10/31 Creating a new radio stack

The first step after removing the trays from the aircraft is to remove all of the existing attach brackets. The radios were mounted in separate locations in a subpanel under the instrument panel. Now they will be in one stack in the instrument panel since a lot of room has been freed up.

2 -3" pieces of 3/4 angle were used to make the side angles. Side angles were drilled and attached to the trays with 8/32 screws and lock-nuts.

Radio stack was temp fitted to instrument panel and the final hole for the radio stack was enlarged slightly to allow the stack to fit at the top.

10/30 Wiring the programming cable for the VP-100

The programming cable for the Vertical Power VP-100 comes in kit form. Basically, a coiled cable with two telephone jack ends. One of the ends has to be adapted to a 9 pin d sub serial connector.

Here a picture of the tools I used to rewire the cable.
Not shown is also a DVM that is used to check the continuity of the connection.

The first step is to cut off the head of one of the telephone jacks.
Its critical that you don't cut off the wrong connector as the wires are reversed on it.
VP supplied a color photo of the jack so you can identify which one to cut.
Yellow wire has to be on left with clip on top as shown in the photo.

Trim back the black insulation about 2 inches.
You should have 4 wires: yellow, green red and black.
If you look close at the photo below, you will only see 3.
That's because the black wire had stuck to the black insulation and I cut it off when I removed the insulation. So I have to cut off the rest of the wires and strip back another 2 inches of insulation.
The green wire isn't used so it is cut off.

About 1/8 inch of insulation is removed from the three remaining wires to expose the copper wires.

The exposed wire is pushed into the D sub pins that Vertical Power supplied and crimped with a D sub crimper. I got mine at Fry's Electronics for $26.95.

The three crimped pins are inserted into a 9 pin D sub connector into pins 2, 3 and 5 which I believe is a standard serial arrangement for TX, RX and Ground.

The cover is attached around the connector. Hopefully screwed together instead of screwed up.

10/30 Fab VP bracket , continue teardown of old panel

I riveted in platenuts for the attach brackets for the Vertical Power Vp-100. The installation manual says to use at least 2 screws to hold the VP-100. I used 4, one on each end. The attach brackets were primered and put aside to dry.

Heres how the brackets look when they are attached to the VP-100 Control Unit.

The attach brackets are fitted to their final position. If this was a new RV, it looks like it could be mounted on its side right against the inside of the firewall. This would free up a lot of room. However, there is already too much interference with stuff already mounted for us to use that location.

Continued work on removing all electrical wiring, breakers, switches that are not longer used.
The bulkhead just forward of the panel had to be removed because it interfered with the new radio stack.
The two pictures below shows everything removed that is not going to be used or tied into the new systems.

If you look at the middle right side panel in the picture below, the two Cessna style red rocker switches for power and alternator are gone, as well as all of the other switches. Everything is done through the VP-100 except we will continue to use our keyed mag switch. We ae going to have to make a cover plate to hide all of the empty spots on this panel.

10/29 Dynon EFIS and EMS installed

Tonight after work, I installed the Dynon EMS senders that came with the kit. I already had senders on the aircraft but am not sure if some of them are compatible with the Dynon EMS or not so replaced them all with the Dynon senders.
The Dynon senders included the oil pressure sender, oil temperature sender, fuel pressure sender and manifold pressure sender.
None of them matched the existing senders so had to redo mounting and connections for each one.
I also wired up the power to the Dynon EMS and took a picture with both units on.
The existing circuit breakers/switches in the picture below are all being removed and being replaced by the Vertical Power VP-100.

The two Dynon units replaced all of the units in the picture below. The Dynon units also have extra features that the existing panel didnt have as well such as relative wind direction and speed, AOA, TAS, 4 cylinder EGT and CHT monitoring, leaning function, etc. RV4chick is really going to like her new panel!

Tomorrow the fun starts as the VP100 Control Unit will be installed in its final position and the wiring of the Control unit begins.

10/26 New Panel work

Worked in the hanger for a couple of hours after regular work and finished up most of the work on the new instrument panel. The holes for the radio stack and the VP-100 switch panel are a little undersized yet. Will match to the actual parts when they go in.

