A few more pre-inspection tasks

Friday afternoon I went to the hangar and put some gas back into the passenger wing so I could check for leaks on Saturday. I was pleased to open the hangar Saturday morning and not see any spills on the ground, or in the wing skin so I am hopeful that is fixed.

I had a couple of things I wanted to do that I wanted some assistance with so Scott joined me for the morning. First on the agenda was to replace the springs on the carbs.

New carb spring

Astute readers will remember me saying that this is pulling the throttle back towards full rpm all the time. The new spring is designed to provide less pull on the cable while still pulling the throttle to full in the event of a cable break.

Old and new carb springs

The new spring is on the left. Scott tells me that the bigger diameter is the key difference (I had been expecting it to be longer, less to pull).

While testing the new cable tension Scott noticed that the locking nut on the cable at the carb was too tight, it should pivot as the cable moves and it did not. So it was loosened a tiny bit.

The other thing I wanted out of Scott was his knot tying skills so I could tie the plane to the truck for a full RPM test.

Full RPM Test

As part of the build up I did another mag test and saw drops of 50 on both sides so that is good. Then at full power the meter got up to 5300 rpm, all the instruments in the green. I let it go for a half a minute or so before reducing back to idle. The book says we need 5800 so there may need to be a pitch adjustment before/after first flight. Scott, and a fellow hangar dweller who had stopped by, thinks that I’ll get more rpm when moving.

We also did a leak test for the pitot system.

Pitot system test

We were able to blow air into the system and see the air speed indicator come alive. Unfortunately it was hard to keep the air in the tube because it kept leaking out of the end but I’m fairly confident there is no leak in the system. Once I’ve flown off the 40 hours I’ll take it for a proper certification so that I can use the transponder.

Sunday morning Teri and I were at the hangar early again this time to recalibrate the fuel gauge. The sender unit for the passenger wing is now sending different values than before so the gauge was massively under-reading the fuel amount. So I went through the painful process of putting in a gallon at a time and calibrating the panel. Everything currently reads well again.

With that, I believe the plane is ready for inspection. I have the day off Thursday to get the hangar in a bit better shape, remove the cowl and access panels, and then we shall see what the DAR has to say on Friday.

One last thing – I installed my first camera in the cockpit at last.

Garmin VIRB installed in cockpit

I have a Go Pro for the wing but I can’t decide which direction it should face – towards the cockpit? Forwards? Out to the side ? Any thoughts, let me know!