Tue Aug 04 2020

Center arm rest and miscellaneous

I started this morning by painting the inside surfaces of the lid. They don't need to look particularly pretty, but I want a smoother finish than the powdery primer.

I riveted a little bracket to the elevator pushrod tunnel cover. This will provide an extra attachment point for the arm rest compartment on the bottom edge of the forward face.

I also installed the nutplates on the sides of the elevator pushrod tunnel cover.

...and around the stick holes in the forward floor pans. These nutplates will be for attaching the stick boot rings.

There were four holes around each of the crotch strap passthroughs that needed to be drilled up from #40 to fit a #8 screw (forget the drill size).

Riveted the shim to the forward flange of the elevator pushrod tunnel cover.

I wasn't too happy with how the finish was coming out on this tunnel cover. There are a bunch of scratches coming through. Apparently I didn't have it sanded smooth enough. Grrr. After this paint dried, I sanded the outer surfaces and recoated.

Long ago, I had made a pair of streamlined vents for the bottom of the fuselage. Well, I ended giving those away to some friends in the Netherlands, so I need to make another set. First step was to sketch out the little airfoil shape.

Last time I made these, it was completely by hand...mostly on the sander. This time around, I'm going to make a pattern and try to cut them out with the router. So, I need a hardwood block to make the pattern from. I planed down some poplar baseboard and glued several layers together.

apparently I needed more clamps. There's a gap.

After spraying on another coat, the scratches aren't visible. We'll see how it looks once this dries.

I also sanded and re-coated the little support bracket.

I'll be turning the bulkhead fittings down to 1/4 diameter to press into the little airfoil shape. I'll also use the 1/4" hole as a locating feature for the pattern on the aluminum plate. Used a brad point bit to drill the hole.

Some spray adhesive to attach the (half) airfoil sketch to the pattern stock.

So, yeah...scratches persist. Pretty frustrated at this point.

I decided to just sand it down and start over. What I discovered, though, is that it's not really feasible to sand a painted surface. At least not easily. The sandpaper clogs up almost instantly, and that little ball of clogged paint gouges the hell outta the rest of the painted surface. After wrestling with that for an hour or so, I decided to try wet sanding. That worked much better. The sandpaper would still get clogged, but not as quickly.

Here is the cover sanded smooth (as far as I can tell) with 600 grit sandpaper. Tomorrow, I'll re-countersink all the holes to remove all the paint buildup so far.