The first step - make the cutout for the fuel gauge and fuel cap.
The lip of the opening is bent downward. I made a forming block out of a scrap piece of wood.
Then the lip was bent downwards by stretching the metal around the form.
Flip the form over and bend the other side.
Trim and sand the edge smooth.
The opening is complete.
Once the opening was cut and bent, the sides of the aluminum were marked and the pneumatic shears cut off the excess.
We put the original rear cowl in place. We haven't made the new one yet but the old one fits so that is a good thing. The opening for the front cockpit needs to be cut out yet. A decision has to be made. Here is why:
We have a bunch of original Curtiss drawings showing the cowling dimensions. The prints are from the JN4D2 which is different than the JN4D.
The JN4D has two nearly round cutouts with a small windshield.
Here is another view.
Now the Canuck has a bigger opening than the JN4D. If you look under the windscreen, you will see the cowling cut out beneath it. Plus, it is a bigger windscreen.
The extra cutout allows you to see the instruments better. If you sit in a JN4D cockpit, you have to duck your head to see the upper instruments. Not so in a Canuck.
Of course, the JN4D2 cutouts are even different. they have the same rear curve, but the cutout in the front is even bigger than the Canuck! So, our drawings are nearly useless.
The piece of original cockpit is from a Canuck. I sat in the airplane last night and I must admit, the cutout under the windscreen is nice. I have not made a decision yet, but I am leaning this way.
There is a lot of sheet metal work to come. Stay tuned!