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Thread: Building a Nieuport 11...

  1. #721

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    It's always somethin'.

    -Rosanne Rosanna Dana

  2. #722

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    Ain't that the truth.

    But it gives me time to refine my vane style airspeed indicator and finish up on the gun.
    The opinions and statements of this poster are largely based on facts and portray a possible version of the actual events.

  3. #723
    I thought you were all GPSed up for airspeed and stuff dude?

  4. #724
    Dana's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Fokker Builder View Post
    I thought you were all GPSed up for airspeed and stuff dude?
    GPS doesn't give airspeed...

  5. #725

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    Ah, Dana, with the CloudAhoy app, it does! It even looks at METAR data and calculates airspeed versus ground speed, as well as climb and descent rates. However, it does so after the fact.

    Any ole aviation nav app will give at least ground speed, in addition to climb rates, altitude, etc. I think iFly does an estimate of airspeed, though.

    Replaced the battery, marked out the cut down vane airspeed indicator, and mounted the gun today. I'll figure out mounting the airspeed indicator later.

    So Saturday morning if the weather cooperates and my little Babette is willing, we'll go around the patch.
    The opinions and statements of this poster are largely based on facts and portray a possible version of the actual events.

  6. #726

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    Well, the "one more thing" monster raised it's ugly head, but at least I solved why the last battery damned near melted.

    The Diehl alternator is pumping pure juice to it. I was on taxi to the end of the runway and the voltmeter jumped with RPM's, going up to 16 volts before I backed off the throttle. If I'd of gunned it, the needle would have pegged for sure.

    Back to the hangar. No flight. This is why I never invite spectators to initial test flights, or for the first few of them. It's a 50/50 chance they won't get to see anything but a lot of fussing.

    A little troubleshooting later, and everything is grounded okay, with no change from what it was before. Disconnect the voltage regulator and it's a flat 12 volts on the battery. Run the engine and it's a flat 12v (as to be expected).*

    Well, sh*t. So there's one of three things going on:

    1) Voltage regulator is crap and needs to be replaced. Eighty bucks.

    2) I need to run a ground directly from the Diehl case to the ground on the regulator. The instructions say "The regulator/rectifier unit must be properly grounded to the alternator. Simply placing the unit on standoffs located on the firewall may not be sufficient. A ground wire may be necessary." Apparently in putting things back together I wasn't holding my mouth right - mine is on a standoff to the firewall - and there's insufficient ground now. But it was okay before. Huh. Maybe two dollars.

    3) There's a problem with the coils in the Diehl case. Highly unlikely, as if there was it wouldn't be producing juice, and it's not something that moves around and I was very careful with it when it was off the engine. The darned thing is dead simple:

    http://www.greatplainsas.com/scdiehl.html

    I called it a day, though, as I needed a decent Internet connection to do the research....plus I've found that when I attempt to repair a problem immediately after finding it, sometimes it turns into a fix that will require a larger repair later.

    * My ground crew joked that I should just fly the plane the ten minutes around the pattern on just the battery. I guess I got bug eyed at the notion, as it brought big laughs. Flying an aircraft with the ignition on a total loss electrical system? I'm pretty cavalier, but damn.
    The opinions and statements of this poster are largely based on facts and portray a possible version of the actual events.

  7. #727

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    Quote Originally Posted by Frank Giger View Post
    * My ground crew joked that I should just fly the plane the ten minutes around the pattern on just the battery. I guess I got bug eyed at the notion, as it brought big laughs. Flying an aircraft with the ignition on a total loss electrical system? I'm pretty cavalier, but damn.
    Frank, that really isn't such a far-fetched notion. The total-loss system has been the default setup on Legal Eagles since they appeared on the scene over twenty years ago. The 1/2 VW will run about four hours on a small battery (several flights in the Eagle!), a couple of hours would probably be very possible with your plane. Just watch the voltmeter and start thinking about winding up the flight when the battery gets around 10v. A few laps around the pattern should be low-stress.

    But I don't blame you for wanting something in the system exciting the electrons. My Legal Eagle had a magneto.
    Last edited by Sam Buchanan; 09-16-2017 at 08:48 PM.
    Sam Buchanan
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    The RV Journal RV-6 build log
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  8. #728

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    Sam, both you and my crew were right - no way the battery would go flat in the ten minute run around the pattern and I could have put her to flight.

    I can't cut corners like that for a simple reason - I'm a corner cutting kind of guy. "Gooder enough," and "we'll just make it work" have been my guiding light in my life, and somehow, incredibly, I've always come out on top.

    So for the aircraft I have to be on guard for the "don't worry about it, it's nothing" mindset. That means being very strict about flight worthiness, and making a few rules about working on the plane and flying it. If it's not completely flight worthy, it's grounded.

    I really, really, really like flying, and doubly so when it comes to this aircraft.

    One rule I made early on is that I will make no flights on the same day as I make a meaningful* repair. This keeps me from rushing into a task, and gives me a second look at my work before taking it up in the air. It's a good rule for me to have, as more than once I've reviewed my work that I thought was done and spotted something amiss.

    You know those guys that remake the same part three times because of some imperfection that really doesn't matter? I'm the opposite of that guy! The only parts I ever remade were totally wrong; if it was in tolerance and worked, no matter how ugly, on it went and I moved on. Eventually I'll fly up to your neck of the woods and after the third walk around you'll start spotting that here and there on the aircraft. There is loads of good workmanship on the plane, but very little excellence.

    * Meaningful means anything that can effect a stage of flight. Replacing the axle would halt flying that day, but not re-lacing the combing around the cockpit.
    The opinions and statements of this poster are largely based on facts and portray a possible version of the actual events.

  9. #729
    DaleB's Avatar
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    Frank, I totally get what you're saying and I think it's a good rule. I have a couple of friends who have the ability (occasionally to an annoying degree) of glancing at the airplane from ten feet away and spotting any imperfection. If there's a wire not secured for more than a few inches, or a screw not tight, they can spot it immediately. I have to work hard to get that kind of detail, so I have to make a concious effort to slow down, walk away and come back for a second look.
    Measure twice, cut once...
    scratch head, shrug, shim to fit.

  10. #730

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    Quote Originally Posted by Frank Giger View Post

    So for the aircraft I have to be on guard for the "don't worry about it, it's nothing" mindset. That means being very strict about flight worthiness, and making a few rules about working on the plane and flying it. If it's not completely flight worthy, it's grounded.
    I won't argue with that protocol, you made a good decision.
    Sam Buchanan
    EAA Technical Counselor
    The RV Journal RV-6 build log
    Fokker D.VII build log

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