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I was in Salt Lake City all last week for meetings and flight testing. I managed to get back on Friday night, in the midst of a big winter storm - over 12" of snow. I didn't try to get out to the airport on Saturday, as I was certain that the taxiway to the hangar wouldn't have been cleared.

Sunday morning I decided to chance a trip to Smiths Falls. I discovered that while some taxiways were clear, the one to my hangar hadn't been cleared yet. I left the car in front of the club house, and trudged down the hangar line all the way to the end, in snow half way up my ankles. I was bushed by the time I got there - I've got to get some snow shoes. Fortunately, the taxiway had been cleared by lunch time, so the walk back to the club house for lunch went much quicker.

Sunday I installed the big elevator pushrod in the rear fuselage. There are a whole bunch of washers that go on each side of the rod end, with the hole shebang bolted in between the two elevator control horns. I threaded a piece of nylon cord through everything, then pulled it tight and slipped a 1/8" drill bit through to hold everything in place. I pulled the cord out, then pushed the bolt through. I do have to lubricate all the rod end bearings though, as they are quite dry, and there is more friction in the elevator control than I would like.

I also finally secured the extra four feet of GPS antenna coax that I had to add when I did the WAAS upgrade to my GNS 430. I had originally chosen the shortest possible routing for the coax, running it right underneath the canopy rail from the instrument panel to the rear seat area. But when I did the WAAS upgrade, I learned that the WAAS version of the GNS 430 had a minimum RG-400 coax length of 13 ft, and my coax was four feet too short. Arrgh. I ordered longer screws for the centre canopy rail, and used the longer screws to hold an Adel clamp to secure the coil of extra coax at the top of the rear baggage area, right by the antenna.


I also put the flaps on the hinges. There are many different ways to handle the hinge pins - I elected to remove some hinge eyes in the middle of the hinge, and used two separate pieces of hinge pin, inserted from the middle on each side, with the two pieces secure to each other with safety wire. The first piece was impossible to get all the way in until I put some Boelube on it, then it was only quite difficult. For the second one I drilled a hole in the end of the piece of dowel so I could put the hinge pin in the hole to allow the dowel to be used to push the hinge pin. That helped a bit. For the next two I realized that the Boelube had been pushed off the end of the hinge pin by the time it had been inserted very far, so I pushed a bit of Boelube into each hinge eye. That made a huge difference - the last two pieces of hinge pin slipped in place very easily.

Then I attempted to attach the flap pushrod to the inboard end of the flaps. I quickly discovered that it would have been much easier to bolt those rod ends in place before riveting the flaps together - I could get the lock nut started, but I couldn't get a wrench on it to tighten it.

Today I took a couple of hours of comp time, and left work early to go to the airport. I bought a cheap 7/16" wrench at Canadian Tire, then used a propane torch to heat it to a nice cherry red then bent a 90° bend in it. The modified wrench allowed me to hold the lock nuts on the end of the rod ends so I could get them tightened in place. I got the flap pushrod lengths adjusted to put the flaps at the correct angle. Next trip I'll adjust the aileron pushrod lengths to match the ailerons to the flaps.

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