Pitot Mast Install
I finished all the dimpling on the right lower outer wing skin and got it temporarily installed to keep it out of the way. Its big, unwieldy and easily damaged. I turned my attention to getting the Dynon pitot mast installed in the left wing. After researching and querying Van's Tech Support I decided (as many other have) to locate it in the bay immediately outside the aileron bell crank assembly. Some guys use the stock location inboard of the bell crank, but I was concerned with serviceability and pushrod interference from the two 1/4" air lines and pitot heat circuit. The flip side now the pitot tube is located outboard is the close proximity to the tie down ring and tie down lines. Having talked with several owners whose pitot tubes are in this location I decided the risk was manageable. Van's Tech Support recommended this location which sealed the deal. I spent a lot of time figuring out how to use the provided template to position and cut the hole in the skin for the mast. Any misalignment would cause problems. I had to first enlarge the template on my copier to 104% of its original size so the dimensions were correct. After match drilling the base plate to the spar, I slipped a trimmed template over the mast and marked the 3 spar holes I'd just drilled. The I glued the template to the skin with contact cement while carefully positioning the template hole marks on the matching spar/wing skin holes. Using a unibit, rotary tool and files I roughed out and trimmed the hole following the template profile. After inserting the mast in the newly created hole I was rewarded when the 3 forward holes lined up on the skin. Clecoing the skin back on the wing I match drilled the remaining 8 holes through the skin into the base plate. I was pleased with how it all worked out and the tight fit of the skin opening to the mast.