PFM Logo Fokker Triplane Model T Curtiss Canuck

November 7, 2002 Project Update

Fokker control stick assembly

Work on the Fokker D.VII continued this past weekend (11/2-3) at Old Kingsbury Aerodrome. The top of the control stick was fabricated by Tom Gaylord (shown here holding the complete control stick, including the newly-built top) and Roger Freeman (shown below building up the tapered section with welding rod). It starts as a normal control stick but ends with an upward tapering section ending in a complex arrangement of an angled holding handle, gun triggers and a dual handled auxiliary throttle. The auxiliary throttle will not function as a throttle on this airplane. Roger Ritter suggested that we use it as a smoke controller switch. It's a pretty good idea and will be considered.

Welding the control stick top
Dylan Johnson

Team Fokker welcomed Richard Johnson as its newest member. Richard and son Dylan (seen here in the Canuck's cockpit) showed up after lunch Saturday and began making the wooden control stick handle and the two wooden handles of the auxiliary throttle. Bill Broussard fabricated the two aileron control horns that mount on the horizontal part of the control column. These were welded on. He also finished working on the gun triggers but work is still needed to finish the Bowden cable attachments and mount the whole mechanism to the control stick. The vertical and horizontal stabilizers, rudder and elevator have been painted. Tom used a soldering iron to open the various mounting holes that had been covered by the fabric as well as the openings on the horizontal stabilizer through which the elevator control cables pass. He also began making the central auxiliary throttle mechanism. Tom, Bill and Roger reinstalled all the tail surfaces to check for clearance and prepare the plane for the fly-in on the 23rd. Tom also began fabricating the mounting rings to which the control cables to the rudder and the upper cables to the elevator are attached.

Roughed-out grips, handle and drawings

This final photo shows the control grip work completed on Saturday. The top framework of the control stick is done (except for the tube that will hold the auxiliary throttle handles), the two auxiliary throtle handgrips are roughed out, and the long pieces that will form the main handgrip are cut roughly to size and drilled to take the control stick tube. RIchard Johnson will be finishing up the woodwork this week to fit the control stick framework, and then the mount tube for the auxiliary throttle can be welded on. With that in place, the stick grip can be completed with the auxiliary throttles, main stick grip, and gun triggers.