45-25 Cowling Edge Gaps

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This is how this manual page begins …

NOTE: In the following steps, the COWL-00001 Top Cowl and COWL-00002 Bottom Cowl will be trimmed to create a uniform gap that will allow for the accumulation of primer/paint. A uniform (equal) gap between components is more aesthetically pleasing than a wavy or angled gap.

I found this stage time consuming! You have to tread very carefully, since removing too much material will spoil the look.

I decided to use tape to mark the required gap.

Vans suggest a gap of 0.050″ (1.3mm). This sounds small, but actually looked quite large, and after consulting the aircraft sprayer who is going to paint the plane, I went for 0.040″.


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I lost count how many times the cowling came off/on to carefully fine tune the gap!

In the latter stages I used a feeler gauge to mark the narrow areas, removing the cowling to gently sand off more material.


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Anyway all the time spent resulted in a pleasing look.

Fingers crossed that 0.040″ is enough?? It looks about right.


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When setting the rivets to attach the cowl hinges, as per the Vans advice, I didn’t squeeze quite as much as you normally would on metal.

But I applied filler to hide the rivets and slight undulations.


The last page of section 45 (which is OP62-12 for the EXP119) concerns applying the aluminium foil insulation. I’m going to do this a bit later, since I want to fit the Vetterman Exhaust first and check the location.

UPS tells me the Exhaust is on its way, but in the meantime, I’m going to make the gear leg fairings.

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