July 31, 2010

What else, for goodness sake

I am reeling at the end of today. The day’s sequence of events has left me feeling totally punch-drunk.

This morning I decided I’d refurbish the spare Mikuni fuel pump that I have with one of my recently purchased service kits so I could just swap it in for the upper one on MYRO. However, yesterday I had swapped over the main wheel tyre myself for a spare that I had and got a local tyre fitter to do the same for the nose wheel, so my first job was to refit those.

On arriving at the field the first thing I found was that the other main wheel was totally flat and had somehow managed to pick up a puncture while it had been just standing there. I just couldn’t believe it, after all this time. I refitted the other main wheel quite easily and then went on to fit the nose wheel, a job that took me a few minutes the last time I did it. But today, would the bolt holes line up? Would they heck. After about half an hour’s struggling and after chipping my new paint on a suspension damper several times, I eventually got the wheel into place.

Then it was onto the Mikunis. I swapped out the upper one quite quickly and then went on to see if I could do anything with the lower one without completely removing it. While undoing the securing screws I managed to mark the pilot’s side door plastic on a screw head which was a good start. And then when I went on to examine the unit, I immediately found the cause of all my fuel system problems. Firstly, I noticed that the unit had actually been only recently fitted from new when it had been on MYME and wasn’t an old, clapped out unit at all. However, an internal gasket had been wrongly fitted, probably in manufacture, and there was no internal seal between the two small internal one-way valves. So that’s why it wouldn’t pump and that’s why the system wouldn’t hold a pressure. Freak or what? What’s the chance of that happening? If you fit a new unit and it doesn’t work, you notice immediately and can take steps to fix it. But what earthly chance did I have of diagnosing a problem like that? I was going to refurb the unit anyway, but as it was all still ‘new’ inside, I decided just to reassemble it correctly and see what happened. So I did and of course, my fuel system then worked more or less perfectly.

Trouble is, that freak manufacturing mistake has cost me a two week delay.

So then it was onto the starter switch. I thought that I’d have to drop the panel front to get at it but I found that by removing the altimeter I could then remove the switch and detach the connections. While doing it, two of the tiny connection grub screws slipped through my fingers, fell into the pod and then out through the tiniest crack onto the grass below. Naturally, one I found but the other just disappeared off the face of the earth.

Colin said to be careful when I was taking the switch apart at home as you have to watch out for springs flying out. So I was, but two still managed to roll onto the conservatory floor. One I was able to pick up straight away but the other, like the grub screw, just vanished. So now my starter switch is useless, unless I can find the lost spring. I hunted high and low with a bright torch but there was no sign of it. If it means I have to take each piece of furniture out of the conservatory one by one and then search the floor with a fine-tooth comb tomorrow, then that’s what I’ll have to do.

But this day will go down as one of the worst I have had to endure for many a year. I had no idea that just trying to get the final few small jobs on MYRO done could possibly be beset by so many setbacks. And today they have been seemingly unending, one after another 🙁