10/25 New Panel Cut

My wife and I have been sick the last couple of days so havent got much done. I was feeling better this afternoon and went out to the hanger and got a big portion of the new panel cut. The holes for the Dynon PFD and EMS, the Trio Autopilot and the VP-100 are rough cut.
Still need to do the cutout for the radio stack and a few small items.
I took a picture, but the camera didnt focus right so its blurry. Will replace with a better picture later.

10/23 Creating the new panel

We removed all of the instruments from the old panel today so we can use the old panel as a template for the new panel. The curve around the top of the new panel must match the old panel. We are going to try to reuse the old angle from this panel.

The picture below shows the old panel on top of the new panel so the curve can be transferred.

Heres a picture of the new panel with the curve cut and the old angle clecoed onto the new panel. The attach holes for the canopy lock have been match drilled into the new panel as well as the attach holes to mount the panel to the fuselage side panels.

10/22 Relocating Wiring

Today we started relocating the wiring and equipment in front of the panel.
We need to make room somewhere to put the Control Unit (Red box in the picture below). The Control Unit is the heart of the Vertical Power system. All of our electrical power will connect to this box.

We removed the vacuum pump filter, regulator and hoses from the instrument bay.
The vacuum pump was removed from the engine. When the vacuum pump is removed, it either needs a cover plate installed on the accessory panel to take its place or a SD-8 gear driven aux alternator can be installed. The SD-8 is an eight amp aux alternator that is engaged if the main alternator ever fails. See http://www.bandc.biz/SD8desc.html.
The Lycoming part number for the vacuum pump cover is 60430. ECI sells them for around $26 and their part number is AEL60430. The spacers for the cover are part number 68593.

We relocated some of the electrical components to make room in the bay.
The below pictures shows the VP Control Unit temporarily mounted in the bay.
The final location may change a little. We are planning on moving the radio and transponder up from the subpanel into the main panel after the Dynon engine monitor is installed and we remove all of the analog engine instruments.

10/22 Start of Conversion

We decided to document the changes in upgrading from a classic 6 pack analog instrument cluster to a Dynon EFIS (Electronic Flight Information System ) and a Dynon EMS (Engine Monitoring System) (see www.dynonavionics.com) at the same time we upgrade all of the electrical system to use the new Vertical Power VP-100 electrical control system. See www.verticalpower.com for info about their system. This basically means we will be gutting our panel and electrical system for a complete retrofit to a more modern glass cockpit and electrical system.

The picture below shows our current RV-4 panel before the start of upgrade. It consists of a standard 6 pack, Trio AP, various analog engine gauges, Fuel flow computer, Dayton density altitude computer and breaker switches.
A radio, transponder and intercom are located on a subpanel underneath the main panel.

The picture below shows the left side of the aircraft in front of the instrument panel.

The picture below shows the right side of the aircraft in front of the instrument panel.
You can see its real packed and lots of wiring everywhere.

The original plan was to put the Dynon EFIS-D10A in the top center part of the six pack. Upon measuring the room, we found out that the Dynon will overlap both of the instruments to the left and the right. The Dynon EFIS-10a is 4.09 in wide.

We decided to remove the turn coordinator and the vertical airspeed indicators and move the airspeed and altimeters down to the lower six pack.

The picture below shows the panel with the Dynon EFIS mounted and the airspeed and altimeter relocated. The Dynon EFIS is powered off a temporary connector because we didn't want to do the final sizing on the wiring until the VP-100 system is installed. It only takes 2 wires to run the EFIS, a power and a ground. A third keep-alive power wire will keep the clock set to the correct time.

In programming the EFIS, we found out that we have the version 2.19 firmware installed. Dynon just released the version 4.0 firmware on Oct 15th. To upgrade to the latest firmware, we are going to have to install 3 more wires in our temporary connector to connect to a 9 pin sub D serial connector so we can download the version 4.0 firmware from a laptop PC. We want to upgrade to version 4 because it enables the Dynon smart avionics bus so we can easily show different screens between our EFIS and EMS monitors.