Rear Wing Spar

Resumed assembly work on the rear wing spar. Parts W15-06L and W15-06R should be completely symmetrical (rear wing spar attach fittings), but both don’t seem to precisely match the plans, the right side deviating more than the left. Looks like cut badly then filed. Worked with Ross to take a test measure of what the angle of the fittings would be on each side, and it was approaching 2 degrees. That could make for a nasty stall break! Scrapped these parts and ordered replacements from Sonex.

Switching Tailwheel

Removing Tailwheel
Removing Tailwheel

Tailwheel plans review. Taking a break from the confusing wing spar to remove the 3″ tailwhell and replace it with the larger wheel for grass operations. Determined the new assembled wheel did not have the same pre-drill for mounting. Need to disassemble and move the old 3″ wheel wings to the new 6″ wheel wings, but takes more muscle mass than I have, so need to get assistance.

Plans Review -Outer/Inner Wings

Wing Plan Review
Wing Plan Review

Center Wing sections are done, now it is time to think about the inner wing section and the outboard wing/tips. Spent several hours review plans with my experienced builder neighbors, identifying what needs to be fabricated versus what is supplied with the kit. I suddenly understand why some folks pay $4K for the pre-built spar options!

Prep for Outer Wing Build

Finished Wing Table
Finished Wing Table

Tonight I spent an hour or so building a larger 4′ x 8′ table for assembling the outer wings. The table is made up of three 8-foot 2″x4″s screwed two sawhorses acting as a frame for the top, which is a 1/2″ 4’x8′ sheet of MDF board. Thanks go to one of my many great neighbors for helping me lift the heavy board into place. The top was secured to the 2×4’s with countersunk wood screws to keep them from damaging the wing skins.

After completing the new bigger table, I then reviewed the outer wings plans and parts of the kit to proceed with the build. The goal is to start on them this week. I’ll probably drop by an RV and Hummel build tomorrow night to get pointers from folks on the outer wings.

Below is a time lapse video showing me finishing up the wing table, drilling countersunk holes for the last six wood screws.


Plans Review

Build night this Wednesday was all about plans review, deciding what to do next. I was considering beginning the canopy but that should come after glare shield and avionics, especially since I am considering trying to adapt the popular ASA Sonex sliding canopy mod to the Onex.

Most of the evening was plans review with an experienced aircraft builder, with a focus on canopy and wings. I think that next week I will attempt to begin the outboard wings, since the metal working workshop (EAA) gives me a confidence boost. This means I need to make a decision about lights, so probably going to make my final decision on nav/beacon/strobes soon and order them.

Finished Wing Cradle

It was rainy before work this morning, so instead of jogging at 0600, I spent an hour or so cleaning up last night’s build work and cutting the carpet pieces to attach to the supports. I attached the carpet pieces to the supports, and tested them with my body weight. The leftover carpet is stored in the Onex parts cabinet. There is enough left to replace 3 pieces of the 67″ x 6″ carpet supports, as well as a larger left over piece not cut to length. At that point I moved the wings onto the cradle. I feel much better with them off the floor. It’s also nice to reclaim the floor space. Now I just need a better place to store the ailerons and flaps than the table they are perched on. I supposed that would be installing them on the finished wings, lol…. Now I need to decide how to proceed…finish the fuselage clecos? Mount the canopy? Finish the wings? Not sure yet, so I will audit plans this weekend and try to determine what to do next. Since this weekend is our annual airpark HOA meeting and fly-in, probably not much build work this weekend. Next weekend I will traveling on the official EAA build night for the project, so not much progress over the next 10 days expected.

Wing Cradle Progress

Been working on a wing cradle to get the center wing sections that are complete stored someplace a little safer than on cushions on the floor. Three hours last week and three hours this week of work and the stand is near complete. All that remains is to cut four strips of carpet and tack it onto each of the support areas.

The design is a modified version of the classic EAA stand/cradle but shortened in width to accommodate the fact that only the center section of my wings are complete.

Hangar Upgrade

The hangar is undergoing a serious upgrade so that the Onex build can proceed at its new location. I’d been using the hangar for overflow storage after moving to the airport, so lots of stuff had to be relocated or removed.

I also never fully set up the hangar as a workshop, so I have been building/installing new workbenches and cabinetry so I can have adequate space to work, and adequate storage for tools and parts. As an added bonus, all the tools, parts, etc. associated with my Searey now have new storage and workspaces also.

So far I’ve spent about 40 hours on the hangar cleanup with still much more to do, such as building platforms for my simulators. I also plan on adding a second story mezzanine to the back of the hangar (and will probably relocate the simulator there), but that will be a winter project.

Onex at Permanent Hangar

The Onex has been transported to its final (permanent) hangar location. This is the grass strip from which I hope to perform my first taxi tests. First flight will probably be at Statesville or Lincolnton, as they have much longer runways. One day…..

Moving the Onex
Moving the Onex