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Europa #435 G-RODO Build Journal - 2017 03

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1 Look for 1.5" diestock in local tool dealers but none available. Order one from Tracy Tools.

Yesterday's Redux bonding all cured OK for handling. Bolt has seized - obviously Redux got where it shouldn't have, despite all the care and greasing - but it breaks free with a light tap on the handle and then moves freely. Take the starboard door out from the boiler cupboard to the garage.

Remove chuck from lathe with workpiece for 1/4" NPT male fitting and fit one of the spare chucks. Cut about 30mm off the 5/8" hex aluminium bar, chuck in lathe and face off. Turn the outer 10mm down to 4.5mm diameter, then the inner 8mm of that down to 4mm to form a nipple on the end. Round the outer end with a smooth file. Centre drill and drill through 2mm.
2784.6
2 Ferrite toroids delivered from CPC; they look very suitable to accept 10 or more turns of the wires supplying the USB (and other) power outlets.

Dry today so roll fuselage out onto drive. Check Bud Yerly's advice about fitting doors and draw lines on top of fuselage, aligned with inner edges of hinge-mounting platforms in the hinge rebates. Lay port door on a piece of carpet and support latch edge on a 20-litre drum so hinge tangs are easily accessible. Use same techniques as for starboard door (see journal of 2016-10-26) to mark hinge hole positions in accordance with the manual. I note while laying the metre stick across the tangs that they are not co-planar; the ruler rocks slightly rather than lying flat. As the effect will be to have one hinge slightly more open that the other, probably not a serious problem, as I plan to make sloped flox pads on the fuselage mounting platforms. Extend the hinge lines around and onto the tops of the tangs. Offer up door to fuselage aperture. The lines on the door tangs are about 1mm shy of those on the fuselage. Mark on the edge of the door where relief is needed to get the lines more into alignment and cut back with Perma-Grit block and files. Re-check against aperture, mark high spots, file again and repeat until satisfied that the lines will align with a small clearance along the top edge of the door. Centre-pop and drill holes in tangs 3mm. One has drifted slightly off-centre; bring it back into line with a needle file then open all holes to 4.8mm.

Offer up CD4 & CD5 to footwell and insert temporary 5/8" button-head 10-32 screws. Can't reach to fit the nuts from outside the cockpit - will have to lie across and get my head down for that. Getting dark so roll fuselage back into garage.

Reverse workpiece in lathe chuck. Drill 4mm, 15mm deep, then open in 0.5mm steps to 7mm. Remove chuck from lathe, mount on holder and drill out to 11mm on bench drill. That is just too tight to admit the 1/4" NPT tap (should be 7/16") so drill again 11.5mm which is fine. Start the tap while held in drill chuck to ensure squareness. Once it's too hard to turn the chuck by hand, switch to the tap wrench and continue until the tap bottoms. Clean up and check how the male thread on the water-trap fits; it goes in 2 turns easily by hand so that should be OK.
2788.1
3 Put chuck with boss ready for die-cutting the thread back onto the lathe. Fit 1 5/16" tailstock die-holder and press it against back of 1.5" diestock to keep it square while starting thread. When chuck gets too hard to turn by hand, remove chuck from lathe, mount it on holder and clamp that in bench vise. Lubricate die and workpiece with Molyslip MCC, carefully re-start on the thread and cut thread down to the shoulder. Alas, when the die is removed the thread is not fully formed - no crests - so discard that workpiece and start again with a 30mm length of the 9/16" hex bar. Face off, centre drill and drill through 2mm. Turn down for 10mm enough to just remove the hex corners and form a cylinder. Fit tailstock dieholder and start thread as before. Remove chuck, mount on holder and clamp in vise. Cut thread down to shoulder - quite hard work and needs to be taken in very small increments. Clean up and check fit in female thread end of water trap - goes in just over 1 turn but seems nicely snug so should be OK once tightened with a spanner. Reverse workpiece in chuck and turn down as before to form 4.5mm diameter nipple on a 4mm shank, total length 10mm. 2790.6
4 Roll out fuselage onto drive. Check fit of port door. Seems to be OK around sides and bottom - the filing back along the top edge appears to have been all that was needed for a good fit. For each of the bolts on that door in turn, paint the tip with a red paint marker, retract the bolts, fit door and actuate handle smartly to drive bolt against fuselage rebate, leaving a red dot. Extend the dots with a cross marking for clarity. Check that the DL07 bolt guides will fit comfortably in these positions.

