A Great Compromise

Building an airplane usually requires a long-term commitment, not entirely dissimilar to the one that is made when saying I do. Yet many builders lose sight of this when building, sometimes even forgetting that they have a spouse. The commitment to the project must be matched by the commitment to maintaining a spousal relationship, and a little forethought and planning can help both builder and spouse enjoy not only the process, but the end result.

All About Avionics, Part 9

One of the final steps in getting your avionics suite to work is installation of some sort of antenna to capture various radio frequencies. Failing to choose the right antenna and install it properly can compromise the whole installation. Rather than focusing on the intricacies of antenna design, the author discusses the merits of internal versus external for particular equipment plus where to place them; by Stein Bruch

Build Your Skills: Composites (Part 10)

What do you do when your horizontal stabilizer isn't exactly horizontal? First, you check that the fuselage is level. If this confirms that the stabilizer is indeed slightly off, remove it and apply heat. Sounds simple, but there's a right and a wrong way to go about it, and author Bob Fritz describes the most effective method to straighten things out.

Completions

Builders share their successes.

All About Avionics

Sophisticated and capable audio systems used to be less common in Experimental aircraft, but now many pilots want expanded capabilities. There are ways to go about choosing and installing such systems that will alleviate unnecessary instrument noise and allow for the best audio quality possible. Avionics expert Stein Bruch walks you through the considerations and offers his top three tips for avoiding problems.

Build Your Skills: Composites (Part 9)

Dont let pesky pinholes ruin your homebuilt project. There is a way to deal with them, and author Bob Fritz describes how. Hint: To start with, cleanliness is always a good thing in the shop.

Completions

Builders share their successes.

Dan Parker and the Altitude Airplane

Dan Parker was just another enthusiast looking to make his mark in aviation with some kind of crazy, notable project. Then he came across the Facet Opel, current altitude record holder, and the race was on. Since then, hes been working on his airplane full time, hoping to break the existing record, and along the way hes come up with some innovative and exceptionally efficient building and design practices.

A Sign of the Zodiac (Part 7)

It’s about the journey, not the destination, as Rick Lindstrom’s homebuilt Zodiac 601 XL is ferried by friends from Florida to its new home in Cloverdale, California.

Build Your Skills: Composites (Part 8)

Last months installment in the Composites series detailed how to do vacuum-bagging of parts at home. This month author Bob Fritz discusses how to inexpensively build one critical component in that process: the vacuum pump.

In Case You Missed it

Rapid Prototyping and Experimental Design

Coupon testing, part 4. By Eric Stewart and Brian Paris.

Building on a Budget

Building his VW-powered Zenith CH 701 taught Wayne Clagg a lot about the consequences of powerplant choices… and much more.

Common Cents

Home equity loans, building loans, credit cards: These are only a few of the ways that one can finance an airplane building project. But beware: Each option has its benefits and disadvantages, and the wise builder will consider these carefully before signing on the dotted line; by Dave Higdon.

Give Yourself a Brake

Brakes are pretty simple to install and maintain, but they are also pretty important....