Friday, July 01, 2011

08Romeo Spa Time

I decided to bag a day of work and use up some of that vacation time I have saved up.  I wanted to get 08Romeo's wheels cleaned up and painted.  I also wanted to touch up a few scratches on my handle above my door and a few along the top of my door.  At least I had some sort of plan and I decided it was more important to clean up a few things on the plane then fly for breakfast.

I pulled into Red Eagle and this aircraft was staring me in the face.  The plane looks like a Northrop F5B but with the Canadian designation CF5. I only say this because one of the containers had Canadian express on them. The wing was locked in a jig on the opposite side of the truck with multiple boxes tucked on the flatbed trailer.

Ok, enough distraction, I need to get some work done.  I uncovered 08Romeo and commenced to the dirty cleaning part of the operation. I completely cleaned both rims and prepped them for painting. A few times with a scotchbrite pad helped even out any chips that were there, yeah, there were a few.
Pictured above is the before shot, man that was dirty. I did notice some wheel bearing grease squeezing out and I'll keep an eye on that. It was a multiple step cleaning process, remove excess grease and dirt then spray parts/brake cleaner after protecting the hub and bearings.  With a bit of a parts cleaner buzz I completed step one.

Step two required a steady hand around the tire and a new small 1" brush. I started from the outside in on the first rim and that didn't work out so well.  It did allow a second coat along the face of the rim but also made it hard to steady my hand close to the rim itself.  Wheel two was painted inside out, this worked out great and it took half the time. Take a look at the finished product.
Not to bad, if I must say so myself.  I touched up a few small areas along the pilot side handle above the door and a few along the top of my door.  They looked ok but I would later get a number for a professional painter located at Wilmington to make it right.  At least I have the metal protected.

The test flight...

Of course there has to be a test flight! I called Vince and he was available to make a flight today. Short hop, knock out a few landings, help the paint dry and come home.
We launched for Cape May and enjoyed the cool 64 degree temps at only 3000 feet. Millville was quiet for the most part and it wasn't real busy at Cape May.  Vince got to fly and he did very well, transferring controls for my pattern entry and landing. We didn't shut down, instead we taxied back for a short hop to Millville.  We waited for a Diamond to land then departed north for KMIV.  We had traffic in the area, a King Air landing ahead of us on runway three two.  I was number two for a full stop and taxi back.
Diamond, short final
We taxied for runway three two behind a Cessna and a Mooney.  I announced crossing runway ten-two eight and followed the Mooney.  The Mooney pilot decided to do a run up with his tail hanging over the hold short line which left me sitting well across the hold short, on the runway side! I made at least four calls for him to move up the taxiway so I could clear, nothing.  Finally I moved to the pilots side inching closer and still calling.  The right seat passenger held out a thumbs up but still no movement.  I called again and he finally moved.  I acknowledged with a thanks but held my tongue since Vince was in the plane. After a CH47 Chinook passed by on the ILS runway 10 low approach and our Mooney driver departed, we were finally rolling down the runway for home.
"Take Off Time" - B25  on the ramp at KMIV

It was windy but a fun flight home. Vince once again did a nice job and this time I had him make the calls to the tower at Wilmington. He nailed all the info, brief, to the point, no ahh's or uhh's, a really nice job.  We were directed straight in runway three two report jersey shore line, Vince acknowledged. We transferred controls for pattern and landing, Vince pointing out we're low on the vasi's.  (rolls eyes)...I held my altitude and in a blink the lights were split. I must say Vince is pretty sharp, fun to fly with and someday he'll make a great pilot. He did tell me today he'll fly Mary and I around. Great, does that mean I'll be to old or unable to hold a medical? Vince just laughed.
Final Runway 32
We secured 08Romeo and cleaned up the leading edges. The painter is going to contact me in the next couple of weeks, his schedule is pretty busy. In the mean time I have a number to call so I can get 08Romeo detailed. Vince and I headed to 58M, I know, why didn't I fly you ask, it honestly slipped my mind. I picked up my sticker for my adlog entry for the previous oil change and scheduled my annual for the first of November.  I think Mary and I will be flying out for turkey day on some vacation so the plane needs to be back online by the second week of the month. Maybe we'll finally make it to the Keys!


Steve said...

Wow that wheel looks awesome - great job!

Rob Schaffer said...

Nice paint job!! You are hired for the attic :-)

Gary said...

Thanks guys...trying to keep 08Romeo looking good.

Rob, I'm the man for cut in work!

Unknown said...

Wow! (There is a new side biz calling u ... Aircraft detailing!)