece of skin to hold access panel. Sanded to final shape, cut access
hole and sanded to shape. Started on nut backing plate.
May 6 2016 5.5hrs - 2869.0 total. Made up nut backing plate, drilled and counter sunk holes, used 5 min epoxy to seal holes. Mounted
nut plates with pull rivets. Prepped skin piece for upper SB elevator horn. Glued skin piece onto horn, sealed inside. Glued and sealed
trim motor terminal strip piece and access hatch piece into place on elevator.
May 7 2016 6.5hrs - 2875.5 total. Removed staples from SB elevator horn and clamps from trim tab motor hatch. Sanded down SB
forward canopy rail a little more in prep for gluing on skin. Scarfed skin piece on both ends quite a bit more. Noticed a problem with the
form, made up a shim for it. Covered all contact areas on form with duct tape. Glued first piece of 1.5mm ply in place. Used extra glue
to patch staple holes in last two elevator horn top skin pieces. Made up a aluminum hatch cover for trim terminal hatch. Drilled and
counter sunk. Sanded both sides of this cover as well as the one for the horn. Primed them both. Final installed trim tam motor with
new cab head screws and washers. Mounted terminal strip. Soldered extensions onto trim tab motor wires. Routed trim tab motor
wires to terminal strip and secured in place. Took lots of shrink wrap in various layers to get everything tight and secure. Terminated
wires, labeled and screwed down onto terminal strip.
|SB elevator horn tip filled with
|New metal hatch cover - masked off so
lead/epoxy wont stick to the inside surface.
|Form for laminating top skin piece.
Starting to shape canopy rail.
|SB elevator horn balance weight glued
in place. Hatch is placed so weight can
be added or removed if needed.
|Dry fit first 1.5mm skin piece.
|Started on nut plate and access panel
for trim tab motor in elevator.
|SB top skin piece glued in place.
|Elevator trim tab motor terminal strip
brace and access panel glued in place.
|First 1.5mm skin glued on.
|Trim motor and wires final installed.
May 8 2016 1.0hrs - 2876.5 total. Today was Mother's Day. So even though it was a weekend day, I only managed to get in about an
hour on the project. Planning to take several days off this week to make some major progress towards getting the control surfaces
covered and the fuselage primed and painted. I need to make filler panels to support the nose skin on the elevator. I'll need 8 or 10 of
them. Rounded up scraps of 1.5mm skin and started making them.
May 9 2016 8.0hrs - 2884.5 total. Did some figuring and decided I need to work on the fuselage primarily, and work on the rudder and
elevator in between fuselage jobs. The goal is to get the fuselage painted by the 20th, even if the control surfaces stay just as they are
now. Sanded down glue joints on instrument panel top cover skin piece. Sanded outer skin surface. Pinned and trimmed second 1.5mm
skin piece, sanded bottom surface and glued in place. Removed fin fairing, shaped tip a little then masked off where filler needs to be
applied. Masked off most of tail area and rear hatches to prevent sawdust from getting in. Sanded down leading edge of fin and
feathered in side skin pieces. Re-attached fin fairing, mixed up a batch of filler and applied to most of fin leading edge, primarily to blend
in tip of fairing. Had quite a bit of filler left over, so got down the rudder and added a bunch to finish shaping the horn properly. While
all of these things dried, made a paper template for the port baggage compartment cover. Traced onto aluminum stock, cut out, ground
down to shape, marked for hinge holes. Drilled and counter sunk hinge holes.
May 10 2016 3.5hrs - 2888.0 total. Removed straps form top skin piece. Sanded down and shaped fin leading edge filler. Sanded down
and final shaped rudder horn filler. It turned out OK! Better than I thought it would. Primed cargo hatch cover hinge and contact area
on cover. Flush riveted hinge onto cover. Had planned to get in 9 hours or more today, but some equipment failed at work that's taking
a lot of time to get working. Once its fixed, hope to take a couple full days off to make up for lost time on the project. Deadline of the
21st is getting near!
