My Wooden Airplane
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2/8/2014 - 2/18/2014

Oil Inspection Doors

Because this engine's oil dipstick is separate from the oil filler, I needed to install two oil inspection doors. I decided that I liked the "flush mount" look with "hidden" hinges and spring-loaded release mechanisms. I found that I could purchase the hidden hinges for about $40 each, but since I needed two, I decided to try to make my own. (While these certainly work, if I were going to do it over again, I think I would just buy them already made.) Also, I found some surplus spring-loaded latch mechanisms for $10 each, but they were for .032 material (instead of the .063 that I needed). This means I had to rivet some .030 "buttons" to the top of the mechanisms to get them to be flush with the door. (I didn't have to change anything with the way they were mounted. The latch has a "ramp" to allow for varying material thicknesses, so I only needed to build up the actual release button that is visible from the outside.) I also thought I'd try to save some fiberglass material by building up the flanges with 1.5-inch strips, rather than using 7-inch squares and cutting out the middle. But, this leads to double-thick corners, so if I were to do it again, I'd just use the squares. One other thing I noticed after the doors were installed is that I'm going to have to replace the dipstick with a longer one. I can't reach the current one with the cowling in place unless I use a step stool!

Total Time: 21.0 hrs.