Initial Project Planning

Initial Project Planning

Trying the Long-EZ on for Size . . . 

6-9 March 2011 – After doing a fair amount of research I scrapped the idea of plunking down $19,000 for a Glastar kit in lieu of the Long-EZ Pay as You Build Plan!  I mean, besides, everyone knows that you SAVE money by building your own airplane!  HA!

Being a newbie, I had to know what I could cram on the instrument panel and what (or who) I could cram into the cockpit.

Initial Instrument Panel ViewInsrument Panel Mockup

 

 

 

 

 

But, being a project manager in my job instilled in me some tendencies to plan this thing out a bit.  I’ve seen too many real-world projects fall flat on their face due to failed planning.  And worse yet, I’ve seen havoc wreaked because a majority of project planning was based on assumptions and/or gut instincts.

Having only been around a Long-EZ when I was about 13 years old, I wasn’t exactly sure how the feel would be in the cockpit.  I had been to the airports around the area and hadn’t seen a Long-EZ, so I figured I would quickly build one myself! (Now that’s a plan!) I cut up some OSB flooring sheets to make a mock fuselage.  I didn’t have enough OSB, but after a quick trip to Home Depot I was able to finish my fuselage mockup.

LEZ Fuselage MockupLEZ Fuselage Mockup

My initial fuselage mockup was just a little too short (in length & height).  And more importantly, the stock width seemed just a little too narrow so I widened the fuselage mockup initially by 2 inches.

Initial Fuselage Mockup

Initial fuselage planning

The 2-inch wider fuselage was better, but it actually felt a little too wide.  I played around with different widths and plugged in the number for all the bulkheads to keep the width ratio the same and not mess with the fuselage’s shape.

IMAG0052

Of course to build the fuselage, I had get acquainted with the plans and their layout in fairly short order.

Initial Fuselage Mockup

Initial Fuselage Mockup

I finally settled on a front seat width of 1.4 inches wider than what the plans called for. This width would give me a little more elbow room, but not so much that I felt like I was going crazy on the widening effort.  After having a few buddies try out the back seat–and actually fitting!–I checked the block for the fuselage passing my size test!

So let’s build this puppy!

Recent Posts

Project Update

Hey Guys,  

Well, it’s coming up on about 6 weeks since I’ve been back on the build.  Made some decent progress on a lot of smaller tasks, and hope to be transitioning into some of the bigger airframe component builds here soon.

First off, I’ve been slowly organizing some of the info on my build log.  Essentially adding menus –such as Canopy Latch Hardware under the Chapter 18 – Canopy– in attempt to avoid having all chapter info lumped under one big page. Unfortunately, one of my last WordPress updates (I think is the culprit) reformatted my pics so they’re much larger in size, and thus have turned sideways to fit on various pages.  I try to update them a few at a time, but honestly this won’t be fixed until after this project is a true airplane.

While awaiting (initially) on some hardware for the canopy latch, I regressed into some tooling up in what I considered critical tooling systems required for my highly esoterically-designed (e.g. “one off”) components.  Those tools being my 3D printer, the plasma cutting table, and the milling machine.  The good news is the 3D printer appears to be back online.  The plasma cutting table is what I consider at bare operational capacity… it has issues on which I’m dealing with Langmuir Systems.  The major mods to the mill (besides CNC) are complete, and I can slowly start bolting it back together and get it operational.

So I’ll be transitioning back onto the canopy (Chapter 18) once again first, then with the remaining big build finishes: the nose (Chapter 13), followed up by the strake build (Chapter 21), and then knocking out the winglet/rudder install (Chapter 20).  All in haphazard synergistic fashion of course!

Cheers!

  1. Chapter 18 – Back off canopy! Leave a reply
  2. Chapter 18 – Mods kill us! Leave a reply
  3. Chapter 18 – My 12 steps . . . Leave a reply
  4. Chapter 18 – New Canopy Handle Leave a reply
  5. Chapter 13/18/22 – Bob is back! Leave a reply
  6. Tooling Up – Mill Tear Down Leave a reply
  7. Chapter 18 – All compromise… Leave a reply
  8. Chapter 18 – SC-1 Captive Bolt Leave a reply
  9. Chapter 18 – SC-1 Safety Catch Leave a reply