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Center Section Proceeds

May 7, 2013

Contrary to popular belief, I have not fallen into a hole and disappeared.  I have been working a bit here and a bit there on the plane when I can.  Work and life get in the way some, so I have to get in a little at a time as I can. 

Before starting the center section I had to get the tail out of the garage.  Like the other bits and pieces I took it to a storage unit to keep it from getting damaged from baseballs, hockey pucks, lacrosse balls or some other unknown misadventure.  

I started by going upstairs and collecting all the parts that are required.  Some of them I got fully prep’d and painted.  I didn’t do the baggage compartment ribs for some odd reason.  Two of the bulkheads that I built before also are part of this section of the build;  F-704 and F-705.  

Like all the build parts you start with a fitting to make sure everything is correct.  This is where I ran into my first problem.  The bottom flange of the 705 bulkhead would not line up with the holes in the bottom skin.  I found this most mysterious.  After sleeping on it I went back out to the garage with my morning coffee and stared at it some more.  Turns out the seat belt anchors were underneath the aft flanges of the seat ribs (F-715).  This was pushing the bulkhead aft about an 1/8″.  I removed all of the seat ribs and removed the seat belt anchors.  A few seconds on the ScotchBrite wheel got them straightened out nicely.  

The baggage compartment ribs were easy enough.  I think I need to tweak the flanges on some of them.  They aren’t sitting at nice right angles like I want.  

Here’s where the parts sit today.

Fuselage - center section - initial fitting

Fuselage - center section - initial fittingI have some concerns about the steps.  I purchased the two steps for the plane, but I am starting to have second thoughts.  I wonder if I can come up with something different like a step stool.  I’m just thinking about drag, here.  If I could save a bit of weight and some drag that might not be a bad thing.  I need to research this some more.

If everything works out OK, I might be able to get all these pieces prepped this weekend and ready for riveting.  I usually bite off more than I can chew. 

From → Build Log, Fuselage

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