THE BELLY IS PAINTED- Anthony, John C and John W came out for the afternoon. I quit working on the Mooney and worked with Anthony to get the belly painted. After a little instruction on how to work a paint gun and how to paint I turned him loose with the gun. This fine young man did an awesome job for his first time ever of painting with an HVLP gun . I have seen professionals not do as good a job. It takes a lot to impress me but he did it. He laid the paint on like he had done it all his life. He left before the revel but I know even he would have been surprised. Now we can remove the paint booth and continue with the assembly of the Hawk- another hurdle done.
The engine on the airplane. Notice the clean windshield! Thanks kids
The new firewall and the riveted tabs to hold the cowl are also visible.
In spite of The Mack airport having a Fat Tire Fly-in with lots and lots of really neat airplanes with tires big enough to make them look like Monster trucks, the repair-build group did get stuff done. I spent too much time watching the competition, a really interesting spot landing contest with genuine money as the prize (heavy metal won by Hector in his Cessna 180 N180C, at 5 feet from the line, and Light aircraft won by someone named POPS from Winnemucca NV. in a Super Cub at 9 feet. Travis Reese won heavy metal in the power off from 800 feet at 4 feet but there was no money just bragging rights. I was so interested in the competition that I almost missed lunch cooked by John C. If Anthony had not brought me back to reality I would have missed it totally and the build crew would not have gotten the sliver on. There was a Mackey SQ, and Blue Grey’s new Just Aircraft SUPER STOL competing and not having seen either of these spectacular aircraft preform, I took a minute and shirked my job on the build. OOPs! We are bottle necked on the build as we covered and are painting the belly of the Hawk. And we have to let each coat dry. (The weather held -no rain, so we could paint without blushing). The process goes something like this-
(1) Build a paint booth. (Anthony, Ken P, Kim, and lots of well used 1 inch PVC pipe and fittings (out of my junk) hung from the ceiling with a clear plastic makes an awesome paint booth, and kept the dirt out plus kept from over-spraying everything in the hanger. It has a fan to move the air, LED 4′ lights and no dust. this was done several Saturdays ago.
(2) Put on a brushed coat of Poly Brush then install all the tapes and inspection holes, drain holes and doilies over them- (John Wilson, Josiah, Anthony, and both Silas boys, Pat Wehling and anyone who happened to walk into the booth.(there is only 3 paint respirators so everyone had to take turns).
(3) Put on a Sprayed coat of Poly Brush. (Anthony, Josiah, John Wilson, Pat W, all learned how to work a HVLP spray gun. and they did an awesome job). they did this without the Poly Spray dripping off on the floor. NO-RUNS.
(4) A coat of Poly Spray Was put on. This coat was done both lengthwise and cross wise so there was no spots left uncovered. As this coat dried we watched the spot landing contest. and when the silver dried it was sanded smooth.
(5) Another coat of Poly Spray was added both lengthwise and cross ways. this should have been the last coat before the color but the kids found out about the fun of runs, so it was back to sanding and correcting errors. With a little touch up the color can go on this week then final assembly can commence. currently there is not much anyone can do until the painting is finished.
While the paint rodeo was going on the Engine build ran parallel to it. John C, Bill D, Anthony, Pat, and John W started final assembly on the engine. The rods are on the crank, properly torqued and cotter pins installed. The steel parts were Magnafluxed by Leonard Lentz at WestStar. Again WestStar came to the rescue and donated the Magnaflux time plus giving us all the documentation to show the parts are acceptable. Only problem was the vacuum pump gear was not in the parts given to WestStar. So I am going to have to beg another favor and see if we can get it done. Plus I am twisting Brian Miller’s arm for the adapter and vacuum pump drive gear out of his 0-200 to install in the HAWKS 0-200. Colorado Airparts wants $400.00 for these two parts and we are way short on funds. (Colorado Airparts also supplied the rod bolt cotter keys-No Ace hardware keys were used. Also they supplied the silk thread and the Hylomar case sealent.) We will have to replace Brian’s parts when our ship with all the gold comes in. With these parts installed, the 8 amp vacuum pump drive alternator that Ladd gave us can be used on the nose of the engine until the ship arrives so we can get a proper rear drive alternator. Until the Magnaflux on the gears are done, we cannot Slam the case halves together so the engine will start looking like an engine. Several engine people John W, Pat W and Bill D got their practice learning proper safety techniques per 4313-1A. With the book in hand, they did and redid until the safeties looked like the pictures, and were tight. (6 to 8 turns per inch with the tail turned under ect. ect.)
At the same time Rodger Olander (He did an awesome job with Grahpite on the nose for his Mitchel wing). is fabricating a Graphite instrument panel for us. Only problem is the graphite fabric he got from Aircraft Spruce has so many flaws in it it is not cosmetically usable. (See Photo). Tres said he would try to get us some non flawed graphite fabric unless someone in the club has some-(hint – hint- about 10 inches by 30 inches).
