Believe it or not, it’s been a year since 313TD was given its special airworthiness certificate. In that year, I’ve put 65 hours on it, which is respectable. But alas, no matter the hours, the regs say you have to do an annual inspection.
I won’t bother posting the whole list of items checked, but I did find a few things I wasn’t terribly happy about.
- Throttle cable got a little too close to the exhaust. Operation seems fine, but the plastic wrap is bubbled slightly where the heat-wrap runs out. It also chafes against the fuel pump. I wired up a fix, we’ll see if it stays.
- The wires going into the lower rudder cover are a little chafed. Wrapped ’em up good.
- Left side fuel vent line fitting was loose. Blue residue inside the wing root fairing.
- The screws holding the spinner on were crap. Two of them stripped out and had to be removed via drill. Replaced all with 6/32 stainless.
- Stripped out a mag screw. Why do they make those things with Torx fittings? Suck it, Slick Aircraft. I was able to drill off the screw and replace it with a slotted one like it’s supposed to have.
- Fuel hose from throttle body to injection spider was loose at the spider. That’s the only really scary one. But this is what inspections are for.
- Left aft wheel pant cracked. I think I may have jammed a chock under it a little too hard at some point. I have to fix this over the weekend.
To do the job, I rented some floor space from Andre over at Bill’s Air Center. Once I got in, I was able to do the job in 3-4 hour chunks, using mostly my own tools. The guys there are awesome! It really helps to have several master aircraft mechanics occasionally looking over your shoulder and helping you out with the hard stuff. But really, most of the pain is dealing with access panels. So many screws. I have a few things left, but mostly I wanted to get out of the shop and give Andre his floor space back. Here’s what’s left:
- Adjust Idle. This is the biggest one. I re-timed the mags, and it looks like they’re better than the last time I did them, plus with a set of clean plugs, the engine runs way better. Problem is, the idle is about 200rpm too high, and it stumbles a bit on throttle advance. I suspect this is because of the change in timing.
- Fix wheel pant. Without this, I can’t fly. That happens ASAP.
- Reinstall interior. I took most of it out and left it at home while I was working. Seemed like the smart thing to do.
- Fix o-ring on right fuel drain. Fuel leaks are not cool.
I also fixed a couple of things that were annoying me, like the canopy latch being too tight to allow smooth operation.
So once I get my to-do’s done, I’ll make a logbook entry certifying its airworthiness and take it for a test flight.