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April 2004
Still sanding. I know I said that last month. I had a conversation with Steve Green and he summed it up as being "the Lancair experience". Yeah, that's it. The good news is I'm chasing smaller and smaller flaws and everything is blocking out level and to the touch it feels straight. Getting the wings on and setting the gap below was a major boost in builder momentum. Can't get enough of that these days.

One of the most tedious tasks has been getting the canopy sill bodyworked. I began by rounding out the pointy edge which revealed lots and lots of pin holes. I filled with metal glaze, primed, sanded and to my horror revealed more. So it's been continual chasing with priming and sanding, but after four rounds it finally came together. It was so nice to have it back on. Now to work the gap to get an even popcicle stick width all around. A nice tool to do this task is using the stick itself with abrasive stuck on. More sanding..woo-hoo!

As always, I'm working off a to-do list and I got the comm ground plane installed per Jordan Bach's advice and re-sealed with epoxy paint.



After getting my hydraulic lines re-installed I wanted to do something different besides bodywork. So I began with all my firewall hardware and completing the avionics shelf. The battery boxes are from Lancair and will hold a smaller sealed battery. The advantage of these are they get the needed weight forward, but the problem is the boxes will have to be unbolted for maintenance. Not a big deal. Scott Alair gave me the idea of bonding-in nut plates from inside the firewall so removal is rather easy.

Since I am doing the inertia reel harness I de-cored the seat back and potted-in phenolic blocks with a four-bid covering the front and back for the anchor. There is more information on this in the tips section.

Laying out the avionics shelf was fun and I'm getting more familiar with my components and wiring harness. I don't have a whole lot of items to manage, so the shelf is pretty clean. I'll use click-bond standoffs to secure the parts. The large section I cut is another Ron Jones idea to allow the wiring bundles to drop down and go through the console.

The aft baggage window progress continues along with the NACA ducts. Tedious, but always worth the effort. Always a nice break from bodywork is "anything else". I fitted the exhaust tunnles I got from Ron Gregory. It's his signature piece that I saw fitted to Stuart Featherstone's Legacy. Well, had to have these! I will finish intalling the screws and send them out for polish. It hides the ugly blanket and, like Ron Jones' root fillets, adds to the beauty of this airplane. A big thank you goes out to Stuart for helping me get a set and putting up with my daily asking. Thanks again Stu!

Now, in finishing out April comes the installation of the flaps and all related hardware. Just a little bit more and I will be cycling my gear. Can't wait! One issue I noticed, and sort of bothers me, is the way the flap terminates at the root fillet. There is this trailing mismatch that I am going to fix with bid. More on that next month, along with my engine and scmitar prop!





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