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REFLECTOR: Out the door
Well yesterday was the day that my just completed 173 FG Elite
finally came out of my garage (big garage with 3 small 9 X 7 doors). Here`s
how I did it.
First, I retained about two of the hundreds of suggestions that I
received from everyone that visited my project in the last two years, then
went with my own idea. I built a jig with 1 x 2 lumber duplicating the
exact dimensions of the 173 and its fixed gear. This was very light and
easy to trial fit into the door. It allowed me to figure out that I would
have to cut my cement floor and pavement ouside the door to make a trench
to lower the gear in while tilting the fuselage to bring it out diagonally
through the opening. It turned out that I had to cut a trench 36 X 36
inches in the cement floor extending it about two feet in the pavement
outside. This was about one foot deep and centered in the middle of the
door. I used a cement power saw and will be able to replace the slab in its
original position leaving just a minor scar on my floor as a reminder of
this memorable day.
Most people that visited my project over the last two years offered to
help me to get it out, so I took them up on their offers. I called a few
trustworthy friends two days before and 18 able-bodied,sensation
seeking,not-all-too-convinced helpers showed up. After a practice run with
the 1x2 jig, everyone knew exactly what to do and C-GDOU was gently taken
on its first off-the ground experience, backwards through the door and onto
the flat-bed trailer for the trip to airfield. With pieces of carpet nailed
to strategic points on the door frame and a few helpers assigned strictly
to maintaining clearance, the successfull operation took exactly one minute
and fifteen seconds and without a scratch.
Then a few late commers came in to help; they were only two minutes
late but are still wondering how the feat was accomplished. What the heck,
we almost put it back inside to show them how simple it was to do if you
have the necessary person-power.
Oh, I almost forgot the ladies. Thanks to them, we have the whole
process on film and video.
Then came the muffins, cheeses, patees,fruits and coffee. And the
usual debriefing and plain shooting the ..... that one usually witnesses