Forward Skin

With a successful engine test and taxi done with a working panel it seems safe to attach the forward skin (why do I type that with a sense of having to talk about unriveting it later). The only panel item left to install is the GPS antenna which will sit just nicely on top of the panel.

I was going to use velcro but Allen thought I should use something magnetic and in the end the bottom tin from my safety wire container was liberated and put to work.

Magnetic disc for gps antenna

A hole was drilled for the cable to go through, with grommet to keep safe and snug.

GPS Antenna on skin

It makes for a very nice install. I’m going to do something to cover the skin, will just need to make sure the magnet still works through it.

Oh, here is a random picture of the seat cushions in the plane which I sat on for the taxi.

Seat covers in the plane for a bit

(I’d quite like to get the Zenith logo and my tail number embroidered on there).

The other thing to install in the panel is the map box. Because I sadly didn’t get the map box powder coated I had to spray the front of the box with a dark primer, otherwise you can see the shiny aluminum through the hinge. It stays in with some tiny #40 rivets that took about 1.5 squeezes to pull.

Map Box installed

And from the front

Panel complete

I’ve put my tail number on the box. Yes, my tail number – the airplane is registered with the FAA. Oh hai Mr Tax man 🙁

With that done I could put the front skin on and rivet.

Front skin ready to rivet

In the end I decided not to rivet just yet as I wanted to test the panel with the skin on, and I had the battery on a charge. I was able to test just before I left and everything still appeared to work, I will rivet that first thing next session.

Before the rest of the plane can be wrapped, I need the side windows in but it really is very handy to be able to put my head through the window to do things. So I need to get those things finished so I can put the windows on. Those things? Seat belt install, rivet the side covers, and maybe wrap the back of the baggage compartment.