Counterbore the hinge tang holes with a 10mm spade bit (to avoid digging in) and check that they are deep enough to take a stiffnut. Grease the hinges and pins to prevent the pins dropping out. Countersink the holes in the door halves of the hinges and deburr the back side. Start to fit the hinges then realise the holes in the tangs need to be slightly countersunk too, so do that now. Fit hinges, greasing the stiffnuts and ensuring the hinges line up with the marked lines. Check that there are screw threads showing beyond all of the stiffnuts, so counterbores are deep enough. Offer up door to fuselage aperture and check hinge alignment. Notice that the fit is slightly tight at the bottom of the forward edge so relieve that with a Perma-Grit block. Tape small pieces of polyethylene sheet over hinges as for starboard. Mask off the hollows inboard of the hinge platforms port and starboard with parcel tape. Cut pieces of sponge to fit within the hinge leaves, to keep them sprung apart, and tape them against each of the hinges.

Rain starting, so pull everything back into the garage. Later, rainfall radar shows a clear patch for a few hours so roll out fuselage again.

Abrade bonding areas around bolt guides and hinge pads and degrease with acetone. Mix a peg-2 (45g) batch of standard epoxy (which turns out to be too much) and add several doses of flox until it is really stiff. Spread onto hinge mounting areas in fuselage recesses. Offer up port door, holding hinges and sponges in place with the polyethylene sheet. Clamp gently in place with Solo clamps. Likewise position starboard door and clamp. The clamping pressure needed is surprisingly light, so to ensure the doors stay in place add clamps at forward and aft top corners.

Cut out the 16 off pre-marked 30mm BID squares and lay them on small polyethylene sheets in 4 stacks of 4. Mix a peg-2 (45g) batch of epoxy (too much again) and start to wet out BID. Paint bonding areas on fuselage with epoxy. As it's quite cool with the big door open, I need to warm each layup in the palm of my hand to get the epoxy flowing enough to wet it out fully. Apply each layup to the door frame, lining up by eye with the marks where the bolts strike, and peel off polyethylene backing. Add peel-ply to each layup and wipe up a few drips with the brush.

Cut a large piece of polyethylene sheet to cover the cockpit apertures and tape it in place. Roll fuselage back into garage. Put fan heater inside on a large piece of hardboard, set to half power, thermostat 3. 9C, 67% RH at start, changing soon to 23C, 42% RH.

Clean adaptors and fit hand-tight to water trap. Offer up to firewall to see where it might fit. It will need to go quite high in order for the bottom end to clear the aft baffle, so the upper connexion will have to loop around the reach the sensor.

I see I'm now just 0.3 hour short of the time on the garage hourmeter so must remember to start it after I've done another 18 minutes' work!

In the fuselage it is 24C, 30% RH at bedtime.
2795.5
5 Sample cups well cured; 25C, 26% RH in cockpit; turn off fan heater.
7 Roll fuselage out to drive. Remove polyethylene sheet and fold.

Unclamp starboard door and lift it off. Peel off tape holding polyethylene strips and sponges around hinges. A lot of excess flox has gone into the recesses inboard of the hinge platforms but the flox pad looks otherwise OK with what feels like the right sort of taper on the hinge platform. Remove port door. Flox has spread a bit more on this side and has caught the sponges and gone up the sides of the recess a bit. On the port aft recess, cut down into the flox along the line of inboard edge of the hinge platform with a narrow blade on the oscillating saw. Crack off the waste piece in the hollow. Clean up the sides with power file and TC file and peel away the parcel tape in the hollow. Similarly cut off waste and clean up the port forward recess. After filing off the excess flox and peeling off the parcel tape I see that the oscillating saw has gone just a little too deep at the forward end and cut into the underlying structure slightly. I will need to put a BID patch underneath that area. Offer up port door. Aft hinge looks fine and seems to sit nicely on the flox pad. However, there is a significant space between the forward hinge and its flox pad. Don't know how that happened, although it's possibly because I moved the door and re-seated it, which might have smeared the flox away from the desired area.

