Friday, November 21, 2014

32-09 Torque Tube prep (attaching wings)

Wheee!  This was a fun day, as I got to install the wings and look at my beautiful bird coming together!  I had the assistance of Nick and Nick (son & son-in-law).  The whole point of the day was to get the fuselage out of the garage, attach the wings, line up the two components of the torque tubes and match drill 2 holes on each side.  Like many things, the day was full of challenges that made it fun.  As you can see in the pictures, it was a cold day—about 20 °F.  (BTW, yesterday, it only took my frozen fingers about 2 hours to remove the gas tank fitting so I could have access to the R torque tubes.)   I worked 3rd shift last night and woke at 3:00 this afternoon to get this done before it got dark and (too) cold around 5:00 or so.  Advice:  if you are in a hurry, stop and reschedule so you aren’t in a hurry.  

Big Nick was granted a few hours of ‘guy time’ by his fiancé and helped me out.  First thing we did was scrounge in the garage to find some 1/8” shims to put a measured amount of droop in the flappers.  (Discussion on VAF about how the wing was designed for the flapperons to be neutral in flight, but wind loads force them up just a tad into a reflexed position, so The Book has you install them with 1/8” droop to allow the wind loads to put them in neutral in flight.)  Then we chiseled and shoveled layers of sheet ice off of the driveway so we weren’t guaranteed to slip and fall.  I maneuvered the plane out and into the driveway, then Big Nick & I maneuvered the wings into the plane while Nick guided the flaperon activation tab into the appropriate slots of the torque tubes.

I then noticed The Book calls for a 0.063” shim to be placed between the inner and outer torque tubes.  Argh!  I really should stop working and sleeping so I can do a better job of reading ahead.  A few moment of rummaging around in the garage revealed that the hinge material was very nicely dimensioned to be the long strip of 0.063” shim.  A quick pass with the bandsaw to remove the eyelets and we were ready to go.

I didn’t even take any pictures of the actual drilling of the torque tubes.  This photos on this page are really all about the fact that I got to see the wings and the gear on the fuselage.  (All it needs is a tail section, the canopy, an engine with prop & cowling.  Sigh....)


IMG 3477

Aft view of 012 with wings and wheels, in the driveway

IMG 7603

3/4 frontal view 

My beautiful bride snapped this from the front door.  You can see the main gear still has some camber, and the nose wheel looks way to far forward without the engine.  The turtleneck is still sheathed in blue, as it’s only held with cleco’s and no rivets.  From here, the wings good perfectly smooth and ready to lift!  (The roses didn’t do so well in the snow fall, however.)

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