May 11 2016 2.5hrs - 2890.5 total. Ended up having to work 9.5 hours today. So much for taking the day off! Planning to definitely
take the next couple of days off completely. Turned elevator over on bench and clamped in place. Its very heavy now with all that lead
in it! Sanded down the new skin pieces on the top of both horns. Looks pretty nice. Sanded down glue joint on SB side of new top
skin piece. Its going to need some filler to get it cleaned up. Sanded down all glue joints and staple touch ups on SB forward side.
Started on port side.
May 12 2016 5.5hrs - 2896.0 total. Managed to take the entire day off work, but the local paper is doing a story about the project and
stopped by today for photos and an interview, which ended up taking up about 3 or 4 hours that I didn't count in the running total. First
thing this morning I sanded the port side top skin down and finished saning the rest of the port side that wasn't sealed yet. After lunch
started prepping for the newspaper interview. Cleaned up the shop a bit and hung the elevator and rudder on the fuselage. Also installed
all the inspection hatch covers, elevator access covers, and put a couple screws in the fin fairing. After the interview and photos,
removed all the hatch covers and door. Mixed up big batch of sealer and used a roller to seal both sides of the forward fuselage, and all
areas that had not been sealed yet. Mixed up a small batch of filler and touched up the top skin joints on both sides and a couple other
areas that needed filler. Started sanding green primed areas with 280 grit. Sanded most of the primed area, including all the overlaps,
just one small section left to go.
|Starting on filler panels.
First one being dry fit.
|Second layer of 1.5mm skin glued on.
|Port baggage hatch cover rough
shaped, drilled and countersunk.
|Filler applied to leading edge of fin.
|More filler applied to rudder horn.
|Fin filler and leading edge
sanded to final shape.
|Cargo hatch cover flush riveted to hinge.
|Elevator horn skins
sanded to final shape.
|Rudder and elevator as well as
hatch covers in place.
|Completed rudder horn
looks fine now.
|Entire port side sealed, ready to
be sanded and primed.
|Forward section of SB side being sealed.
Aft portion primer being sanded down.
May 13 2016 8.5hrs - 2904.5 total. Sanded down filler applied yesterday on both sides of top skin and a couple other touch up spots.
Removed rudder and elevator and stored out of the way. Started masking off all opening in prep for sanding and priming of all skin
surfaces. Realized I had to finish the backing plates for the cargo hatch. Sanded areas to be glued. Sanded in scarf joints, sealed up all
surfaces and glued backing plates into cargo hatch opening. Continued masking and have all openings complete except small area on the
bottom backside of the firewall. Not sure how this is going to work as the supports for the front end of the fuselage are in the way, and
I'm not sure how I'm going to be able to roll the fuselage to get to the bottom yet.
May 14 2016 4.0hrs - 2908.5 total. Removed clamps from baggage hatch backing plates. Sanded down glue joints. Masked off
baggage compartment. Finished sanding forward section of SB side of fuselage, top piece and entire port side, except for bottom of
port horiz stab. and stab fairings.
May 15 2016 8.5hrs - 2917.0 total. Finished sanding all of the empenage including the bottoms of the horiz stab - very tiring process.
Went back over several other areas all around the fuselage and sanded down any trouble areas. Have left the bottom un-sanded as I
can't get to it very well. Will have to wait till its on its side to get that area. Vacuumed and dry brushed entire fuselage, then wiped
down with damp cloths to remove all dust. Covered workbench top with brown paper. Laid out .75oz fiberglass and started covering
areas with green primer. Finished forward SB side, also put a strip on aft top of fuselage and tried a larger scrap in the SB horiz stab to
fin faring area. Worked easier than I though it would.
|Baggage compartment hatch
backing plates glued in.
|All hatch covers removed
and areas masked off.
|Port side completely sanded.
Ready for primer.
