Sat Mar 20 2010

Pushrod, control column link, and crotch strap brackets

With my dad in town, we jumped into assembling the forward elevator pushrod.

Next task was to install the rod end bearings. Here we're torqueing the jam nut to the proper torque. Be sure to check the torque spec, these don't get as much torque as a standard tension style nut.

We moved on to installing the rod bearings in the ends of the hexagonal lower control column linkage. It took a bit of looking to determine which of these two is the correct bearing...turned out to be the bottom one.

After screwing the bearings in so the center to center distance matched the drawing it was time to install the lower link. I took this photo intending to show the use of dental floss and a bent nail to position the washers, but if you look closely, I had missed two of the washers and had to redo the arrangement. By the way, the plans show one washer on each side of the rod end, but the space between flanges of the weldment required two washers on one side of the bearing and one on the other side.

The lower link of the control column is installed. For reference, I ended up having to screw each rod end bearing in two full turns from the center to center dimension shown on the plans (in order to have the sticks parallel to each other), so torqueing the jam nuts was a waste of time. Since there was no way to get the torque wrench on the jam nut with the link in position, I just tightened the jam nuts by feel. I actually checked the feel on the torque wrench ahead of time, though, so I think I'm pretty close.

Next task was to install the crotch strap brackets. Since I may be purchasing Hooker harnesses, I decided to increase the spacing between brackets to 5/16 to accomodate the thicker bushing which comes on the Hookers. I just used Mike Bullock's instructions. Draw centerline inline with the nutplate. Forward bracket goes 7/32 in front of that and rear bracket goes 3/32 inch behind it.

I also cut a piece of scrap and fashioned this template. It would have been far too difficult to drill the holes with the floor plan in place, but this bracket kept everything in alighment and allowed me to transfer drill the screw holes into the top flanges of the brackets.

Got the ribs drilled.

When dimpling the top flange on the rear bracket for the nutplates, I used the no-hole yoke in conjunction with my pop rivet dimple die to get in the tight angle. Actually I needed a couple washers on top of the pop rivet die so the nose of the male die didn't contact the face fo the yoke.