Tank attach angles

Well, we had quite a day out here. We decided to run down to the beach with dogs and make a half-day or so out of it. Unfortunately, things got interesting on the way home – the car overheated. Seems I have a bit of a cooling system leak somewhere. I managed to make it home without any more overheating, but at the cost of driving with the heater running full blast. In the Houston summer heat. Actually, it wasn’t that bad on the highway, except for my feet getting thoroughly cooked. I now know that this car’s heater is tremendously effective.

Anyway, by the time we got home, I was tired again and I took a nap. Then it was finally out to the garage, where I got to work on the T-405 tank attach angles. I’m glad I decided not to try to do these last night; they weren’t terribly difficult, but there was a lot of time-consuming “how should I do this…” along the way. If I’d put some time pressure on myself to finish it last night, I might well have messed something up.

First, the chunk of angle gets cut to the rough length of the attach piece:

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One side gets a symmetrical round profile, while the other is shaped to fit inside the nose of the inboard tank rib. I used one of the reinforcement plates as a pattern for this. Here’s the cut line I made on the first angle:

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Roughly cut to size in the bandsaw. I did a fair amount of vixen file work to fine-tune the shape, but I can’t remember if this photo is before or after I did that:

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Then it’s over to the bench grinder to remove all those nasty tooling marks and make all the corners nice and smooth:

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The second angle went a lot quicker, mainly because I could just use the first one as a pattern instead of having to carefully lay out cut lines. Here’s the pair:

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These will eventually get drilled to the tank ribs, but that will wait until I can get the right wing caught up with the left. Weather tomorrow looks good, so provided my local Napa has a good stock of 7220 primer, I can finally get those right wing ribs primed and then work on riveting that skeleton together.

I also took some time tonight and read through the instructions for the capacitive fuel sender kit. I can see that these tanks are going to take some time; there are lots of little details that have to be attended to. Fuel senders, access holes, vent lines, caps, drains…fun times!

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