Monday, May 28, 2007

The canopy connection

Before I screwed up an aft canopy channel on Thursday, I was making decent progress on my RV-7A canopy. Oh,the plexi is still down in the former bedroom of my youngest son (who no longer lives at home), but I was on schedule to cut the canopy during the hot Minnesota summer months.

I guess I still am, but I've slowed considerably. Sometimes I think you can overthink things when building an RV airplane. I've spent hours looking at the canopy side rail, after reading threads about how it expands or contracts from how it is initially fitted. Do I have it perfectly aligned with the fuselage at this point? How do I know? The more I read, the more confused I get.

In particular, I'm trying to understand what the instructions mean when it talk about rolling the side canopy onto the F-716 tab. I assume I bend and twist it. But can the side tab also e bent and twist to mate properly.

I looked at Checkoway's site and while there are many pictures, of course, there isn't the single one I'd like to have. Incidentally, I see Dan has started a plane-weighing business.

I put out a call on the Yahoogroups site, but nothing yet. Oh Ron Fearnow was kind enough to take a picture, but it's a slider. And it's not quite as close as I need.

Neal George was busy doing some cutting this weekend, by the way. He sent a shot of him cutting his cowling. Cool.

Neal calls it the $900 cut.

Anyway, back to me. I remembered to check Walter Tondu's site on the subject. Walter really has a great site and good instructions on the canopy. But, alas, no shot of the tab. Although this one comes close.

Now, if I could just find one of the exterior. Incidentally, great links on canopy work appear on this week's RV Builder's Hotline.

Our Daily Thread - During the fuselage construction process, you have to build spacer blocks to simulate the main wing spar. A thread on the RV Builders Yahoogroup this week asked how, and I know what he meant. The instructions make it sound like you have to get accuaate down to 1/32" and, in a way, you do. But how do you find a perfect fit? I used a beer carton in my mix, and apparently other folks had similar ideas to use whatever was around.

Today's inspiration: The perfect evening flight. Take it from Jeff Orear of Peshtigo, Wisconsin. He posted on Rivetbangers. We'll be seeing Jeff at the RV Builder's BBQ, because I just got his reservation last week. I think we're going to actually hit the 350 person max this year. Cool.

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