Similarly, remove waste and clean up on the starboard side. Offering up the starboard door show that its forward hinge is OK but there is a space between the aft one and its mounting pad. I will have to re-do both of those, taking more care this time.

Abrade the hinge pads on the port forward and starboard aft hinge recesses with the power file. Mask off the hollows inboard of the hinge pads with parcel tape as previously, extending it a bit further along the sides this time. For the hinges themselves, instead of strips of polyethylene sheet taped over, try parcel tape instead, which might allow better conformity with the hinge surfaces. Cover both faces of the hinges and add small pieces at the sides to stop epoxy getting into the hinge pins. Find some large pieces of sponge and attach them adjacent to the hinges with double-sided tape, which allows a better view than the duct tape I used the first time.

Abrade the fuselage roof area under the port forward hinge recess with the power file. Cut 4 off 50mm squares of BID and lay on a small piece of polyethylene sheet. Mix a peg-2 (45g) batch of standard epoxy - have to open a new tin of resin as the dispenser bottle is empty. Wet out 1 BID square, then lay 2nd piece on top at 45 degrees and wet it out. Repeat for 3rd & 4th layers - much easier than trying to wet out the whole stack at once with rather cool and viscous epoxy. Paint the area for the layup with epoxy and apply the BID patch. Peel off the polyethylene carrier and stipple layup into place. Cut some small pieces of peel-ply and apply.

Mix about 4 good doses of flox with the remaining epoxy and spread it onto the port forward and starboard aft hinge pads. Very carefully offer up port door, holding forward hinge against the sponge as it slides into place. Clamp at forward and aft extremes of the top edge of the door, and very lightly at the door tang to keep it in line with the fuselage profile. Repeat for starboard door.

Drape polyethylene sheet over cockpit apertures and tape down in a few places with duct tape. Roll fuselage back into garage. 11C, 46% RH in cockpit. Connect and start fan heater. Cockpit gets up to 20C, 40% RH in a few minutes. Leave to cure overnight. 25C, 29% RH when locking up at bedtime.
2799.8
8 26C, 32% RH. Sample cup cured. Turn off fan heater. Early rain now stopped, roll out fuselage onto drive. Take off and fold up polyethylene sheet.

Unclamp and remove starboard and then port door. Cut off waste flox in port forward recess, taking great care not to saw too deep this time, and prise out of the hollow with an old screwdriver. Remove parcel tape masking and grind off some small nibs of flox with the power file. Remove parcel tape from hinge and offer up port door. Hinge now sits nicely on pad with no gap. Repeat cleanup process on starboard aft hinge recess and check hinge fit - also satisfactory.

Remove peel-ply from layup under hinge recess. Remove peel-ply from reinforcing layups on fuselage door frame around shoot bolt guide locations.

Try to hold each hinge of port door in place on its pad while exercising door. Quickly obvious that the tangs are fouling the fuselage recesses as the door rises - they will need to be chamfered to clear the inboard face of the recesses as the door opens. Start with forward tang and chamfer it with a Perma-Grit block. Offer up again and it is definitely better than before. Check where it's touching and relieve a bit more. Repeat checking and rubbing back in small increments, also rounding corners and tapering sides of tang until the door is opening to the point where the hinge leaves are approximately at right angles to each other before any obstruction is felt. Repeat for aft tang, and check each hinge carefully again for full movement. Once satisfied, prepare to bond hinges to flox pads with Rapid Araldite.

Attach a strip of polyethylene sheet to the inside face of each hinge with double-sided tape and to that stick a small piece of sponge, again with double-sided tape. Mix a little Rapid Araldite and put small patches of it on the fuselage face of each hinge. Carefully offer up the door, making sure the sponges stay in place to spring the hinges open, and lightly clamp the tangs in place. Insert strips of card in the gap between the door and the fuselage for clearance, then push the door firmly inboard and tighten the clamps. Add clamps at fore and aft ends as before for security. Getting dark and dew starting to form on top of fuselage so roll it back into garage.
2802.7
9 Roll fuselage out onto drive. Take clamps off port door - and it does not stay in place! Lifting it off shows that there are small flattened patches of Araldite on the hinges, but apparently it did not stick to the flox pads at all.

