Tail Cone Kit

The tail cone kit, along with the wing kit, arrived on July 14, 2014 in this crate.

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I have unpacked the crate and set aside all the Tail Cone parts to inventory after completing the inventory on the Wing Parts.

Having hung the wing on the jig, I decided to move on to the tail cone.  I had to trim the ailerons and it took a lot of effort on Dan’s part and confidence building on my part to make myself make those cuts.  I am happy for future builders, that these will come already trimmed.  Here is the Right side being drilled.  I am happy again.  It is good to be finally putting something together.  These long spells between finishing one kit and really getting started on another, I think, is the most difficult part of building a Panther.  Certainly, building it is not.  This Tail Cone is very impressive in it’s design.  As I said about the spar, I am a new builder for metal planes and I don’t know if this is just a copy of the design of another aircraft, but I do know that I am very impressed with it.

Drilling for the lower longeron on the right side.

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8/25/2014, I have installed the upper longeron on the right side and tonight will start on the pieces that go on the sidewall.

1/24/2015.  I have been neglecting my “paperwork” because building has been so much fun and have not wanted to take the time, but am putting off going to the shop this morning so I can at least catch up on the overview of progress.  Details in tail cone construction, will come, maybe tomorrow.  What I am able to accomplish with the parts that I have now, for the tail cone, was completed about 2 weeks ago, and I am now working on the forward fuselage, which is another very interesting challenge.

1/3/2015.  Assembling the tail cone sides and formers.

AssemblingTailCone12/31/2014.. Dimpling the sides.

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1/4/2015..  Completed the assembly as far as I can go.  So I took some time to start planning for the installation of my Dynon modules.  I plan to make a cover for those up front in the baggage area, on the floor.  I also plan to give those stiffeners a little re-enforcement to be able to handle baggage being thrown in.  The little module placed on top of the push tube cover is the ADAHRS, which is sort of like the brains of the Dynon system.  Now, I messed up and riveted my cover top on, before I read that it should not have been done yet.  However, I think that if I do not rivet in the cover, that won’t be a problem.

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1/11/2015..  Countersinking the longerons.  I should have done this earlier in the process, because you cannot dimple the skins and re-attach them if the longerons are not dimpled.  Maybe another point in the case for going with protruded rivets.  So, I am now going to catch up and counter sink all 4 longerons.  In this first photo, you see the set up to determine the depth of the sink.  This is, to me, the most difficult part and I am never sure that I have it right.  One conclusion that I have come to, is that, it must be deep enough, so, if I get it wrong, I want it too deep.  The second photo is my new way to not only keep the tool and part cool, but to keep it clean.  This would have been much easier if I had a friend or brother/friend operating the air blower.  I was using ice water to keep the tool cool, but that was not helping the part and was causing a clogging up of chard in the tool.  Notice that I am using the narrow MicroStop.  If you can, be sure that you also get a narrow bit for it, the one I had, barely fit and this was a problem.

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More to come when I get the tail wheel and bracket.  Always check out the “construction” menu items under each main menu item if you are interested in more detail.