It took me four tries to build a paint booth that I’m happy with. The key was using heavier (4mil) plastic. I used two exhaust fans and a single inlet vent. I also have a small electric space heater that can quickly raise the temperature in the booth to about the surface temperature of the sun.
Today’s goal is to paint more interior parts and the canopy frame. I need to get the frame painted so I can install the plexiglass windshield and rear window.
The biggest thing I’ve learned about painting is that the set up to paint takes 10x the time it actually takes to paint.
Meanwhile the panel should arrive on Wednesday. Jon thinks it will take a couple weeks to get the panel fully in. He is probably right, but I am hoping it is quicker than that since the engine should be arriving in three weeks or so (and I still have to glue the canopy).
Jon and I painted sone of the access panels. They came out pretty good. Some minor contamination (dust) and the paint needed to be reduced a little more but quite happy with the result.
We also began prepping the rear window for Sikaflex (glue). Jon took measurements for the engine grounding strap.
I ordered the new firewall forward hose package from Aviation Specialty. Steve gave me full credit for the slightly older hoses I bought toward the new ones with integrated fire sleeve. The hoses are beautiful.
The engine looks to be three weeks out and the instrument panel is two weeks away.
I mentioned this before, but I realized that I wouldn’t be able to install two rivets near the canopy aft frame because I had already installed the canopy latch mechanism. I certainly was not looking forward to uninstalling the latch mechanism just to put in two rivets on each side. Last night, my father and I decided to do it. It probably took about 2.5 hours to uninstall, rivet and reinstall everything. Very frustrating!
Funny story, I very nearly managed to get a closed end ratcheting wrench stuck in such a way that I would not be able to get it out. I was tightening a bolt for part of the latch mechanism when I realized that the wrench on the nut side was trapped between that bolt and another nearby bolt. I couldn’t back the bolt out because my wrench would just ratchet when I turned the bolt. I yanked, pried and cursed. I seriously thought I was going to have to leave the wrench where it was forever. I finally managed to get a second skinny open end wrench on to the nut so I could back the bolt out. Man, that was close!