This photo is of the prototype during the
earlier phases of construction.
February 28 2015 2.5hrs - 2280.0 total. Used a larger thread nutplate with the
same hole pattern to drill all the holes for mounting the needed nutplates on both
access hatch backing plates. Countersunk the rivet holes as necessary. Traced the
outlines of the underlying bulkheads and stringers on the inside of the skin to aid in
glue and pre-sealing. Permanently mounted the oleo strut onto the bottom longeron
including cotter pin. Ordered a countersunk clevis bolt for the final attach that
goes up through the longeron to the oleo bracket. It will be installed later after the
skin is installed across the bottom.
|Skin with tracing lines on inside surface.
|Backing plates with nutplate holes finished.
March 1 2015 1.5hrs - 2281.5 total. Looking at cutting access port into bottom of horiz stab. Spent some time thinking about
options and realized that the wire terminals that go on the end of the wire don't have to fit through the plastic tubing. The tubing is
pulled out of a hole in the elevator when its removed from the stab. So the wire terminals need to be able to fit through the same
hole after the tube is removed! This is a lot more space and will allow the rudder and elevator to be pulled off with the plastic
tubing being pulled out and then the disconnected wires can come out the same hole. No need for the DB-9 and DB-15
connectors. Can use terminal strips instead. Made up a small strip and some blocking to mount terminal strip. Drilled and
countersunk for nutplates. Put in some lightening holes.
March 8 2015 4.0hrs - 2285.5 total. Clevis pin came in - not countersunk. 50ea 6-32 nutplates also arrived - wrong size mounting
holes! They're great mini nutplates that I will definitely use later, but I've already drilled all the holes for the larger size. Went and
bought all the correctly sized nutplates they had in stock at the local store. Also had them order a counter sunk machine screw.
We'll see if its the right size or not. Mixed up a double batch of thin epoxy and sealed the inside of the large skin piece. Also sealed
the access panel backing plates. Sealed and glued together the terminal mount blocking. Removed, sanded down and re-primed the
tail strut mounting brackets. Started planning for skinning the bottom of the fuselage. Marked on fuselage where 1.5, 2 and 3mm
skin section need to go. Check my stock to be sure I have enough of each. Started making up a paper template for the first 2mm
March 9 2015 2.5hrs - 2288.0 total. Riveted nutplates in place on both backing plates and terminal strip blocking. Found some bolts
long enough to reach through the terminal strip mounting holes to the nutplates on the bracket, had to cut them down a little. Put a
coat of paint on the tail strut mounting brackets. Removed paper template from fuselage, started to layout on plywood stock.
Plywood is 48" long. The distance between the furthest BHs I wanted to get in one piece is 48 1/4". Just a little too far. Will need
to split it up into multiple skin pieces. Also decided to go ahead and trim back the existing skin where it extends past the edges of
the longerons. When I glued the earlier skin pieces on, I extended it about 1/2" to 1" beyond the edge of the longerons. It will work
better if I just cut that existing skin overhang off before scarfing it.
March 13 2015 2.0hrs - 2290.0 total. Ground and sanded overlapping skin from SB side, started on skin on port side.
March 14 2015 2.5hrs - 2292.5 total. Finished sanding down skin overlap on port side. Went back and fine sanded all edges port
and SB. Re-fit the paper template and marked the edges now that the skin overhang is removed. Removed template and used it to
trace forward section of template onto plywood stock. Rough cut to shape. Trial fit on fuselage, clamped and pinned in place.
Traced around edges to mark areas to scarf on existing fuselage skin. Also traced location of BHs and longerons onto inside of skin
March 15 2015 3.5hrs - 2296.0 total. Sanded down all contact surfaces on the BHs and longerons where new skin piece will be
glued. Sanded inside surface of skin to prep for glue and sealer. Scarfed edges of new skin piece and overlap areas on existing
March 16 2015 1.0 hrs - 2297.0 total. Got out the clamps, straps, shims, clamping boards, etc and set up a dry fit full clamping of
the new piece of skin to practice for the up coming glue job. Checked for fit, gaps, etc. Looks like I should round the bottom
longeron a little more.
March 28 2015 4.0hrs - 2301.0 total. Removed the temp installed skin and checked the shape and symmetry of the ribs. Decided
none of the gaps are too large that thickened epoxy can't handle it. Prepped area for wire terminal strip. Also sanded down all
contact areas on inside of aft skin piece. Prepped and glued in the access panel backing plates. Glued terminal strip in place. Cut a
piece of spiral wrap and covered elevator trim wiring where it left the main bundle and ran to the tubing that goes through the horiz
March 29 2015 2.0hrs - 2303.0 total. Removed clamps from access panel backing plate glue job. Sanded down and cleaned up glue
joints. Trial fit skin piece. Ground off a couple of areas where the backing plates landed on the BHs. Removed the DB-9 connectors
I had previously installed on the wiring for the rudder. Installed terminal strip on its mount. Re-terminated all the rudder wires with
circular wire lugs strengthened with heat shrink. Cut a small hole in BH to route wires. Installed wire clamp.
