Dusting off the wings (literally)

OK…after a fairly drawn-out, but largely successful hangar cleanup effort, it’s time to get back to practical work on this thing. I haven’t been totally lapsing the past few months – there’s been a fair amount of time nailing down electrical design, trying to figure out how to handle financing for the FWF stuff, and so on – but work done while staring at a laptop isn’t going to get this thing flying.

The fuselage is about as done as it’s going to be for a while. There’s still the forward bottom skins to finish riveting, but that has to wait until the tail comes off, and I’m not ready for that quite yet. That leaves two overall efforts to work on: first, beginning to lay out systems-type stuff, and second, getting the wings closed up. I’m going to focus on the latter for the time being.

With that in mind, the wings come out from against the wall where they’ve been sitting for, oh, 3.5 years, and out into the nice open space created by cleanup work, and then I got started on a different cleanup effort. You see, these wings were, well, filthy. There was a general accumulation of Sport Flyers dus, plenty of spider webst, plus the requisite mud dauber nests – and not just the normal nests stuck to things, but a weird collection of mud on the sing that was closest to the wall. As best I can tell, this came from mud daubers building up in the window above, but occasionally clumsily dropping their mouthfuls of mud. Or something like that.

Anyway, I pulled the flaps and gave them a good hosing down (due to the aforementioned weird mud collection), gave the ailerons a wipe down as well, and pulled the bottom skins to get a look inside. I was actually surprised there weren’t more mud dauber nests inside the wing.

I couldn’t quite get to every part of the wings without taking them out of the cradle, which I didn’t do today. Maybe tomorrow. The main thing I have to do now is look back and figure out what order to do things in. There are several things left: a service bulletin fix on the aileron brackets, installing the pitot mount and controller, installing the conduit and pulling wiring for the landing and nav lights, actually installing the landing lights, mounting the wing tips (and, in turn, the nav/strobe light units), and riveting the bottom skins in place.

Which reminds me, I’ll need to order some wire supplies before I can pull wiring in the wings, and it’d be nice to have a general idea of how much and what wire I need for all the electrical work so I can order it all at once, so I guess I need to be thinking about at least loosely planning the wire routing in the fuselage as well…such is the fun of this part of the build, it starts to seem like everything is interconnected in some way.

In other news, I’ve been slowly accumulating some secondhand/discount stuff the past few months. I’ve got a Dynon intercom, a network splitter cable (needed for the dual ADAHRS I’m planning), and just a week or two ago, I got myself a pair of harnesses for about half the cost of a new set, and I can hardly tell they’re used. And fortuitously, VAF put together a group buy on PC5000X prop governors, which I got in on…hopefully that’ll save me a few hundred on the governor, I’ll find out the final price when the buy closes out in a week or so.

Such is the update for today…now I just have to keep that work habit going, which can be challenging this time of year. Houston summers just aren’t a lot of fun.

Posted in Wings. Bookmark the permalink. Hours Logged: 2.5