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"

My Photo
Location: Peachtree City, Georgia, United States

Friday, January 14, 2011

Instruments and bad weather

Boy, what a week...or two. After returning from a week long training session for work, Atlanta got hit with a snowstorm. Now, we rarely get snow storms down here in the south, so needless to say, Atlanta was paralyzed. Kids were home from school all week. Roads closed. Nature is still the boss!

When UPS resumed deliveries, we got a package from from Legacy Instruments. The original compass and oil pressure gauge cleaned up nicely...

But unfortunately, the Type C Tachometer was beyond repair. Apparently, the internal spring was broken and replacement parts were impossible to find.

This is the instrument panel so far. The two open spots will be filled by the temperature gauges now being overhauled by Legacy Instruments. The big hole was for our tachometer before it was deemed irreparable.

When I got the news about the tachometer, Paul Dougherty offered to help. He had a spare tachometer, but I knew it were earmarked for one of the museum's other projects and I hated to ask him to part with it.

But David Harwell happened to have a Type B tachometer in his display case and willingly parted with it.

David Harwell owns Barnstormers Workshop at the Peach State Airport, one of the few quality antique aircraft restoration shops in the country.

While I was visiting David, we discussed the fuel pump issue.

Let me back up a bit. Because of the snow in Atlanta, and the fact that no one left the house for three days, I contacted several engine overhaul places and asked them their opinions about pumps that would fit on the Hisso. Pete Jones at Air Repair responded with his suggestions. So did Jodi at Aero Accessories. Paul Dougherty educated me about the pumps he had used in past restorations.

I found out the pump below was used on a Jacobs engine. It was a fine pump, but it was too long to fit in the Jenny. I needed a shorter pump like the ones used on the R-985 radial engine.

David Harwell rummaged through his pile of spare parts and found the exact pump I needed - a Pesco 4100. I'll send this out for overhaul next week.

When I couldn't stand it anymore, I braved the icy roads and met Brian Eberle at the hangar. We got the lower radiator support drilled and cleco'ed. We were on our own here. There are no Hisso drawings so we have to design the engine installation using old pictures and make everything fit the best we can. Remember, we are not building a JN6. We're building a JN4D with a Hisso engine like the barnstormers did back in the 1920"s. They probably made their installation in some farmers field somewhere.

One of the issues was the "lip" of the spider plate. I guessed the width I needed to cradle the curved part of the lower radiator. When we installed the radiator, the lip was too short! The solution was to rivet a larger doubler on the inside of the lip. It works, but for you future Jenny restorers, make the lip bigger than you need and trim it down later.

Now some side news - Phil Mintari in Texas sent pictures of his Jenny. He has been busy spraying dope on the fuselage.

Here is the front half.

Phil spraying away.

This was earlier in the build right before they began the covering process.

Danny Mintari dropping in the OX-5.

If only pictures could talk...this is a great picture of Phil and Patricia Mintari discussing the Jenny.

More soon



Post a Comment

<< Home