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What is a Sonex?

I am building a homebuilt airplane called a Sonex-A. I have been working extremely hard to finance this project since August 2016. In April 2017, I purchased a partially completed Sonex. I will still need to buy an engine and am such, working a million odd jobs to earn enough money.

What is a Sonex?

Well first we have to ask, are you talking about Sonex the company, or the Sonex Airplane?

Sonex is an aviation company, based out of wisconsin, that produces airplane kits for builders to make at home. A kit from Sonex includes the plans for making every single part in the plane and how they fit together, most of the hardware you will need (nuts screws bolts) , and a great deal of the material needed. With a kit, you can build realistically build a Sonex airplane in under 2 years in your garage. You are then left needing to buy certain customization items, instrument's, upholstery, and your choice of an engine.

The Sonex-A is a 2 seat, pilot and 1 passenger, small airplane. It is capable of performing aerobatics and has very responsive controls, akin to a fighter plane, or a sports car. Depending on what engine you instal its cruise speed is between 120 mph and 140mph, and it burns 5-8 gallons of fuel and hour in cruise flight.

For my Sonex-A (kit#1612), I am still keeping my options open for any good deal on an engine I can find. and after a long period of sketching different ideas I have tenatively decided to vynll wrap my pane when it's done, this is my proposed color scheme.

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Build Update: The Turtledeck November 2017

First off, what is a turtledeck? The answer is obvious at first, it is a wood platform on the back of the house, with a bunch of turtles sitting on it, right?

Or maybe it is what you call the deck of a cruise ship that is for turtle pleasure?

Well actually it is the round part of the plane behind the cockpit, that leads into the tail, as seen in this beautiful Sonex.

So, now that we know what a turtledeck is, I can get into how I built one!. Like everything, It started with a plans review. The turtledeck skin was made of 2 smaller skins (a left and right) and a central spine of a stiffening C-Channel. The skin then is curved to make it rounded, pretty, and aerodynamic.

I then prepared all the parts. The turtledeck formers were up to the plate first, they look like this:

I made sure that they had no stress rising scratches. (rule of thumb is that if you can catch a fingernail in the scratch, then it is too deep and must be buffed out.) Aside from that I checked them against the plans …

Build Update: Joining the Fuselage October 2017

Riveting the Fuselage side panels was extremely satisfying! After a few day's hard work, I had built up these huge 10' long metal structures! 

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Build Update: Aft Fusalage October 2017

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Starting at the back of the plans I came across the first task of the fuselage, Fabricating the rudder cable fairlead blocks. I gathered my materials, Phenolic (a composite material), drill and drillbits, and as always the pans. I laid out the dimensions for 4 blacks on the oversized piece of phenolic, I was careful to account for the thickness of the bandsaw. With the blocks cut to shape ,all the remained was to drill the 4 corner holes, and the large center hole. The blocks were set aside for later.

The next a…