October 8, 2010

Fitting the Right Flap; Flap Pushrod - 3.0 Hrs.

The tasks on the right wing root are mostly finished. About the only thing left is to cut and flare the fuel line that comes out of the fuselage, but I can't do that until the right wing is pulled back off. So it's time to work on fitting the flap and the flap pushrod. So today, I put the flap back on the right wing and checked the fit against the fuselage. I briefly checked it back when I mated the wings for the first time, so I knew it fit fairly well.

The fit is very close. So close, that you can't really see any gap between the edge of the flap and the side of the fuselage. So this raises a question: how much gap is there supposed to be here? I looked through all the drawings and the manual, and can't find anything mentioned about it. To complicate it a bit, the side skin on the fuselage flexes a bit right here, so I'm not sure where the reference point is supposed to be. So, I wrote a posting on the online forums to see if my friends out there have any advice. I'll see what they have to say. Here's a close-up:

So for now anyway, since it moves freely and doesn't really rub on the fuselage (even though it looks like it does), I'm going to go ahead with the task at hand, which is to fit and install the flap pushrod. This is a short sturdy pushrod that raises and lowers the flap.

Here's a picture of the flap lowered all the way, showing the flap pushrod in place. It connects to the end of the flap and goes up inside the fuselage and connects inside to the flap weldment. The arm of the weldment moves up and down to move the flaps up and down. The hole in the fuselage is only a pilot hole when you build this part of the fuselage, and now it needs to be opened up and enlarged enough to provide clearance without rubbing. It turns out to be sort of a strange-shaped hole, needing to be opened up along the side and the bottom of the fuselage. If you look closely at this picture, you can see a reflection in the flaps' skin showing the partially finished hole to get an idea of how it goes. It still needs a bit more work. I studied a number of websites online to see how others have done this, to get a general idea of the task at hand, and then began the work. My advice is to go slowly, enlarging a bit at a time so you don't overdo it. I was able to leave the flap in place on the wing and just lower it all the way to take the rod out of the hole and let it hang there while working on it bit by bit. I used my dremmel tool with a burr bit to do this work. It worked great! I spent most of my time today on this and didn't quite get finished. When I do the other side, it will go much faster.

More to come soon.

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