Four Years Down

Time once again to look back on that first snip in the metal for the rudder kit which is now four years ago today. The little box to the top right tells the story, over the last year the first number hasn’t gone up by much, I did only 53 hours on the build compared to 120 the year before. The other number though has certainly increased. Ouch.

53 hours is the least time I’ve spent on the build in a year and I’m a little stuck as to what happened. It sure seems like things have progressed quickly since last year and I was expecting the number to be similar to the first year (last year was an abomination as my Dad was here and he really wanted to see the fuselage come together). I do know I started slow, it was very hard to get back into the project after the summer, and I did a lot of days where I didn’t work much because I came to a “natural” stopping point. Having looked at the engine and the FWF kit I am very keen to get back to it, and I am hopeful that the first reasonably cool morning come September/October I will get out to the hangar at least for a couple of hours.

[UPDATE] I don’t know how I could have forgotten this, but my wife reminded me that we lost 2 or more prime working months due to the airport repaving project! Even though two thirds of the work didn’t impede access to my hangar, they turned the electricity off for several weeks so it was just the same effect. Without that, I surely would have been in the 80-90 hour range.

That said, the transformation of the project over those 50 hrs has been huge! Fuselage is together, interior is together, almost had the wings on (pesky water rash) etc. Although there are a still a ton of little things to do, I think the transformation is only going to get more marked as major pieces get mated to the fuselage. And I think as more go on, the more exciting it will become.

Many people have asked about my new estimate for a completion date. My goal is still next December in time for my 50th birthday but wouldn’t it be great if it could get done before the summer heat returns next year. I know that every task takes 3x longer than I expect but it sure seems doable with the right start and the right help.

I sure do appreciate everyone who has left a comment, wished me well etc over these four years. I’m hoping you will all stick around for the next year and perhaps “Five Years Down” will be the most exciting anniversary post yet.

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