SB side forward of tail fully primed.
|First try at primer on curved surface.
May 16 2016 5.5hrs - 2922.5 total. Left work early, got all set up to apply primer and fiberglass to the rest of the fuselage. Sanded
down and feathered the edges of areas where new primer will go. Trimmed off all the loose fiberglass from previous prime jobs.
Applied the last of the original fiberglass then opened the new package I'd ordered a couple weeks ago - and its the wrong stuff!
Quickly called all around town and basically confirmed that it doesn't exist here. Called the company I ordered it from in California and
they express overnight shipped a couple of the correct packages that "should" get here by 4:30pm tomorrow. So I just lost two of the
four remaining days to get this done before the show. Used the last remaining scraps of fiberglass to cover a couple more small spots.
Printed out a set of drawings showing the paint patterns. Called a local car detail shop and asked them to make up a set of stencils for
the roundel. E-mailed them the specs. Decided to try applying the primer in a couple of test spots with a roller and a brush, to see if I
could do it without a spray rig. The primer turns to foam if I use a roller - tried a couple different kinds of foam rollers, and all I get is
foam! A paint brush leave major brush marks. Went and bought a $12.00 high end paint brush. A little better, but still not good without
a lot of sanding. It sands really well with 320grit, but I end up removing most of it that way. Will see if I can rent a spray rig
tomorrow. I should be able to get most of the SB side primed while I'm waiting for the fiberglass to show up tomorrow. Still holding
out hope that I can get it painted...
May 17 2016 5.0hrs - 2927.5 total. Its 11:00pm now and I left work today at 11:00am, with a 1/2hr break for diner that 10.5hrs. But
I've only recorded 5hrs as the rest of the time was running around picking up parts, etc. Things that happened today included buying a
spray gun, airline filter, and several hose fittings, borrowing a large compressor from a friend building an RV, several trips to get the
right hose fittings, installing them, visiting the car detail shop (twice) to confirm the roundel stencils, and a couple other stops. Got
everything home and hooked up and tried out the paint gun with some of the white primer. Not as easy as it looks in the videos! Still I
think I'll be able to get the whole thing primed with white pretty quickly once the green is finished and sanded. Fiberglass packets
arrived today just before 1:00pm. After fiddling with the paint gun, compressor and white primer, started applying more fiberglass and
green primer. Covered area over top of instrument panel, used a scrap on the SB horiz stab, and put a large piece on the forward port
side. If I can keep up the momentum, it still might happen!
May 18 2016 13.5hrs - 2941.0 total. Its 3:00am on Thursday the 19th as I type this. Left work about 10:30am Started working on the
project at about 11:00am and only had a couple short breaks. Trimmed some of the extra glass from yesterdays primed areas. Primed
entire port side, finished priming fin both sides, and tops of both stabs. Raised front of fuselage up a couple feet on the bench and
sanded bottom of fuselage that I couldn't reach before. Sanded feathered edge onto all primer edges on bottom sides of fuselage. Primed
entire bottom. Only areas not primed are bottom of stab on both sides.
|New section primed under stab and
on top aft part of fairing.
|Messing around with applying
primer with rollers and brushes -
doesn't work very well.
|New glass and green primer over
instrument panel and small patch
on stab. White is where I tried
out the spray gun.
|New glass and green primer
on forward port side.
|Front end raised up, bottom
sanded and primed.
|Port side primer finished.
May 19 2016 2.5hrs - 2943.5 total. Left work at 10:30am, but
had errands and meetings off and on all day that used up almost
all my time. Was able to trim off most of the fiberglass fringes
and sand down about 90% of the port side. Reality check time -
project goes in the trailer on Saturday morning so only have
tomorrow. No way I can do any painting and have it dry in time.
Planning to sand all the primer down and make up a support for
the engine cowlings. Also tweak the stand for the front end and
clean up the cargo carriers I built the last time the project went
on display. Will need to remove all the masking and re-install all
the hatch covers, etc.