Scrape the Araldite off the hinges with a scalpel. Roughen the surface of the flox pads slightly with a TC file. Mix a small batch of Araldite Rapid and spread it onto both flox pads and hinges, keeping clear of hinge-pin area. Offer up door and clamp tangs down, with card spacers on the join line and extra clamps at the extreme ends as before.

Leave to cure and look at fit of hinge tangs on starboard door. Forward one seems to need very little attention but aft one needs a lot, especially at aft corner.

Araldite sample in mixing cup well cured, so gently open port door and hinges stay in place. Movement is free until the hinges are nearly open at right-angles. Cut a length of wood to prop door open, but it is not quite long enough to get the hinges open enough for the head of the Tight Fit drill kit. Dispense with the prop and just support the door on my shoulders as I drill through the hinge holes 3/16" (#10). Hinges then come off the flox pads quite easily - the Araldite there is still a bit leathery. Scrape the remains off the hinges and the flox pads.

Roll fuselage back into garage.
2804.4
10 tick Roll out fuselage. Offer up port door and drop AN525-10R10 screws into hinge holes. Fit temporary plain nuts and check operation of door - looks absolutely fine. Will need to fit longer screws on the forward hinge because of the extra thickness of the BID patch underneath.

Offer up starboard door and check again that the tangs are not fouling in either recess over the full range of movement. Attach strips of polyethylene sheet, and piece of sponge, to the inner faces of the hinges, using double-sided tape as before. In addition, tie down the sponges with nylon fishing line to keep them better in contact with the closing hinge. A little fine rain is just starting, but it doesn't look as though it will amount to much, so decide to work on. Stuff pieces of tissue in the hinge recesses to keep them dry. Mix a small batch of Rapid Araldite and spread it on the flox pads and the hinges. Offer up the door and carefully place hinges onto flox pads. Clamp the tangs and the extreme ends of the door as before.

Fit cowl and draw the projected outline of the silencer outlet pipe onto the inside, using a pencil held against the inner surface of the pipe. With outside calipers, measure the distance from the end of the outlet pipe to the inner surface of the cowl - minimum of 45mm, just forward of the bottom and maximum of 77mm, just aft of the top.

Araldite sample in mixing cup is now cured. Carefully unclamp starboard door and raise gently; hinges stay in place. Cut away the nylon lines holding the sponges and using the Tight Fit drill kit drill through the hinge holes 3/16". Insert screws, fit plain nuts finger-tight and check operation - looks good. Remove screws, open door so tangs are just touching recess and gently peel the hinges off the pads. Clear the Araldite off the hinges with a razor blade and off the pads with a chisel. Re-fit door and again check operation - all looks OK.

Roll fuselage back into garage.

