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Thread: The Barn Find Build

  1. #21
    Senior Member jrevens's Avatar
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    Default Re: The Barn Find Build

    Quote Originally Posted by Eric Page View Post
    ... I'm developing a fondness for this plane due to pity!
    That made me laugh! Good report, Eric!
    John Evens
    Arvada, CO
    Kitfox SS7 N27JE

  2. #22

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    Default Re: The Barn Find Build

    I had to go to Philly on Sunday (got out Monday morning before the storm arrived), then had a couple days of computer work planning avionics and wiring, but I finally got back out to the garage today.

    I put a 1/2" shim in my tubing straightener so it would pull a bit farther, then finished straightening the bent lower longerons. I had to also use a ratchet strap on the left side, as that one had a funny S-bend in it, but it all worked out fine. The other tubes that I thought were bent, aren't (well, they actually are, but it's intentional; they form the curved shape of the lower fuselage).

    Next I stripped the covering off of the tail surfaces. The fabric I removed weighed in at 2 lbs 15.6 oz, and that's without paint and doesn't include the glue that's still stuck to the structure. That seems heavy to me, but the Poly-Brush had been applied with a pretty heavy hand.

    The organic vapor respirator cartridges I ordered finally arrived today, so I'll be able to get started on cleaning Poly-Tack and -Brush off of everything. Might make some progress on that tomorrow. I have a truckload of nursery stock coming in the morning, so I might end up putting some of that in the ground instead.

    I have some high shelves in my garage that I use to store leftover 12' trim boards from my house. By rearranging that stuff a bit I was able to make a perfect storage spot for the flaperons until I need them. They had been laying on furniture blankets on the floor. I had nearly stepped on them twice, and the neighbor's 110# golden lab walked on them once (no more damage, thankfully). I also hung up a 12' extension ladder that's been under foot for too long; that made room for the wing cradle, so I can finally get my car in the garage again.

    No photos today; I couldn't be bothered to take any!
    Eric Page
    Building Kitfox 5
    Member: EAA, AOPA, ALPA
    ATP: MEL / Comm: SEL, Glider / ATCS: CTO
    Map of Landings

  3. #23

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    Default Re: The Barn Find Build

    Today I suited up in nitrile gloves and a respirator, and started cleaning the fuselage tubes. While acetone does soften -- and with sufficient rubbing, remove -- Poly-Brush and Poly-Tack, it's a LOT of work. I spent the better part of two hours to clean a few feet of tube. At that rate, the job would take a month. The real time eater is the areas where the Poly-goop is thick (which it just about everywhere); you have to hold an acetone-soaked rag on them for awhile to soften the stuff, then rub, and rub, and rub. I tried dipping a Scotch-Brite pad in acetone, and that works a bit faster, but the pad quickly becomes saturated with adhesive and difficult to use. Plus, it dulls the finish on the powder coat.

    I searched my toolbox and found a small blunt scraper, which, when held at the right angle, will scrape off Poly-goop. I'll still need to go back over it to wipe away the remains with acetone, but it's a lot faster. Like the Scotch-Brite pad, it ruins the gloss finish on the powder coat, but I'm only using this technique on areas that will be covered again, so I'm not really bothered about it. The powder coat is remarkably tough, so it doesn't go through to bare metal, even with aggressive picking or scraping. The big advantage of this method is that it doesn't require the respirator!

    Anyway, I got about half of one side done, so it would appear that the whole fuselage will take about a week. Then there's the tail parts to clean. Then the wings. What on earth have I gotten myself into?!?!

    It's funny the things you don't notice until you're perched on a shop stool, inches from the frame. The first builder used so much adhesive to install the aluminum longeron down the side of the fuselage that there were blobs of it on the outside radius of the tube, right were the fabric was. I used a small file to remove enough of it that the new fabric will have a smooth surface to lay across. There were also two small gouges and burrs in the aluminum tube at the forward end. I cleaned those up with the file as well, and since it's not structural, I'll fill them with something and sand it smooth before covering.

    Break's over. Back to work.
    Eric Page
    Building Kitfox 5
    Member: EAA, AOPA, ALPA
    ATP: MEL / Comm: SEL, Glider / ATCS: CTO
    Map of Landings

  4. #24

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    Default Re: The Barn Find Build

    Damn that sounds like a lot of work. Glad the scraper works. I was going to suggest the Napa gasket remover stuff I've seen suggested but I'm pretty sure it will do a number on the powder coating.
    For the acetone (or MEK) I've read suggestions to wrap the soaked rag around the tube and then we plastic so it doesn't evaporate.

  5. #25

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    Default Re: The Barn Find Build

    Quote Originally Posted by alexM View Post
    For the acetone (or MEK) I've read suggestions to wrap the soaked rag around the tube and then we plastic so it doesn't evaporate.
    I actually thought about that, but I lack the patience!

    -=-=-=-=-=-

    I'm constantly in disbelief at the way this plane was put together the first time. There were lumps under the fabric around the door frames and rear side windows, but I couldn't figure out what was causing them. Once the fabric was off it became clear: the builder hadn't bothered to clean up the glue squeeze-out from installing the aluminum door and window frames. He just left blobs of it to cure in place, then put the fabric right over it!

    I've scraped it all away, and plan to do a little "body work" at the joints between aluminum pieces so the fabric lays down smoothly next time.

    I made a surprising amount of progress on the frame clean-up today. The right side of the fuselage and ~2/3 of the vertical stab are done, and the remainder of the vertical and ~3/4 of the left side have been scraped. I should be able to finish the fuselage in one more solid day of work.

