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  #61  
Old 04-07-2014, 05:38 AM
Strike69's Avatar
Strike69 Strike69 is offline
 
Join Date: Nov 2011
Location: Glen Burnie, MD
Posts: 94
Default Spring progress

Enough already ... where is spring? It has been a long hard winter and I am very ready for spring and warmer weather. Who knew we would have this much snow and cold weather in south eastern Virginia? Eventful month with college shopping for my daughter and receiving word on my next assignment. Fortunately I am only moving 3 hours north (south of Baltimore) and can come back on weekends to finish but it would be really nice to have everything done by the time I move in June. So long hours at the airport now with the finish work.

I went ahead and did the horizontal stab modification per the SB. Drilling and re-riveting the spar was not a lot of fun but I am glad it is done now instead of having to pull the tail off later. It set me back a couple of weeks but was also a good opportunity to fix the elevator horns and connect.

Before:



One of our EAA chapter members welded the holes closed and I re-drilled the connect.

After:



Now the elevators are flush on both sides. Nutplates and fairings were a logical next step to finish the tail section completely.





I'm not a big fan of how the lower stab gap seal worked/fit so I shaped some foam and made a fiberglass lower fairing.





Installed the fuel pump and red cube using nutserts to secure the pump to the floor. A little creative tube bending was needed but it all fits.



Built a heating/cooling air mixing box and affixed to the firewall.



Like others, since I am using a Superior engine with horizontal induction and an Airflow Performance fuel control, I needed to make a custom throttle cable bracket.



And my motivation for the month ... the Data Plate.



I need to make big progress by the end of the month so if you are in the Hampton Roads area, come on out and I'll put you to work.
__________________
Mike "Strike" Messer, CFI/CFII/MEI, ATP
RV-8A/F-15E/T-38/T-37/T-6
RV-8A Phase II
N-251WM
Garmin G3X/GTN-650/Dynon D6/GTX-23ES/TruTrak GX Pilot/GDL-39
Eagle XTREEM I0-360-B1HD2 (dual P-mags)
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  #62  
Old 04-13-2014, 04:46 PM
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Strike69 Strike69 is offline
 
Join Date: Nov 2011
Location: Glen Burnie, MD
Posts: 94
Default It has wings!

Okay, I normally don't put anything up except at the end of the month but today was a special day. The usual suspects were over to help fit the wings and after a little bit of white lithium grease on the spars, they slide right in ... much better than the gear. Eight 3 oz fishing weights hung down the leading edge of the wings acted as plumb bobs and a laser line level was used to sight the sweep while the iPhone declinometer helped to measure the incidence (isn't modern tech wonderful?). Surprisingly, the aileron push rods needed NO adjustments and only minor trimming on the flaps. Now to finish the fairings then have the crew back to remove the wings, deburr and put them right back on ... permanently.



__________________
Mike "Strike" Messer, CFI/CFII/MEI, ATP
RV-8A/F-15E/T-38/T-37/T-6
RV-8A Phase II
N-251WM
Garmin G3X/GTN-650/Dynon D6/GTX-23ES/TruTrak GX Pilot/GDL-39
Eagle XTREEM I0-360-B1HD2 (dual P-mags)
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  #63  
Old 05-19-2014, 05:21 AM
Strike69's Avatar
Strike69 Strike69 is offline
 
Join Date: Nov 2011
Location: Glen Burnie, MD
Posts: 94
Default Mid-May Progress

It has been a while between traveling for work, turn-over for my new job, and working at a feverish pace to finish before I move next month so posting has been at the bottom of the list. My oldest son keeps asking though and I have discovered that he and his friends visit this site often to look at the aircraft and my progress. He now tells me he wants to be an engineer (aerospace?). All of my kids are really excited about the project coming to it's conclusion and look forward to flying when they come out.

It is hard to really convey the progress being made since much of it is finish work on the not-so-glorious "guts". But here goes ...

While we got the wings on last month, I waited to permanently attached them with the bolts until I knew for sure I no longer needed access. After deep freezing the bolts for a couple days and a little bit of grease, only a medium-sized "influencer" was needed to get all 8 CT bolts plus the 2 non-CT bolts per side in place. What took some time was getting the nuts on the bolts on the front side. My hands are not small and the space is tight. NOTE: There are two bolt/nut combinations on the bottom that you must use care when tightening because of the space to the gear mount. Do NOT start the nut on the bolt then hammer the bolt in further ... the nut will tend to get destroyed. Yeah, that was fun backing that bolt back out.



