Tuesday, 26 January 2010

Welding Work

During December I begun the preparation of the fuselage for it's eventual bead blasting and painting. There was no repair work necessary as the aircraft has never been crashed and there is no evidence of major corrosion but there are a number of other jobs that need to be completed.

The job list included:
  1. Adding structural harness attachment points.

  2. Welding on additional tabs to support the baggage sling, 'D' windows, hat shelf, floor boards and skylight.
  3. Welding up and re drill the rear horizontal stabiliser mounting holes (to be re drilled).
  4. Have my inspector sign of AD.2008-09-18 (Wing strut attachment bracket).

The plan was that if these jobs could be completed by Christmas, then I would grit blast and paint the fuselage in the period between Christmas and the New Year. Of course things don't always go as planned, but more of that later.

The first problem encountered was that the harness brackets that had been made (http://gbrih.blogspot.com/2009/11/harness-brackets.html) were flawed, the bolt couldn't be fitted because the fabric would interfere, so I had to make new ones to fit (see below). They were manufactured in the same way with the same spec material but now weld at an angle to give better clearance.

My friend David made four post supports from 4130 rod with an internal M6 thread. These were welded to the fuselage to provide additional support for the skylight.

The additional tabs were all welded on over a couple of evenings and I begun to plan the cleaning and painting of the fuselage frame.

The AD inspection was scheduled to be done once the fuselage had been bead blasted as this was purely a one off inspection for corrosion or cracks around the strut attachment fittings and it would mean I wouldn't have to remove paint at a later date.

I'll discuss stripping and repainting the fuselage in the next posting soon.

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