October 16, 2008

More Control Stick Assembly; Organizing parts - 4.0 Hrs.

I worked a little on the control stick assembly tonight and then spent some time organizing stuff.

Here's the hex-shaped control column pushrod F-665 as it comes in the kit. This joins the bottoms of the left and right control sticks. I was very happy to see that it's all cut to length and drilled and tapped in each end for the rod end bearings. All I had to do was clean it up and prime it, as seen below.

Then I spent some time locating the rod end bearings, only to find out that the threads on one of them are seriously messed up. The part is unusable and I will have to return it to Vans for a replacement.

At this point I really began realizing how much time I'm spending just looking for stuff. It seems like every bolt, nut, washer, and cotter pin I need is in a bag somewhere and I'm spending way too much time looking for stuff. I've got to get more organized. All this stuff is still in the bags it comes in from the factory. I never did do like a lot of guys and buy some of those plastic cabinets with a million little drawers and make labels for all this stuff. I got through the empennage and wings just fine by using stuff out of the bags it came in from the factory. But now it seems to be different. There are a lot more of them it seems, and one bag contains misc. bolts of several sizes, for example, or a bag of nuts has 6 or 8 different kinds of nuts in it, just all thrown together. And the washers... good grief. They're all mixed up in a bag together. Finding the right bag and then figuring out which washer is which part number is tedious and time-consuming. So I spent some time tonight getting more organized. I'm still not using little plastic drawers. But I labeled some small ziplock bags and separated some of these items out so I can find them fast. I strung all the same size washers on pieces of safety wire, and put the rivets most often used in some little shaker-size storage containers I have (the red, green, and orange ones below). I also put all the rivets in one place in my cabinet, and so on, so I know where to look for stuff. This should get me through the rest of this project just fine. It's hard for me to spend my precious shop time piddling around with stuff like this and not feel like something was accomplished on the plane, but it feels good to get this done so I can work more efficiently from now on.

Getting organized. Not what I'd rather be doing, but worth the time spent. These little shaker-style containers are great. Found them in the aviation isle at Home Depot. They have split tops. Just squeeze and it opens so you can shake the rivets out. But if you drop it, your rivets won't pour out all over the floor.

<< Previous | Home | Next >>

Contact me: swayze "at" europa.com (replace "at" with the @ sign... no spaces... you know the deal)