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[February 20, 2011]


I am really glad I waited until today to align the wheelpants. It was nice outside and I was able to open up the hangar door to allow more light inside. As you can see, I have a lot of rulers out to align my wheelpants. The idea is from the centerline, there should be equal distance between the front and back of the wheelpants for both sides. Mine ended up pretty close. The right side was 37 7/8" from the centerline, and the left side was 38 3/16" from the centerline. That was as close as I could align them. Why they are 5/16" different? Your guess is as good as mine. Possible bad centerline? Hard landing? Who knows.


Aligning the front.


And aligning the rear. You can see I used a 2x4 block and some Popsicle stick for spacers on the bottom aft of the wheelpants.


The wheelpants have so many things to be in alignment. The tire isn't supposed to be in the center of the Sam James wheelpants. But I did align it with some groves in the tire.


With everything aligned, I drilled the #40 holes through the fiberglass into the bracket. The Sam James fiberglass is translucent enough so it is easy to see the holes in the bracket.


Looking Good, Billy Ray! Feeling Good, Louis!


I still had some time to burn at the hangar so I started working on the gear-leg fairings. Supposedly these are what really give the speed increase. A round object in an airstream produces a lot of drag. I started by making sure there wasn't any twist in the fairings and then taping the trailing edge together.


Finally I traced out the shape of the initial trimming from the cutout on one of the drawings.

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