Thursday, July 28, 2011

July Newsletter

Completed Right-hand Fuselage
The right fuselage has been completed through the doghouse areas and the top and belly skinning.  Paul, Randall, Ayman and Jeremy did a great job considering they didn’t have much data for the doghouse area to go by.  We have switched fuselages between the two containers, and now the left one is mounted on the rotisserie fixture to have its remaining top and two belly skins riveted on, along with all of the doghouse areas completed. 

 As mentioned last month, all of this will go substantially faster as we have “reinvented the wheel” by learning from all the data and measurements gotten from the right-hand fuselage assembly.  The left-hand fuselage should be completed, or nearly so, by the end of September.
Completed Right-hand Fuselage

The center-section is coming along nicely.  It is being worked on by Bryan, Ted (the new guy) and Jeremy (better known as "Bammer"), who floats from fuselages to center-section, back to fuselages, anywhere he is needed.  How can a man who is built like a Brahma Bull float?  Don't know.  Must be magic.
Center-Section Assembly

With the center-section, we were able to "prove" the fixture setup by using the partial, scrapped skins obtained from the Colorado parts to fit and align all of the factory holes.  Then we put on the new duplicated skins from Pat Harker's project.  Bryan and Ted are now also making forms and pressing the fuel bay ribs for the center-section.

There has been a lot of "in-house" milling to finish-depth of relief edges on the spar caps.  Vic Peres (Erie) could not complete the milling because, between the different airframes, we were not confident that all of the edges would be identical.  It turned out that they all were the same, but we couldn't take the chance.  

We are still waiting for the remaining center-section wing attach angles from Peres, but as of now, we can work around not having them.
Forward (Nose) Spar

I have the forward spar (#3 of the three for the center-section) almost complete.  I have it set up on our long table, 18+ feet, to keep it straight—a challenge.

We sent four of our radiator shells to Martin Radiator Company in Gasport, NY.  Martin Radiator has been in the business of manufacturing new, improved replacement coolant radiators for the Mustang series aircraft for years.  One can always tell a Mustang that has one of his radiators installed as the coolant exit door(s) are mostly closed in flight.  With the original Harrison Radiators from WWII, the doors are always wide open.

Farleman's Machined Parts

We have received back from Ron Farleman (Nautilus) a number of additional machined parts.  Thanks, Ron, for the good work.  He is now machining our new canopy and windshield bows.

Farleman's Machined Hinge Points

Bumps in the Road
None, except for the fact that it is really hot in Georgia this time of year and your airplane is melting.

Bad News - The Katz
The Katz

They have both given their notices that they are leaving us to go to work for the high steel workers union.  Better benefits, only half the hours and where they are going there are a lot more critters to catch and eat.   We wish them luck.  

Before Rivet left, she did us the favor of dragging a huge rat in from the field that she was not too kind with and hid it somewhere in the shop/hangar.  After a couple of days, yuck.  Well, after some looking around with a gas mask on, we found it and gave it a proper disposal.  Rivet just watched with the look on her face, "It wasn't me."

Great News
Look what we finally got!  It took lots of legwork, research (thankx, Weezie) and time, but it all was well worth it.  Having an original, clean Bill of Sale Registration is worth kazillions and just look at that fancy N#:  N 887XP!

And, many thankx to Nan, Weezie’s professor sister, for all the proof reading she does for us.


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