A day at TBSS

Some people get airsick.  I become ground sick.  The thought of being all winter with no flying makes me ill.  So, today I visited with old friends at the Tampa Bay Soaring Society.  I may reinstate my membership.

It was a beautiful launch that returned safely.

Thought for the day

I’ll reprise something I sent my HBS class secretary a year ago this month. “A Trump administration will not be without anxious times for the public.  Remember the Air traffic Controller’s Strike, the walkout from the Reykjavik Summit and “Tear down this wall” by Reagan?  Those were anxious times during the administration of arguably the greatest presidency of the 20th century.” So Much for politics.”

I am elated that I finally mastered the skill of being able to take photos and videos from my Phone or iPad and publish them immediately via WordPress on www.bambas.com followed by posting on Facebook.  Traffic is building ‘hughly’.  It is amazing that this little device that we carry around in a pocket gives individuals the power previously available only to major media.  From here on its a question of audience size.  Of course the Kardashians learned that long ago.

Our green thumb?

In our front yard there is a bed of vica surrounded by an extruded concrete retainer. It has been four years since Dolly and I planted 86 purchased cuttings. This fall the bed finally looks mature, with all bare spots covered. The top of the bed is level and the sides nicely trimmed.

Front Yard Planting

On the side of the villa there is a bare bed that has never been planted. Its covered with pin-oak leaves and mulch.

Empty bed on side of villa

In late November we potted a tray of 72 cuttings from the front bed.  Stem ends were dipped in root hormone before planting.  After four weeks they showed new growth.  So, we potted another tray.  Before heading north for the summer we’ll plant these in the side yard bed.

Lycoming IO-360 M1B 180hp Engine

August 3, 2016

Our engine was ordered after returning from Airventure ’16.  It was delivered to the Dalton Airport on the 18th.

I had expected a wooden crate.  Instead it was in a foam filled cardboard box strapped to a pallet.  The box was opened that day to check for any damage. The engine was in a large plastic bag that also held four silica desiccant pouches and a color changing humidity indicator card.  We did not open the big bag.  Apparently Lycoming squirts some foam into the cardboard box and lets it harden before setting the engine.  Then, the space around the big bag is filled with liquid foam and the box closed.  It was well protected.

October 20, 2016













The engine was picked by Dan Willoughby’s Engine hoist for unpacking.

It arrived with two Slick magnetos, a prop governor oil pump, and a horizontal oil filter mount.  Before mounting the engine to the airframe, these appliances were replaced with two electronic pMags and a 90deg. B&C oil filter mount.  The prop governor oil pump was removed to save weight as we will install our Catto fixed pitch prop.  I also installed a 40 amp backup alternator on the vacuum pump pad in the rear accessory case.  Dessicator plugs were installed in the top of each cylinder.  All changes were detail documented in the engine logbook.

Dan Willoughby and Mike Goulet helped with installing the bottom two engine mount bolts.

November 7, 2016
Weather was getting colder.  The project area was cleaned up, tools put away, and we prepared for our relocation to Florida for the winter.

Move to the Airport

October 11,2016

The big day!  Dolly and I have been building this RV-7 for almost two years. Each has had a significant milepost.  In 2015 it was the test fitting of the wings to the fuselage.  This year it’s the airport move.







Dalton Airport (3DA) is a small private/public airport located on one of the main streets in Flushing, Michigan. Pole barn hangars with electric doors line the sides of both the sod and the 3500′ hard surface runway. EAA Chapter 77 owns a cavernous main hangar and one of the smaller hangars where I rent space.  That’s where we are going.
The move was blissfully uneventful. I had arranged for a tilt-bed automobile hauler from Norm’s Towing in Montrose.  Norm showed up on time; the plane was winched up the ramp and strapped down.  It was threatening rain, but we were prepared with a tarp.  Twelve miles and $100 later we were ensconced in our new home.

Baby Gets Legs

October 5, 2016

Please forgive the misleading headline of this post.  “Installing a motor mount and adding landing gear legs, wheels and brakes” just doesn’t work as a title.

Master and starter solenoids, the battery box and cabin heat valve were installed on the firewall. Then the motor mount was added.

Four ratchet straps were hung over a pole barn truss to lift the fuselage.

Notice the recessed cover had been riveted into the center of the firewall.

After a little excess powder coating was removed from the gear legs they slipped nicely into the mount tubes.  The retainer holes were reamed to 0.3115 inches for the close fit bolts which slid in with taps from a plastic hammer. Nuts were torqued to 190 in-lb, including 50 in-lb turning drag.


Beringer brake caliper mount holes were drilled to the axles and reamed to 0.3115″.  Hubs/tires were mounted with brake discs safetied on the hubs with 0.40″ wire.

Baby’s got legs!

Gluing the Rear Window

October 3 to 27,   2016

There was almost as much masking, sanding and fitting of the rear window as for the tip-up canopy.  The rear window fits over the top of the roll bar and under the fuselage skin.  The sides and aft edge of the window are trimmed to about an inch beyond the edge of the skin.

The front edge of the window is cut and sanded to match the aft end of the closed canopy.  With the tip-up closed and the window removed, a fine line is drawn across the roll bar just behind the tip-up to guide glue application.

Gluing was done after moving the project to the Dalton Airport.  SIKA glue application was similar to that used for the tip-up canopy. The rear window was braced against the clecoed skin using thin battens and a board resting on the baggage compartment top longerons.

The rear skin was riveted, and the Inner and outer protective plastic film replaced with food wrap on the outside of the window.

This post is not meant to be a step by step guide as to gluing the window. Adjusting the window placement during gluing is difficult. There were many opening and closings of the tip-up during the process.