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Jessie The Jeep

My Flying Control Jeep

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Church Fenton Airshow - Sept 26th

 

There were no events after the DLI meeting until late September, when the former RAF Church Fenton hosted an airshow. The airfield is now in private hands and called Leeds East Airport, and this was to be the first big airshow in Yorkshire for some time. It was a 100 mile drive for me each way, which meant an early start.

 

I woke up before the alarm at 05:30hrs, and by the time I was ready and got fuel, I was on the way a bit before 07:00hrs. I expected about a two and a half hour drive, or threre abouts, but hit the traffic queues a few miles from the airfield, and crawled along for another three quarters of an hour, getting past the queue and in through the main gate just before 10:00hrs. It had been a long cold drive, but the sky was getting brighter and it was getting warmer. There must have been 70+ MV's parked up, mostly from the Yorkshire MVT.

 

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After parking and fitting my flags and Follow Me sign, I went for a walk around the static aircraft park. The show had a very retro feel to the display, with no modern jets ( thankfully ) but plenty of warbirds, classic jets and vintage aerobatic aircraft on show. The most modern aircraft flying were probably the home built RV4 and RV8's of the Raven Team.

 

Folland Gnat

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Pitts Specials

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Edited by Jessie The Jeep

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I found a spot on the crowd line near the intersection between the main runway and the display line which ran at 90 degrees to the runway. This way, I could catch the take off and landings, plus be close enough to the display line to photograph that too.

 

Team Raven

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Provost

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Douglas C-47

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Supermarine Spitfire

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Meteor

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Venom

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It was hard work to get sharp helicopter images at the very slow shutter speeds ( 1/60th ) needed to blur the slow moving rotors.

Bell UH-1 Iroquois

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Hughes OH-6 Loach

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The Historic Aircraft Collection provided the third Spitfire and the Hurricane, which both looked great tail chasing against the blue sky and white clouds of a Battle of Britain Summer sky.

 

Hurricane

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Spitfire

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After the Gnat display, they formed up with the Vulcan for several passes. Following this, they rearranged the formation to fly the missing man formation, in memory of their team member Kevin Whyman, who was sadly killed when his Gnat crashed at Carfest at the beginning of August.

 

Folland Gnats and Avro Vulcan

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Missing Man Formation

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The Vulcan then closed the show, flying a full display in fantastic sun light, ending the show with a near vertical climb and flying off into the Sun set and into history.

 

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It was a long, tiring drive back home, and I didn't make it home until well after dark.

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Fishburn Airfield Fly/Drive-In - October 3rd

 

A week later, 'Jessie' was back out again, this time along with the Dodge, for the Fishburn Airfield Fly/Drive-In. We left home in reasonable conditions, but as we made the 23 mile trip, it got more and more foggy, and on arrival, the airfield was completely fogged in. The result, virtually no visiting aircraft. Fortunately for the public, the wheels side of the event showed up in force, with a strong military presence along with the classic cars.

 

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More details in my Dodge thread, as that was out and about both days of the weekend.

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Offcourse the Ww2 planes are cool.

But I like the Mig 15 in the photo's, never seen one in the flesh.:(

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Time for a little winter maintenance.

 

In the ten years I've had "Jessie", I've frequently had brake light problems. The bulbs aren't the problem, it's the brake pressure switch. It can't handle the amps and high voltage of the 24 volt circuit that the French Army installed in 1966. Arcing across the terminals burns out the contacts, sometimes in a matter of a few months. Fitting a new switch is a pain, as the brake pipes need bleeding after replacement.

 

Some time ago, I made a back-up switch with two brass contacts, and an insulated blade that withdraws from the contacts to allow the circuit to complete. While this worked, it too burns, and if the two brass contacts are held apart the right distance, I get a blue welding arc from the electricity flowing between them!

 

Well I think I've cracked it! I've replaced the two 21 Watt brake light bulbs with high output LED's. Current draw is massively reduced using LED's, and I can no longer get the brass contacts to arc. I have a new pressure switch to fit, and hopefully, this reduced current draw will allow this switch to last.

 

The pictures show the new LED light in the holder, the brightness with the cover off, and then with the red lenses refitted.

 

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Interesting Steve, I've been toying with the idea of replacing side lights and brake lights with LED's on a 6 volt system. It's hard to tell from your photo do you think the light intensity has increased ?

 

Pete

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I'm not sure if it has increased compared to the 21 watt bulb, but it's no worse, and there were more powerful ( more expensive ) LED's available, but I didn't want to spend a fortune for initial tests. I can always get brighter LED's later.

