Thursday, December 23, 2010

Stuck in flyover country

I haven't posted much lately. It's winter in Minnesota. You have almost no chance of getting a good day to fly. My currency at the FBO expires on Sunday and while I have a plane reserved for tomorrow, it appears to be too crappy to fly.

It's too cold to work at the hangar. I'm too broke to make any progress on the plane.

I need motivation. This new video is a start. Just a start.

Wednesday, December 1, 2010

Fun with fuel lines

Some years ago, I wrote an essay on determining when "good enough" is good enough on your RV airplane-building project. In matters of firewall forward, however, it's very difficult for a novice airplane builder like me to know when good enough is good enough.

For the last week, I've been building a couple of fuel lines for the RV-7A and I thought things were going OK until I asked a question on Van's Air Force regarding firesleeves. That's when someone noticed that I'm using aluminum fittings.

We went back and forth and I learned that:

-1- Aluminum fittings shouldn't be used.
-2- Aluminum fittings can be used.

Then today came the question about the route my fuel line is taking. See, the problem is I'm building a nose-gear airplane and there are extra "tubes" on the engine mount for a nose gear plane. You people with tail draggers have it easy. See destination, route to destination.

I, on the other hand, have an additional maze to get through.

Anyway, once the aluminum fitting vs. steel fitting debate petered out without a declared victor, the route I took for the fuel line is faulty because my original plan to clamp it to an engine mount is faulty.

Perhaps it doesn't matter in the short term because once I put the firesleeve on, a lot of the slack I depended on to allow me to clamp it (a fuel line needs flexibility because the engine is going to be shaking) disappeared.

So regardless, I've got to build a new fuel line and, frankly, the money is used up and that pretty much kills progress until spring. God love ya, Christmas shopping season! Oh what the heck! It's too cold to be building airplanes anyway.

Here's a video that shows how things are: