Since I was finishing up the fuel senders in the last video I spent the time waiting on the tubes to get a few more items off the checklist. It's kinda funny. The previous video and post make it seems like very little was accomplished the past few weeks, but what it feels like is far more was done. After putting the empennage to bed at my father-in-laws house I pulled out the rear fuselage material to start assembling those parts. Overall the ribs aren't too bad to put together. The main trick is getting the parts all lined up correctly. I talk about this a little bit in the video. Effectively the parts are all designed to go together in EXACTLY the right way. If you don't put them together correctly, they don't fit. So it's a good feeling when things don't appear to be fitting well together and all the sudden everything clicks together.
After a week I got the Rear Fuselage ribs together, the torque tube arrived and I needed to get the fuel tanks tested and wrapped up. Even though I genuinely thought the tanks were good I took the extra step to test the tanks with water. I'm really glad I did - not only did they leak, but they REALLY leaked. Where they were leaking would have been a major pain to resolve if the backs were on, so chalk this one up to being prudent and checking at each phase of things.
I got the tanks re-sealed in the areas where they were seeping out water and did another re-test. A few ones that didn't appear the first time appeared, so I adjusted again. The third test was the trick. Everything seems good to go from the front of the fuel tank. So I worked on attaching the rear portion of the fuel tank. I ran a little short of the pro seal, so I've got another tube on order and will crack that open when I'm ready to wrap up the second tank at which time I'll have plenty of pro seal to go around.
Once the tanks were squared away and the rear fuselage ribs were stowed I got the left wing out of storage to wrap up the ribs with the torque tube. This phase all went together quite smoothly. At this time the back skins are riveted on. The next steps I will be taking is working on getting the electronics installed, the pitot tube installed and mount the necessary electronics inside. I was going to build some mount points out of spare aluminum, however I changed my mind at the last minute to use the ClickBond material which I used a bit in the vertical stabilizer. Their product works really well. It's quite permanent, or as permanent as the airplane is going to be, but it is expensive.
During the week this week I'll fiddle about with the electrical work and getting going on the pitot until I get the last toque tube, pro seal and ClickBond materials - hopefully by this weekend. I have the last week of the year off from work. I am hoping I can still get all the control surfaces together here before the end of the year and move onto the fuselage. Obviously it take as long as it takes, but with due diligence it's coming together quite nicely.
As I mentioned in the previous post I have the firewall forward kit on the way, the finishing kit not the way, the interior on order/on the way, the instrument panel order in (which basically means I'm in queue to get built) and the engine on order. I have the prop already here. So a number of very major items are all in play at the moment. If the fuselage goes together as quickly as I expect it to, I may actually be stuck on waiting for the engine/instrument panels, but that's how the ball bounces here. The good news is I think everything but figuring out the paint scheme is settled or in progress at the moment.
Anyway - next update should be either the last week in December or first week in January.