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Q-talk 100 - Installing Elevators

During the building of a Q, there are times when you have to bend your body into awkward positions, making you wish you had long arms like a gorilla. Attempting to install the elevators by yourself is certainly one of those times. One night, while at the airport alone, I found feeding the steel elevator tubes through aluminum spacers and into the elevator torque tube very difficult. I soon realized my arms were too short to be able to fish around the steel elevator tube and hold the spacer in place at the same time. This forced me to become creative. First, I straightened about 6" of .040" safety wire and then added a very slight curve to the piece, like a parenthesis. I positioned the wire through the top bolt hole in the elevator, pointed the end toward the center of the plane and through the aluminum spacer to keep the spacer from falling. I then cut off about 12" of .032" of safety wire and looped it around the aluminum spacer. Gripping the two ends of the .032" safety wire about 4" from the spacer, I twisted the wire until it held the spacer tightly. At that point, I could easily move around the spacer with the safety wire tool with one hand and fish the steel elevator tube with the other. I made sure that I directed the .040" safety wire down the center of the steel elevator tube until the aluminum spacer was in place. Worked like a charm for me.

You can order a printed copy of Q-talk #100 by using the Q-talk Back Issue Order Page.