    My plan for the next step is to use some scrap pieces of insulation foam to make crude mock-ups of the remote avionics boxes so I can plan out where I want to mount them. Since the fuselage will be going to a welder for the tail reinforcement and rudder gussets, I might as well have him add any additional mounting tabs that I'll need for avionics and antennas. Then once the fuselage is in the welder's shop, I can turn my attention to cleaning up the tail frames and stripping the wings.
    Eric Page
    Building Kitfox 5
    Member: EAA, AOPA, ALPA
    ATP: MEL / Comm: SEL, Glider / ATCS: CTO
    Map of Landings

  6. #26

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    Default Re: The Barn Find Build

    I forget, what are you planning for a panel?

  7. #27
    Senior Member bbs428's Avatar
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    Default Re: The Barn Find Build

    Ugg! Unbelievable what you found under the fabric. Lol. Your plane will be lbs lighter and look sharp!

    My 1st rc plane was lumpy and bumpy cause I didn't go over the structure sanding and filling. I just rushed into it, wanting it done. If you can feel it now, you'll see it later. 90% of the labor is in the prep for a sharp looking finish. Thankfully my original builder only made it to page 30 before quitting! Less work for me!

    Keep on keeping on and when in doubt, build it light!
    Somebody said that carrier pilots were the best in the world, and they must be or there wouldn't be any of them left alive. Ernie Pyle

    Brett Butler
    Building: Model 5 Outback with 7 mods

  8. #28

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    Default Re: The Barn Find Build

    Quote Originally Posted by alexM View Post
    I forget, what are you planning for a panel?
    One 10" Dynon HDX, ADS-B in/out, Dynon com radio and a couple of AP servos, because they're relatively cheap and I dig gadgets. I'll get the USB WiFi dongle for the HDX as well, so it can talk to my iPad. I don't think I want to cut the panel for an iPad mount, but I'm sure RAM makes something that will work.

    Quote Originally Posted by bbs428 View Post
    Ugg! Unbelievable what you found under the fabric. Lol. Your plane will be lbs lighter and look sharp!

    My 1st rc plane was lumpy and bumpy cause I didn't go over the structure sanding and filling. I just rushed into it, wanting it done. If you can feel it now, you'll see it later. 90% of the labor is in the prep for a sharp looking finish. Thankfully my original builder only made it to page 30 before quitting! Less work for me!

    Keep on keeping on and when in doubt, build it light!
    Man, I wish my guy had only made it to page 30. I also wish he hadn't lost his build manual, and that he'd been just a tiny bit organized so I'd have some idea what I've got and what I need to order.

    Agree completely on keeping it light, especially since this is an early Series 5 with 1,400# MGW. For that reason (and speed of construction) I'm leaning toward covering with Oratex. And, as much as I would love to strap a 150HP turbo conversion to the nose, for the same reasons I'll probably use a 912iS and a 2-blade carbon prop; they're known quantities with lots of support, they don't weigh a ton and they're good performers at reasonable cost.

    -=-=-=-=-=-

    No airplane progress to report. I got a load of nursery stock delivered yesterday, so I spent today slaving in the sun (with help from my parents and, for an hour, my neighbor) to get some of them planted. Got about thirty done, out of ~150.

    To those of you in parts of the country with nice soil, that probably doesn't sound like much progress for a day's work. Here in the Pacific NW, we're cursed with glacial till and lots of clay, which are a ***** to dig in, require sifting to remove rocks and amendment with manure to make anything grow.

    I had one unfortunate interruption today. One of my neighbors bought a nice 182RG about a month ago. He was flying this morning and when he came home he put it down without benefit of landing gear. The engine was running, so the prop is destroyed (bent tips and loose in the bub) and the engine will need a tear-down. I didn't get a look at the belly, but I'm sure it's a mess too. It stayed on the pavement and upright, so no wingtip damage. He owns a forklift (because you do, right?!), so we put a strap around the nose at the firewall and picked it up far enough to get some dollies under it, then we were able to tow it back to his hangar. Much to my neighbor's chagrin, it was a nice day, so there were plenty of people at the airport to stand around and watch.
    Eric Page
    Building Kitfox 5
    Member: EAA, AOPA, ALPA
    ATP: MEL / Comm: SEL, Glider / ATCS: CTO
    Map of Landings

  9. #29

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    Feb 2020
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    Default Re: The Barn Find Build

    See that's why I want to live next to an airfield.

    I forgot to tell you, when we left your place on our visit. We checked out the twin beech there and as we walk away, off out over the tree line I see what looks like a dude with a wing suit descending rapidly.

    Knowing that TDO is a sky diving place I naturally think that is what's going on.
    But as I point it out to my son I see it go down behind the tree line and think "huh, pretty sure a wing suit guy has to end jump under a parachute" and this guy showed no signs of that.
    Now, the noise in the background didn't make sense because it was the sound of an electric r/c plane, and I had seen an r/c field when I was on the 45.
    Pretty creative r/c "aircraft".

  10. #30

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    Default Re: The Barn Find Build

    Quote Originally Posted by alexM View Post
    I forgot to tell you, when we left your place on our visit. We checked out the twin beech there and as we walk away, off out over the tree line I see what looks like a dude with a wing suit descending rapidly.
    That's funny! Yeah, it's an odd place for it, but there is an RC field about a third of a mile S of the approach end of Rwy 6. They seem to be a good bunch of people; I've never heard of a problem.
    Eric Page
    Building Kitfox 5
    Member: EAA, AOPA, ALPA
    ATP: MEL / Comm: SEL, Glider / ATCS: CTO
    Map of Landings

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