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May 05, 2019, 03:10 PM
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Seagull AT6 Refurbish for museum

KLBE Museum
Project AT 6 & P51B
I am still acquiring suitable, and pretty scale airplanes for the museum at the airport. I was lucky enough to pick up a pretty nice North American AT6 at an auction and Swap Shop. It is a Seagull model ARF, and was in good condition. I saw that it needed some more scale detailing, some wrinkles ironed out of the covering, and I decided to order a new uncut cowl, and canopy.
The cockpit was bare, so I Googled AT6 cockpit, and found all of the pictures to help me construct the details. The previous owner had epoxied in 2 hardwood rails into the forward cockpit to mount inverted servos for the elevators. I had to cut them out, and patch the floor area. After I got it patched, I painted the whole cockpit dark gray. Looking at the pictures, I saw that there was a cage type structure between the front and rear pilot. I took a 1/2" X 1/2" balsa block, and some wooden dowel rods, and constructed the cage. The next step was to cut out 2 seats from 3/16" balsa. I also saw that the rear pilot had an instrument panel in front of him, and attached to the cage. I cut and shaped the panel from a 1/2" balsa block, painted it black, made up an instrument panel, and painted the seats black. I glued the instruments to the block, and painted the cage with the cockpit gray. I went through my pilot stash, and found 2 Marine pilots, and got the cockpit laid out. I didn't want to glue anything in yet, waiting for a new canopy and cowl from Sig.
The next step was to get the cowl and engine compartment ready to mount a motor, and install a radial in the cowl. This radial motor was my last one from my friend in the Czech Republic, so I have to order a few more. The engine bay had a wooden box glued to the firewall for the rudder servo. I thought it was a bit unusual, and i didn't need it there, so I cut it out. I found an old worn out K&B .65, and a motor mount that would work. I mounted the engine, but had to recess it back far enough so that the front prop hub wouldn't interfere with the cast resin radial motor. I cut out a cardboard backing to glue the cast resin radial to, and set it in the old cowl to center and fit it. After everything was aligned, I marked the gaps between the cylinders that I had to cut out. I got it press fit back into the cowl, and fit the cowl to the fuselage. I needed to cut a longer 1/4 X 28 threaded rod to get enough through the cowl to mount the prop and spinner. I'll do a refit and alignment in the new cowl. The new cowl arrived so I centered it on the cardboard, and epoxied it on. After it dried, I centered it in the new cowl and epoxied the whole thing in. I installed the new cowl, and marked where the mounting blocks were located, and drilled them. I dug out a prop, and found the correct spinner for it, and got them bolted on. I noted that it did need a little larger prop, and found a MA 16" that looked right. I'll deliver it to the museum on May 4th. Dean
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