I decided to install the stainless steel fuel line from the firewall to the gascolator, only to find that it didn’t come close to fitting. That was one of the parts I’d made a pattern for while the dummy acrylic firewall was in place. In theory it should fit, but in practice it doesn’t. And that my friends, is the difference between theory and practice. However, other things which I fit the same way, fit just fine. It’s only this one part.
Incidentally, if you haven’t already installed the tiny screws for the tube fittings on an Andair device, do it before you install the device. You’ll be happier. I removed the gascolator, put in the screws and reinstalled it. Andair says to stake the screws and I didn’t do that - I used Permatex Threadlocker Blue instead.
You may have heard that there’s not much room between an RV-3 firewall and the engine. That’s entirely correct.
David Howe’s cowl tool is virtually essential for aligning the cowl. Wirejock, aka Larry Larson, made the necessary disc to replace the spinner. I shortened the length of the tool because my shop is too small for its full length. Here, you can see the full length tool without the disc. I later installed three length adjustment bolts in the empty hub holes - these control the cowl position so that the prop and spinner will fit (I have not ordered these yet).
Even with a heavy book and a water jug resting on the top cowl, it would not lay fair to the fuselage.
I copied Jack Nystrom’s work here on his RV-3, Hack Job, and made several slits in the inner skin. The slits are 10” long. This worked but I’ll need to fill and seal the slits later.
The top cowl fits reasonably well. The bottom cowl was more difficult, mostly because it needed the top cowl to hold it up. At this point, the lower quarter-turn fastener locations are not in, also the cheeks aren’t trimmed to length. But you can see the disk and the shorter length tool.
In that photo, the wide angle lens (did I mention that I have a small shop?) causes distortion in the fuselage.
Under the small potatoes category is the burning question: do the cowl cheek bulkhead flanges face forward or aft? I have 11 photos showing them. Five said flanges aft, and six said flanges forward, which was my inclination anyway. The plans don’t show it, no surprise, and the SK sketches sort of illustrate that either the person drawing it was lazy or the flanges face forward; it could be interpreted either way. On mine, forward they will point. The actual parts are labeled R and L, and if I followed that, they’d point aft.