A while back, whilst trying to decide what coms to put in this thing, I found a local ad from a guy selling basic 2.25" mount radios for a few hundred dollars a pop. His name was Frank, and he had a stock of 25kHz-spaced stuff which he was getting from Germany after Europe went to 8.33kHz spacing. I figured one of these would suffice until I'd flown the aircraft enough to decide whether I wanted to keep it or otherwise.
Frank sorted me out with a Becker unit, which I wired to a Signtronics intercom which I had laying around. I couldn't get sound to come out, so, suspecting the intercom was duff, I changed the intercom to another Sigtronics box, but the improvement was marginal. I wasted a lot of time trying to get it to work, and didn't really learn much in the process.
So went back to Frank and asked him to build me a harness (which I, at first, called a 'loom', much to his Germanic delight). Somewhere along the line the Becker, and some extra money, was swapped for two Dittels of the same 2.25" format, and a PMA-4000 intercom.
Yesterday I tried to install it into the aircraft, only to discover I'd spaced the holes in the insert panel too far apart, meaning the radios did not clear the mounting brackets. Difficult to explain, but it meant I had to make another insert panel.
My local powdercoat place is a massive rip-off, so not wanting to go that route again, I looked into alternative finished for the new part. Realizing that I had a whole load of epoxy leftover from the cowl repair, and some carbon fiber left over from my Cri-Cri instrument panel years back, I decided to laminate the aluminum with it. I lightly spray-glued the panel, carefully laid it onto the carbon (as not to disturb the weave), then epoxied over it with a foam brush. The next morning, I took a razor blade and cut around the edges. The end result is crisp, and I'm really happy with it.
I might do some other bits of the interior in this finish.
Also, yesterday, flew to Victorville KVCV to gawk at Covid-grounded airliners with a friend (who just completed his Airbus rating and is not flying any time soon). Anyway, he has a nice RV-4. Check out all this equipment just sitting there, costing...