Finishing AC hose routing, Evaporator shelf, front baffle “walls”, interior panels, and test fitting panel.

I finished up the routing of the AC hoses down the right side of the fuselage. The hose going all the way to the tailcone dives down towards the floor and goes through the bottom most lightning hole to make sure it doesn’t interfere with the flap tube in the next bay aft. I placed a small piece of angle on the angle attached to the side skin, used nut plates to screw the 2 angles together and then utilized a nut plate to keep the hose from rubbing on the angle attached to the skin.

View of the metal piece riveted in all 4 corners of the lowest lighting hole with a bushing through the center for the hose to pass through.

The hose destined for the condenser scoop, goes across the flap tube area on it’s way across the tunnel and to the 1st bay under the left-most rear seat.

Hose continuing to the tailcone under the right rear seat.

I utilized Adel clamps anchored to the step to route the hose inward and keep it away from the bolt holding the step in place. It then makes its way aft to the tailcone.

Similar for the hose going from the condenser to the tailcone.

With the hoses done short of crimping on the ends, I started working on the evaporator shelf by using cardboard as a template.

I test fit the cardboard until it was trimmed correctly to sit between the longerons.

I then used the cardboard to mark up the fiberglass shelf and trimmed it, sanding a little bit to get a good fit. Shown here as well are the 3 holes matched drilled into the shelf brackets that get riveted to the longerons.

One other small task was to trim the upper cowl ramps and add a “wall” so that the baffle material could sit in-between the upper air ramp and this “wall” so it has something to push against.

Using some scrap fiberglass to trim up a “wall”

I then mixed up some flox and bonded the “wall” in place with a small “D” shaped piece to provide support against the cowl wall. This was repeated for the other side.

One nice day, I decided to head outside and paint the interior panels. I ordered the lighter tan ones knowing that I was going to paint them a darker color. I think they came out nice!

I ran into a snag with continuing with the evaporator install so I worked on completing disassembling the panel. I removed the wiring harness and separated the metal sub frame of the panel from the carbon fiber.

Wiring Harness removed
Carbon fiber panel with avionics trays.
Metal subframe with shelf for various components.

I spent some time getting the metal subframe in place, followed by the carbon fiber panel with the avionics trays. This first test fit was mostly done to mark the sub panel where I’ll need to cut away and reinforce making room for the connectors on the back of the 650 etc.. Not a whole lot needs to be removed just a small rectangle near the bottom and really just for the connectors and so the wiring harness doesn’t get bent too much.

Aerosport Interior Panels

Couple of small things to finalize about the gear installation prior to moving on to getting the interior panels trimmed.

First was to tackle the hardest bolt in the airplane to install. The bolt that holds down the nose gear donuts. This thing requires a lot of compression to even get the bolt hole to line up. Luckily, I have a tractor. So I strapped the engine mount to my bucket and let the hydraulics do the work. Even still, the bolt was stubborn. I feel for others who have said they’ve had family members hanging off the engine mount while someone pushed the tail upwards while trying to muscle that bolt in place.

Tractor comes in handy!
Hardest bolt installed!

I then got the plane repositioned in my garage. It’s now kiddie cornered across 2 stalls so I have room for the engine to be mounted and still move around it.

I also got the brake lines installed and taped to the gear legs.

Brake lines taped

While I’m waiting for my engine to arrive, I’m knocking off misc items still to do on my list.

I started getting the interior side panels trimmed to be able to paint them. I started with the rear panels as they don’t require too much trimming. I did have some adjustments to do as I did build up the door areas a little more than stock, but the trimming wasn’t too bad.

Left rear and baggage door panels
Right rear panels

There are 4-5 screws that need to be located and nut plates added to hold the panels in place.

Then it was time to tackle the front panels. These require a bit more trimming, especially around the front door frame where I built things out a bit more with micro.

Front left panel in place

One trick I saw used was to use a compass scribe a line matching the contour of the area around the door frame. Trimming to that line, gives a good fit. This marking and trimming around the frame was done progressively until everything fit well. Taking a little off at a time is key here.

I then placed the instrument panel in place to make additional trims around the air vent area until it all fit well.

This process was repeated for the right side. I do have AC hoses routed down the right side, so I additionally had to trim the front of the panel to alleviate interference as the hoses leave the firewall and start their journey down the right side. I can now paint these when I have some time..