The Airplane Factory

Went to The Airplane Factory at KTOA today to talk the Jean. He was super helpful and took time to show me a few things even with his busy schedule. I took some pictures of their Sling 4 to help with the build. Also a few shot of the firewall of a Sling 2 that they had the engine removed for maintenance.  

    
    
 

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Vertical Stabilizer Rivnuts and VOR mounting

Time: 1.75

Installed the rivnuts on the vertical stabilizer parts. I used some high strength “red” lock tight on them (as suggested by Craig). Pretty easy to install these.

Also started to work on mounting the VOR antenna on RIB #4. I wasn’t supplied the mounting plate so I ordered some .81mm 6061 aluminum to make the plate. Will have to wait to work on that when the material arrives. It looks like the rivets are going to be a bit tough to get in near the antenna base. They will definitely need to be cut, but how much can they be cut? The VOR antenna is a┬áRAMI AV-520 V STYLE VOR/LOC/GS ANTENNA I ordered from Aircraft Spruce (https://www.aircraftspruce.com/catalog/avpages/ramiav520.php).

 

Priming

Time: 1.5 hrs

Primed the vertical and horizontal stabilizer frame parts today. Will need to let them dry a few days before riveting.  The primer seems to be drying well. I think I put it on a bit thick in some areas because I was thinking it should be a dark green opaque coating, but after reading Aircraft Spruce Q&A it seems you just need one coat which is transparent. 

 

PosiStrobe mounted

Time: 1hr

Mounted the tail strobe/nav light to the rudder tip. I chose to use the Aveo PosiStrobe which is a position and strobe light in one and uses LEDs instead of incandescent bulbs. The light is a bit wider and over hangs just a bit, but I think it looks alright. Need to get a 14v power supply to test it. The PosiStrobe XP was purchased from Aircraft Spruce (https://www.aircraftspruce.com/catalog/elpages/posistrobexp.php)

 

Parts prepping process

TIP

So here’s my prepping process for getting parts ready to prime. This is done after removing the protective plastic, test fitting the parts and reaming any holes where rivets fit too tight.

  1. debur holes with countersink bit and electric drill (if needed). Most look pretty good, though I have found the need to debur at least one side of the hole. Also if I have to ream the hole out then it needs to be deburred.
  2. debur edges using a cheap burring tool from Home Depot which seems to do a good job and is quick.
  3. Clean parts with a (1:3 mixture) 1 part Simple Green Extreme Aircraft Cleaner and 3 parts water. I rub it on with a lint free cloth and then wipe it off with another lint free wipe.
  4. Carefully put it on a bucket to be primed. I’m going to use a Zinc Phosphate prime I purchased from Aircraft Spruce. It’s supposedly self etching so it should stick pretty well and it says it’s “excellent” for corrosion resistance. I’ll probably be doing the quick build kit so I’m not going to go crazy with a more involved priming routine.

Vertical Stabilizer

Time: 1.75 hrs

Did some deburring of the VS frame parts. Had to also match drill a few rivet holes so the rivets would fit. Additionally I enlarged existing holes (and added a new one) for installing the grommets for the VOR and tail position light wiring.

I notice that there was an undersized hole in the two angle pieces where the rivnuts (7 per piece and I only had 6 holes that would fit the rivnuts) are to be installed. I just had to use the #11 reamer to enlarge the hole that looked like it was sized for a 3.2mm rivet. Still waiting for my rivnut puller so couldn’t install those.