Chapter 23 – Firewall MAP barb fitting

I had planned on getting a lot more done today than I did but a couple social events, one involving food, had me somewhat close to the airport.  So I stopped by the hangar and spent about an hour finishing up the assembly of a roll-around tool cabinet.

I was getting my shop notes together after returning home when an old Air Force buddy called, who I haven’t talked to in ages.  So I spent some time catching up with him.

Finally out in the shop, I played hide and seek with parts that I haven’t seen in 5 years.  One being the 9-pin D-sub connector for the GRT MAP sensor, which I found after hunting around for only about half an hour [I have a bin where I keep all <ahem… most> of my wiring harnesses in labeled bags, but it wasn’t in there].

The Molex connector for the Electroair MAP sensor?  To be honest I’m not sure if I’ve ever seen it, and it wasn’t in any of the Electroair component boxes… which I’m fairly religious about leaving unused tidbits in their respective boxes until installed.  I have a big ziplock bag that has all the Molex connectors in it, including old ones that I’ve pulled off of components.  It wasn’t in there either.  Looks like I’ll be placing a call to Electroair to have them send me one out.

As I played my on-again, off-again parts hide-n-seek I took pics of the disassembly of the engine electronics components coming out of the GIB headrest.  As par usual on this bird, there is very little space to jam all this stuff into.  I starting by removed the rats nest of wires that are still awaiting termination and much-needed cable management.  I also grabbed the shop vac and cleaned up what I could, although each component will need to be wiped down to remove the dust as I reinstall it.

I then focused on removing the components of the B&C SD-8 backup alternator from the headrest.

I then assessed my final configuration and location for the 2 MAP sensors and the firewall barbed fitting pass-thru.  I had wanted a slightly different configuration with the tubing and the connecting barb fitting for the MAP sensor tubing, but the tubing coming off the Electroair MAP sensor is thicker and less amenable to being curved at a sharper angle.  So I left it as is and decided to put the barb fitting as far outboard of centerline as possible, but still somewhat close to the top of the CS spar.

After assessing internal headrest configuration and engine compartment firewall spacing, I decided to place the firewall-transiting MAP barb just a bit away from the left side engine wiring connector, P9, which itself is as far outboard to the left as possible.

With my hole drilled through the firewall, it was now time to prep the barb fitting for flox install into the firewall.  I’ll note that up until a few hours ago I had planned to install a double-sided stainless steel barb fitting that had a threaded area in the middle and a nut.  However, the threaded area and nut on each side would have required me to drill a bigger hole and thin down the firewall to have enough barb length on each side for decent gripping of the tube.

Plus, the OD of the stainless steel barb was a hair under than that of the barb fitting on the MAP manifold block, whereas this brass barb fitting is closer to the same OD.

I then whipped up a little bit of epoxy & flox and then floxed the barb fitting into the 15/64″ hole through the firewall.

I had the P9 connector on-hand as I had done some configuration checking with that earlier, so I held it in place against the firewall as I grabbed a shot of the freshly floxed-in-place firewall-exiting brass MAP barb fitting.

With at least something notable done on the build tonight, I went back into the house and spent another 30 minutes or so looking for the missing Electroair MAP Molex connector… but, alas, no joy!  So calling it a night.

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