I have finished my rudder and have ordered the rest of the tail section, time to save for the next section. So here is my question: what do most builders build next? I’d like to build my wings so I can set them aside and use my space for the fuselage, which is pretty much gonna be a permanent space hog until I rent a hangar. Is it required to have the fuselage complete to build the wings?

Thanks all.....


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No.  Joyce recommended wings to me after rudder and stab.

Scott -

I built the wings first.  They are easier to store than the fuselage and the fuselage will take twice as long to build with the engine, avionics, etc.  You don't need the fuselage to build the wings.  Good luck.


Thanks Brad, wings it is! Btw, just out of curiousity, are you still hangaring at chino or did you move south?

I'm still at the EAA hanger in Chino. 15 hours on my plane as of this weekend, 25 to go!

Same here. Wings first. I have the wings hanging in the rafters out of the way.
Thanks everyone, wings first it is!

This is a 701 perspective, but I might have quit if I had built the fuselage first. In my opinion it is a real bear, even w/o having tackled the controls yet, and you cannot hang it on the wall or tuck it away easily.

Best sequence in my opinion is rudder (detailed instruction), rest of the tail (less hand holding), wings, fuselage (lot less hand holding), slats and flapperons, LG and controls, finish. Just like the manual. The slats and flapperons are tough enough as well, when you feel you should be able to slap them together in an afternoon. They are like 8 mini wings.

The 701 manual weens you off detailed instruction gradually to the point where you feel pretty capable, of course always referring back to the Standards.

Thank You Perry,
It sure seems to me that since the success of the company relies on how easy it is and how reliable it is to build their planes, someone would put together a comprehensive step by step manual for each section. Handholding just means a well built airplane by truly inexperienced builders, as they advertise. “Homebuilthelp.com” videos are really fantastic though and dramatically reduce the need for said detailed instructions. Jon at homebuilthelp has videos for the complete construction of the 601xl/650. It just means paying another $300.00 for a complete set of vids. JMHO, and I will definately be ordering the wings next!

When I began my 601 they gave me a photo guide with text that was step by step.  Do they not do that any more?

Hi Joe,
Well I’ll tell you its very scattered about. I have the 40 page typed (with notes and pencil drawings in the margins) manual that is just about useless, except for the general techniques written in the first 10 pages. I mean, the rudder section of that manual is one paragraph long that basically says attach the ribs to the spar, stretch the skins over, drill and rivet.

Then after that I have a photoguide for the assembly of the tail only, but the pics are so dark its impossible to see the detail of what they are showing. After that I have a separate list of instructions that refer to a different set of drawings for the tail, brief instructions for fitting the fuselage together which refers to a few schematic overviews, and instructions on how to fit the canopy to the fuselage (with schematics). Finally, I have the (beautifully done) CAD drawings for the tail, wings, fuselage and canopy. To be honest Joe, its very difficult to make heads or tails of how this manual, or manuals, fit together.

I found Rudder instructions which were beautifully detailed and illustrated on the website, but only the Rudder instructions are presented in that format.
If the entire airframe were to be presented in that manner it would be fantastic.

I called Kaitlin to ask about it and she seemed confused and said with what you’ve got you should be able to assemble the airplane. Now with a whole lot of cross referencing my manual(s)with whats online and whats in this forum, there is no doubt I could put it together. But in my opinion (excluding the beautifully done CAD drawings) the manual(s)as sent to me gets about a C+ rating at best.

However, I have found that the “homebuilthelp.com” vids are really excellent, making my difficulties with the manual a moot point really.
I’m thinking that since I’m building the now decades old 601 HD model, the instructions are old and have been revised enough to necessitate the multiple formats it came in. It also appears that the photoguide has been xerox’d a few too many times! :)


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