April 1 2015 1.0hrs - 2304.0 total. Put lock washers under each of the screws in the terminal strip. Zip tied the cables to each
other to prevent chafing. Spent about 45 minutes just planning and pondering about if its OK to go ahead and put the skin over this
|Access panel backing plates sealed
and nut plates and rivets dry fitted.
|Making paper template for bottom skin.
|New coat of paint on tail strut brackets.
|Nutplates riveted in place. Terminal
strip dry fit on blocking piece.
|Trimmed skin back flush with
bottom of longeron.
|Starting to remove overlap on port side.
|Scarfed edge of skin piece and
existing skin on fuselage.
|Practice clamping, checking
for fit, gaps, etc.
|Gluing access panel backing
plates onto aft skin piece.
Base for wire terminal strip glued in place.
Terminals strip in place.
All wires re-terminated
April 3 2015 2.5hrs - 2306.5 total. Glued piece of skin in belly of the fuselage. Touched up and sealed hole drilled for wire and screw
hole for wire clamp in tail.
April 4 2015 3.0hrs - 2309.5 total. Removed clamps from yesterdays glue job. Applied second coat of sealer to inside of new skin
piece. Started painting bottom longeron and aft part of fuselage that was never painted. Got two coats on most of the forward portion
of the bottom longeron and all the areas sanded down for epoxy . First coat applied to most of inside of aft fuselage.
April 6 2015 0.5 hrs - 2310.0 total. Applied 2nd coat of paint to some of the aft fuselage area.
April 8 2015 1.5hrs - 2311.5 total. Continued painting areas inside aft fuselage. Still not done.
April 10 2015 1.5hrs - 2313.0 total. Finished up 2nd coat of paint inside areas of aft fuselage. Put two coats of paint on inside of new
skin piece that will be glued on aft fuselage, only painting the areas that will not be glued. Also put 1st coat of paint on the new piece of
skin that was just glued in the center of the belly section.
April 11 2015 1.0hrs - 2314.0 total. Final prep sanded the area of the aft SB fuselage that will get the new skin piece, and also final
sanded the inside of the skin piece itself. All ready to be glued on.
April 12 2015 2.5hrs - 2316.5 total. Glued skin piece in place. After it had partially dried, removed some of the clamps and all the
staples as I was afraid that if I didn't get the staples out at this point, I wouldn't be able to get them out at all after the epoxy fully set.
April 13 2015 2.0hrs - 2318.5 total. Removed all the clamps, sanded down staple holes and part of the exposed glue joints. Touched
up the paint on the inside of the new skin piece - where I could reach. Also put 2nd coat of paint on inside of skin piece in center of
the belly. Started planning out how to make backing plates for the tail wheel strut cover. Will use aluminum for the actual cover, but
will make the backing pieces out of wood ply.
April 17 2015 1.5hrs - 2320.0 total. Masked off holes in bottom diaphragm to keep sawdust out of aft fuselage. Sanded down
extruded glue from tail strut area. Planned out how to attach backing plates for strut cover. Made up templates for belly section areas in
front of, and behind the strut section. Started to layout on plywood stock.
April 18 2015 5.0hrs - 2325.0 total. Traced templates onto plywood. Cut out plywood, Sanded to final shape. Setup steaming station.
Steamed tight bend into each new skin piece then clamped in place on fuselage and let them cool and dry. Put in locater pins, traced
location of BH and stringers on inside of skin pieces. Taped over access panels and hung up rags to cover opening into fuselage to
prevent sawdust from getting into fuselage. Sanded down all contact surfaces in preparation for gluing. Sanded scarf into skins on
fuselage and also onto new skin pieces.
April 19 2015 6.5hrs - 2331.5 total. Glued both new skin pieces in place first thing in the morning. Glued dried enough by the end of
the day to go ahead and remove clamps, staples, etc. Relocated supports holding up fuselage to a new spot a little further up the work
table to provide free access to the areas that need skin now. Masked off openings in bottom of fuselage in preparation for sanding the
scarf angles in the existng skin areas. Started laying out for the next pieces of skin.
|Skin piece being glued in center of belly.
|Most of inside of aft fuselage painted now.
|Two coats of paint on inside
surface areas that won't be glued.
|Skin glued in place under horiz
stab on SB side of fuselage.
|Starting to layout templates for new skin
sections in front and behind tail strut.
|New skin pieces cut to size, steamed,
scarfed and ready to be glued in place.
|Starting to layout next skin pieces.
|New skin pieces glued in place
|New skin pieces from a different angle.
|Different angle showing the
area that will be skinned next.
|One of the visitors to this website asked
for a shot showing the overall project.