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Thread: Building a Nieuport 11...

  1. #1061

    Join Date
    Feb 2021
    Hi, I believe it is this page:

    And I even found some pictures, for example:

  2. #1062

    Join Date
    Aug 2011
    I know I've been scare on the forums, and the damned website is dead (gonna have to find another provider and rebuild it) so posting photos is now hard, but folks, I'm alive.

    Fuselage is in the "almost done" stage:

    On gear.
    Controls are in.
    Seat is in.
    Floor is done.
    Firewall mounted.
    Turtle deck done.
    Entry step complete.*

    I had Ron Wade (master of all things metal) of C&D Aviation (where I work) help me fabricate a good fuel float, which is going to work great.

    As y'all know, I wrestled with fuel monitoring the whole time, and while my wreck had nothing to do with it (since I couldn't get reading that were satisfactory to me, I always topped it off at every stop), it still bugged me to no end. The problem is that the tank is wide but not tall. It's a gallon an inch, and the tank is ten inches tall. Traditional floats are designed for tanks that are narrow but tall - meaning that the darned things are narrow and tall, too. They hit the bottom of the tank when it's half full.

    My long tube reading system worked, but I never liked it, as it was down and to the right inside the fuselage, meaning that eyes were down to look at it. It also suffered from tail down/tail up syndrome in inaccuracy (as all fuel sight tubes do).

    The solution needed is a puck that will sit on the top of the fuel, not below it. So we made one out of thin tin (the copper we had was too thick), and it turned out great.

    Cameras kinda crapped out, and I whipped out my phone for some of it, so I might be able to cobble together a video.

    How we did it:

    Cut a circle the size of the float we wanted (about four and a half inches) in MDF board, sanding down a small bevel around the edge, and sanding the plug out of it a bit to increase the kerf.
    We took the MDF plug, dug up a three inch pulley, put a nail in the center of it, and drew around it onto the tin, and then cut out the circle.
    On the MDF with the hole in it, took a bit of scrap wood, drew three lines going to the center of the hole (we really should have done this before cutting it out), and made marks on the lines and the wood to where the wood would hit the edge of the tin.
    Pretty cool centering technique; just put the tin down, push it with the stick until the lines agree on three sides.
    Put the MDF plug on top of the tin and repeat centering technique.
    Into the press with it (one of the big reasons I asked Ron to help), where in less than a minute we had pushed the tin into the hole to make what looked like an ashtray.
    Tappy-tap with a hammer around an idler bearing for a Sherman tank track - yep, we have one and use it for all manner of riveting and stuff - until it's a nice dish.
    Measure around the lip, cutting a clean line (a little less than an inch).
    Using a small set of smooth pliers, we bent up the edge of the dish to bring it to 90 degrees, checking for flatness on the welding table.
    We set this down on the sheet of tin, took an AN3 washer with a sharpie in the middle, and drew around the dish, and then drew around the dish as well.
    After cutting out the circle, we took the pliers and bent up the edge of the flat piece to 90 degrees.
    The dish went into this, and we beat this down to seam it them together.
    Heat and solder the join for water tightness,
    We then tinned a bit of 1/4 inch copper tubing (after making some flanges on it) and soldered it to the center of the float for the rod that will go up out of the tank to tell me how much fuel is left.

    A week in water and no leaks, and with the rod she floats with about an eighth of an inch below the waterline.

    Since the fuel flows out of a hole in the bottom of the tank and the float is flat and larger than this hole, I'll disaster proof the system by soldering some short pegs around the hole at the bottom of the tank in case the float ever gets a leak and sinks.

    * Originally one stepped on the lower longeron with the left foot, bringing the right foot over the turtle deck to step on the seat, much like mounting a horse. But since I made the fuselage deeper, I found that my old stiff self was having trouble with it. The fix was to make a step that is four inches up from the longeron. Now I can get in and out of the aircraft easily.
    The opinions and statements of this poster are largely based on facts and portray a possible version of the actual events.

  3. #1063

    Join Date
    Aug 2011
    weirdly enough, some of my older videos actually have ads before they start...

    A few notes:

    1. I don't have a brake that's long enough for this stuff.
    2. This mask stuff where I think I don't have to shave didn't work out too well.
    3. Cleaco? Never heard of her.
    4. I didn't realize until I had sprayed the wood that I had no shot of it with all the parts in it!
    The opinions and statements of this poster are largely based on facts and portray a possible version of the actual events.

  4. #1064

    Join Date
    Apr 2014
    Great to see you back, Frank! Been wondering what's going on in the hangar. I had to smile when, in the instrument panel video, you realized you forgot the two side panels for the switches - I've done that myself.

    Could you rivet a couple of panels to the main one?

    If/when you have time, a 3 minute video showing the status of the plane would be nice to see.

    Welcome back!

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