Work begins again

Today I started back on the sim build, although I didn’t do a great deal. I took the best part of the day to tidy up and prepare the room for this phase of the build.

Apart from a few minor tweaks and touch-ups, today was spent beginning the work on the console which will contain the MIP and glareshield. This is the point at which I’ve been stuck for a while, trying to work out in my head the best way to go forward. In the end I decided to do what I do best, forge on and see in what direction things lead me.

One thing I noted is that not only it it getting darker earlier, but with three sides now covered in the sim, the interior is rather more dark than it used to be, and some supplementary light would be in order. Since I haven’t settled 100% on the lighting system to use inside the shell, I bought a flourescent-tube inspection lamp, more usually used in a garage, and hung it up from the ceiling, to give me more light. It’s a bit stark, very blue-white compared to my normal bulbs, but it gets the job done. If you notice a tint to future photos, that’s probably what it is.

So today I began construction of the pilot and co-pilot footwells. These are simple, free-standing structures, with solid plywood sides to form the sides of the footwell – which will join up with the interior cladding when it’s done – and a frame on top, to allow for wires and other things to poke through from above. The sides were done with 12mm ply, which is more than rigid enough when supported, and the frames with 18mm x 96mm pine batons. Photos below – note the use of wooden corner joints rather than steel l-plates. The wooden joints are much more rigid in this case and allow for much longer screws to be used. They will be inside the footwell out of view; at the front I will simply add an extra plywood sheet to give the impression of closed box on three sides – the whole assembly, or assemblies, will then be screwed down to the base-board in-place. On top of the footwells will go the frame for the yoke system, and then on top of that will go the frame for the MIP. The glareshield frame will ride atop them all. This use of lightweight board and baton frame keeps the weight down while keeping the structural strength that I need.

Nothing else to say at the moment, but it’s good to be back on the job. Test flights by Christmas or bust!

The pilot's footwell

My new inspection lamp lights up the void