June 21-22, 2009

Installing ELT/Strobe Power Supply Brackets - 5.5 hrs.

Vans offers a nice bracket that you can install in the aft fuse to hold your ELT (Emergency Locator Transmitter) unit. It goes right behind the baggage area on the side wall, out of sight and out of the way. The bracket can also be used to hold a power supply unit for your strobe lights. So I decided to get a pair of them, so I have both. Now is the ideal time to install them, for obvious reasons, just like for the autopilot servo bracket that I just finished. So today I got them out and started the installation, while the aft fuse is disassembled and access is open and easy.

Here they are, right and left brackets, after the fitting, drilling, deburring and priming. Vans recommends installing 4 nutplates around the center hole for the ELT and using the 4 outer holes for the strobe power supply. I don't know at this point how I want to configure it all, so I put nutplates in all the holes. I like having options, and it's only a few nutplates. These are ready to install.

The right side bracket, installed. It's tricky getting the holes drilled on the bottom flanges of these brackets, due to the curvature of the bottom of the fuse. My right-angle drill with the shortest stubby bit still wouldn't fit in there. So I was forced to drill it at an angle. But it worked out okay. There are 4 holes drilled through each flange, top and bottom, into the J-channel stringers. Then they are pop-riveted in place. Getting the pop rivets in the bottom channel is no easy task either, because the rivet puller won't fit underneath it. The solution is to pull the top of the bracket away from the wall so you can reach down in there from the top and pop-rivet the bottom rivets from the inside. Then you push the top into place and rivet the top rivets. Here it is, all finished!

Here's the one on the left side. And below, a shot of both of them. I'm really glad to have this done.

Finally tonight, I finished all the dimpling of the holes along the longeron lines. A bit of primer here and there to fix minor scratches in the primer, and this thing was done. The aft fuse prep is finished. This thing is ready for riveting!

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