Aircraft Cables

Our EAA chapter is restoring a ’46 Funk and replacing cables. (“The Big Squeeze: Fabricating Aircraft Cables,” December 2013). Where do we find the proper micrometer crimp dimensions?

–Delwin White

Dan Horton answers: To the best of my knowledge, none of the sleeve manufacturers publish the actual or target dimensions for a properly crimped oval sleeve. They all prefer that you use an official gauge. The reason is simple; unlike a micrometer, it requires no setting or reading. It is hard to make a mistake when using a “go or no-go” gauge, and having one in hand offers some small liability protection (FAA or otherwise) should a cable fail at some later time. Both Loos and Nicopress gauges are readily available at $25 to $35.

Panther Insurance

In the review of the Panther (“On the Prowl,” March 2014), you don’t mention what it takes for a familiarization flight or to meet insurance requirements. How does one train for a first flight in a new single-seat aircraft? Thanks!

–Paul Catterson

The answer on insurance is that “it depends.” Insurance companies usually look for time in similar types and total overall hours before quoting. In terms of checkouts, there are usually similar types of airplanes with two seats that can be used for some sort of transition. The most important thing is being honest with yourself about your abilities. The bottom line is, sooner or later, you have to strap in and take it up solo—and be confident that you can get it back down safely.—Ed.

Dawn Patrol Junkie

I just wanted to tell you how happy I am when there is a Dawn Patrol article and how sad I am when there isn’t. It gives me the humor to keep going in life!

–Doug Broadie

We like nothing better than a good, humorous story, and Dawn Patrol certainly meets that criteria. As long as Dick Starks keeps sending us material (typically every other month), we plan to run it.—Ed.

They Like Us

I can’t tell you how spot-on the articles are in KITPLANES® and how much value I find in this magazine. I have convinced three of my flying buddies to subscribe in the past year, and they agree!

We like things like how to do a proper oil change, step by step, or how to do a brake job with clear text and good photos. We also really appreciate the “lessons learned” category—you simply can’t read too much about that. We enjoy the articles about new planes and products, especially the flying reports. Even if we can’t fly some of those birds, it’s a delight to read first-hand reports of others.

–Terry Ruprecht

Thank you for your support. The real key to our content is our readers—almost everything you see has been contributed by builders and pilots who read KITPLANES® and want to share what they have learned. So send in those articles folks! —Ed.

Write to [email protected].


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