Monday, 28 October 2013

Week 115 - Baggage tray

Hours to date: 1174.75

The seat is fitting really well now and with the addition of the two plywood blocks either side it doesn't move at all.

Don't worry about being able to get the seat out with them hard up against it - the seat does flex slightly so you are able to remove it after they have set.

I won't be bothering with the plywood blocks behind the seat as I have extended the cell sides (see previous post).

I've also sanded down the plywood blocks at their outside edge so they blend into the surrounding area more. I'll post of pic of these later.

As you will see below the seatbelt hole on the right hand side got obscured by the seat edge - this is a result of the cell not being square. Only thing to do here is build out with micro on the inside and Dremel back where needed.

Onto the baggage tray - as you can see I had to use a lot of micro to fill the edge gaps. This may be as a result of my battery box pushing the tray higher than is normal. I made a 'shelf' underneath on the edges of the tray out of duct tape to stop too much micro going down the sides. This worked out well.

I fitted the tray to the back of the seat using micro too.

To finish off the baggage tray I will add a layer or two of carbon to the edges (top and bottom) where the micro sticks out - to make it more durable - otherwise it will no doubt get chipped in everyday use.

After that I'll fit the tray back in and then make up some support brackets. I'll use the same fixings on the outside as I did for the cell rear cover, the ones that embed themselves into the honeycomb.

Finally there are the thigh supports - which don't really support my thighs but do provide a smooth transition from the edge of the seat and stop any foreign objects from entering the control area below the seat.

They turned out okay - I used 6 layers of glass and am keeping 3M in business with the amount of duct tape I used.

Pete fixes these to the seat but I may fit them to the cell I think - we'll see.

Plywood blocks fitted to edge of seat to stop sideways movement.

Mod to seat with micro so starboard seatbelt hole is open.

Duct tape from hell for the thigh supports layup.

Duct tape on the seatback where the tray is fitted to it with micro.

Tray in place ready for micro - note duct tape 'shelf' underneath to stop micro going down the sides too much.

Lottsa micro.

Not too much needed to fit the seat.

Baggage tray with micro - I'll layup some carbon over the micro to make it more durable and stronger.

Thigh supports - after trimming out - they fit really well and make the seat more comfortable for your legs.

Wednesday, 23 October 2013

Pattern making video tutorial

Another awesome video from the boys at EasyComposites.

Part 1 of 3.

I wish I'd seen this before making the oil cooler ducts - oh well good knowledge for next time.

They also have an excellent set of tutorials showing how to make a carbon fibre car bonnet using an existing metal bonnet as a mould.

Tuesday, 15 October 2013

Week 113 - Seat continued

Hours to date: 1152.25

The seat is coming along nicely - however before I get into that I will talk briefly about the battery.

I decided it was time to order one as it is yet another thing that must be done before the cockpit can be painted.

The good news is that it fits perfectly.

Finally something going right for me!

I lined the inside of the cover and base area with special sticky backed foam which takes up any gaps and makes the battery resistant to moving around and being subject to shocks.

After that I drilled out some holes for the terminals to come through.

All pretty straight forward.

Back onto the seat...

I was only able to take the seat so far with regards to correcting the tilt of the safety cell in relation to the wing spar tunnel. This was mainly due to the left middle part of the seat contacting the safety cell (see photo below).

It is pretty good now - I used a spirit level to confirm things were square. I am only about 1 or 2 degrees out so it should be okay.

I may build up the starboard side some more - we'll see how it feels. If I do that then I'll have to put some micro underneath the seat middle on the starboard side so it contacts the cell properly.

The procedure - as described in my last post - went smoothly enough, duct tape everywhere then a heap of micro on the seat edge and where it will contact the cell on the duct tape. Use a stirring stick to clear up the edges as much as possible, then squidge the seat down with some weight on it and leave it to set.

I'm leaving it for 48 hours as I want it to be set properly hard before I sit in it.

As you will see below I am also making up some foam block (and micro) fillers for the thigh supports. When I get those right I will cover the lot in duct tape and lay glass over the seat front and onto those areas. That will likely be the subject of my next post.

These supports also act as a block to stop any foreign objects from entering the area of the lower control column.

Battery - it fits!

Terminals coming out the side

Anti-shock foam lining on the cover

Seat view from the back - you can see how much out the starboard side is

Ditto from the front - nothing I can do about this really.

Duct tape everywhere

Micro on seat and duct tape area then a heavy weight (my dusty tool box) and leave it to set.

Foam block and micro to make up moulds for the thigh supports.

Tuesday, 1 October 2013

Week 111 - Seat

Hours to date: 1137.25

As usual with me - I am my own worst enemy sometimes - and this is the case with the seat. Yet another modification, and in doing so it has probably trebled the time to fit.

I found the original position to be too upright - it's just a personal preference - but I prefer to be more laid back in a seat. Maybe it's my years of glider flying in this position and my previous aircraft - the Rans S-10 - also with a very laid back seat position, which influenced this decision.

In my defence I can only say that in the end I will be more comfortable - and for me this is a very big part of building your own plane. If you can't make it fit you like a glove then what's the point?

Because of cutting the seat back down I've had to extend the cell edges outwards in the seat back edge area.

Easily done with a flock 'mountain' and two layers of carbon.

In a much earlier post you would have noted that I also extended the lower front part of the seat.

It does feel comfortable now - still some fine tuning to do though until it is perfect.

And of course due to my cell being installed on an angle the seat has to be modified to compensate for this.

I've just flocked in the plywood blocks that 'lock' the seat in place at the front lower edge. There are also some further small plywood blocks that need to be flocked in around the seat back area to stop it moving from side to side - I'll do those next I think.

After all that is done - it will be a case of putting duct tape everywhere the seat contacts the cell and then putting a heap of micro on the seat edges to 'fit' the seat to the cell perfectly.

Pete has built some nice seat extensions at the front which support your thighs - I will be doing the same.

Extending the cell sides in the seat back area.

Flocking in the plywood seat blocks

Seat back cell extensions - both done.