So, it's been another few months and it's time for a bit of an update.
Structurally, the aeroplane-in-a-box is complete. There is nothing left to do to make it flyable, other than take it to the airport. I could bolt the wings on and fly it by dinnertime.
That being said, there is still a short list of things I need to do before the first flight, including some of the following:
- Calibrate the fuel gauges for both tanks.
- Verify adequate fuel flow in a nose-up attitude.
- Calibrate the compass
- Verify full power operation for a certain time.
- Install and safety-wire the prop.
- Permanently install the wingtips, elevator and horizontal stabiliser fairings.
- Stick on the vinyl registration stickers to the tail & wing.
- Install the flightworthy bolts in the wing spars, control runs and tail attachments and;
- Verify control surface travel is within limits and the control stops function effectively.
- Calculate the empty weight Centre of Gravity, Gross Weight CG and Zero Fuel Weight CG, to ensure they remain within limits.
I've had 2 inspections from a "Technical Counsellor", and have corrected the deficiencies he picked up yesterday, the biggie being inadequate spinner-to-cowling clearance. Sorted that out by installing 2 x 2 washers under the upper engine mounts to lower the spinner slightly. When she's flying, I'll order a marginally longer spacer from Saber, a new aluminium spinner from Cummins Spinners
to make it look better as I had to trim mine slightly due to the aforementioned clearance issue (Note: there was nothing at all wrong with the spinner from Alan the first time, it would have fit perfectly if I had the recommended clearance), and remove the washers to bring it back to where things should be.
We weighed the plane yesterday and came up with the following Left gear: 169.7, Nose Gear: 82.85, Right Gear: 169.7 for a total empty weight of 422.25Kg, or 931Lbs.
happy with that, as The Mothership suggest an empty weight of 1028-1075Lbs, so I'm nearly 100lbs lighter than could reasonably be expected. I didn't have the prop blades (Sensenich composite G/A, 3 Lbs) or the gear fairings installed, so I'm still working on a 950Lbs
basic empty weight.
With 165 HP she'll go like a scalded cat.
As I'll be using a registration category that limits the maximum takeoff weight to 1320Lbs initially, I have nearly 380Lbs payload, so that's me + full fuel, or Me + Mini-Me + 3.5hrs fuel, which is plenty for the intended usage.
So here's a few of the latest photos, including the chosen livery.
The complete electrical schematic for the plane.
Ignore the sleeping bag. That's there to cover the canopy at night, just-in-case....