Another hint is WE NEED CASH I am really cheap but even us cheapskates eventually run out of ideas. DONATIONS ACCEPTED! We need to get Ercoup engine mount bushings and spacers (about $200.00) to put the 0-200 in the Hawk. Plus [we need] misc hardware and a carb. Hector said to use Jerry’s idea and use the C-85 carb with a primer. Hector said the serious hop up guys do this because the 150 carb with the pump has a flat spot when accelerated rapidly. I would think just the opposite would happen. Jerry purchased a primer so it would just be plumbing. Just hate lots of fuel lines, but is not expensive and we have the carb, in fact two of them. I thought about selling them, but they are better than nothing and a 150 carb can be installed later.
Anyway the Build continues- Did I say bring CASH?
Another day, more done. Saturday was another interesting Hawk build day. I had a new high school student that was really interested in the project and took to it Like a duck to water. Elijah is his name. Both he and his dad helped out Saturday and we managed to get the belly edge paint removed for the pinked reinforcing tapes and most of the tape installed. I am sure he will be back, his goal in life is to be a professional pilot. Very sharp young man. I also had both Silas’s working again this weekend plus Silas’s (guess Which one’s?) Dad who is a CFI and an A/P and works at WestStar. The word just keeps getting out. So far the list of young people regularly working on the project is expanding. They are Josiah, Jake, Haley, Sterling, Parker, Anthony, Silas, and another Silas, and now Elijah plus the Mentors. Things so far are working well as they do not all show up at the same time and there is plenty to do. Next build session should be interesting in that we will need to build a temporary paint booth as we are about ready to start spraying the silver and the paint. I plan on Making a paint booth out of PVC and plastic to keep the over-spray off everything in the hanger- another project!
The engine is proceeding nicely. John C, Anthony and Pat W managed to get Ken P’s lapped valves re-installed in the cylinders, and they do not leak, they held solvent. I took the valve springs to Auto Machine Services and they let me play with their spring tester at no charge. THANKS. The springs tested to new standards and I think they were new. this allowed the springs and keepers to be installed. The case is currently being tested for clearances and alignment and hopefully it will check out. After that I am going to take the steel parts to WestStar for Magnaflux. Then we can begin final assembly. Brian took the rods to Skyways and had them reconditioned. They now have the piston pin bushing replaced, the twist and convergence checked, and the rod bearing journals honed, and they are Magnafluxed. They are certified and we have paperwork, but we are $200.00 poorer. (Cheap for all that was done, normally $100.00 per Rod. Thanks SKYWAYS.) We have paperwork on the cam and lifters, and when WestStar is finished with the Magnaflux on the metal parts, crankshaft and gears etc, we will have paperwork on them also. This engine will be basically new and could go into a certified airplane as an overhaul. We do not have an original log book for this engine, so the time will start from 0 even though some parts are not new. Times unknown. The crank, the case, the pistons, the valves, and all normal replacement parts are new. The only thing old are the cylinders and some of the gears. The cylinders are .015 oversize. The total cost so far is not bad for basically a new 0-200 engine about $3000.00.
The only other things needed are an 0-200 carburetor, mags, plugs and an alternator. Brian brought back an alternator core from Skyways,, but it is a 70 amp Prestolite (off a Cessna 150) and I do not think it will fit between the firewall and the engine. (Plus it is very heavy.) Ladd gave us an 8 amp B&C alternator, but is driven by the vacuum pump drive which is located on the front of the engine, and we do not have the vacuum pump drive gears and drive pad . Cheaper to get a new alternator. Jerry talked to the President of Champion Aerospace at Sun and Fun about a Slick mag kit and he told Jerry that Champion normally does donations at the end of the year and since this is not year end he will take it under advisement. (Keep your fingers crossed). If this does not fly, then I am going to push for an electronic ignition again to save weight. Jay Scheevel thinks this is the way to go and is looking into it. So do I, but that green stuff keeps getting in the way of rational decisions. This would definitely mean we need a reliable alternator, or E-mags which do not need anything. Again we could throw lots of money at it, if we had it. (An airplane is a large hole in the sky that sucks up money.) Some of the things we need ASAP are the correct color paint, some intake hoses and a few engine gaskets, The engine mount spacers for conical mounts (Ercoupe C-85 to 0-200 to clear cowling) and new rubber mounts, $120.00 for the spacers, and lots of time. Once the belly is painted, then it will be time for final assembly of the airframe. Things should go fairly quickly at this point, as most of the large hard parts are finished, except for the new gear bungees (my project). As to paint, I could spend money with Poly fiber or I can have Pat Trim of Hightower Suppy color match and mix some Polyurethane paint that is flexible and can be put on fabric. It would be cheaper (probably nearly free). Pat is an old time modeler (part president of the Grand Junction Modelers) and uses it on his models, He said it would work good. ANY THOUGHTS on THIS WOULD BE APPRECIATED! I am in the hanger every Wednesday afternoon if anyone has time to work on the Hawk or I can fit to daily schedules that work – Oshkosh is coming fast!. ANYWAY THE BUILD CONTINUES!