Parts prep

Man, there’s a whole lot of prep work to be done. The first half-page or so of the instructions here specify a bunch of places that need to be countersunk to accept dimpled skin parts. When I looked at this over the weekend, I started marking the first item on the list, the lower longerons, with the intent of doing the actual countersinking in my next work session. Thing is, since I’m a little OCD (and cautious) about countersink depth, every time I use he cage, I feel compelled to readjust it. So every work day that includes countersinking has some built-in setup time. With that in mind, I decided to do all this countersinking in two passes; first, I’d set aside all the parts that needed to be countersunk, marking the locations as I went, and then I could go back and do all the actual countersinking in one batch instead of a bunch of little work sessions.

So tonight was just getting through that first step; finding the parts, deburring them as needed, then marking. Among other things, I marked the lower and auxiliary longerons, the gear tower and center section reinforcement plates, and the seat back support plates and spacers. That’s actually not all the things that need to be countersunk, but the other items are all large and unwieldy – the 16’ long upper longerons and the not-quite-as-long-but-still-cumbersome mid and lower aft longerons. Those, I think, merit their own work session. Plus the lower/mid aft longerons are still attached to the aft side skins, which are in turn sort of serving as a table for other parts.

In other news, I keep thinking about rearranging the garage, but I’m just not sure how to go about doing it. Space was pretty tight when I had the fuselage temporarily assembled, and once I get things back together and somewhat structurally sound, I’m going to want to put the fuselage in a rotisserie setup to make it easier to work on. That’ll mean even more length to the fuselage assembly, and thus an even tighter garage. Problem is, I’m just not sure how to go about making this extra room. If I could get the wings out of the garage, that would help, but I don’t have anywhere else to put them.

So I dunno. I’ll have to solve this problem at some point, I’m just not sure how yet. One solution might be to rent a self-storage unit for the wings, but that’s money out the door that’s not going to actual building – plus moving the wings to/from storage would be obnoxious since I don’t have a pickup truck or trailer. Maybe I can figure out a better use of space in the garage…

UPDATE: So I went back out in the garage and did some thinking and a lot of measuring, and I think I have a workable solution for rearranging the garage. If the weather holds out, I think Saturday or Sunday might be a garage cleanup/reorg day.

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