|This photo is of the prototype during the
earlier phases of construction.
September 23 2018 3.5hrs - 3607.0 total. Spent some more time debating if the
new tail wheel is the right size and finally decided it is. This means the tail wheel fork
will need to be re-made to the new smaller dimensions. Why work on new parts
when I can rebuild a part that's already finished!! What am I doing?! Jacked up the
tail of the plane, removed the fork and took it to the machinists. During this rebuild
he's also going to make up some wheel covers to make the wheel look very
authentic. We also started discussing making the rudder pedals. Back at the shop,
started laying out for the remaining rib scarf extensions. Finished roughing out all of
the remaining 1/4" rib extensions (eight in all). Will need to scarf them and the ribs
in preparation for gluing them on. Still have four 3/8" ribs that need scarf extensions.
|Laying out the remaining
rib scarf extensions.
|Last eight 1/4" ribs and
extensions ready to be scarfed.
September 24 2018 1.5hrs - 3608.5 total. Marked and rough cut out the rib extensions on the 4ea 3/8" ribs. After I had them cut out
I realized I had used the calculation for the size of the scarf joint for 1/4" rather than 3/8" ply. Had used up the last of the 3/8" ply that
I had on hand to make these. After a moment of panic I figured out I only needed another 5/8" length on the scarf to get the minimum
7:1 ratio. I had left some extra material all around the rough cut, and its just enough. I'll need to be very careful cutting and gluing
these joints to make sure I leave enough material in place.
September 26 2018 2.5hrs - 3611.0 total. Setup the scarf platform and sanded the scarf angles into the eight 1/4" and four 3/8" rib
extension pieces. Now need to do the same to the ribs themselves.
September 30 2018 1.0hrs - 3612.0 total. Decided it will be easier to cut the lightening holes in these last remaining ribs before the
extensions are put on. Started cutting the lightening holes.
October 1 2018 2.0hrs - 3614.0 total. Continued cutting lightening holes in ribs 1 through 6 (2ea). About 1/2 done with the smaller
October 8 2018 2.0hrs - 3616.0 total. Continued cutting lightening holes. All the smaller holes are finished (less than 4") now just
have all the big ones to do.
November 11 2018 0.0hrs - 3616.0 total. Have been travelling for the last couple of weeks and not had much time to work on the
Spit. However I've been in touch with a supplier in the UK and have ordered a set of rudder pedals made from a cast of original MK-IX
pedals. Also have ordered an elevator trim wheel and rudder bias knob, complete with micro switches, bases and mounts. Also
ordered a gear position selector - with switches, and to top it all off, a very nice complete spade grip with operating gun button and
brake lever! I'm waiting for permission to post photos and information from the supplier. Looks like very nice stuff. There is a
several month lead time as the parts are custom made. Also, I may be making a deal on an engine soon... more on that as things
Long Gap here.......
January 19 2019 0.0hrs - 3616.0 total. The potential deal on the engine fell through. Have heard from the cockpit parts builder a few
times and he is making progress. Also heard from the welder with the fuel tank. His welder broke and he ordered a new one. Once it
arrives he expects to be able to get the fuel tank completed fairly soon. He says he's already got it partially finished. The other welder
finished remaking the tailwheel fork and the wheel cover plates. They look great!
|All of the rib extensions with
the scarf angles completed.
|Starting on the lightening holes
before adding on the extensions.
|New pile of removed material
is starting to grow.
|Cutting out more lightening holes.
|Big difference from cart
wheel to airplane wheel!
|Old fork and wheel (lower)
compared to the new one (upper).
|Holding the new wheel and
fork up to see how it looks.
|New fork and machined cover plates
that look exactly like originals -
except three bolts instead of four.
|Original tail wheel. Photo is again from
the invaluable Monforton Book.