Third Annual Conditional Inspection · · PAGE 256.
June 7, 2008: This Saturday at the hangar
was all about the beginning of the third annual conditional inspection of N2PZ. The
new nose gear fork arrived as scheduled this past Thursday. Here is how the airplane
rests until the nose gear leg returns from factory modifications.
I took off the cowl, the nose wheel fairing, gear leg fairing, and pulled down
on the tail tie down until the nose wheel cleared the hangar floor. Then it was time
to remove the old nose gear fork and move all the appropriate parts to the new fork, which
will provide additional ground clearance. The grease fitting, the two cap screws
that engage the lock to prevent the nose wheel from getting into the prop arc, and the two
brackets that are not secured by the axle bolt are shown already installed on the new
lighter fork weldment.
The nose gear leg was removed and suitable safety supports were put in place to
be sure my bird does not fall on its chin and do major damage. It will be sitting it
this position for at least the next three weeks. All of this is done to be in
compliance with Van's Service
Here is the old fork after stripping off the pieces that were moved to the new
fork. You can see just how much paint got on it when the airplane was first painted
in July 2005. The nose gear leg fairing is shedding some of its UHMW protective film
after three years. Some of the overlapped plastic is letting go, but where it is
stuck to the paint, it has a good grip. So much for my idea about two layers are
better than one.
Back at the tail, the tie down eye-bolt and this cargo tie-down strap are how I
got the nose wheel clear of the hangar floor. I used this same rig last year during
the annual inspection to clean and re-pack the nose wheel bearings.
Wendell reported that the work on the communications antenna cable has been 100% successful. All his voice communications from his RV-8 are rock solid!
June 8, 2008: Time for my usual Sunday web site update. It is 94 degrees outside and a good time to be indoors doing this update. I read the instructions for shipping my nose gear leg back to the place it was made. Can there be any better place to get the modification needed than from the people who built it? Being the resourceful guy I am, I had a piece of the original packing crate from Van's Aircraft that brought my wing kit to me. I used that board as the mounting board for my nose gear leg. When it was secured to the board, the leg and board, along with my information form in a suitable zip-lock bag, was all packed inside a layer of heavy cardboard to make the package acceptable for UPS ground shipping back to Langair Machining near Scappoose, Oregon. Tomorrow it goes to the local UPS facility for a long cross-country trip via ground transportation.
As for me, I have a two-week business road trip that begins NEXT weekend and will keep me away long enough that my nose gear leg could actually get back home before I do. We shall see. My postings to update this web site during that trip may be missing, although there are at least TWO RV-builders out there that may get a visit from me. We will see what time may offer in my business and weekend personal travel plans.
June 12, 2008: I talked to both RV builders that could get a visit from me during my upcoming road trip. Right now, it is just a matter of confirming possible meeting schedules with each of the builders. One is in Pennsylvania about 50 miles from my son's home, the other builder is in Massachusetts, not too far from one of my customers from my day job. We shall see how it all works out. If there are new builder RV pictures to be posted, I will create the new pages in my OTHER RV BUILDER section of this web site.
I pick up the rental car for the 2-week road trip tomorrow and the miles begin early on Saturday morning enroute to York, PA. My nose wheel gear leg is on a UPS truck, riding a train from Chicago to Portland, Oregon. The delivery at Langair is scheduled for next Monday, June 16, 2008.
June 22, 2008: I am half-way through my road trip for my day job. Today I am near York, PA publishing from my son's home.
The nose gear leg for my RV-9A has been modified at Langair and is on its way back home via UPS. It is scheduled for delivery on Tuesday and will be waiting for me to install it next weekend.
As for this week, I was busy in the Philadelphia area for most of the day on
Monday, June 16th. I drove to New England Monday afternoon and evening. It
rained very hard with small hail when I passed through Peekskill, NY. After that,
there was light rain most of the way to my destination at Westfield, Mass. My
morning business meeting the next day went well. I found an "Old Friend"
just outside the office of my client this morning.
I spent eleven years working with a company that built these five-meter fiberglass satellite antenna systems. This one is not currently in use, but is still at the typical elevation used in New England for satellite reception in the western part of the geostationary arc. It is pointed EAST instead of West for "show purposes" to the street in front of the offices.
I had to get this shot from the parking lot to provide the "scene" as
seen from the street. After leaving here, I stopped briefly at the nearby airport
that serves this area. I wanted to meet the staff at the FBO to discover the ease of
flying my RV-9A in to meet these folks in the future.
My lunch was with an RV-9A builder at his home not far from my morning appointment. The details of that visit are fround on THIS PAGE in the OTHER RV section of this web site.
June 29, 2008: It felt
good to get my airplane back in one piece today! I opened the box from Langair, then
polished off the machined surfaces of the gear leg before putting it back in place via the
engine mount gear leg socket. I did not slow down to take a photo until I had the
nose wheel installed and the airplane safely on its nose wheel. I paused to take
this photo when I finally got the main nose gear fairing installed. I took this
photo just before drilling the holes for the cotter pin that secures the large nut on the
gear leg vertical post. That big nut is tightened until the fork requires 22 pounds
of force to move the wheel from side to side. A pair of compression washers are at
the bottom are full of axle grease, as is the fitting on the front of the nose gear fork.
I changed the oil and filter, plus verified that all the tires are pressurized
at 30 PSI. A thunder storm rolled into our area before I could go test fly the
airplane, so that waits until the Fourth of July weekend when the weather permits.
If you include the 1 hour I flew the airplane after the last annual inspection, the total
is only 10.2 hours of operation for the past year. Needless to say, the brakes are
not suffering. About all that remains to check is the condition of the ELT batteries
before the test flight this coming weekend. The main battery is kept in top shape
via the charger you see on the wing with the wires running to the DC power outlet on the
I also gave Wendell some guidance on building his canopy lock doubler plate. He hopes to get that installed later this week. He is planning on going to Oshkosh in his RV-8 this year.
July 1, 2008: I tried to publish this web update in the early hours of Monday, June 30th. I found the web server was down due to a dead hard drive in New Jersey. The site is up again, but all my hit counters were reset. I will try to get them set to something near where they were. If anyone remembers the value of the home page counter before the shut down, please send me an email via .
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