By Jul DeGeus
By Jul DeGeus
New students at the Aviation Institute of Maintenance in Dallas, Texas, volunteer on the WWI Sopwith Pup Project. Campus Tool Room Attendant and Master Wood Worker Keith Cornwell teaches the students to mix the epoxy which is applied to the rib caps of the Sopwith Pup for the wing rib assembly.
As the Sopwith Pup at Aviation Institute of Maintenance in Dallas continues to take form, I wonder if the designer, Herbert Smith would be proud of our volunteer’s attention to the details. Each rib and part of this WWI aircraft is carefully created to meet our standards of accuracy. Picky? Some might say so but why not? Our Sopwith Pup has taken on a strong sense of pride for our aviation career school family. We look forward to additional progress in the weeks and months to come.
On April 26, 2013 Aviation Institute of Maintenance in Dallas hosted an Aviation Maintenance Education Day. The event brought over 125 high schools students, aviation maintenance hiring employers, and prospective students to campus to learn about aviation maintenance. Guests were treated with tours of the school facilities and training equipment. Additionally our instructors fired up our PT6, Allison 250 engines and our Robins R22 Helicopter. To cap off the tour, our inquisitive guests were given an opportunity to view our plans and progress on our WWI Sopwith Pup. They learned about our chosen pilot Captain Pratt and the profound impact the WWI era had on modern aviation.
Sounds like an appetizer order at a restaurant but hardly the case…
The team mechanics at Aviation Institute of Maintenance in Dallas have routed 65 cap strips for the production of main wing ribs A, B, C, D, E and mini “riblets” for the WWI Sopwith Pup aircraft. They also have made fabricated the jigs for cutting and assembling, as well as a drying rack.
The next big item to do will be getting the tooling made from the local machine shop. We are currently looking at two different shops for a bid. After that, the jib and materials needed to fabricate the main landing gear and the rear tail fixture for the WWI Sopwith Pup aircraft are next.