Once the wings were on, wiring and pitot/fuel lines could all be connected. I had Aircraft Specialty make the fuel hoses and I couldn't be happier. I originally screwed up the order but they swapped it out no problem. These guys are awesome. I did learn they will send you fittings that can be used with a plastic tube to determine the EXACT length you need. Next time.





One of the "fiddly bits" was to set the breakout force for the nose wheel. A digital fish scale worked great.



Over the weekend the first set of fluids were "transfused" into the aircraft. After much hydraulic fluid on the hands (and floor), I learned how to bleed brakes.





Finishing up the baffles and fitting the cowling has been slow progress but I am hoping to be complete by next weekend and ready for the first engine run.



Like others, the Superior IO-360 with the Airflow Performance fuel control doesn't quite fit the stock IO cowling. A hole in the bottom side was necessary and I will glass it over later in the week.



I am sure we will come up with an appropriate modification name.

The clock is ticking until the movers get here at the end of the month and until then, long hours at the airport with the cowling and canopy remaining. At least it is only a 4 1/2 hour drive from work to the airport here so weekends will be filled with finishing up this summer.

__________________
Mike "Strike" Messer, CFI/CFII/MEI, ATP
RV-8A/F-15E/T-38/T-37/T-6
RV-8A Phase II
N-251WM
Garmin G3X/GTN-650/Dynon D6/GTX-23ES/TruTrak GX Pilot/GDL-39
Eagle XTREEM I0-360-B1HD2 (dual P-mags)
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  #64  
Old 05-28-2014, 08:21 AM
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Strike69 Strike69 is offline
 
Join Date: Nov 2011
Location: Glen Burnie, MD
Posts: 94
Unhappy First Engine Run

Attempted the first start over the weekend but while there was fuel flow and rotation, there was no spark. Chasing wires I found my P-mag switches were grounding out the power so for now the lines are connected directly until I can find the fault in the switches.

With the crew back in palce yesterday, we cranked up for real.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=u8FdV...r#action=share

Only two minor leaks that hopefulyl will be solved with tightening the connectors. I say hopefully because during the second run, there was a loud "clunk" followed by severe shuttering during cranking ... which can't be good. A little investigative work found 7 teeth on the starter ring sheared off. as it turns out, the starter engaged then froze.



The good news ... Ameritech, who built the engine, is going to help out with fixing the ring and replacing the starter. While I won't make the projected completion date before I move, I will be able to finish within the month.

More to follow ...

(update)

The new starter ring and re-installed prop.

__________________
Mike "Strike" Messer, CFI/CFII/MEI, ATP
RV-8A/F-15E/T-38/T-37/T-6
RV-8A Phase II
N-251WM
Garmin G3X/GTN-650/Dynon D6/GTX-23ES/TruTrak GX Pilot/GDL-39
Eagle XTREEM I0-360-B1HD2 (dual P-mags)

Last edited by Strike69 : 07-29-2014 at 05:06 AM. Reason: Added pictures
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  #65  
Old 07-29-2014, 05:25 AM
Strike69's Avatar
Strike69 Strike69 is offline
 
Join Date: Nov 2011
Location: Glen Burnie, MD
Posts: 94
Default Almost to the end ...

After the "minor" set-back, movers, and lack of internet until now (new neighborhood and fiber had yet to be run), it has been a long time since I have had the opportunity to post my status ... so much has changed.

Jumping right in -

Flap and wing fairings, step, and most other external things are complete.



The N-number will eventually be 12" high but for now letters from Lowes work just great.



I went the SikaFlex route for the canopy and windscreen and while apprehensive at first, this stuff was so easy to work with and cleaning up the excess was a snap since the agent only sticks to the primer. A little effort masking went a long way in making a nice, solid seal.





On to the front end ...





I did swap the earlier interior "blue" lights for more night-friendly red.



My mentor and right hand helper gave me a special chock as a memento of the occasion of passing the FAA inspection. The squawk list was small (loose jam-nut in the tail, a nut on the battery solenoid, etc.) and all-in-all a painless experience mostly because he kept me honest throughout the build. Thanks Jim.



So on to Phase I. The battery was about to die so the starter didn't quite move the prop and now my kids are here for a month. I can't wait to get out in the last weekend of August and get those first few flights out of the way. I am hoping to get the 40 hours flown off in a timely manner and FINANLLY move the TARDIS up to it's new home at Martin State north of Baltimore.

