Sunday December 4th, 2005|
Finished Drilling Cabin Frame Channels
Today I continued working on the cabin frame. I didn't get any in-process pictures, but you can see here that obviously I got the thing drilled. Afterward of course I got a much better idea of how this *should* be done. It would make a *lot* of sense here to put a spacer between the two channels and weight everything down. This would get your perfect spacing. My spacing is pretty good, but let's just say that this thing is almost impossible to drill perfectly straight since you can't flute the channels due to the attach strip that's on the inside.
Here's the center plate drilled to the forward side of the cabin frame. This thing get riveted to the inside of the channel but the plans have you drill it on the outside since it's easily accessible at this point.
Anyway, I sat the cabin frame up on the fuselage to see what I had. Dan Checkoway and others have mentioned that if you put the seats in the position called for in the plans they will interfere with the cabin frame.
Sure enough, mine bumps there. Glad I saw this on Dan's site and decided to build the cabin frame before painting everything. Looks like I'll need to get creative by moving the hing on the seat bottom just a little. I agree with Dan that it's ridiculous that Van's won't change the plans here and maybe have you wait to fit the seat back bottom hinges. Oh well, no harm done, jus a little bit of rework (and people wonder why these airplanes take so long to build!).
Here's a view so you can sort of get the 'big picture'. The cabin frame serves as a roll bar. The channel running from the top of the cabin frame to the baggage bulkhead serves as a brace for the frame and also tranfers load back into the thick .032 top skins in case of a nose-over incident. It was a little surprised to see how high this thing sat. I know that in Mike Stewart's plane my head almost touches the canopy so those bottom cushions must be really thick to get you up that high.