Fuselage - Fixtures and stands

2006-06-25 - Building the fuselage stand. (4.5 Hrs).

Last week was Father's day, so I didn't get any work done. Tomorrow is my wife's birthday, so I had to do some shopping yesterday. Yes, as usual, I waited until the last minute. Anyway, today, I managed to build a stand to hold the fuselage so the longerons are 42" above the floor. This is just about right for me to reach over the edge without having to bend over, but it may be a little high. I thought it would be better to be a little too high, where I could shorten the legs, than to be a little too low. We'll see how this works out.

BTW - since tomorrow is my wife's birthday, today marks the end of three years working on this project. My original estimate was three years, so my ability to estimate how long it will take to complete an airplane is right in line with my skills at estimating software completion dates. I guess that means I still have three years to go.

Actually, I did do a little work last week. I finally assembled my engine hoist. Now, I should be able to lift the engine onto the engine stand, and maybe start putting it together. BTW, this is the 1-ton version from, you guessed it, Harbor Freight.
These are the parts for the wing stand. I used the surface planner to make the short 2x4's the exact width of the wing spar. The short 2x4's insert into the spar slots, and the long pieces are the legs.

Home Depot did not have any 7/16" bolts longer than 2", so I am using 3/8" bolts--it's not a close fit. They did have 1/2" bolts, which I considered cutting down with the lathe, but they were twice as expensive as the 3/8" bolts, and that would have been a whole day's project. As it turned-out, the 3/8" bolts turned out to be a whole day's project, so I should have forked over the extra $.40 per bolt and done this right--cheap bastard! Or, I could have gone somewhere else to get the 7/16" bolts--stupid bastard!

The short 2x4s inserted into the spar slot, and bolted in. One 2x4 for the upper bolts, one for the bottom bolts.
Alright, I got to use my new engine hoist! Woo Hoo!
One side complete. Probably should cut the ends off of those bolts, or at least cover them with something.
Looking at the inside and the outside.
This height makes the sawhorse for the AFT end just the right height. And, I now have a place to store my ShopVac, again.