The excitement is growing rapidly, even JD seems to be getting excited. Scott and I are both bi-plane fans and the history that was made and will again be made with this airplane is quite special to us. After the motor run and amp checks we assembled all of the components of the Curtiss for the first time since we brought her home and began the transformation. What a beautiful plane in her new colors.
All that is left before her maiden flight with electric will be the mounting of the airborne batteries and receiver, and the re-rig of the flying and landing wires. The rigging is made of 304 stainless wires with Dubro steel turnbuckles that have to be adjusted and tuned just as a full scale biplane is. Once complete and ready to fly we need to notify the local newspaper and a whole bunch of local people of the when and where this historic event will take place. The Today Herald Newspaper ran an article about our discovery and the return of this aircraft to Lake Havasu and will be running a follow up article about the completion and first flight of the Curtiss and its part in the upcoming London Bridge Seaplane Classic.
After the motor run, current draw, battery checks the battery tray was secured with wing nuts in the fuselage and the top cowl was installed. Further tests show that the air inlets and outlets seem to provide adequate ventilation through the fuselage for cooling of the motor, speed controller and batteries.
John Hanks is our resident rigging expert and he is seen below tuning the rigging and safety wiring all of the turnbuckles. The fairings around the struts and rigging on the floats were replaced. A final check of all systems showed that the Curtiss is ready for her flight tests. We ended up gaining a little weight and now she weighs exactly 50 lbs. but considering the nearly 3,000 sq. in. of wing area, and the new increased power system, we expect a great flyer.
The Curtiss shortly after the first motor run.
The Curtiss is ready to fly but the weather gods have decided that we must wait. A huge storm off the Washington coast has brought high winds, 20 to 50 mph and the forecast is for the winds to continue for a few more days. The forecast for next week is for calm and warm conditions that are suppose to carry through the London Bridge Seaplane Classic so we will be able to test fly the Curtiss and also be able to showcase it at the event. If you can, attend the LBSC event and see her strut her stuff live.