Day 53 - December 20, 2014

This Saturday, the main tasks that were worked on included the decals on the vertical stabilizer as well as the canopy latch installation.  As for the decals, they were placed along a strip of tape that was lined up with the horizontal rivet line and from there, taped on in order to space each decal. 
The tail number for TF3 will be N113TF.  Very cool! 

After hours of wire routing and installing plates, the canopy warning light and latch system were completed.  The light will act as a warning light for the canopy as well as a red rotator light to increase night vision. 
Some last details were completed on the engine including the filling of oil and engine coolant in each separate reservoir. The left and right side steps were bolted into place through a hole in the fuselage that had to be enlarged for a nicer fit. 
The interior pushrods were adjusted to clear the flaperon and the elevator pushrods.  Also on the interior floor panels, we adhered the anti-skid material on both the left and right side of the cockpit.  The canopy bulkhead also had the same material applied to it to prevent scratches and dents that could occur from luggage. 

TF3 is really coming close to completion.  We ended the day with an Open House for parents to see and hear all about what we've been working on in class. 
Thank you, TF3 Mentors, for the cookies and nice gift!
Happy Holidays!


Day 52 - December 13, 2014

This Saturday, many important tasks were worked on and completed, including propeller, engine and fuel tank work.  The fuel tank was temporarily installed and the fuel neck was permanently installed.  This involved many bolts and screws. 

Work also continued on the canopy warning light and latch.  This involved routing many wires into place and fitting the canopy to the fuselage.  After a few minutes of positioning the canopy, it was a great fit and the canopy latch also fit very nicely. 
As it turned out, the fuel pressure sensor had a grommet that wasn't the right size, so we had to replace it in order to make a better fit.  Further work also continued on the engine.  This included safety wire work to attach the air filters onto both sides of the engine.   We also double checked the plans for the engine to ensure that every step was completed and marked off. 
Finally, the propellers were attached after finding the right torque value and removing the spinner. The pitot tube, which measures airspeed, was also connected to the avionics.  After this major step was completed, TF3 looks more like a plane.
Stay tuned for next week, as we might be undergoing the inaugural engine start of TF3!

Day 51 - December 6, 2014

A lot of progress was made this Saturday, despite the fact that we were working with a reduced number of team members.  The airplane is nearing completion and since there aren't as many tasks to work on, smaller groups of students will work together at a time and will alternate each week. 
Further installation of the cockpit warning light was worked on.  This task involved routing many wires through the canopy bulkhead and attaching them to the "eyeball" light.  The canopy latch holder was also attached onto the inside of the bulkhead. 

The anti-skid wing walk material was adhered to the right wing after cleaning the surface with alcohol. 
After a long time trying to align three bearings, we finally attached and torqued the bolts on the right wing flaperon.  The spars of the wings were also sanded and primed. 
As we are nearing the last stages of sanding the fairings, work continued on the nose wheel and nose wheel strut fairing.  The steps that attach to the fuselage were Pro-Sealed to avoid corrosion and rust due to water that could seep in.  The area on the forward fuselage where the canopy bolts onto was also Pro-Sealed to prevent corrosion as well as to protect the avionics systems.
Work continued on the engine and the engine coolant overflow container was bolted on.
Check back soon for more progress!