gapilot vans RV7 quick build kit
My Great Lakes 2T-1A-2 Rebuild Diary 2007.
I purchased my Great Lakes restoration project on 12th June 2007 in Phoenix, Arizona USA. This is my restoration project diary for 2007, I will update it almost daily to show the project status.
I have the STC#SA2368CE and the El Dorado Zepplin Drawings for the centre section mod and plan to fit it after approval from my inspector and PFA. I am also looking at the Split Cowl STC#SA00123BO.

Replacing the spar was the quick part of refurbishing the wing. Bonding all the little parts to the spar takes time - mainly due to the number of clamps I have.
While waiting for some parts to arrive I had a look at the R/H upper wing. It has been inspected by my inspector and the spars are okay. The wing just needs some small items replaced and refurbished. Cleaned and revarnish.
One job I need to do is refurbish the engine baffles, and as I need to put the engine in storage I decided to remove them now. I will rebuild/renew them all.
Still very cold outside so I have just done a couple of hours in he evenings, and Saturday afternoon. Continued progress with the L/H Upper wing. I have set/tensioned the drag & anti-drag wires and checked alignment. Finished glue fitting on the centre wood brace and wood parts on rear spar to trailing edge.
Just a few hours in the workshop this morning as I have visitors coming later. Up early as I was keen to put the wing back together after the good progress I made yesterday taking it apart.
Just a few hours in the workshop this morning as I have visitors coming later. Up early as I was keen to put the wing back together after the good progress I made yesterday taking it apart.
Having decided to rip the upper left wing rear spar out rather than make a repair I figured a good day on the job was needed. I started at 10:30 by 12:20 I had the rear spar out! Even I was suprised at how well it went. No time to stop I got the new spar and drilled all the necessary holes and by 20:00 the new spar was back in the wing - with just a few ribs in place.
My inspector Barry came over to inspect the centre section I rebuilt, the control surfaces I recovered and the wing spars. When I purchased my Great Lakes I knew some of the wing spars were not in great condition. We identified a number of cracks in the upper left spar.
I need to get the wings and centre section inspected. So I decide to do some work on the fuse. Some of the stringers needed to be replaced, so I made some new ones.
Tidied the the second wing - Lower Left.
Just worked Sunday this weekend. Finished work on the centre section - before inspection and covering. Tidied the workshop and started work on the first wing.
Riveted end ribs to spar and varnished spars after fitting ply mod.
The first meeting of 'The European Great Lakes Owners Club'. Roberto a Great Lakes builder from Italy comes to visit the UK. He helps out with a little work on the center section - in between taking a picture of every inch of my Great Lakes.
Working on the top side of the centre section - the over fuel tank ribs.
Checked alignment of flying wires and bonded on the centre section panel.
Working on the centre section. Reassembling centre section. Refitted new front ribs. Fitting the centre section ply mod.
Working on the centre section. Dismantled the centre section to finish drilling rear spar bolts and to varnish.
Working on the centre section mod, fitted front ribs..
No work on the Great Lakes this weekend went flying as the we hadsome nice weather for a change! Saturday calibrated the angle of attack instrument on my Dynon D100 - fitted to my RV7. Sunday took Jo flying, and she had her first go at flying the RV (she had flown my Cessna 150 lots). On the way to Bembridge on the Isle of wight we went via Weymouth along the south coast past Lulworth Cove. Jo took some pictures..
Working on the centre section mod. While checking the fitting of the ply panel I decided it may be worth checking the old covering. Mark saved all the old covering and this has proved to be really worthwhile - thanks Mark.
Trial fitted tank to centre section. Started to look at forward ribs and discovered the replacement ribs are a mirror of the original. *** Problem with center section front ribs ***.
Drilled (small) bolt holes to attach rear ribs to spar. Also drilled holes in rear ribs to attach trailing edge. Attached outer ribs to spar mounts. I am now going to mock up the centre section with the new spar - also fit tank. To ensure all is correct before drilling any more holes. Will also trial fit the centre section mod.
My control surfaces need to be inspected, so I have started work on the centre section. I am replacing the rear spar and all the ribs. Every one of the original ribs was cracked/scrap.
Made & fitted HS mounting cover, and last rivet tape. Also fitted elevator leading edge tape.
Still no flying today. Finished applying tapes to elevator ribs, applied trailing edge tape and finished rivets and tape on HS.
Had planned to go flying today - RV fly-in at Fenland. Rain and low cloud until 3pm. So decided to have a day in the workshop instead. Finished fitting rivets to elevators and applied tapes.
I was applying Rand-o-proof all evening to the elevators and HS.
Covering R/H Horizontal stabiliser, ironing elevators and horizontal statilisers. Started dopeing the elevators.
Covering L/H Horizontal stabiliser - with help from Oscar.
Started covering L/H Horizontal Stabalizer.
Completed attaching fabric to L/H elevator, started covering R/H elevator.
Started covering the control surfaces. David came over to give me a lesson on fabric covering - he is building a Great Lakes. His instruction has really made a difference, it's okay reading a manual or viewing a video. But having David keeping an eye on what I was doing and offering advise as I went along has made all the difference. He has saved me days, if not weeks or months of progress having set me off on the correct path from the start. Davids inspector is the same as mine so he knows what he is looking for and will be checking.
Made up the replacement wooden parts for R/H lower wing inspection panel, ready for when I mix some glue for the centre section spar. I have a friend coming over to give me a quick covering lesson so I am preparing some parts for recovering.
Starting to look at rebuilding the centre section. My plan is to assemble as much as possible, but I expect to stop to locate parts I don't have. Already added some to the list today.
This evening I continued assembling the center section. I am only assembling the centre section to see what goes where as the old parts show marks where they were fitted. This makes assembly easier - a few pictures for reference then I can start rebuilding it.
This evening I laid out what remains of the centre section. It's in a mess and most of it will need to be replaced.
Unpacked undercarriage.
Contacted the PFA today, they have my application - Francis does not see any problem to the Great Lakes going onto a PFA Permit to Fly. We are going to work with Work Sheets rather than a Project Book. Measured up for the belly stringers on the fuse this evening.
Finally the last part of my Phoenix shipment arrived - the covering chemicals. They should have been in with the aircraft but there was a problem with the shipper.
Fitting trim pipe, luggage box and left side wooden ribs.
Fitting oil breather pipe through fuselarge.I have some questions about parts fitting in the pictures - if you can help.
Granted registration onto the UK register. The Great Lakes is now registered as G-GLII.
Trial fit of controls to fuselarge.
Unpacking the crates. Putting some parts on the fuselarge.
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