We’re pleased to offer an update on the fantastic progress our Collections Team and Restoration Volunteers have made on the Bristol Bolingbroke.
It’s been around 3 months since we resumed work on the Bolingbroke, with our initial focus on the cockpit and tailplane. This is partly due to space constraints and partly to capture the knowledge of our volunteer team and make progress on the cockpit, which is probably the most complex part of the aircraft.
Inside the cockpit
Look carefully and you will see the refurbished rudder pedals have been trial fitted. You can see the new leather straps for the pilot’s feet.
Replacing the instrument panel
We are in the process of manufacturing a replacement instrument panel, as the original was severely damaged. We don’t have the drawings for this, so have used a mix of the original remnants and photographs. The black areas shown in the photograph are the remnants of the original instrument panel.
Repairing the tailplane
Repairing the tailplane structure in preparation to fitting the wingtip.
On the Tailplane we had an issue of significant damage to the structure and a missing wing tip.
The solution to the missing wingtip was to copy the one we had. Fortunately, they were designed to be fitted on either side so we could make an exact copy and know it would fit.
Riveting the new wingtip
One of the next tasks is to make a rear support structure for the Tailfin. This box section supports the rudder. And is a difficult component to make due to the thickness of the material and the number of interfaces with other aircraft parts at quite close tolerances.
Rudders and elevators
We are now turning our attention to the rudder and elevators. As you can see below, they are in need of a lot of TLC.
Thank you to all our restoration volunteers
We would like to say a huge thank you to all of the volunteers who are putting in so much hard work on the Bolingbroke restoration. The workshop is open for visitors to view whenever the volunteers are working and it has already proven very popular with visitors.
Of course, we will keep you updated as work progresses.