Check which shoot bolt on starboard door contacts the fuselage first - it is the aft one. Coat the tip of that shoot bolt with a paint marker, retract bolts, close door firmly against fuselage and operate handle firmly to make a mark on the fuselage door frame. Open door and prop up. Drill on the marked spot 1.9mm and then 3.9mm. Wipe area clean, re-apply paint marker to shoot bolt tip and repeat the marking process. Paint showing more at one side of hole so file on that side with a Perma-Grit needle file. Wipe, re-mark, file, until satisfied that the bolt is contacting the hole evenly all round. Drill 5.9mm (which the hole has nearly grown to anyway) and then 7mm. Re-check with paint marker - looks OK so drill 9mm. By now the forward shoot bolt is contacting the fuselage frame so clean up the rebate there and apply paint marker to the tip of the shoot bolt. Make a mark with both forward and aft ends of door held firmly against fuselage. Drill on mark 1.9mm & 3.9mm, check again with paint, pull into alignment with needle file as for aft hole. Drill out to 5.9m & 7mm, re-check, drift hole slightly with round file and drill 9mm. Check OD of DL07 guides (0.6" or just over 15mm). Change to step drill and drill both holes to 10mm with that. Re-check with paint. Drift forward hole slightly with file. Step drill to 12mm.
2807.5
11 Open up fore and aft shoot bolt holes on starboard side fuselage door frame to 14mm with step drill. Both shoot bolts will now enter the holes and are holding the door closed in a good position - firmly against the frame with no movement. Enlarge forward hole with taper reamer until DL07 guide is just starting to enter. Bring bore more cylindrical with a Perma-Grit round file, checking frequently with DL07 for fit and twisting it to leave witness marks showing where to file. Stop as soon as DL07 will just fully enter the hole. Try closing door and operating handle - shoot bolt strikes but does not enter DL07, because it is not quite square in the vertical plane. File the top fore and bottom aft edges of the hole slightly and try again. Now, provided the guide is held with the forward end up, the shoot bolt will go right in under spring pressure. Repeat the careful enlarging process on the aft hole. Test operation with DL07 in place - OK. However, if both DL07 guides are in place door will not shut. Use a diamond burr in the Dremel to form partial rebates at the lower sides of each hole, and towards the inboard side, where the DL07 rim contacts first. The aft shoot bolt projects slightly more than the forward one, so sink the aft guide slightly more than the forward one. Deepen the rebates gradually until the door will close without the guides in the door touching those in the frame. The aft hole is just breaking out of the upper edge of the BID reinforcement so the BID will need extending upwards a bit. Leave that for now as the need for similar fixes may also emerge once the holes are made on the port side. 2808.5
13 Roll out fuselage. Mark shoot bolt tips on port door with paint marker and make marks on fuselage door rebate as for starboard. Drill on paint marks 1.9mm, 3.9mm, 5.9mm, 7mm & 9mm, swapping ends as each bolt bottoms, and checking at each stage with fresh paint, dragging holes into line with files before drilling again. Change to step drill and enlarge holes one step at a time to 14mm, checking alignment with bolts at each step. Now that the bolts will enter the holes, check alignment with a mirror on the inner side - both look perfectly concentric when door is held against fuselage rebate. Enlarge entry side of holes with taper reamer, insert & twist DL07 to leave witness marks to guide filing to cylindrical shape until DL07 will fully enter each hole. Check at each end separately that the door is held firmly against the rebate with the bolt engaged in the DL07 guide, then try with both DL07 in place. As on starboard side, more clearance is needed so make partial rebates for DL07 rims on both forward and aft holes. Deepen rebates carefully until the door closes with no interference between the door-mounted and fuselage-mounted DL07s. Check shoot bolt action with both DL07 in place - smoother when they are held at the correct angle so bolt doesn't bind as it goes in, and much better when a little bit of grease is applied to the bolts. Check that there is a small clearance visible between the door & fuselage DL07s when the door is closed and the bolts home. The BID reinforcement on the forward hole, like the starboard aft one, will need extending because the hole is too near the edge of the BID.

Re-check starboard door for clearance and deepen rebate on aft hole slightly to improve clearance there.

Spend some time trying to project and measure where the hole in the cowl should be for the exhaust outlet pipe. Eventually use the Minitool jigsaw with diamond blade to cut around the pencil line previously drawn. Offer up pipe and trim edges of hole until the pipe just enters. Turn pipe so outlet is more aft than down and file away cowl where it touches, until satisfied with appearance and clearance, with pipe pointing well aft.

Replace forward port door hinge screws with AN525-10R12. Fit washers and stiffnuts to them and to the AN525-10R10 screws in the port aft hinge. Washers need to be bent slightly to fit.

Lay a couple of carpet scraps over door sills to keep shoot bolts clear of the frame. Abrade bonding area around port forward and starboard aft DL07 guide holes and degrease with acetone. Cut 8 pieces of BID about 30mm square and lay on pieces of polyethylene sheet. Mix a peg-1 (30g) batch of standard epoxy and wet out BID, one layer at a time, to form 2 off stacks of 4 layers, with alternate layers at 45 degrees. Paint areas around DL07 holes with epoxy and apply layups. Peel off polyethylene carrier, stipple down and apply peel-ply. Spread polyethylene sheet over cockpit apertures, secure with duct tape and roll fuselage back into garage - not a moment too soon as dew is starting to form on the top of the fuselage and the tape won't stick there. Connect and start fan heater. Initially 10C, 70% RH in cockpit.

