Saturday, October 25, 2014

Backup UMA Steam Gauges Arrived

Yesterday, the weather was warm enough and winds light enough to finish priming the unprimed parts from the last primer session ... plus the parts made within the last week or so. The temperatures were at the low end of the Akzo recommended temperature range, so a light bulb was placed at the bottom of a large tall cardboard box to make a warm place for the wet parts to dry. Three rows of wire were strung from side to side to hang the parts from …. this worked out quite well and got the temperature up to 78 degrees inside the box.
A tall cardboard box with an incandescent bulb at the bottom was used to make a warm paint drying box.
While attending AirVenture at Oshkosh two years ago, I spotted a company that makes 2 1/4" instrument gauges for experimental aircraft ... UMA Instruments. I spoke with Sharon Rathburn, a UMA sales and customer service representative, and discovered one of the nice touches UMA is willing to provide a builder is marking the airspeed indicator’s face with correctly colored speed tapes. UMA silk screens the speed tapes onto the face of the instrument as opposed to using vinyl sticky tape as some companies do ... which can lift and peal over the years.

This year while at AirVenture, I decided to look for Sharon so backup steam gauges could be purchased for the DOG Aviation RV-12 … ultimately a 2 1/4" altimeter and airspeed indicator was ordered. A page was copied from the RV-12 POH manual which showed the operating speeds and Sharon wrote down all the information so the correct speeds could be marked onto the airspeed instrument's face.  Some would say this is total overkill for a small daytime VFR aircraft and to a certain degree, I would tend to agree. However, having a background in electronics I know displays can go lights out at any moment and typically when it the least convenient ... so the DOG Aviation RV-12 WILL have backup.
The UMD Instruments 2 1/4" altimeter and airspeed indicator with custom silk screened speed tapes.
I’m very pleased at how nice the silk screening looks on the airspeed indicator. Clicking on the above photo to enlarge it will reveal the nice silk screen job on the face of the airspeed  instrument. UMA did a nice job and the customer service was great … thanks Sharon.