REFLECTOR: Jeffco or not?

Grigore Rosu grigore.rosu at
Mon Jan 28 18:38:59 CST 2008

I have already ordered both the Jeffco (3 gal) and the fuel gauge kit from
Velocity.  Is there anything else I need before I start working on the fuel
tank?  Ken Baker suggested a "side gauge kit" as potentially useful, because
it allows you to always turn your head and see how much fuel you have left.
Any idea about that?  Is it worth considering, or it just makes the
installation of the fuel tanks more difficult and prone to leaking?

Many anticipated thanks,

On Jan 28, 2008 5:56 PM, Alex Balic <velocity_pilot at> wrote:

>  1)       I would recommend the Jeffco for a couple of reasons- first – it
> is specifically designed to be a fuel sealer and is more resistant to
> alcohol content than the epoxy (future concerns?)  also-  the opaque grey
> color makes it a very simple matter to locate any pin holes (they appear
> black against the light grey epoxy) while you are constructing. You will not
> want to try to fine them after your tanks are sealed.  Since I have an auto
> conversion, I built the entire tank using jeffco since I will almost
> certainly be burning fuel containing methanol at some point.
> 2)       I tested my tanks using a cheap kid's party balloon- you just
> install the inflated balloon to the vent of the tank you are testing, and
> see if it is still inflated a day later. It also keeps some positive
> pressure on the tank if you need to do a soap bubble leak test.
> 3)       I would not try to install any of the strake skins without the
> wings attached- learned this from personal experience- as well as the
> experience of a couple of other builders- don't use the factory alignment
> templates either- just hang the wings and keep them there until the strakes
> are done unless you are ready to apply a lot of filler to make the leading
> edge of the strake match the leading edge of the wing.
>  ------------------------------
> *From:* reflector-bounces at [mailto:reflector-bounces at] *On
> Behalf Of *Grigore Rosu
> *Sent:* Monday, January 28, 2008 12:34 AM
> *To:* Velocity Aircraft Owners and Builders list
> *Subject:* REFLECTOR: Jeffco or not?
> I'm about to install the bulkheads in my first strake and therefore I'll
> soon need to worry about the fuel tank.
> 1) Should I use Jeffco or not?  The manual sounds as if Jeffco is optional
> ...  If I should use it, where can I get it from?  (I can do a random search
> on the internet, but perhaps there are some better avenues that you may have
> encountered so far).
> 2) Do I need an altimeter to test the fuel tank?  I have none, but the
> messages I could find in the reflector archive on this subject mention an
> altimeter.  BTW, can I test each tank in isolation, or they need to be both
> installed first and checked together?
> 3) Should I finish the first strake (including installing the upper
> strake) and then move to the other one, or it is better to also install the
> lower strake on the other side and its bulkheads, then do both tanks at the
> same time, and then install both upper strakes at the same time?  Note that
> I can only install one wing at a time in my garage.  The flow-chart that
> came with my manual says that the wing can be removed once the lower strake
> is installed ... I'm a bit reluctant to do so though, because I'm affraid
> the torsion generated by the spar may be too big without the upper strake.
> Thank you,
> Grigore
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