31 December 2016: The firewall is the panel that separates the engine compartment from the aircraft cabin. It is also where the nosewheel will be mounted later on. It is made from galvanised steel and has 6061T6 aluminium components riveted to it. Patricia has laid out the parts, cutting and drilling where necessary. Many of the parts on the Zenair CH750 STOL are ‘match-hole’ technology, meaning that they can be simply clecoed into place. If you look carefully you will see silver, copper and black clecos in use here. The black clecos will be replaced by A5 rivets, the copper ones by A4 rivets. The silver clecos are ‘place holders’ for the moment and will be drilled out to take the bolts that will hold the engine mount on at a later date. Next, Patricia must take it all apart, deburr and treat it before reassembly and riveting. Gwen fell asleep on her mummy’s back during the process – which shows how therapeutic building a plane can be – for both mother and child! (Gwen will be learning to pull rivets very soon!)
4 December 2017 Then it had to be disassembled, deburred, degreased, Cortec 373 treated, reassembled and riveted off… Now, it must wait for the forward fuselage and rear fuselage to be mated before being built into the airframe.
One of the ‘new to building planes’ ladies pulled the last rivets with Patrica!
Jonathan and Patricia are pleased with the results of the first week of building – especially since they have not really had much time in the workshop – and it has been freezing cold this January (2017)