Monday, November 16, 2009

At least the oil is drained

It was a beautiful weekend with weather as foreign to an Ohio November as parrot meat to a polar bear. Temps hovering near 70 and clear, calm skies. So where was I? Still waiting for new hinge strip material to fix Papa's cowls.

With weather that nice, though, any time spent at the hangar is good time. I went out and finished draining the oil out of the oil filter. That's typically a messy job, but with time to spare I was able to devote sufficient time to the task to get it done without spilling a single drop. That's not as easy as it may sound. To remove the filter without spilling any oil down the back of the engine or the front of the firewall is a tightly choreographed effort involving an electric drill, a modified water bottle, and a lot of rags. It's worth the effort, though, because any oil spilled will eventually end up spread down the belly of the airplane. It is NO fun at all cleaning the belly, no matter what the weather.

While waiting for the oil to drain, I removed the wheel pants. That too is a persnickety job that I try to avoid whenever possible, but the tires are soon (assuming I ever fly again) going to be showing thread, at which point they will have to be replaced. Besides that, the annual inspection will be due in just a couple of months, so I figured I pull the wheel pants off while the hangar floor was at least somewhat warm and just leave them off until after the annual.

The rest of the weekend was spent doing various winter preparation chores and working on the RV-12. It's funny that the RV-12 project was intended to fill the time in the gawd-awful winter months when it's too cold and/or nasty to go outside, but I enjoy the "work" so much that I spent most of a beautiful weekend in the basement building a stabilator. I only went outside long enough to go to Lowes to buy a snow blower. With the weather being what it was, there wasn't much competition to buy a snow blower; those procrastinators will find that I got there before them.

Naturally, they will get the last laugh when it doesn't snow at all this year.

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