You may remember earlier that I said this was one of the most difficult installations we've ever tried to complete. No, it's not the most complex by far but installing the trim and pitch autopilot servos were a real chore. Unlike many Cessna and other make aircraft, you don't enter into the tail area simply by removing a bulkhead behind the rear seats. No, on the T210D you manually pump down the gear doors, remove a small access panel and crawl through a 17" hole to get into the tail. To make matters worse in this installation, the aircraft had an oxygen bottle which took up two inches of crawl space.
Normally a person can install the roll and pitch servos in about 16 hours but not so in this installation. First off, none of our guys would fit through such a small opening; maybe we need to go on a weight reduction program. I bribed the guys the best way that I knew how in order to get them to try and crawl through the small hole. First thing I did was throw a quarter in the tail or the aircraft in hopes Tom Knoll would go after it and while in there, install the servos. For the first time in history, Tom Knoll wouldn't go to extreme means for a quarter. Next we threw a couple of doughnuts in the tail. Yes, Kevin tried for hours to get to the doughnuts but just couldn't fit in the small crawl space. I tried to convince the girls to crawl in the back of the aircraft but they were afraid that they may mess up their hair or encounter spiders in the process.
Believe it or not, we actually had to hire a "very thin" person to crawl and live in the tail of the aircraft for several days. He was an experienced sheet metal person and Mitch supervised the installation from the outside. Finally, the chore is complete and we pray that the servos never have a problem, or at least not in my lifetime...
Our bid didn't include the extra labor involved in installing the servos but the additional cost is not going to be passed on to the customer; we will know better next time. Everyone in the shop is glad this difficult portion of the installation is complete. Now on to the radio stack wiring and the panels.