Sunday, May 17, 2009
Playing with the panel
Yeah, I know, most folks would have the panel done by now. What's it been? A couple of months? You know, the lawn was looking at me funny. The deck still needs some work, the fence needed painting. The garage needed cleaning. And I was born with the ability to feel guilt.
Out at the hangar, the grill needs to come home and the bench -- the one I sit on and think deep thoughts during the summer -- needed sanding and staining. So that was my plan today. One piece of non-airplane work and then one piece of airplane work. I don't know why I feel like I need to "earn" the time I work on the airplane. But I do.
I finished up the instrument panel cutout for the ICOM A-210 the other day. So today I put it the PS Engineering intercom. Originally I was going to put this on the other side of the rib. But, you know? There's a good chunk of room underneath the transponder. Now, someday I may want to put a full audio panel there. So I can just cut it out. But for today, perfect.
Then I needed to figure out where to cut the subpanel to allow the radio tray to come through. I fired up my dad's old Dremel tool and, voila!
I'm not exactly sure what needs to happen on the forward side of the subpanel. I assume some angle needs to strengthen it and be used to screw down the tray. The holes for the screws in the tray, though, are pretty far -- farther than 3/4 angle -- forward of the subpanel. And should I reinforce angle on the bottom and top?
Meanwhile, my building friend, Brad, stopped in to check Tom Berge's recommendation that the wires from the strobe/nav light in the tail come through the center of the vertical stabliler. The more we thought about it, though, the more we decided since we've already gone through on the side (without cutting through the vertical stabilizer spar, we best leave it there.
Then he mentioned he had a power supply and a harness for the Dynon 100. So I borrowed it to be sure that when the Dynon went black when I was playing with it a few weeks ago, it was because the backup battery was dead. It was.
I played with it for awhile. It's pretty cool and will be just fine for me, the VFR pilot. I did find its altimeter to be more accurate than the Falcon gauge I bought from Van's as a backup altimeter. I set it for the field barometer and elevation and the Falcon gauge is off by about 80 feet. Not good. No instructions came with it so I don't know if there's a way to calibrate it or what.
Anyway, I left it on for a couple of hours and removed the power supply and, nope, the Dynon didn't come back to life. I don't know how long the battery needs to be charged but it's not doing its job right now.
I've got to get me one of these power units, though.
So the only holes left to make in the panel -- at least until I win the lottery -- or for switches. Master, start, flaps, electronic ignition. I haven't figured out what I need for that yet, though. All in good time. One of the good things about spending a pile of money, is it gives you time to work on stuff without spending any more.