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Progress the last two weeks has been frustratingly slow. We had several snow storms that meant that the taxiway to the hangar would be impassable. I had some Christmas shopping to do, and a couple of otherwise good evenings were eaten up with a work trip to Montreal. And we had family in town the last ten days, which occupied a bunch of time.

I did manage to get the wing bolts torqued, but that took much more time than expected. The upper bolts were a piece of cake, but it took a lot of fiddling around to find a workable combination of sockets, extensions and wrenches to get at the nuts on the lower bolts. The nuts are self-locking, so you can't just spin then down with your fingers. There wasn't good access to get a socket on the lower ones, as the cockpit floor slopes upward in front of the nuts. And the landing gear box braces hindered access with a wrench, only allowing about 30 degrees of motion on each swing of the wrench. So it took a fair bit of time just getting the eight lower nuts on to the point where a torque wrench was needed. The right side was especially bad, as I had put the wing leveler servo a bit too close to the spar. Suffice it to say that the imagined quick job of torquing the bolts turned into several hours of work.

I attacked a whole bunch of other small tasks, but kept on finding that some critical part or tool was still home, or that I needed to order some little bolt. Every trip to the hangar I take more aircraft parts and tools - eventually everything will be there. I put one hardware order in to Van's, and I'll need to do another order soon. I did manage to get the wiring to the elevator trim servo hooked up, I started hooking up the aileron pushrod at the stick, but found that I needed to order longer bolts. Same problem with the elevator pushrod. I reinstalled the last of the brake lines (I had removed the portion on the aft side of landing gear legs, as I was afraid that they might get damaged when pushing the aircraft up the ramps onto the trailer).

I ovaled the holes for the GPS antenna, to move it a bit further away from the canopy rail on the rear fuselage. I came up with a way to secure the extra four feet of antenna coax that the GNS 430 WAAS upgrade required, but I need to order some hardware to implement the idea. I started running the various wires and coax cables from the fuselage to the wings.

Tomorrow is my last day off before heading back to work. I had hoped to spend the day at the hangar, but we got a big dump of snow today, and I fear that the taxiway will be impassable.

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