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Weekend lesson #1: - Tina Marie's Ramblings
Red hair and black leather, my favorite colour scheme...
Weekend lesson #1:
When doing something for the first time, be careful.

My nose wheel strut has been leaking for years now. A year ago, I squirted some sealant in there, and it helped a lot. But it started leaking again a month or so ago. I found a rebuild kit for $25, so I figured I'd just take it apart, replace the o-rings, and be done with it.

Michael said he'd had it apart before, so I didn't bother printing out the diagram. Well, when we got started, it turned out he'd only ever taken it halfway apart, and had no clue where the o-rings went. After much debate and a consultation with two different mechanics, we got it apart. I replaced the o-rings, put it back together, pumped it full of fluid, topped it off with air - and fluid started squirting all over the hanger. Oh, and the valve leaked air. So the strut, squirting fluid out the bottom and air out the top, quickly went totally flat.

I was not amused. All day was wasted, and now the strut was worse then ever.

The consensus over dinner was that I'd nicked an o-ring when I put it back together. Sure enough, this morning I took it back apart, and I'd badly damaged two of the rings, but I had some spares I'd picked up on the clearance table at Central Aviation a long time ago. I replaced the bad o-rings with new ones, and the valve stem with an high-quality automotive valve. It only took me 2 hours to do what took me all day yesterday. I was much more careful, it all went back together fine, and it was holding pressure better then ever when I left the hanger.

Someday I'm going to figure out how to fix things without screwing them up the first time...

Current Mood: geeky geeky
Current Music: Melissa Etheridge - I Want To Be In Love

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