Fuselage 34 – Aft elevator stop


First, an update. After the last post, I was very concerned with a slight discrepancy between the alignment of the elevators. I posted to Rivetbangers and contacted Van’s support. The response from Van’s was:

Actually, that’s darn close to perfect alignment.  Nail it down before it gets away.

So, I’m still a little annoyed that its not perfect, but I guess I’ll have a beer and forget about it for now. If it still bothers me, I can fix it when its flying. I think it will likely be forgotten and a non-issue.

So tonight it was time to turn my attention to the rudder stops. The amount of travel that the elevators are supposed to have is 25 to 30 degrees up, and 20 to 25 degrees down. I used the digital level method to measure the travel. Before any modification, I only had 21.4 degrees up, so not even at the minimum. The down deflection is 23 degrees, so thats square in the middle of the range. Today I decided to work on the up travel, which means working on the aft stop.

Here you can see the aft elevator stop before modification. In addition to setting the correct amount of travel, you also should make sure that both elevator horns contact the rudder stop at full deflection. As most people’s horns are not symmetrically aligned, this means the stop will be different on each side.

I started by using a dremel, but it became quickly apparent that I would need more material moved to get the travel where I wanted it. This meant I needed to remove the rudder stop and use the bench grinder and scotch-brite wheel. 

Here is the end result. You can see the right horn further aft than the left. The final reflection is  27.5 degrees up. I may take off just a little more tomorrow to get closer to 30 degrees. Luckily, the front stop won’t require much adjustment. I will only take off a little bit for the left side of the stop to try to make both of the horns contact the stop at the same time. That should also get me pretty close to 25 degrees. 

Session time: 2.5 hours 

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