Now the waiting begins...

The SB tail is being shipped separately by air.
The SB tail is being shipped separately by air.

Finally pulled the trigger on the kit!

I'd been waiting on a few final clarifications from the local dealer and Sling about a few bits and pieces, namely is the fuel system compatible with E10 MOGAS (yes) and are 4-point harnesses an option (not from the factory, and finding a satisfactory rear mount for the front seats in a 4-seat aircraft is difficult).

I've gone with the hand brake rather than toe brakes given the overwhelming positive feedback from pilot reports, and have included the long range tanks both from a safety point of view and weight-and-balance considerations.

As mentioned previously I've ordered the standard build tail and rest of the kit quick-build, including the canopy so I have to do less plexiglass and sealant work. The SB tail will be about 6 weeks away and air-freighted; the QB likely some months and come by sea in a 20-ft container.


The front end kit arrived for this yesterday and I have provided it to the local steelformer building my frame for me so they can confirm and tap the holes correctly for the press and die.

Rivet Gun and other tools

New Tool Day
New Tool Day

I've picked up the Milwaukee gun and associated battery and charger. I've also got a few things from ATS (hand dimpler, AN bolt gauge) and Aircraft Spruce through their local agent (clecoes, pliers and so on, largely based on advice from the dealer). I've got a rivnut drill attachment rather than a hand puller, and some chucking reamers in #40, #30, #21 and #11 en-route from the US, which are the correct drill sizes for 2.4mm, 3.2mm, 4.0mm and 4.8mm rivets respectively.

CAA registration mark reservation

Whiteboard already being put to good use...
Whiteboard already being put to good use...

The CAA has held my preferred registration mark for two years for a nominal fee, and I've let the certification department know I'm building one, which it turns out is just a courtesy now that they no longer perform stage inspections.

IFR Equipment

I still have some questions about radio navigation requirements in NZ as the transition to ADS-B/RNP is still in flux, and will try to write a separate post about this. Unfortunately the CAA roadshow planned for early March was delayed by a community COVID outbreak in Auckland, and is now rescheduled for a day I can probably not attend. I still feel that a GTN 650 + G3x + G5 backup is a satisfactory solution for most scenarios, but this will need more research and liason with CAA to determine a satisfactory solution for the NZ regulatory environment.

Pilot's Operating Handbook

Although not strictly required, I've begun putting together a PoH based on the factory built ready-to-fly version, with updates for my aircraft's expected features and performance. I'm creating it as a HTML document, using CSS paged media to support printing with nice pagination and automatic ToC support. The software to do this is called Weasyprint and is freely available.