Europa #435 G-RODO Build Journal - 2009 06

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Excuses section - during May, June & July 2009 I've been doing some actual flying in Cessna 152s to revalidate my licence, so that has occupied part of my time and energy that might otherwise have been used for building. I appreciate the work done by the fine people at Staverton Flying School to keep me current, and fervently hope that by the next revalidation 2 years hence, I won't have to bother them again because I'll be doing it in my own Europa!

day notes hours
1 Consider that it would be better to make a right-angle adaptor for the 9-way D-type connector and so allow use of an unmodified shell with cable grips etc. Try milling an open-ended slot in a piece of 35mm x 35mm x 3mm aluminium angle as a test and it looks very promising.
2 Digital voltmeter and ammeter modules arrive. Alas, I have ordered a 50A AC ammeter by mistake! Can't send it back as it was my own fault; must have clicked on the wrong line. Order a DC one instead, from a different supplier. The voltmeter works fine on test. Measure up 9-way D-type connector more carefully and start to prepare a milling schedule for the aluminium angle.
4 tickFinish marking up cockpit module flange areas onto fuselage bottom moulding. Roll fuselage on its wooden dolly out of garage. Take fuselage rigging dolly out of trailer. With Robert's help, take fuselage to moulding out of trailer and get wings out. Leave port wing on lawn as starboard wing has to go into garage first. While manoeuvring starboard wing, brush against port wingtip and it falls over onto steel fuselage dolly, making a couple of holes in the top rear skin. Bring starboard wing into garage and slide wing sling under it. Bring port wing into garage and support it on sling likewise. Remove dolly from port wing, slide it clear of cockpit module. Slide wing into cockpit module, then move wing and cockpit module outwards to clear end of starboard spar. Remove starboard wing dolly and slide wing into cockpit module. Insert 1/2" UNC bolts through seatback bushes into port spar holes. With Robert pushing on port bolt, wiggle starboard wingtip and the bolt goes home. The starboard bolt then goes right through too. Take tailplanes and rudder from trailer to garage. Put fuselage top moulding onto bottom one and wheel into trailer. Put everything else back into trailer. 1283.2
5 Send e-mail to Martin Carolan saying now ready for cockpit module pre-bond inspection. Replace faulty OR5 on starboard outrigger mechanism. Remove port aileron bellcrank inspection panel to see what the skin damage looks like from inside. 1283.6
8 Phone Europa factory and ask about repair scheme for wing skins. Send picture by e-mail to help them assess the damage. Measure distances and clearances around servo connector and check sizes of shells. Slimmest one also has finger-turn screws which is handy.
9 tickMartin Carolan comes to inspect cockpit module and controls prior to bonding-in. He points out some voids in the horn-box bonding that should be filled with Redux flox after roughing up bond areas with small grinder. He says I can be much more aggressive with the scuff-sanding before bonding. He would typically use 40 grit paper and for large areas, a power sander. It's important to get a key (ie obvious scratches) rather than just matting down the surface. He signs off inspection #23 and also #7, #8, & #9 for the ailerons, but we both forget to do #20, the initial fuselage workshop conditions inspection. Draw up the proposed right-angle adaptor bracket for the 9-way D connector in CADintosh. Order a couple of 9-way D sub-min connectors and matching screws from Maplin.
10 Trig TT21 transponder arrives. Order some slot drills from Tracy Tools including one suitable for milling wing-leveller servo connector adaptor bracket.
11 9-way D connectors and screws arrive from Maplin. Slot drills etc arrive from Tracy Tools.
12 Wing repair scheme arrives from Europa factory. A little unclear in parts so e-mail for clarification.
15 tickReceive e-mail reply about wing repair from Roger. 50A ammeter module arrives. It's powered by 5V DC so will need a converter. There is no documentation so no idea whether supply and measuring terminals need to be isolated. However, no problem as I find that Maplin have in stock an Aimtech AM1S-1205SZ which provides isolation as well as voltage conversion. Go to Martin Carolan for signature on inspection #20 that was missed last week, and discuss the repair scheme with him. He offers some useful hints such as to cut the foam in the wing using the patch piece as a template. Collect Aimtech DC-DC converter from Maplin on the way home. Set up ammeter module powered by one side of Thurlby dual bench supply. Turn the other side down to near minimum, giving a few mV output. Apply that to the ammeter input and find it works OK in both directions, with -ve sign appearing when polarity is reversed, so no problem with using it on the battery lead to show both charge and discharge.
16 Post inspection counterfoils 7, 8, 9 20 & 23 to LAA Engineering.
20 Get some diamond, tungsten carbide and other Dremel burrs from B&Q, for cleaning up the aileron horn box bonds before adding more Redux.
22 Order SAT-004 crimp tool for D sub-min contacts (as supplied in Trig installation kit) from SteinAir.
23 Draw up Trig TT21 interconnections in OmniGraffle. Try scarfing the outer skin on the small tip offcut of wing skin. Try various methods but most successful was with cutting disc in Dremel. Normally those discs will shatter if side-loaded, but the force required here is tiny and poses no risk to the disc. Although this is the easiest way to get a nice chamfer, the size of the disc and the protrusion of the securing screw prevents the chamfer being wider than about 7mm. Phone Europa factory for guidance on tools and methods. No technical personnel on duty, but I get offered John Bewley's home number so ring him. He says the important thing is to have an abraded surface at least 10mm wide, rather than it being a nice taper all the way. He says it's probably safer to do it with medium grit sandpaper by hand than to use power tools.
24 Add dimensions to CADintosh drawing of D-connector angle bracket and add a table of equivalent mill table handwheel graduations (needed because the graduations are 0.025mm and the collar is figured every 10 ie 0.25mm; so 80 graduations per turn gives an advance of 2mm).
27 Warm up older Redux can in a water-bath for a few minutes. All crusty bits dissolve quite quickly and readily. After it has cooled slightly, mix a 15g + 6g batch. Abrade heavily a couple of pieces of offcut layups, paint them with Redux and clamp them together with polyethylene sheet around to catch drips. Plenty of Redux left so do another joint with 2 pieces of wood and another with 2 pieces of aluminium, all suitably abraded and similarly clamped. Leave in airing cupboard to cure.
29 Order a piece of brown foam 100mm x 250mm from Europa factory. Check Redux bonds in airing cupboard; obviously cured but the squeezed-out pieces (although free of any of the lumpy bits seen in batches made before the warming treatment) are still very flexible rather than rigid, so leave all specimens there for the full 5-day cure.
30 Crimp tool for D sub-min connector pins arrives from SteinAir.

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