27C, 32% RH in cockpit at bedtime.
2813.2
14 25C, 31% RH in cockpit, sample cured, turn off fan heater. Roll fuselage out onto drive. Remove and fold polyethylene sheet cover. Remove peel-ply from yesterday's layups. Scrape nibs and runs of epoxy from door sills. Drill out centre of layup over port forward hole with step drill and finish carefully with round Perma-Grit files until DL07 guide fits again. Check clearance from door and operation of latch - OK. Repeat hole opening procedure on starboard aft one. Also need to re-grind the rebate here where epoxy has flowed into it. Operation & clearance OK here too.

Replace plain nuts on starboard door hinges with MS21042-3 stiffnuts, adding AN970-3 washers, bent as required. On the forward hinge, the aft AN525-10R10 screw is not long enough so replace it with AN525-10R12.

While cowl is in position, re-mark through holes in CD4 & CD5 onto sides of duct with red felt-tip pen, as original marks seem to have been wrongly positioned.

Thinking about a cover for the fuel level sensor, try an empty 500g plastic tub and it goes in with a little room to spare, so it could be a good mould for a glass-fibre cover. Cut off threaded rim and stand it on an offcut of wood, on a piece of corrugated plastic to catch drips. Find a couple of suitable BID offcuts and trim them each to about 250mm circle. Mix a peg-2 (45g) batch of standard epoxy (which as usual turns out to be too much). Drape a piece of BID over the upturned tub and wet it out, stippling the edges down the sides of the tub. Trim off when it starts to wrinkle. Lay on second layer, wet out & trim. Squeegee with a plastic card to remove excess epoxy all round. Take in to boiler cupboard to cure overnight.

Try again the fit of the card template for the aft baffle section. Seems trickier than I remember to get it into place. When the metal piece is made, the common earth point and the carb air filters will have to be removed to get it in. About to also check fit of other baffles, then remember that they can only be fitted before the lower cowl goes on, so leave that for now. To reduce the vertical space taken up by the water trap, I wonder if it would be possible to have a right-angled fitting, particularly at the bottom. For instance, drilling into the side of the hex part for a small pipe (to be bonded in?), and just plugging off the NPT thread.

Carve away the marked areas on the blue foam piece for the inboard part of the port seat, using the Dremel router setup with milling cutter. Spend some time fruitlessly looking for the fuel level sensor box to check its fit in the recess, before finally realising it's in the starboard headrest. Fit seems about right, but the arrangement of the wiring needs to be sorted out before I do a proper check. Also the routing of the tube to atmosphere has to be decided.

Discover damage to the fuselage aft of the flap actuator slot. It appears I must have caught the flap tube on something immovable when pushing out the fuselage recently, and it have spring aft far enough to split the fuselage skin locally. Will have to see if I need to get a repair scheme from the Europa factory. Maybe the one I have for the wing would be OK.

Grease well all 4 shoot bolts and their guides in the doors. Remove DL07 guides from fuselage holes and abrade surrounding areas at the back. Degrease all around holes with acetone. I am not going to shorten the guides at this stage - the bodies are 25mm long - but will do that after they are bonded in. Roughen DL07 guides with a coarse file and degrease them. Mix 15g + 6g Redux (more than needed) and add a couple of doses of flox to stiffen. For each DL07 in turn, spread on Redux, taking care not to get any inside, and insert DL07 into fuselage hole on port side. With a split mixing stick, scrape off the excess Redux squeezed out around the rim and spread onto the back side, adding more to form a fillet. Clean up the front of the DL07 guide with acetone-soaked tissue and ensure it is pressed fully home into its rebate. Once both forward and aft guides are in place, lower door and operate handle to engage shoot bolts. Check that the guides are square and free to rotate by gently turning with pliers, while pulling away from the door to maintain clearance. Repeat process to bond in DL07 guides on starboard side. Spread the polyethylene sheet over the cockpit apertures and secure it with duct tape. Roll the fuselage back into the garage and connect fan heater. Initially 11C, 87% RH in cockpit but soon 22C, 60% RH.

At the Gloster Strut, John Bean agrees with my idea to make a repair similar to the one on the wing, but suggests I first write it out in detail for my inspector before starting work.

At bedtime, 27C, 32% RH in cockpit.
2818.8
14 tick 30C, 30% RH in cockpit. Turn off fan heater. Lift polyethylene sheet and check operation of port door latch - beautifully smooth, and door is pulled in to perfect firm alignment with frame as the shoot bolts go home.

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