Fuselage Construction

Yours truly starting the fuselage construction. (Jan 99) mestartfuse.jpg (41828 bytes)
Com antenna installed in the vertical stabilizer. The antenna is the same copper foil design that was used in the horizontal stabilize for the nav. comant.jpg (32655 bytes)
Inverted flight. Laminating the seam between the two fuselage halves. At this point the combined fuselage is too large to be stored in any part of the house but the garage. me_fuselage.jpg (33851 bytes)
Holding the vertical stab straight during the laminating of the two halves. Just be sure to untie the bike before use. vertstab.jpg (45724 bytes)
A water level and pump bob is used to ensure that the fuselage is level and true before completing the seams between the fuselage halves and belly pan. leveling.jpg (36313 bytes)
Construction of the firewall starts. The firewall needs to be flat, so what better than build it on a piece of glass. Using a old double pane sliding glass door, I built-up the foam core of the firewall into a stiff flat laminate. Now if only I could find were that draft was coming from.  firewallstart.jpg (81663 bytes)
We took the fuselage outside and stood it on its nose to complete the lay-ups on the inside of the firewall. firewall_on_nose.jpg (36539 bytes)
The cutout of the nose landing gear can be seen. Cutting holes is hard, I hope its in the right place. nosegear_cutout.jpg (26737 bytes)
Looking at the inside of the firewall, the fuselage is upside down.  The cutout for the nose gear is at the top. The reinforcement rib along the firewall can be seen. firewall_inside.jpg (37689 bytes)
Dad working on the firewall and nose landing gear wheel well. Dad_nosegear.jpg (37557 bytes)
Dad's handy work. Some more gussets need to be installed for the engine mount, but almost complete. nosegear_box.jpg (33578 bytes)
Fresh air vents installed. Air will enter a NACA duct and is fed to this cool ball valve. In the big airplane world this valves that are normally over the seats of the passenger are called "gaspers". FreshAirVent.jpg (29864 bytes)
The lip of the NACA duct is put in place. InsideNaca.jpg (26491 bytes)
Template for lip #6. Dad did the research to find the correct lip shape. This will help reduce the drag from the NACA duct. Lip6.jpg (18405 bytes)
The outside view of the fresh air inlet. Outside_Naca.jpg (17167 bytes)
A screen was placed in the inlet to help stop the big bugs from coming into the cabin in one piece. OutsideNacaScreen.jpg (18042 bytes)
The header tank before the rear wall is installed. Headertank.jpg (31665 bytes)
The aluminum plate on the left inside of the cell is a failed attempt at making the capacitive fuel sensor. Also seen is the vent tube. To try to get the most from the tank I installed a tube that reaches to the very top of the tank next to the fill cap. Failed_header_sensor.jpg (32488 bytes)
The sump of the tank can be seen on the lower surface of the tank. Inside_header_tank.jpg (32000 bytes)
Dad sanding the exterior seams of the fuselage. A additional layer of fiberglass was applied to the exterior seams to prevent the paint from cracking in the future. Hopefully to the distant future. DadSanding.jpg (72276 bytes)
Not required, but I used a vertical mill to drill the pivot points of the rudder pedals. The mill made it easy with a  long drill bit to get the alignment right. DrillingRudderPedals.jpg (103164 bytes)
Rudder pedal mounting points installed. RudderPedalMounts.jpg (84294 bytes)
Rudder pedal control arms installed. RudderPedalControls.jpg (81475 bytes)
The stabilizer is jigged in place, thanks to the mini jacks that are bonded to the sides of the fuselage. (Mar. 01) StabJigged.jpg (71093 bytes)
Laminating between the inside walls of the fuselage and the stab was not easy, however the next steps will be even harder. InsideFuseStab.jpg (69817 bytes)
Seatbelt shoulder harness mounts are installed. This was changed slightly. Instead of the mount inline with the longitudinal axis of the fuselage they where angled toward the center of each of the seats. This will remove bending loads if they are pulled against it in an accident. SeatBeltMounts.jpg (66448 bytes)
Ant. wire routing around the elevators. Extra care was taken to make sure the wire didn't interfere with the flight controls. AntWireRoute.jpg (67280 bytes)
Pilot rudder pedals are completed. RudderPedals.jpg (83179 bytes)
Rudder bell-crank assembly completed. Cables run from the pedals to this bell-crank mount in the aft fuselage, from there a push rod actuates the rudder. RudderBellCrank.jpg (69716 bytes)
Hinge and rudder bell-crank are installed. View of lower part of rudder shear web showing actuator bracket, rudder hinge and electrical conduit installation. Rudder_bellcrank.jpg (31369 bytes)

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