Drilled and clecoed my right wing top skin yesterday. Today I turned the wing over, jiged it up and drilled the bottom skin. Rechecked all measurements with main spar at 9 degrees and both spars centered bubble level. All measurements were exact except one spar tip was off 1mm. I just can't seem to get anything perfect!

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Comment by Ron Lendon on August 24, 2012 at 6:13pm
The tolerances are there for a reason, nobody makes a perfect airplane. After all it is only a big air deflector. I don't think the wind will mind at all. Keep building, your first flight is a day closer than it was yesterday.
Comment by Sebastien Heintz on August 21, 2012 at 8:54am

Good comments guys!  I too love Tim's words of wisdom: "Use the tolerances in the builders guide and do your best but don't beat yourself up over perfection. Look forward to the perfect day of flying."

Here's the Construction Standards booklet for "everything else that's very close."

Comment by Chumphol Sirinavin on August 20, 2012 at 9:38pm
I can't agree more with Tim Garrett's 'look forward to the perfect day of flying'. Wise words. Thanks Tom.

Comment by Jim Palmer on August 19, 2012 at 3:22pm

What was that cigarette commercial a few years ago? "Just a silly mm longer". I have finished the rudder, horizontal stab, elevator, both flaps, both aelrons (damaged one & now rebuilding it) and have kept everything within 3mm tolerance. Yep, I have a few mistakes but nothing a larger rivet or small unseen patch wouldn't fix. Perfection is my goal and before I finish this thing, something is going to be perfect! Everything else is going to be very close. Thanks for the encouragement.

Comment by Richard Rost on August 19, 2012 at 2:22pm

I finally had to put the building practices book open to the tolerance page on my toolbox. Also remind myself of a handmade poster we saw on a Beech factory tour 40 years ago: "on my honor I will best it's up to Bondo to do the rest". That was my A&P senior class that flew in on 4 Bonanza's. Ya, it was over a station on the Bonanza line. Try for perfection, settle for excellence.


Comment by Bob McDonald on August 19, 2012 at 1:10pm

I think every builder has asked the same questions...take apart a CESSNA or PIPER the tolerences are not all that great when factory built. Keep drilling & filling (riveting) you on the journey to building an aircraft.

Comment by Phill Barnes on August 19, 2012 at 9:55am

Hmm. Sounds as if you have a touch of CDO in your building practices, just like me. You can always rip it to pieces and use little more effort to reduce your tollerances. I think it best you buy a new wing kit to protect your building etticate and hopefully learn from your mistakes. Come on Jim, no more sloppy workmanship.


Keep up the good work.


Comment by Mark Maltais on August 19, 2012 at 8:48am

I know the feeling.  I had the spar set to 90 degrees when installing the skin and had a deviation of about 0.3 degrees in one spot. It was bothering me then I told myself the wing will flex in flight anyways and what's 0.3 degrees anyways LOL so that's nothing to worry about.  1 mm in your build is nothing! Enjoy the build  :)

Comment by Raymond Paul on August 19, 2012 at 7:55am
Jim keep up the good work, and I agree with Tim use the tolerances given because there are places that you have to use these tolorences no matter how hard you try, if you are scratch building its even more difficult to hit the mark spot on.
Comment by Don Walker on August 18, 2012 at 9:56pm
Jim; I'm flying a 1972 Cherokee that doesn't have anywhere near the level of accuracy I'm trying to achieve on my 601. There is a 'good enough'.

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