Building in a tiny workshop? (Zenith 750)

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13x11' workshop for most of a zenith build?

  • No problem! Just move to a bigger space at the end

    Votes: 4 15.4%
  • It'll be tight, but not too bad.

    Votes: 8 30.8%
  • It may be possible, but a lot of tasks will be really rough

    Votes: 11 42.3%
  • Nope!

    Votes: 3 11.5%
  • No problem! Just move to a bigger space at the end

    Votes: 4 15.4%
  • It'll be tight, but not too bad.

    Votes: 8 30.8%
  • It may be possible, but a lot of tasks will be really rough

    Votes: 11 42.3%
  • Nope!

    Votes: 3 11.5%

  • Total voters
    26

autoreply

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Jul 7, 2009
Messages
10,733
Location
Rotterdam, Netherlands
I know multiple people building in European-sized garages. Say 8X18 ft.

10 ft of width or so and you can put up storage shelves on both sides. Huge winner.

Not being able to put the full fuselage length (minus engine and rudder) is a major obstacle and basically restricts you to building only small assemblies.

Height is a huge plus. My shed is about 6'5" and about 6' below the beams. Severely limits your options to store wings and other big bulky stuff. A future addition of 2.5-3' or so is definitely an option I'm considering.

Building inside sucks. Dust, metal shards, paint and chemical smells, noise. You also can't leave it there after you're done.
 

don january

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Log Member
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Feb 10, 2015
Messages
2,754
Location
Midwest
Getting the fuselage built and engine hung will be tight but what about when ya got to mount the wing's and rig? Out side it goes.
 

bfanger

Member
Joined
Oct 11, 2014
Messages
11
Location
Strasburg, CO
Be careful here. I started with one side of a 2 car garage on my 701. Once the wings were made, I realized there would be an assembly problem as the garage was both too short in height and width to even assemble one wing to the fuselage at a time. Now I have more into a 32'x40' pole barn than I have into the airplane and have wasted my whole summer building the new building rather then the airplane...
 

davinc

Member
Joined
Dec 13, 2014
Messages
11
Location
Arlington
Now here's a topic where I have some expertise! I started a Zenith ch750 in the kitchenette of my 1 BR apt. Built the rudder and stab. Moved to another apt with my wife that had a 4x12 storage room. Not enough to build a fuselage or wing, So I did the next logical thing: I started building all the small parts for a Fisher Youngster. I'll need a quiver to hold all my airplanes when I'm done...
 

davinc

Member
Joined
Dec 13, 2014
Messages
11
Location
Arlington
Also, One thing I learned (the hard way). It's really easy to make stupid mistakes when you can't open all your plans fully to study them and plan the next move. Fortunately the Zenith plans are a convenient size but I ended up making a major mistake in my wing ribs due to an oversight on the plans on the Fisher since I never could unroll the whole sheet at once. I ended up photographing them so I could study without pushing the kitchen table out of the way.
 

mstratman

Active Member
Joined
Aug 1, 2016
Messages
26
Location
Forest Park, IL
Thanks again everyone for the feedback.

My wife and I have signed up for the rudder building workshop down at the factory in MO next week. Assuming we enjoy it and nothing changes, I'll probably build a 19.5'x5x shed (made to look like a garage addition, so it's not terribly out of place) to store the quick build fuselage which is too big to fit through doors or in the house, and set up shop in that extra bedroom to begin building all the smaller parts.

I'm really hoping I'll be able to do the wings and slats in there, but either way once there's nothing left to do that doesn't require more space (attaching wings, gear, FWF) then we'll cross that bridge when we get there. Possibly try to find a hangar mate to rent from.


When
 

mstratman

Active Member
Joined
Aug 1, 2016
Messages
26
Location
Forest Park, IL
Thanks again everyone for the feedback.

My wife and I have signed up for the rudder building workshop down at the factory in MO next week. Assuming we enjoy it and nothing changes, I'll probably build a 19.5'x5x shed (made to look like a garage addition, so it's not terribly out of place) to store the quick build fuselage which is too big to fit through doors or in the house, and set up shop in that extra bedroom to begin building all the smaller parts.

I'm really hoping I'll be able to do the wings and slats in there, but either way once there's nothing left to do that doesn't require more space (attaching wings, gear, FWF) then we'll cross that bridge when we get there. Possibly try to find a hangar mate to rent from.


When
 

mstratman

Active Member
Joined
Aug 1, 2016
Messages
26
Location
Forest Park, IL
Hey everyone! Just a quick update if anyone is curious. The rudder workshop was great, and we decided we definitely want to build a Zenith. I started planning a shed the next day, and have been building it a bit each weekend since. It's still a work in progress (needs paint, hardware, vents and other finishing), but it's good enough to store the materials for the time being.

We're heading down to the factory again this weekend to pick up our new kit!

