I began by removing the rudder and placing it on sawhorses, then covering it with bubble wrap. Next I removed the vertical stabilizer and placed it over the rudder. Next I set up a couple of more sawhorses and removed the horizontal stabilizer and elevators as a single unit and set them out of the way. I replaced all the hardware in the tailcone or empennage so they can go back to where they were originally when the empennage is attached again.
Now some planning and procrastination. I need to install a rudder trim system and the VOR antenna in the vertical stabilizer. I'm planning to cut a 3" tab at the bottom of the completed rudder, as well as an opening for a Ray Allen trim servo. The servo will be attached with Click Bond fasteners and the opening will be closed with an attachment ring and cover plate. The trim tab will be reattached with a hinge after ribs are installed and a gap seal and trim horn is fashioned. The horn will be internal on the side opposite the hinge and I am planning the end ribs and a 'spar' will be fahsioned of foam and glued in with Proseal.
The cat whisker antenna will go at the top of the vertical stabilizer just under the rudder counterbalance. I need to drill out the top rib so I can add nutplates for the antenna puck attachment and route a conduit for the cable up through the VS. I hate to risk the drilling but I have no choice if I want it to fit. The area above the rib will be slotted to allow the whiskers to drop into place.
Since I wasn't quite ready to begin undoing the work I had previously done on the VS and rudder, I stopped and took the steps to be powder-coated. The coater will use Carmine Red, a close match to the Raptor Red for the final paint scheme, and will leave the mounting leg bare. Not much progress today.