Cowl repair/hinge prep

So…I was prepared this morning to go forward with my plan to rough-cut the pin covers, then pivot to working on the hinges. Instead, I took a brief detour. As I was considering the placement of the covers and marking the cut lines, I decided that it’d be a good idea to patch up the previous pin passthrough cuts I made. These cutouts are just a bit forward of where the new cover cutout would be, close enough that I figured I was likely to mess up the cover cutouts if I went back and patched the old cutouts later on.

So I pivoted to working on those. I sanded the perimeter to a decent taper, then laid up four strips of cloth across the inside of each cutout. I pressed the cloth just a bit into the cutout, mainly to ensure good contact with the taper I’d sanded. The basic idea was to bridge the gap with cloth, then come back later and add flox to fill things out (the latter bit was done this evening).

In the meantime, while the first layup was curing, I pulled the horizontal hinges and deburred all my rivet holes. I also countersunk the rivet holes in the lower cowl…upper cowl will wait til later, ie once the current layup/patch work has cured.

So tomorrow I’ll get to do more sanding (it never ends with fiberglass work), then I’ll probably take an initial look at the gap between the upper and lower cowl. While I don’t want to try to get it precise until the hinges are riveted, I’d at least like to get a rough fit done. In particular, right now there are a couple spots where the upper and lower cowl halves make contact and interfere a bit.

I think I’m also going to add some material back to the upper cowl and rework some of the gaps there. There’s one spot in particular where I ended up with a much larger gap than I really wanted.

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