Sat Mar 31 2007

Wing conduit location; drill press problems

I spent some time with The Gimp (it's the Linux version of Photoshop) late last night (actually early this morning) to determine the optimum place for the wing conduit. I read a posting on the Matronics list that you can run a piece of conduit through the wing and right into the fuselage. Then the wires are supported through the wing to fuselage gap. I thought this was a great idea, but I needed to find a spot where I could safely drill through the wing ribs and also through the fuselage floor ribs. There was no drawing showing both sets of ribs, so I scanned the wing rib drawing in and the fuselage drawing in and overlaid them on top of one another. Here's the spot. This also happens to be Van's recommended location for wing conduit.

How do you get a couple 15 foot pieces of CPVC into a Honda Civic? Like this! It sorta made for an interesting ride home. I had to order these pieces from a local plumbing supply place. The CPVC available from Home Depot was only 10 foot long which wouldn't be long enough to go through both the wing and the fuselage. What they had available was 20 foot long pieces. I hacked 5 foot off in the parking lot to make it a little more manageable, but still plenty long.

I was starting to drill the conduit holes in the ribs, but the belt kept popping off the pulley on my drill press. Turns out the setscrew had backed off the flat of the motor shaft, and the pulley was slipping and coming off the shaft. It put a spiral gouge around the motor shaft which, in turn, gouged up the inside diameter of the pulley. On top of that, the motor seems kinda noisy when I turn it by hand. I think I'll take it apart to see what's up.

This drill press is pretty old...probably made around 1950. Here's a crack in the insulation of one of the motor wires.

Got the motor taken apart...

Sure enough, the bearings are completely dry. It may look like grease in the bearing, but that stuff's as hard as a rock. I'll order some new bearings from BDI (Bearing Distributors, Inc.) when I go into work on Monday.