4TH QTR 2003           •   •   • 
10/02/03 3.2 683.7 Clamped the fin fairings in position, located the J-strips onto the upper longerons and tack welded them on. Removed fairings and did the skip welds. Located and drilled holes to match the nutserts around the aft bulkhead of the turtledeck. Located, drilled #40 and clecoed holes in bottom fin rib and J-strips to hold fairing in place. The fin rib has 10 clecos spaced 2.844" apart. The longeron J-strip has 2 clecos at the rear 2.5" apart then 8 clecos forward of that 3.14" apart. Removed fairings and drilled 3/16 hole 1" down on tailpost thru fin aft spar for AN3-13A bolt. Reinstalled fairings one at a time to back drill 3/16" thru tailpost and fairings. Did some initial forming of the aft vertical edges to the tailpost with a hand seamer. Fin fairing clamped in place and ready to tack weld longeron J-strip Ten clecos installed in lower fin rib
Initial fit of fairings to tailpost Hand seamer
10/16/03 2.1 685.8 Improved fit of the fin fairings. Used 2x4 form blocks to rework the curves at the tailpost. Trimmed the aft edges of the fairings to fit good with the rubber gap seals I'll be using. Removed stab and then drilled out the #40 cleco holes to 11/64 in prep for installing nutplates. Installing black clecos Blocks used to form bend at tailpost
Detail of curve at tailpost Aft view of fin fairings
10/20/03 2.5 688.3 Installed nutplates in fin and fuselage J-strip for fin fairings. Installing nutplates on fin lower rib Nutplates on fin, ready to install nutplates on fuselage
10/30/03 2.0 670.3 Test fit fairings. Did a little more adjustment to the left fin fairing aft edge curve so it wrapped around the tailpost better. Removed fairings and trimmed upper front corners to fit better with fiberglass trutledeck to fin fairing. Drilled holes and installed nutplates in fin fairings to hold it. Fiberglass fin fairing test fitted with clecos Nutplates installed in aluminum fin fairings Fiberglass fin fairing mounted
11/01/03 2.4 672.7 Located and tack welded the stringer standoffs onto vertical tubes 210-13 and 210-15 using a length of stringer material on edge and clamped to the other vertical tubes for support. For a picture of the standoffs sorted click here. Note that the standoffs that weld onto tube 210-13 stick out more than the ones for 210-15 because the stringers taper as they go aft. See Tail Stringer Drawing for details. Upper standoffs tacked Standoff tack welded Lower standoffs tacked
11/02/03 1.0 673.7 Finish welded the stringer standoffs.
11/10/03 1.0 674.7 Fitted the ends of the side stringers into the formers at Tube 210-11. I ended up putting a "step" in the stringers so the stringer fits tight in the former, but also so the exposed part of the stringer is flush with the edge of the steel former. This is done to ensure a smooth fabric transition at each stringer. Stringer fit into former
11/19/03 1.5 676.2 Bought a 1/4" radius router bit, and set up my router table on my table saw. Did some testing on scrap stringer material to get the radius cut right. Using offset measurements taken on a recent visit to Kimball Enterprises, I did some layout on the 3/8" x 1 3/4" spruce stringer stock. Router table setup Detail of router bit and test cuts Marking width of stringer from the TUBE
11/26/03 2.8 679.0 Finished layout on the side stringers using a strip of oak trim clamped in a curve fitting to the offset marks drawn earlier. I then cut the stringers freehand on the table saw, note that I left the stringers extra long so I would have plenty of wood to hold onto as I neared the end of the cut. I then used a sanding block to fine tune the curved edges and finally routed the radiuses into the curved edge. Marking cut line on a stringer Stringer cut in table saw Routing radius into curved stringer edge
12/01/03 1.0 680.0 Made a couple of simple wood jigs to hold the belly stringer formers on tubes 210-33 and 210-35. Note that Kevin omits the standoffs at tube 210-37. Also the standoffs at 210-33 are 10.875 apart, and the ones at tube 210-35 are 7.375 apart. This is different than plans. Standoffs at 210-33 ready for tack weld Standoffs at 210-35 ready for tack weld
12/02/03 3.3 683.3 Welded the standoffs on tubes 210-33 & -35.Cut the two bottom stringers to length then began fitting the upper edges of them to fit up into the fuselage structure as shown in pictures Stringer Detail, PB147586, PB147589, and PB147590. I used a die grinder to cut the notches in the stringers a little bit at a time until the fit similar to the example pictures. Standoffs welded Grinding out material so stringer will fit over a fuselage diagonal
12/03/03 0.8 684.1 Marked and cut the lower edge of the belly stringers but didn't have time to cut the radiuses. Belly stringer marked for cutting bottom curve
12/04/03 2.2 686.3 Did some more fitting of the bottom stringers, mostly to the diagonal tubes but also the front where they meet the sheetmetal. Used a long sanding block to smooth the bottom curves cut the day before, then I touted the radiuses. I didn't like how the side stringers flopped around at the tails without support from tube 210-17, so I used some left over 4130 sheet from my laser cut fittings to make some miniature tabs to weld onto the tubes. Basically I cut a narrow strip of the sheet drilled a small hole (for a 4-40 model airplane screw and locknut) near one end and then welded it in the proper position on tube -17. Afterwards, I used a dremel cutoff wheel to trim the tab to length and free up the strip to make the next tab. Leaving the tab long while welding kept it from overheating and melting away during the tedious welding. I got 2 of the 4 aft "mini" tabs installed. Front end of belly stringer going into aft belly former Tails of belly stringers rounded
Aft view Miniature tab used to hold tails of side stringers
12/06/03 1.0 687.3 Welded on the other 2 mini tabs, then drilled holes on the side and belly stringers for mounting to the standoffs and mini tabs.
12/16/03 1.5 688.8 Put on first coat of Polyfiber UV-550 urethane varnish on the fuselage side and belly formers. The UV-550 is mixed 2:1 with the U-865 catalyst. Varnishing the fuselage formers Polyfiber UV-550 urethane varnish & U-865 catalyst
12/22/03 1.3 690.1 Put the second coat on the stringers.
12/29/03 2.4 692.5 Switched efforts to the landing gear, by fitting the sway plate to the fuselage. Because of the weld beads around the landing gear bushings, I used a die grinder to take material away from around the holes so the plate would sit flat against the longeron. Next I set the landing gear spring in place (that spring is heavy for one person!) and installed the axles backwards so I could take some measurements to center it on the fuselage. I then clamped the sway plate to the spring such that the two would stay together when the spring was removed for drilling. Also I took some measurements from the tail to each gear leg to verify the alignment, the left leg is 1/8" aft of the right. Sway plate before fitting Die grinder was used to enlarge holes in sway plate
Centering gear spring on fuselage Checking gear alignment
12/30/03 4.5 697.0 My dad came over and helped me take the spring off and drill the 1/4" hole through the gear spring. Since I had used several clamps to hold the sway plate on the gear it was easy to locate and drill on the press. We then lifted the fuselage up on saw horses and installed the sway plat and gear spring. Next we temporarily installed the axles and wheels and tires. Note the wheel halves got torqued to 130 in-lbs after installing the tubes & tires. We then put the bottom sheetmetal, tail feathers, tailwheel and stringers on and rolled it out in the driveway for some pictures. Drilling 1/4" sway plate hole thru gear spring Gear spring installed under fuselage
Aft right view Forward left view
QTR TOTAL 16.6  
 4TH QTR 2003           •   •   •