Thanks xblueh2o and jcarne for advice on the plans, I'll get some ordered!
DaAV8R, I'd like to know if you have an opinion on the access hole I've got in the tail of this -8. The picture is down below.
I've had a chance to do a more thorough evaluation of what I've got myself into, and I definitely have some work ahead of me.
First up in my list of headaches: IO-540 Engine.
This engine was overhauled by Chuck Ney in December 2011. No previous logs, no work order referenced in the logbook entry, and no sheet listing the
measurements/tolerances of the build. I did give a call to Barrett Precision Engines since they knew him and could give an estimate of his work. They
said he did good work, though they did disagree with his practice of removing cylinder choke. They estimated the engine value at $25,000.
However, they also agreed with me that a 540 is too heavy of an engine for an RV-8, so it has to go.
The second headache is the prop.
I don't know who it was built by, or even if the parts used are serviceable, but even if they are the HC-C2YK-1BF hub and F-8465-7R blades
combination has no engines that it has been shown to be compatible with. Maybe someone that isn't concerned by torsional vibration (single bank radial
engine, but who uses those?) could use this prop, but I don't feel like being the guinea pig for a new prop/engine combination. And I don't want to be
responsible for selling a prop that brings down an airplane.
The third headache is the battery location.
It has been moved way back into the tail in preparation for the IO-540 that I won't be using. A large access panel has been cut and the battery and wiring
is already installed. There is no doubler or reinforcement for the battery access hole except a joggled edge. I hope I only need to add a doubler and
move the battery and external power receptacle back to the front. I'll have to see what Van's builder support has to say. I might need additional stringers
and frames to get it back to the original strength.
The fourth headache is more a collection of little annoyances.
The avionics, while nice if you want a glass cockpit, are already installed with many of the wires run (several of which are unlabeled) and I'll have to work
around them for the rest of the project.
There are components of an oxygen system installed, but if I remove them there are obvious holes, and I want a pretty airplane. I'm thinking of
finishing the installation, but using a lightweight cylinder typically used in portable systems, but if it adds more than ten pounds I want it gone.
The most recent builder didn't make many notes, and since steps were done out of order I don't know what I might have to undo to complete missing
steps. I have found several things put together that aren't checked off in the build instructions yet.
To top it off I've done follow up repairs on wiring installations of the previous mechanic in the past, and I dread all the wiring bugs I'm afraid I'll find when it is ready to flip that master switch.
Once it's done this will be a sweet little plane, but there's still a long way to go to get there.