Curtiss Jenny Restoration

Welcome! We hope you enjoy following the restoration process of a 1918 Curtiss JN4D Jenny. Once completed, the aeroplane will be flown and displayed at the Candler Field Museum in Williamson GA (30 miles south of Atlanta). You can contact me below by clicking on "VIEW MY PROFILE"

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Location: Peachtree City, Georgia, United States

Monday, January 22, 2007

Tail is together at last

The rain stopped long enough today for me to get the tail pieces out into the fresh air and put them all together. Here's most of the family - son Nicholas was playing at a neighbor's house - but everyone else was there.

I just have a few little odds and ends to do yet, then the tail will be completed. I have to spray the new fin wires and make the rudder horns. Here's another shot.

Before all this happened, I finished the coppering on the rudder. Here's an example of the copper pieces that really strengthened the joints.

Also today, I acquired an original engine for my Bucker Jungmann, but that's another story for another day.

Next step is building the missing fuselage fittings and controls.



Sunday, January 21, 2007

final meeting of the fin and stab

Today's progress - Finished all the coppering on the fin! Now it was time to fit the fin to the stabilizer.

Before that could happen, four wires had to be made. Same method as before.

I left the front and rear attach fittings undrilled. The rear fittings attach to the tailpost with spoon bolts and I wanted to wait to make sure everything lined up properly before drilling any holes. For today, c-clamps sufficed.

Here's the top of the fin. I deviated a bit from original (forgive me, but it's an improvement). The rudder cable rubbed against this wire at full deflection. So, I moved the wire higher and kept the hinge alone. I think I covered this in a previous post.

Here's the stab attach point with my handy c-clamp.

Also gave the rudder a second coat of varnish. Ready for copper tomorow.

Till then


Wednesday, January 17, 2007

Spider Plate

Good news! The spider plate arrived today!

Doc Hood in California had five spider plates cut and bent. He is keeping three for his own Jennies and was kind enough to send one our way.

Even the box was a work of art! Thanks, Doc.

Here's a close up.

This is an OX-5 spider plate. With some modifications, it will fit the Hisso. The ledge which holds the OX radiator will have to be cut off and the curved lower pieces that hold the Hisso radiator will have to be made. You'll see more about this later.
As for progress on the tail - lots of little things. Both elevators are complete. All the metal parts have been put on for good. Same for the stabilizer. Plus, the rudder now has the first coat of varnish.
Till tomorow.

Friday, January 12, 2007

Tail fittings painted

OK - Here we go. Today all the brass screws were attached to the wooden frames. There are quite a few of them. In case you noticed, I pre-varnished the wood that went under the tabs.

The transformation was amazing. The flimsy wooden structure became rather strong when everything was screwed together.

Here is a tip for thoes of you building a Jenny rudder - with all the tabs in place, it is difficult to remove or install the wooden framework as a whole. The tabs prevent the wood from lifting out (as they should). Since you can't weld the fittings or braze the tabs in place, the wood has to be removed.

So, shape the tubing on the jig, braze and weld all the tabs and hinges, and then build the internal framework. You'll save yourself a lot of headaches that way!

Get ready to paint tons of little fittings! It goes pretty quickly though. Here are a bunch of them ready for paint.

Same for the wires. They are drying as we speak.

I also had a chance to clean up one of the original rudder bars. More on this later.



Monday, January 08, 2007

tail stuff

After taking all the metal parts off the tail, I had a chance to spray them with the DP-90. Don't make fun of the space suit - it really works well. I like fresh air.

Here you can see the leading edge of the stabilizer go from grey to black.

I still have a bunch of little parts to paint yet. I did mount the two elevator trailing edges (below) on the frame. Looks kinda neat in black. Also, now that the finish color is on the metal, I was able to put the copper hold down strips on the trailing edge to spar fairings. You can see the copper in the bottom of the picture.

While the paint was drying, I began coppering the top of the fin.

Remember - nail down only one side, drill your holes, nail down the other side, then drill back through the holes. No need to say "now where was that hole?"

Here's the tip completed with the hinge and bolt back in place.



Tuesday, January 02, 2007

Fin copper details

Here's the front fin with the copper.

And the rear lower spar. I will final drill the bolt holes later, once I make sure everything lines up.

More later