Chapter 13/22/23 – Painting Goalpost

I started off today making a run down to Harbor Freight for some equipment and tools.  I then headed over to my neighbor’s house for a while since he wanted some male company during their Mother’s Day cookout.

After some great food and beer, and a nice break with my buddy next door, I then spent some time assessing, evaluating and designing the conversion of my fuselage dolly into a bench top tool table on wheels.  I’ll report more on that tomorrow with pics.

I then had to contend with what had become an elephant in my shop, sitting there in the middle of everything and just getting in the way: my TIG welder. With new TIG torch consumables in hand, I needed to finish up my patch job on the oil heat engine sump fitting’s weld to the standpipe.

However, when I started clearing off my welding table I ran across my stainless steel upper left firewall pass-thru. I needed to trim it up and instead of setting it aside to do later and forgetting about it –like I did last time– I just spent the 20 minutes [and 3 Dremel disk changes…. that stainless steel is TOUGH!] to get it done.

Here’s a shot of what it looked like before, in case you didn’t remember.

I then mocked it up on the firewall for a quick test fit…. looks good and I think it will work fine.

I then welded up the remaining tiny gaps in the oil heat standpipe patch that I had to weld in place when I blew out a centimeter sized hole in the tube sidewall.  After an initial test to ensure there was no leaks –and there was NONE– I then ground down the weld repair to minimize it’s robustness a bit.  [One thing I didn’t show here was that there was a decent blob of solid metal inside the tube as well that I drilled with a large diameter drill bit to remove].

I then did one last test on the oil heat engine sump standpipe to ensure there was no leaking out or from around my welded repair patch.   And there was none…. SUCCESS!

So a few days ago my buddy and fellow Long-EZ builder Dave Berenholtz asked me if I was building a show plane, to which I answered something along the line with, “of course not!”  Well, after my escapades this evening I can understand why he might ask me that. ha! I do definitely have some design ideas for the interior of my aircraft…. not really the cabin area mind you, but more the nose area.  Nothing major, but I am essentially making a white accent stripe down the middle of the NG30 to lighten things up in the somewhat confined and dark spaces of the nose.

Given that, my last piece of the white center stripe –which I’ll paint first before the tad bit of color (same as nose wheel cover) that I’ll be putting on the sidewalls and NG30 sides– is what I call the goal posts… actually the goal posts existed before I put the plate in on top of it. FYI – the “Goalpost mini bulkhead” is what the original plans called out as F6.

Anyway, this mini-NG30 bulkhead will get painted white, overlapping a bit on the sides. The fancy part is that I taped in a curve at the bottom side to somewhat match the curve on the front edge of the forward NG30 cover (For those of you in the US or know the Progressive “Box” Dude…. it kind of looks like that too me).

I will add that I prepped it with a thin skim coat of micro last night, and then after I sanded that down I hit with a thin skim coat of epoxy before heading to Harbor Frieght.  To reduce the cure time so it would be ready to work on when I returned, I set a heat lamp on it.

Upon returning I lightly sanded the surface and prepped it for primer and paint.

Here’s the “goalpost” bulkhead after a couple of light coats of primer and then 2 standard coats of paint.

Tomorrow, after the top coat cures, I’ll sand it just enough to dull it and then hit it with a couple of coats of clear.

I plan on getting a bunch of internal nose prep work done tomorrow, as well as my fuselage dolly metamorphosis, but I will also be transitioning into move mode since Thursday I’ll be heading back down to North Carolina to deliver a load of household goods.


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