Here are pics if anyone's interested. I haven't gone back yet and written anything up, though, so just a gallery as yet: http://zenith.stratman.pw/
 

Winginit

Well-Known Member
Joined
Jun 12, 2016
Messages
811
Location
x
I don't have the actual measurements , but I doubt that you can get the fuselage thru a doorway since its a side by side configuretion. Remember, it also has to be moved thru other doorways to get to the room unless you have an egress right from that room. Then I also suspect that the fuselage will actually be longer than the room, but you can check to be sure. To avoid all the frustration, why not just build you some type of simple shop? If need be, you can buy one of those quick assemble aluminum carports and then "wall it in", or get one that you can attach to the side or back of your house to create space. Trying to work in an inconvenient situation will really test your mantra.

http://store.alansfactoryoutlet.com/ProductDetails.asp?ProductCode=18x21-Boxed-Eave-Carport&gdffi=cfd76161b1044426a274dcd40d9e70bb&gdfms=DAB6A8B3950147429CF770A1A27148B1&gclid=CJzByJ_voM8CFY48gQodbcMM7w

Just be sure it will withstand Chicago snow loads.
 

Victor Bravo

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Joined
Jul 30, 2014
Messages
6,753
Location
KWHP, Los Angeles CA, USA
Congratulations Mark, you will absolutely love the CH-750 when you're all done. That shed looks plenty good for most of the work you will need to do. When the time comes to mount the wings and tail for rigging, fuel system, control hookup and wiring, you can just pin everything together with Pip pins under a tarp attached to the shed, do all of your hookups, then pull the pins and store everything back in the shed. Only the final bolt-together and preparation for test flight will require bolts and nuts. By that time you will be looking for a short-term hangar rental as a base of operations for the test flying anyway.
 

mstratman

Active Member
Joined
Aug 1, 2016
Messages
26
Location
Forest Park, IL
To be clear, we won't be building in this shed. It's just to store the fuselage and other materials. We got the quick-build kit which has the fuselage mostly assembled, so when we bring it home Saturday it's going straight into the shed.

We'll be building what we can in the house, then when the time comes that we've done all the little parts, we'll be seeking out a hangar or other larger space.

Winginit: I love the idea of the carport cover, but am worried about theft. It would need to be (or at least appear) fairly secure - but that's probably doable. When the time comes we need bigger space I'll definitely give that a lot more thought.

You're right about the snow! I only did about a 2.5/12 roof pitch, which probably isn't sufficient long-term for asphalt shingles, but I'll keep a close eye on it for the first couple of seasons. As long as it lasts ~5-10 years I'll be happy.
 

mstratman

Active Member
Joined
Aug 1, 2016
Messages
26
Location
Forest Park, IL
Also Winginit: to your point we also did (briefly) discuss replacing the garage with a bigger one that can double as car storage and a workshop... that's my dream, but it's just a bit too pricey to do at the moment.
 

mstratman

Active Member
Joined
Aug 1, 2016
Messages
26
Location
Forest Park, IL
Cabin width with bubble doors is 50", so I assume without the doors it should be less, and this opening is around 54", so I think we should be okay fitting the fuselage in there. As long as we don't put the wheels on.
 

mstratman

Active Member
Joined
Aug 1, 2016
Messages
26
Location
Forest Park, IL
Victor Bravo: Thanks! I hadn't really considered that you could pin it together to do those hookups. Good to know! That should extend the time slightly where we can work at home before a relocation is needed.
 

Winginit

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Joined
Jun 12, 2016
Messages
811
Location
x
I saw something the other day that might be useful here. They sell old metal shipping containers that have doors. Depending on neighbors and zoning, you might purchase one and use it for storage, then when your project is done just resell it. They have different lengths and you would have to check your local area for availability. This one is 40' but they have 20' also. Don't know if there is a 30' or not. I see 10' available also but don't know if its worth having. I think they have wood floors.

http://www.ebay.com/itm/like/222255038263?lpid=82&chn=ps&ul_noapp=true

http://www.ebay.com/itm/like/222250318269?lpid=82&chn=ps&ul_noapp=true
 

BJC

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HBA Supporter
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Oct 7, 2013
Messages
10,480
Location
97FL, Florida, USA
Lots of discussion about using shipping containers for hangars / storage / workshops in the archives here, but I don't recall if someone is actually using one.


BJC
 

cluttonfred

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Feb 13, 2010
Messages
7,009
Location
World traveler
An ISO shipping container is great for storage and even a small workshop and very secure, but not free and depending on the location the delivery cost can be high. If just building for temporary dry storage, you might consider a DIY bow roof shed to the exact size you need. See https://www.homebuiltairplanes.com/forums/showthread.php?t=20465&p=253108&viewfull=1#post253108. I have this set of plans -- www.by-the-sea.com/stimsonmarine/bowroof.html -- and it seems very doable. With plywood ends and sides, even just the bottom 8', it would secure enough for most places. Here's one weathering a hurricane!

 
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