Saturday, 24 July 2010

Busy Day

Busy day in the workshop after pretty much a week off due to flying training for my IMC Rating and fair to say my last lesson this week on Thursday it all kinda made sense although it took it out of me some what!

I went out to the workshop around 11:30am and came back in around 7pm after a small break for the F1 Qualifying this afternoon. Main job today was to fit the top rear wing skins to the left wing and pleased to report I managed to get them all secure by close of play and I also managed to use up another box of 1,000 pop rivets - I have no idea how many rivets are in each wing apart from a lot!!

I also managed to cleco all leading edge skins down today and hopefully tomorrow I'll be able to rivet these and the wing walk doubler then its time to build the wing tip and the left wing will be finished and my prediction is the first wing will take around 100 hours and the second one maybe 50-60 hours as I won't be making mistakes that need undoing taking up lots time, plus the bulk of the metal prep is done for the right wing.

My spare parts have arrived from America (7 rear ribs) and they will arrive next week so I have everything that is required for the right wing hopefully with just 7 rear ribs to debur, flute and prime before I can start building it up. I also have 2 thumb sized dents on the leading edge of the left wing skins which I believe will fill nicely and will decide later if its something I can do or wait until it goes into to be painting sometime in the future.

Sunday, 18 July 2010

Look What I've Made!

A busy weekend preparing the lower left skins and they are now all riveted so the next step is to have the wing inspected which will happen tomorrow when Nigel comes over to have a look and hopefully he'll like what he sees.

So I've spent just over 80 hours preparing this wing but have a feeling the right one will move along a little quicker especially as I won't have to remove the rear ribs on the right wing as I had to on this one as the parts are handed and hard to tell apart or at least that's what I've found so 7 needed replacing as I'd trimmed the rear flange off them and that's required on the plans so they had to be replaced with fresh ones, so if anyone fancies some fully prepared rear left ribs let me know and we'll do a deal.

If all goes well with the inspection then I'll build the right wing and then stop the build until I'm sure where I'm going to be living longer term with the impending job change / lack of contract!! Although I'm not even a third of the way through the build I'm already thinking how the aeroplane will look when finished and have already indentified some areas that need some tlc, the odd dent and scratch etc that will need filling before final paint - More skills to learn

Tuesday, 6 July 2010

Little Job Takes A Long Time

Started building the stall warner today and what looked like a pretty straight forward job took 4 hours to do! The Chapter 16 plans listed washers that didn't match the part numbers I was using so a quick search of the Vans Airforce Forum pointed me in the right direction, the plans also call to use 14 washers but the picture uses 16 so I built it to the picture spec and it seems OK.

I fitted the stall warner to the correct rib and then fitted the lower skin to make sure the stall warner worked and it did after three attempts!! It was then a case of running the cables to the terminal block at the fuselage end of the wing and then make the connections and after that it still worked to my surprise. After that I ran a nice bright orange nylon string to the wing tip for the optional navigation / landing light kit which I have decided not to fit as we rarely use the landing light on Victor Alpha and night flights aren't allowed in the UK on permit aircraft so I decided to save the money, but if the build mood takes me in a few years I'll be able to fit them without too many issues.

Next job is to fit the lower wing skins and get Nigel my LAA inspector over to give everything the once over after they have been riveted. It's a good job my mate Steve is staying at the moment as I need to flip the wing over to do this, its not a one man job unless you have 15ft arms.

Sunday, 4 July 2010

Tough Week But Progress Made

Safe to say I've had an interesting week starting last Monday when I had a meeting with my boss who confirmed what I'd suspected for a while my contract will not be renewed at the end of September which means 3 more months money and then nothing unless I get a new job in the mean time. Like most industries right now radio is a difficult place to find work and if I can't I will consider doing something else whilst throwing myself into the build until parts and funds run out.

OMC training is proving to be bl..dy hard work and I wonder if I'll ever get the hang of it but did some training on Friday in Echo Alpha the glass cockpit 172 and Mike Delta the clockwork PA28 on Saturday and felt more at home in the PA28 but have decided to continue in the 172 as understanding flying in IMC on a glass cockpit is an important skill to learn for when the RV-12 arrives.

On a more positive note I've done a lot of work on the left wing and this coming week I'll be fitting the electronic stall warner and the lower wing skins before inviting my inspector Nigel over to have a look at the wing work so far before hopefully getting the OK to seal the left wing up and place it in the stand outside and hopefully if time allows and by that I mean weeks before I may have to leave this house I will finish the right wing as I figure it will be easier to transport completed parts rather than semi completed parts. I guess if I do end up moving house then the fuselage will have to wait until I'm established in my new location.