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I'm not sure if it has increased compared to the 21 watt bulb, but it's no worse, and there were more powerful ( more expensive ) LED's available, but I didn't want to spend a fortune for initial tests. I can always get brighter LED's later.

 

I wasn't sure if it was any brighter either when I set up a test for a project that's on the back burner, however on the plus side the current draw and heat generation were significantly less I'll be interested to know how you get on with them over an extended period.

Thanks

Pete

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November 19th - Brake Switch and Panel Light

 

With a nice day forecast, I got Jessie out to replace the brake switch. It is awkward to reach, having the exhaust and steering linkage so close, but the switch was unscrewed and replaced without loosing too much brake fluid. They would of course still need bleeding again.

 

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The dash was drilled for a small 24 volt panel LED which was wired up to the brake switch circuit. The LED lights up every time the brake pedal is pressed. This would allow me to monitor the function of the switch and warn me if the switch failed or a wire became detached.

 

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By the time the switch and LED were wired up, forum member 'Skint George' called around to help with the bleeding of the brakes. After the job was done, the brake lights and LED panel indicator came on when the pedal was pressed, but stayed on after it was released. After repeated pressings, and tapping the switch with a spanner, the lights went off, although the switch seemed 'sticky'. I'm guessing the switch just needed freeing up after a long period of storage since manufacture, as its operation became more reliable the more it was used. A couple of days later after no use of the brakes, it was behaving properly when checked.

 

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I've also had to replace a couple of jubilee clips on the top radiator hose as the old ones were worn and would no longer tighten properly.

 

At some point over the winter, there's a few areas of body work that need some attention. These include the corners of the fenders, behind the axe and shovel, and a small area in the drivers floor well.

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Jessie has been hibernating over the winter since a run out in late November to test the brake lights. Since then, there has only been occasional engine runs when I've been swapping stuff around in the garage and workshop. I'd usually take the chance to go and play in the snow, but this year took the GPW out for a slide instead.

 

Today, Jessie came out onto the drive to have the sides, roof and follow me lights refitted after the winter. I normally remove them at the end of the season, as it makes more room when squeezing between the two Jeeps in the garage. It also means both Jeeps can be parked at either side of the garage, under the suspended floor.

 

I'd checked the engine oil and water today, but as it was forecast for rain, didn't do much else and got the Jeep back in the garage. In the end, it did stay dry, but tomorrow is meant to be sunny all day, so I'll go around and grease everything and check the other fluid levels, ready for the Yorkshire MVT Crank Up next weekend.

 

I've still got the bodywork rust patches to deal with, but decided to wait until the warmer weather when I can work and spray outside.

 

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How annoying, after 685 miles since fitting, and less than a week before the York Crank Up, the head gasket has gone! A replacement has been ordered today, so there's still a chance I can strip the top end, replace the gasket, and get it all back together again for Sunday.

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How annoying, after 685 miles since fitting, and less than a week before the York Crank Up, the head gasket has gone! A replacement has been ordered today, so there's still a chance I can strip the top end, replace the gasket, and get it all back together again for Sunday.

 

Thats a shame, I know your pretty well on top of things but did you re tighten it after a "running in" period.

I would not have thought a head gasket should fail after such a low amout of miles. Maybe look elswhere ?

Good luck and enjoy your crank up...

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I checked my records, and the gasket that was fitted was a Fel-pro one. So it was a good quality make.

 

Working space was tight today, as the Jeep was on the wrong side of the garage. I was squished between the Jeep trailer in front of Jessie, the Ford GPW along side, and a suspended floor just above the engine bay.

 

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Anyway, it's all back together again now. So it's been run, cooled and torqued again, then put away for the night. I'll go for a couple of drives tomorrow, and torque it again after each when it has cooled.

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Three runs out today and all seemed ok. No sign of leaks around the head, no sizzling from inside the head, and the radiator level remained unchanged. The head was torqued down twice, with the nuts hardly moving the last time. It's back away in the garage again now, but things are looking hopeful for still attending the Crank Up on Sunday.

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Three runs out today and all seemed ok. No sign of leaks around the head, no sizzling from inside the head, and the radiator level remained unchanged. The head was torqued down twice, with the nuts hardly moving the last time. It's back away in the garage again now, but things are looking hopeful for still attending the Crank Up on Sunday.

 

Hopefully it won't give any more problems.

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No problems at all. It was a 164 mile round trip to York, but I haven't sorted the photos yet. It was a nice sunny day with a good turnout, but there was a bit of a cool breeze when the Sun went behind a cloud. Radiator level was completely unchanged by the time I got home.

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