A Stitts Skycoupe Restoration Project

The Stitts Skycoupe is also known as Stitts SA7 D

Thursday, June 23, 2011

Skycoupe back on its feet!

With a large group of 10 workers, we were able to reassemble the landing gear and put the Skycoupe's fuselage back on its legs. See the images below. Continued progress was also made on the wing, with all repairs to the rib leading edge now complete and the correct bolts installed on the diagonal bracing.

During the re-installation of the bearings and wheels, a few pieces came up missing. All workers are reminded that it is imperative when disassembling anything on the airplane to:
  1. Photograph all details before doing anything. This may be the only record we have to help us put things back together. There are two cameras in the shop for this purpose.
  2. Place all parts in ziplock bags (a box of these is in the shop) and mark the contents with a Sharpie.
  3. Tape the bags onto the parts they belong to.
  4. Wrap masking tape onto odd parts and label them so we'll know what they are and where they go back onto the plane.
When reinstalling anything on the airplane, do this with care and avoid scratching the beautiful freshly-painted surfaces. While our intent is not to build a showplane, why not make it look as good as possible? Remember too, that this is an airplane and one day we'll trust our life to each others work. Often it is simply the lack of something as tiny as a washer than can cause problems.

Some upcoming events to note:
  1. General Aviation News has accepted by offer to publish an article on our project. I will use this as a means to solicit donations of things we need.
  2. Terry is negotiating with the NC Transportation Museum to see if we can recover the control surfaces of a Piedmont DC-3 under restoration. This would provide us with a good means to learn how to cover before doing our own plane. We also have someone lined up to teach this workshop. You can read about the DC-3 effort here.
  3. Aero Accessories, owner of a line of the Tempest line of aircraft components and the Marvel-Schebler line of carburetors, has invited us to tour their facility in Gibsonville (near Burlington) on Thursday, July 7th from 2-4 PM.
No work session is planned for this weekend, but we are planning to meet latest next Thursday.

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