Welcome to my thoughts...
aka Attack of the Blog !!!
...seeing the world through this pilot's eyes
November 26, 2014 Making aluminum parts have...
got me thinking.
I enjoy making an airplane out of tube and fabric. And I've always liked working with wood. And now I'm finding that.... um... I like working with aluminum sheets.
And those thoughts have me thinking of other thoughts; the next airplane to build. OUCH !!!
Fabricating with aluminum, it just seems so fast... build a form for the ribs (which takes just a little bit of time) and you can knock-out forty ribs in a few days. A few more days to cut the lightening holes and flange them and BAM !!! you have your ribs finished. But that's not the real beauty of working with aluminum... There's something, I'll say, sexy looking about it. The Hughes H-1 with it flowing lines. The M-1 Midget Mustang has similar flows to its lines.
So... a Midget Mustang... Thorp T-18... Skyote... ??? BUT, I don't want this to distract me from what still lays before me... my Radial Engined, Skybolt. Maybe I need to get a rendering my Bolt made up, the way that I have it designed. (to keep the motivation going).
Maybe I should just stop all this nosense and get back to building !
December 8, 2014 Seeing ORION blast into orbit...
got me thinking.
I've had a facination with space flight since... since I can remember. On my twelth birthday I had a bunch of my friends over and the cake had the Appollo rocket on it with a bunch of spacemen. Pretty cool stuff.
Just the other day NASA lanuched the newest version of putting our "men" into space... the ORION spacecraft. Take a look at the photo of the launch... it's just one KICKASS spacecraft.
How neat is it going to be when all of us can fly our own private "ORION's" into orbit ???
I saw "INTERSTELLAR" at the movies with Andrea this past weekend. SOLD ! If you like space, ya gotta see it. We're talking DEEP space. We're talking quantum physics. We're talking black holes and event horizons. We're talking ROCKETS.
December 31, 2014
Reflecting on the past...
Looking at the future...
Even with a move... I've made pretty good progress this year. Or... Maybe it's just that I'm seeing little bits and pieces being attached to the fuselage instead of working on one large project with nothing more to see than... one large project. (yeah... that's it. I just looked at my hours since the beginning of this year and it's only 314.3 hours)
Can I say ??? Will I say ??? Do I want to say ??? that I'm a year and a half to two years out from completing the biplane ??? naaaa... no commitment to any of those statements
What I will do is reconfirm my commitment to finishing my biplane. Kind of obvious that I won't quite working on it by the amount of years it's been since first ordering the plans. I'd like to say it will be done and ready to fly out to OSH 2016 but I'm not really sure. There are a few pieces of the biplane I've already gone back and tweaked or re-did and I know I'm going to go back and address the two stringers on the turtledeck I'm not happy with right now.
and... I'm really wanting to have that 300hp Jake hanging on the front instead of 245 or 275. Maybe lighten it up with a wood prop. But... the engine will take a while to get up to speed. I should really look hard at that right now.
I'm living that last 10percent takes 90percent of the time to do... it's the detail of it all. I'm experiencing this on the fuselage. AND... it's not the fit and finish of it, it's the little schit that soaking up a lot of time.
April 29, 2016
It's been a long time since writing anything in this section. Too busy building the biplane ???
Got something to wear to show my passion... designed a tee-shirt for my project. Pretty damn nice if I do say so myself !
November 26, 2016
What's in a number ? or at least an N number. Ya know... the one that is assigned to your airplane, or one that you've thought long and hard about and requested... and received.
As can see from the above t-shirt design. I had choosen N755SS; 755 alluding to the Jacob 755 engine and SS representing South (Jersey) Skybolt. Nice, right ?
A thread was started on the biplane forum about N numbers. There's actually a site out there that you can do an open search, with certain criteria, to see what numbers are available, or at least at the date of the search. And in that thread on the forum, Mark made mention about having the standard "all number's". Looking at older photos of airplane I saw this was the case. That would only add to the "old look" of my Skybolt. Now the only question... what number. Should I pick the shortest length of numbers making it look like it was registered a long time ago, or do I pick one referencing a historic airplane like the Spirit of Saint Louis or... wait, no need to think about this any longer. So... I put in 211, for N-X-211. Of course that wasn't available but a list of numbers came up with 211 in them and one of them was 21100. On the side of my plane on on the top and bottom (in large print) N-X-211-00. Cool ? I think so. So I choose that along with several other low number N numbers. Just the other day I received a letter from the FAA... for ten dollars an N number, I received N21100 and N1016. N1016 being the earliest N number that was available.
November 25, 2018
Getting things done...
I want to change, but I don't see that happening.
I want to be able to move on to another part of the biplane project while waiting on a part, or when I'm thinking something through. The way I'm doing it just adds time to the project. No matter how much I'd like to make a change towards doing it this way, I don't see the change coming.
For instance the main fuel tank; thinking this thing through (how to attack and make it), and wondering if I'll be making it in the first place (where's the learning in not? although that may change still?). All this time I'm pondering it, I could be doing something else, like riveting in the anchor nut plates for the 100 or so tabs I have on the biplane.
But, ohhhhhhh noooooo, I fixate on the tank for weeks, or months, and the project stalls. I'd like to change, but it, so far, ain't happening.
February 23, 2019
I'm still working through the tank. I'm HUNG up on it until I finish it.
No real plans. Nobody local I can talk to about it. It's all head scratching, asking the guys on the forum, and working things through. It's taking QUITE a while, but I'm okay with that. I LOVE the learning. Didn't think I would be building a fuel tank when I started this project, but I am now.
by the way... I just went out and spent $50.00 on a few oak wood boards to be used as the former for making the end-caps. It would be cheaper to go out and buy a tank than to buy all the material and parts and make it yourself. Unless... you can source the aluminum local and have the ability to make the tank in one shot. Then... you may still be pushing to be making it for the same amount as what you could purchase it for.
But where's the learning when you purchase it?
After I'm finished building the last piece and attaching it... making it flight worthy... I'll not only see a beautiful biplane, but I'll see the sum of its parts. I'll look at it and see every part and piece on it... parts and pieces that I've made. I can see why you can get you the lic. to tear it down and work on it after you've built it; you know her better than anyone.
This fuel tank for instance, I'll think of the fuel tank and I'll see all the bungs, fittings, weld seams, baffles, you name it... and I'll envision it when I'm thinking of that tank. And those hammer marks that you'll see when you look at the corners on the end-caps... I'll be proud of those 'cause I made it. You don't get those hammer marks for a machine made part.