Friday, March 09, 2007


I spent about 4 hours finishing up the empennage today. I had to do a lot of sanding and shaping of the fiberglass parts to get a good fit. When I closed up the ends of the tips on the stabilizers it built up a little more than I needed so I had to sand it down to get it to fit properly. The plans call for a 1/8" gap between the control surfaces. Once I got things sanded down I had to attach the rudder and take it apart four times to get it it fit properly. Then I started on the elevators and only had to take them off twice before I had a good fit. But that's it for the Empennage and my next step is the wings. The Quickbuild option is a little more than $10,000 so I'm going to have to wait to see how the tax man treats me this year and wait for the vacation pay from the company. Hopefully I'll be ready to order by the end of April or first part of May.

4 Hours

Total hours on project = 195

Wednesday, March 07, 2007


I finished up the other elevator today by final drilling the holes to the #30 size and then deburred and dimpled the aluminum and then countersunk the fiberglass to accept the CS4-4 pop rivets. I also got the tips for both the stabilizers closed up and riveted those on with the CS4-4 pop rivets. I got a lesson on applying 'glazing putty' and then tried my hand at it to smooth out the interface on the rudder and elevator tips. I put a little too much activator in the first batch and it set up way to quick on me. I sanded that out after it dried and tried again. It still set up pretty quick but I was able to get it put in place this time. All I need to do now is sand that out and smooth it to the final shape.

4 Hours
Total hours on project = 191

Tuesday, March 06, 2007


Today I finished up the fiberglass tips for the rudder and the one elevator that I worked on yesterday. I had to final drill the holes to the #30 size and then took everything apart so I could deburr the holes. On the aluminum side of the rudder and elevator I used the squeezer to dimple the holes. For the fiberglass pieces I had to use the countersink bit and countersunk the holes. After I got everything cleaned up well I used the CS4-4 pop rivets and permanently installed the fiberglass tips. When I finished with that I got the last fiberglass tip our for the other elevator and cut the aluminum strips and using the holes in the fiberglass tip drilled the pilot holes in the aluminum. I cleaned everything up real well and then glued the strips to the fiberglass. I was able to hold them in place with clecos and clamps and left it to dry overnight.

4 Hours
Total hours on project = 187

Sunday, March 04, 2007


I spent the afternoon today cutting the aluminum strips for the rivet reinforcement on the fiberglass tips for the rudder and one of the elevators. After cutting the strips I deburred and then clamped them in place and drilled the pilot holes using the holes in the fiberglass tips as a guide. Once I had everything cleco'd in place and was satisfied with the fit I took it all apart and cleaned it up real well. Finally I glued the strips in place using clecos and clamps to hold them while they dry.

3 hours
Total hours on project = 183

Saturday, March 03, 2007


Today I checked my stabilizer tips and found that the glue had set up nicely where I put the aluminum strips on yesterday. So I was able to mount the tips to the stabilizers and final drill the holes to #30. Then I took it apart and deburred the holes. I dimpled the holes in the stabilizers and used my countersink bit to countersink the holes in the aluminum. The next step is to close the open ends of the fiberglass tips. I'm going to get Craig Easter of Precision Design to help me out with that since he's an expert in working in fiberglass.

1 Hour
Total hours on project = 180

Friday, March 02, 2007


I worked on the fiberglass tips for the horizontal stabilizer today. Each of them were too long by about 1 1/2" so I had to trim them back to the proper fit. I held the elevators up to check the clearance to make sure they were sized properly. There were no pre-drilled holes to attach the tips with so I had to measure and mark and then drill the pilot holes through the horizontal stabilizer and the fiberglass tip and cleco it in place. Once I got the tips sized and fit I cut strips of aluminum and glued into the tips for a reinforcement backing for when I rivet the tips in place. I did this for both tips on the horizontal stabilizer and the one on the vertical stabilizer. That was a total of six strips as there is one on each side of each tip.

3 Hours

Total hours on project = 179