Monday, August 19, 2013

Steps, Antennas, and Stuff

A lot of work has been completed, but I lack that exemplary feeling of joy after completing a section or part that I normally get. I suppose this felt more like a lot of small chores that needed to be done in order for me to move on to those larger tasks. Don't get me wrong, this was still a lot of work.

Tues 13th - 1.75hrs- Started upper forward fuselage section
Wed 14th -0.5hrs- Measured for antenna install, made spacers for step
Thur 15th -1.0hrs- Worked on upper fuselage, bent panels, drilled out holes
Sat 17th -6.5hrs- Made antenna doublers, drilled skin for antenna install, primed parts, installed stainless steel heater boxes, made clips for wiring conduit
Sun 18th -5.25hrs- Installed side panels, installed steps

I didn't get very far on the upper forward fuselage section. I just clecoed parts, drilled holes, made a stiffener out of extrusion, and then clecoed to the aircraft.

I ordered and installed the stainless steel heater boxes instead of Van's aluminum ones. Stainless Steel's thermal conductivity, or K-value, is a fraction of aluminum's; meaning that the stainless steel heater boxes will insulate the tunnel from the heat better than aluminum. Hopefully, this keeps the tunnel's heat cooler than what it would originally be. Also, in the event of an engine fire the aluminum would just turn into a puddle from the heat but the stainless steel would still be there. I also installed the boxes with a high temp silicone gasket (note the white tube in the pic below was shipped with the boxes) and some 3M fire barrier sealant around the edges to help keep the fumes out.

The Com Antennas Install has begun!
See my previous post for what my plan is for these antennas as well as dimensions and a discussion on the doubler sizing. I made the doubler first, per the dimensions I show on the previous post, and then I drilled out the rivets on the outboard frame since they will be incorporated into the doubler install. I match drilled the existing holes into the doubler and then match drilled the doublers holes to the skin.

I then drilled the large center hole in each part, deburred, dimpled, and primed everything. Here is a pic looking down and forward on the left hand installation location.
The doublers and shims dimpled and primed.

  The antenna clecoed in place.

 I finally got around to installing the side vent doors.

The step install.
I am installing these a little differently than what the plans say to do. I am using 1/4in hardware instead of #10 and I am installing it at angle instead of straight up and down. This will allow removal of the bolt in the future through the access panels I will be installing in the luggage compartment floor. I also made spacers from delrin rod to insert into the step tube to reinforce the tubing and prevent it from being deformed while tightening the bolt. I made them from delrin because it's cheap, I think it was around $3 for the rod I bought, and it wont cause dissimilar metal corrosion sitting inside the step.

 I made a makeshift insertion and positioning tool from pvc and safety wire.

 The step installed. It's a little scratched from sliding it in place, but I can touch that up later.

 View from the outside and the "shin protector" is installed.

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