« Posts tagged rudder

Equal parts forward and back.

6 hours.

One of these days, I’ll move forward without moving backwards.  Today I had to dismount the EFIS in preparation for taking it to MGL Avionics.   Apparently the OAT module is fried.  I tried it with a new probe last week, no dice.   Maybe, if I’m lucky, I’ll be able to drop it off tomorrow on my lunch hour.   Other than that annoyance, I got the tailwheel hardware primed, something I should have done long ago, and I got my spark plugs torqued in.   But now, for some mysterious reason, the tailwheel steering chains don’t reach their mounting points on the rudder anymore.   It’s possible I had the steering link on upside down/backwards, which would have accounted for the missing 3/4″ of chain necessary to bridge the gap between what I need and what I’ve got.   Looks like I’ll be ordering another set of tailwheel chains.  Grumble.

Anyway, once I get my EFIS back from the shop, it’ll be time to prepare the engine for first start.

On another note, I’m progressing nicely in my tailwheel training.   We flew from Torrance to Hawthorne, where I did 8 landings, unassisted.   Apparently I CAN land a Citabria in 3-point attitude.   At least when the wind is coming at me and I set up the approach right.

Emp Tips.

.5 hours.

I’m trying to get back into the rhythm of doing something, anything, once a day. On my list of odds and ends has been the fiberglass empennage tips, and I’ve been avoiding it because I hate fiberglass and there was always something more important to do. This morning, I did the easiest of the 6 empennage fiberglass parts, the rudder tip:

Easy enough. Cut off the excess with a Dremel, drill, countersink for CS4-4 pop rivets, rivet on. There may or may not be later stages of filler, but at this point, it’s done, it’s on, and it won’t come off. The other tips will need a bit more work, since there’s trimming, and a need to reinforce them. The elevator tips need to be covered up and filled once the counterweights are drilled for balance. But then that’s DONE, and then it’s all about wiring and firewall forward.

More odds and ends.

2 hours.

I’m waiting for parts from the Mothership, so it’s all about what I can find to do while I’m waiting. Mostly I sat out there puzzling out wiring runs. The floor panels are in already, so I might have a nice game of Go Fish to look forward to when it comes to running wires for 2 GPS antennae (yes, 2, in case I get hold of a GNS 430W), trim servo, strobe unit power, tail light, then strobe wires forward for the wingtip strobes. What I did actually get done was finally rivet the reinforcing angle that the tank brackets attach to just forward of the main spar. I can’t believe I forgot to do that during wing mating, but I think I probably had other things on my mind at that point. So that’s done, and there are little blobs of torque seal on the accompanying thru-bolts to tell me I don’t have to worry about it anymore. Oh.. remember this thing? F-697?

It’s the canopy jettison bracket. I put it on the subpanel because I was just following the directions. Then I realized I’m not going to install the canopy jettison system (weight, complexity, etc). Now I realize that thing might get in the way if I have to chop holes in the subpanel for some deep avionics, like a GNS 430W or some other surprisingly large piece of gear I think I need. So I took it out. You can never have too much practice drilling out rivets.

After that, I fiddled around with the fiberglass rudder tip, and worked on the mounting system for the tail position/strobe. This is genius. At some point, I bought a length of 1/4″ aluminum dowel from the hardware store. What I did was cut 2 half-inch lengths of it, which I’ll drill and tap to 4-40, the same thread as the tail light mounting screws. I’ll put some dimples in the sides of them, then sink them into blobs of flox in the rudder bottom. At that point, they’ll be permanently affixed and I’ll still be able to unscrew them to change bulbs. OH, thumbs down on the build quality of the rudder botttom. The two halves of the rudder bottom don’t exactly line up along the seam, so I’m going to have to clean it up with micro and sandpaper. If I was exceptionally skilled with sheet metal, I’d make my own out of aluminum, but I’m not, so I’ll deal.

Finally, I messed around with the tailwheel springs. I’m going to need to order new chain. I should have looked at the plans. I remember them going together completely differently, and it took me some time to figure out that getting the chain directly on to the spring is no big deal. But the puzzle fooled this monkey, and I missed ‘Castle’ for nothing.

I’m going to pester Tim again this week and see what the deal is with my cylinders.