Posts

Fuel Capacity for a Transatlantic Trip

Image
One day we want to fly our Sling TSI from the US to Europe (and back).  This will require careful planning, good weather, survival gear, extra fuel, and nerves of steel. Flying to Europe is possible following a northerly route via Canada, Greenland, Iceland, and Scotland ( route ). The longest leg of this route is 676 nautical miles between Goose Bay (CYYR) and Narsarsuaq (BGBW). Routes with shorter legs are also possible, but those require more refueling stops ( example ). It seems reasonable to plan for a 700nm range with an additional 200nm to divert. After doing the math using the Sling's POH numbers, we worked out that we need 18g of extra fuel to get to a 900nm range (btw this will leave only about 100lbs for luggage).  Note that our plane does not have the extended range fuel tanks installed. We decided against this, because it adds weight and complexity, and we can always add a fuel bladder on the back seat for those few times that we need it. TurtlePac makes fuel bladder

Base color

Image
Carlos has started on the base coat. Meteor Gray. It is looking really good, specially in the sunlight.  

Ready for paint!

Image
 This week Carlos is getting the plane ready for paint. Its going to be really exciting to see the final product. Here are some picture of his work in progress.

First Color Sample

Image
This weeked we received the first color sample from Carlos. It is looking great. There is good progress on the plane itself. The doors are on, the windscreen is installed, and we have started fitting the interior. There are still a number of missing/delayed parts, but the plane is still on track to be ready to fly this summer.. The seat were installed temporarily so we could try them out. It is starting to look like a real cockpit. Jean also made the bracket for the Jaw damper servo. That will be installed in the rear of the plane soon.

Panel Installed!

Image
This week MidWestPanel (ie Steve and Adam, father and son) visited The Airplane Factory to install our panel. The panel has a custom layout, it is backlit, it hasVPX, recessed G5, Sirius XM, and lots of other custom features. We are really happy with the results. They did a great job. As you can see, behind the panel the is wiring complicated, so it took three days to install. Adam and Steve did all the work, while we supervised and made sure they got it right (;-). In the end it all went very smooth, and after testing there were only a few minor issues to be resolved.  The backlight looks awesome in the dark, it will be pleasure to fly this plane at night. Here Gustavo is inspecting the wiring harness. Nice work guys!

Fuel system

Image
This week we assembled and installed the firewall-forward fuel lines. That was a lot of work, with a lot of gotchas. Each section requires several steps. The inner fuel line, the clamps on either end, the heat sleeve, and end-ties with metal wire. The correct layout is unclear from the diagram. Also the diagram uses subtle green/blue and dashed fuel lines to indicate different types of hoses. Note that there are THREE types of fuel hose that are used in the Sling TSI. It is easy to mixed them up (which we did several times) Blue lines - 3/8” J30R7 Blue dashed lines - 3/8” J30R7 return Green lines - 3/8” J30R9 Green dashed lines - 5/16” J30R9 Also there is a subtle difference in the check valves. Make sure you use the right one. Here are the tools we used: Anyway after a couple of days struggling with it, we got it installed. Thanks for all the help James. Finally it is installed. I hope there are no leaks!

Panel Update

Image
We received some more exciting pictures from MidWest Panel Builders on the progress of our panel for N333ST. The panel is powered up and fully lit! Hopefully we can install it in June. We worked closely with Steve to add several customizations that deviate from the standard panel layout. We opted for a full IFR capable panel with V-PX circuit breakers which eliminate the normal circuit breakers on the panel, creating more space and allowing for a clean and symmetrical layout. Note the backlight, it is custom made for the panel. We moved the switches so that aircraft controls are on the left and lights are on the right. This created enough space to move the USB ports to the bottom corners, so you can easily charge your ipad or phone. The G5 flight instrument backup is still prominent in the center, but it recessed with a simple bracket. Neat!  More notes on the panel design here . Can't wait to get it installed.