Project Update

Time: 8 Hours

So It has been a pretty busy summer for us…mainly for me flying and picking up extra hours so we can save for the propellor/spinner. I have done a lot on the RV that is worthy of posting on the blog. I have been cleaning up little items that were on my to-do list and checking them off. One item that I had added on the list a while ago was to remove all the zip ties I used and replace them with cable lacing. I wish I had just started off learning to lace and going that route from the beginning but I fell into the zip tie trance and how easy they are to put on. One problem with the ties is that they can chafe the wires as well as leave a sharp edge on the tail you cut off. So I watched a few videos and taught myself to lace properly and began to carefully remove the zip ties and replace with lace. I started on the firewall forward area including the engine. I then moved to the harder areas like the battery compartment and avionics bay behind the panel. It was a slow process but very rewarding to make it look professional. Here is just a couple of shots of how it looks with lacing.

Garmin GPS Antennae

Time: 1 Hour

I had run the RG400 coax cable from the Garmin GTN-625 tray a year or so ago when I was doing all the wiring behind the instrument panel. It wan through the left side firewall pass through. I just had it coiled up waiting for its final routing and installation. The cable has a required length and was labeled “so not shorten” since I put it in. So no that I had almost all the work done firewall forward I decided it was a good time to finish this task. I needed a TNC cable connection that is required for this antennae and ordered it from Aircraft Spruce. Once it had arrived, along with other goodies, I un coiled the cable and followed the steps to crimp it on the cable. If you need help with this task has a great video online. After I had it crimped on and tested for any shorts between the pin and shielding and all was good. So then the routing was planned out and how I would coil up the extra length of cable. I just decided it would be best to creat a larger coil and secure it with an adel clamp as well as zip ties before it runs up to the antennae. Once that was complete I ran the Dynon gps serial wires along the coax cable to secure it as well. I secured the cable in several spots to prevent chaffing or movement. Overall I’m happy with this layout and hope it has a good signal. I won’t know for sure until I buy the Garmin GTN-625 down the road.

Skyview EMS

Time: 4 Hours

I played around with the Skyview for a while looking at different configurations and how I would like to use them. One great feature of Skyview is the fact that it is so customizable! You can have different variations of screens and sizes, for example you could have 50% PFD and 50% engine instruments or 60% PFD and 40% interest instruments as well as several other options like 40-40-20. My initial plans for now are to run 50% PFD 50% engine for take off and landing, and then switch to 80% PFD 20% engine on my 10″ screen for all other phases of flight.  That would leave the 7″ screen to handle only the moving map. So now the fun part, Dynon is an open source coding and they allow for manipulation of their widgets if you’re willing to spend a little time playing with their text file.  For example there widgets can’t be changed from bars to arcs to numerical numbers pretty easy, but let’s say the arc always starts and ends in the same spot as they have designed it. With the ability to manipulate the files I can start and stop the arc wherever I want. Look at this next photo, specifically at the MAP gauge and the RPM gauge. Look at the starting point and ending point of the arcs as well as their thickness. 

Now fast forward a couple of hours, there is a learning curve in here, and see what I did to all the arcs. Some I rotated, some I made longer and some way shorter. I also changed the thickness of the lines as well. 

I also added a boost pump light so I know when it is on. Here you can see how each of the lights looks when activated. 

Each of these indications is just off of the sensor it could be manipulated in a lot of different ways! For a geek like me this is a lot of fun changing these files. For now this is how I will leave it until I look at it more and see if there’s any other information I would like to have during the critical phase of takeoff and landing. This configuration is saved as one file on a flash drive, I can change his shop to look totally different and save it as a different name and have access to both (or as many as I want) iterations of the screens anytime I want with a couple button pushes. Now this is what I call fun! ?

Cleaned up Wiring

Time: 1 Hour

I spent an hour cleaning up the fuselage floor wiring once I finished running the passenger seat heat wires and switch. I’m all done running wires so I wanted to zip tie all my wire bundles to make them look nice. I will tell you it’s getting harde and harder to bend over the side of the fuselage now that it’s on its wheels. 

I also grabbed my 2″ black air vent hose and cut a chunk off to add to the pilot air vent and the elbow on the forward baggage door. 

Every little step is progress. 

ADHARS and GPS Antanae Shelf

Time: 8 Hours

My last post had some fairing work and it turned out so-so, I’m not an artist by any shot and this will have a lot of work needed. 

I moved on to getting my ADAHRS mounted in the tray I made for them. I just needed to get them lined up with the axis of the airplane and attach them with non-ferous screws, I went with nylon screws and nuts with a little vibra-tite thread locker. 

I then connected the three lines between the two ADHARS. White is for static air pressure, blue is for pitot or ram air pressure and green is for AOA (angle of attack). I had already ran the Skyview network cables to the shelf area but needed to run the OAT (Outside Air Temperature) probes, one for each ADHARS. These will allow the units to give accurate readings with respect to airspeed. You need to keep the probes out of direct sunlight and away from any exhaust so I decided to put them under each wing. I placed them close to the access panels and in the same spot on both wings. 

With all the wires run I climbed into the tunnel to put the shelf back in place and make all the connections. I forgot how tight that space is and what a pain it is to work back there. So I powered up the Skyview and all worked perfect and crossed checked the two ADHARS units with no errors. I decided that I wanted to put my two GPS antanaes under the engine cowling and out of sight after talking with several builders this year at Oshkosh. I took some photos of a really nice setup and decided to replicate it. I started with a cardboard template. After I was happy with the shape and layout I transferred the dimensions to some .032 sheet and cut it out. I drilled all the holes for the mounting hardware as well as some lighting holes. I grabbed the two antanaes and mocked them up so I could drill the attach holes. I also drilled all the holes for the nutplates and dimpled them.I cleaned up all the edges and scuffed all the surfaces to be primed and painted. 

In between the priming and painting I worked on the firewall pass thru. I came up with the perfect spot on the right side of the firewall so that wires that needed to go to the engine area would run nicely.  I drilled a 3/8″ hole for a punch bolt to go through, I bought this tool just for this task. It is two peices that get pulled together and cut thru the sheet. It made a clean and perfect hole and was a lot easier than drilling the stainless steal. I used the pass thru as a guide and drilled the attach holes. After they were drilled and deburred I put the screws in and slid the fire sleeve on. I will run my wires thru this and seal it up at a later date when all the wiring is done. 

Vans had prepunched 3/4″ holes, one on each side, that I was originaly going to use but they are just to close to the edge of the firewall and I think they would be in the way of the Skybolt fasteners I’m planning on using. That was the main reason for switching to these firewall pass through from Cleaveland Tools. So what to do with the holes that Vans punched? Well after a little research I decided on using two large washers and a bolt/nut to sandwich the firewall between them. Once the paint on the GPS shelf was dry I bolted it in place. 

I’m real happy with how it turned out and have Bob M. to thank for the inspiration. One last task for the day was to clean up the wiring in the battery compartment since I’m done running grounds and wires through the firewall, at least on the right side. I have a little more work straighten out the ground wires, but I’m happy without turned out!