In addition to the doubler plate, I also need to modify the skin to accommodate the antenna elements. I notched the skin so that I can slide it up around grommets at the base of each arm. Pictures are better than words in this case…
Vertical stab parts are put together, minus the skin. I’m putting in an optional antenna for VOR/Localizer/Glideslope reception, so I had to make a doubler plate for the top spar where the antenna will be mounted to. To make the plate, I used a sheet of 0.032″ 3003 aluminum that I bought from Amazon a while ago, and simply traced the pattern from the rib.
I added wires and grommets for the antenna and for a light that will go on the top of the rudder. Since I had to pass the wire through two of the lightening holes, I attached some nylon caterpillar grommet material to the edge and secured it with silicone sealant.
I decided to take a break from working on the wings as I await a few things I need for sealing the fuel tanks.
A few weeks ago I got in a shipment of goodies from Jean at TAF, including missing brackets for the VS, so now I can build that up as well as finish off the rudder and elevator.
Today I prepped the VS parts and primed them in just under 3 hours. I still have to prep the skin, but next steps are to start putting the structure together and figure out how to mount the combo glideslope/localizer antenna I bought back in the spring.
I decided on the RAMI AV-12 antenna to mount inside the VS. This antenna is optional, however I plan to fly IFR and want to be able to fly ILS approaches, which, for the moment, are still pretty common. It was hard to decide which antenna to get, but this style seemed to most closely match the TAF build plans, and the manufacturer claimed pretty low drag force: <1 lb.
I bought the version that includes 25′ of cable with an integral balun (AV-12L), figured it would save me from having to buy coax cable.
I had to take the last few days off from the airplane to do other chores – I installed a ceiling underneath my 2nd floor deck to have a dry place to park my car while I work on the plane. I also needed to do spring tune-up on the lawn tractor, which takes a few hours since ours does double-duty as a snow blower during the winter. We’ve had a lot of rain lately so the grass is in desperate need of cutting!
I plan to resume tomorrow with finishing priming of horizontal stabilizer parts and then assembly.