I realized today that tonight is the anniversary of N999ZA. Yup, it was exactly one year ago today that I picked up the empennage kit from the FedEx facility here in town.
After today’s work, I have 199.0 hours on the kit, having set 2639 rivets and drilled out 205 rivets. (Only two parts re-ordered, but I haven’t reordered my “dropped rudder” stuff yet, so that number is going to go up.) I thought I would have more hours on the kit and be a little further (I assumed 6 months for emp, 1 year for wing, 1 year for fuse, 1 year for finish, and 1 year for avionics, engine), but I’m okay with where I am given all the other stuff I’ve been working on (first floor project, HA420).
At ~200 hours per year, and assuming it will take 1500-2000 hours, that leaves me about 6.5 -9 more years of work. (The girlfriend was not happy with this simple calculation, so I quickly explained that 200 hours per year was only for this year, and would only be true if I had an entire first floor worth of wood flooring to lay every year.) We both agreed it would be okay to speed up a little for the remaining (hopefully) 3 to 4 years.
Anyway, enough with the sentimental stuff.
Well, after finishing the left tiedown this morning, I needed to move onto another big step.I thought this afternoon would be a good day to start building my wing stands.
After a lot of thought and research, I decided I didn’t want the floor-to-ceiling kind. I wanted very sturdy floor stands. So, I started building.
Instead of the 4x4s, I went with matched 2×4, turned around to cancel out any bow (although these are the “select” 2x4s, and they are damn-straight).
After screwing them together and cutting them into 4-foot lengths, here’s where I am.
I also decided that I wanted to be able to work on both wings at once. I bought a piece of MDF from Lowe’s and had them cut it unto 4 equal 2′ by 4′ pieces.
I’ll put my two posts about 2 feet apart (so when the spar-supporting angles head out from there, I’ll have plenty of space to walk between the wings). This also gives me the right wing-to-wing spacing to fit everything on one side of the garage.
Oh, come on, that was funny.
So next I spend some time cutting some 19-inch supports. I used some trigonometry (wuhoo) to figure out that to fit on the 2-foot-wide MDF planks, I needed 19-inch support cut on the 45°.
After another hour or so, I had the other set pretty much done.
How do you like the 4′ height of the stand, so far? I’m getting ready to start wings soon and I might emulate this design.
I think they are about right for me. I’m 6’2″, and the tip of the leading edge is just barely not too high, but the rear spar is still reachable. I wouldn’t do it any other way if I did it again.
[…] I came up with was a method used by Andrew at his build site, which I think he credits to another builder. Anyway, I did make a modification or two. Andrew […]