__________________
Mike "Strike" Messer, CFI/CFII/MEI, ATP
RV-8A/F-15E/T-38/T-37/T-6
RV-8A Phase II
N-251WM
Garmin G3X/GTN-650/Dynon D6/GTX-23ES/TruTrak GX Pilot/GDL-39
Eagle XTREEM I0-360-B1HD2 (dual P-mags)
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  #66  
Old 07-29-2014, 04:06 PM
DeltaFox DeltaFox is offline
 
Join Date: May 2009
Location: chesapeake, va
Posts: 97
Default

Congrats Strike! Hope to see you get the Tardis airborne soon. Looks like it's going to be a banner year for first flights in 339.

Dale
__________________
RV-9A Airworthiness certificate Oct 2017,
first flight 11/18/17, testing completed Mar 2018.
Now free to move about the country.

http://dalesrv.blogspot.com

2020 Dues Paid
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  #67  
Old 08-24-2014, 07:32 PM
Strike69's Avatar
Strike69 Strike69 is offline
 
Join Date: Nov 2011
Location: Glen Burnie, MD
Posts: 94
Default Sooo ready ...

The kids have come and gone, the move to Maryland is complete, and the bugs in the engine have been worked out (okay, mostly). I was so ready to fly this morning and had the crew on standby to come out. Only problem - the winds were 070 10G18. Using runway 10 gave a crosswind that was well above my first flight limit of 5 kts (say nothing of the gust). Needless to say not the best of days for a first flight so I spent the time taxing around and calibrating the G3X.



I also worked on the mold for the aft end of the skirt. Not a show stopper for flight but part of the many cosmetic necessities before paint. I used modeling clay and the layup seemed to go well so more to follow.



I still have to troubleshoot the lack of RPM indication (both P-Mags and G3X connections and settings all seem to check out). Hopefully calls tomorrow yield a simple fix and maybe next Friday we'll fly (since it is a4 hour drive between home and the aircraft now).
__________________
Mike "Strike" Messer, CFI/CFII/MEI, ATP
RV-8A/F-15E/T-38/T-37/T-6
RV-8A Phase II
N-251WM
Garmin G3X/GTN-650/Dynon D6/GTX-23ES/TruTrak GX Pilot/GDL-39
Eagle XTREEM I0-360-B1HD2 (dual P-mags)
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  #68  
Old 08-31-2014, 06:18 AM
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Strike69 Strike69 is offline
 
Join Date: Nov 2011
Location: Glen Burnie, MD
Posts: 94
Default The TARDIS Flies!

On August 29th at 1821 z (1421 lcl), after 2 years 8 months and 1300 hours of effort, N-251WM, the TARDIS, proved it was a real plane and took to the skies from KPVG (Hampton Roads Executive Airport) runway 02.

It was only a short flight, once around the pattern climbing to a max altitude of 1500 MSL, and was cut short because both oil and CHT temps were very high and there was no need to push it. But it was incredible.

Take-off



Landing



The grin



The airplane flies very smooth with great, responsive control but it wasn't until the next morning on the second flight that I think I could relax some and enjoy the experience.

Thanks to my ground team:

Jim Ferrell - Master Crew Chief (and main build assistant)
Chris Francis - Mission Control/Communications
Scott Brokaw (and family) - moral support

Only 39 more hours to go in Phase I!
__________________
Mike "Strike" Messer, CFI/CFII/MEI, ATP
RV-8A/F-15E/T-38/T-37/T-6
RV-8A Phase II
N-251WM
Garmin G3X/GTN-650/Dynon D6/GTX-23ES/TruTrak GX Pilot/GDL-39
Eagle XTREEM I0-360-B1HD2 (dual P-mags)

Last edited by Strike69 : 08-31-2014 at 06:32 AM.
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  #69  
Old 08-31-2014, 07:49 AM
David-aviator David-aviator is offline
 
Join Date: Feb 2005
Location: Chesterfield, Missouri
Posts: 4,514
Default

Congrats on the build and first flight, Mike.
You are a full fledged member of a very exclusive club!
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RV-12 Build Helper
RV-7A...Sold #70374
The RV-8...Sold #83261
I'm in, dues paid 2019 This place is worth it!
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  #70  
Old 08-31-2014, 11:54 AM
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aviationone aviationone is offline
 
Join Date: Jan 2007
Location: Mukilteo, WA
Posts: 133
Default Congratulations Mike

Congratulations Mike, Its now time to burn some 100LL.
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RV8 (Done)
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