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Lighting for the Wings

December 28, 2011

So I haven’t flown at night in…hmmm…since my training days.  Honestly, flying at night holds little attraction to me.  The risk level goes up, but there are some nice advantages for nighttime flying.  Less crowded, smoother air and a completely different view of the world that you’re used to seeing during the day.  But even though I doubt I’ll do much of it, I dont want to be wishing I had lights and didn’t put them on.  Wig-wag for safety, is just one of the benefits I can think of.

I am pretty sure that I’m going to install the brightest LED lights I can get my hands on.  If I bought today, I’d buy the Aeroleds Sun Spot HX.  But I’m not going to buy my lights today.  I’ll wait until MUCH later to do that.  I dont want that kind of money sitting on my wings doing nothing.  In order to prepare my wings, though, I need to prep a mount.  I chose to purchase the Duckworks Aviation light installation kit.  It gives me a good kit of pre-made parts that I can use to mount almost any kind of light.

The process starts off by putting their template into place and tracing out the pattern for the lens.

Traced lines from the template

After this is basically time to cut.  It really isn’t a big deal, just follow the lines and dont rush it.

Rough Cut

Finished cut

Duckworks sends you a box full of parts.  The instructions leave much to be desired, but if you read it enough times and match up the pieces they are talking about, you eventually figure out what you’re trying to do.

New parts ready for prep

There is some rib prep that you have to perform as well.  For some odd reason I didnt take a picture, but they give you a different template and then you mark the ribs, drill some holes and attach a few nut plates for screws.  The nut plates will support the large rectangular piece of aluminum in this picture.

 

 

All ready for primer

Like all the other pieces of aluminum, you have to deburr, edge prep and prime.

Primed and now I have to wait...

While this is drying I’ll cut and prep the lens.  I haven’t worked with any plexi, so this should be fun.

 

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From → Build Log, Wings

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