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GI Joe's Kit XE 1092
Log: 17 JULY 2009 / 2108hrs

I'll post some photos tomorrow after I compress what I have so far.

I will also detail everything from the beginning to illustrate what is involved per price, tools I have personally purchased and from where with cost, and set up of the shop. I know others have done the same, but there were gaps in information or photo detail and I hope to fill that in. The overall goal is that someone looking at this post will begin with it by viewing and reading what has been accomplished so far and walk away with a better idea of what is involved with the kit itself. Plus, I am going to use it to point others (military) and hopefully convince them to purchase the several kits to use in contingency operations, in that, it is far more versatile and less costly than using other types of rotary aircraft in mission accomplishment.
Log: 16 JULY 2009

I ordered my kit from John Snider after meeting with him in Mentone, IN during their 2008 Fly-In. His helicopter is an outstanding piece of work and if you ever get a chance to take a look - do so. I also was invited to a cook out later on in Sept to view the helicopter again.

Once you make your order (Make a copy of the contract) and get your shop ready.

I cleared a space the would fit a regular vehicle - plus room for the work bench - and storage to the side. The Airframe without blades from front to end is approximately 16 feet. I have not mounted the airframe tot he skids - so I don't know what that is of yet - but my garage clearance is 72 inches in height. Parts listed below.

Email me @ JHWMP01@gmail for photos (there's no place to post photos or create a photo album - presently it's locked for me)

The break down of parts that you will be receiving with estimated shipping costs. Plus the options I ordered for the XE kit.

$ 29,000 -Kit with proof of 10 hrs of flight training
$ 800 - Crating & Insurance on main fuselage/body (labor, wood, assembly of the two crates that will hold the main fuselage and tail)


$250 (vert stab wing)
$125 (ceramic pistons)
$150 (seat cover)
$250 (wheels kit)
$275 (quick build fab parts)
Total: $1,050

Shipping on Five main components

1. Completion kit...John Uptigrove...Calgary, Canada...Shipping cost: $265 (Madison, IN)
2. Engine...Compact Radial Engines...Vancouver, Canada....Shipping cost: $240 (Madison, IN)
3. Fuselage...Dwight Junkin (Factory)...Trenton, FL...Shipping cost: Depends on your location ($1,000 estimated)(might be less/more)
4. Rotor blades...Rotor Flight Dynamics..........Tampa, FL......Shipping cost: Depends on Location (est-$250)
5. Quick build kit...Doug Bryant...Kansas...Shipping cost: Depends on Location

Estimated Shipping Costs: $1,805 +/-

Estimated Total: $31,605 for kit with all parts/components shipped to location. Add the Options = $32,655

Should figure for Paint & Shop Tools.

Knowing that this is an experimental and different builders use different tools. I'm looking at either a H-Frame press or a bench vise w/ a 12 inch jaw opening to insert the far the only thing I found was a H-Frame that was around $129. So, that's another expense I have as well.

Here's the website:

Harbor Freight Tools - has an excellent resource of tools that are inexpensive and good quality for this project. They also have a hand operated hydraulic press that is 12 ton for $129.

The following tools are required to assemble the Mosquito XE:

a) Band saw with wood cutting or steel cutting blade
b) Standard wood cutting table saw with carbide tipped or special aluminum cutting blade
c) Drill Press
d) Face or Belt Sander
e) Hand Drill
f) Digital Level
g) Files
h) Punch
i) Hammer
j) Deburring Tool
k) 3, 5, 8 clamps
l) 3/16 capacity riveter
m) Press (12 Ton @ Harbor Freight ($129)
n) Tap and die set
o) Soldering iron
p) Welder (for exhaust system) (contract this outside)
q) 18 long 5/16 drill bit (came with kit)

I will use the package wood and supports to build an extra table. I purchased 2 plastic horses for $14 each @ Harbor Freight and will use this to lay out parts to aid in assembly.
Photo Log
So, the work begins!
This is going to be one of the most rewarding things you have ever done!
Take time to talk with other builders, keep good logs of your work. We expect to see you flying by new years Smile
I wish you all the best with your build. I will be living through you during the build so please post photos often. I know that you are going to have a "Ball"! May the force be with you.

XE 285  1205 (Myrtle)
Start: 8/1/2013
Finish: 5/24/2014
Arrived home: 10/11/2014

Log: 19 JULY 2009

Today I worked on printing off a 8.5 x 11 inch Battle Book with the Assembly Instructions, Owners Manual, and Engine Manual. I took everything that was sent to me and tabbed it out for organizational purposes. I divided the assembly guide up into 5 Phases. I also used staples to print off the 1-to-1 scale (11x14) PDF drawings and stapled it into a book along the 11 in side.

The PDF files will print out on regular office paper without lost of detail or measurements. Staples printout faded certain measurements - so I did both to have the 1-to-1 scale and a copy readable within the Battle Book.


I used the crating to make a table to place parts on them for inventory purposes - and used two saw horses ($14 ea. Harbor Freight) Photos are in the album.

I received my PRE-FAB parts that only cost $9.20 through US Post Office mail. I had estimated $50 on the above example. So that's good.


I temporarily put the skids together in order to populate the Battle Book with photos of the process. I still don't know where I should drill and what I need to use to attach the skids to the skid joints. I haven't made it that far yet. (See Photo Album)
Exactly what size drill bit did you use to drill the holes in the black skid attachments?

Question for Builders:

Reference: SKIDS

What size drill bit did you use?

Did you rivet them in place - and if so - what size rivets?

Did you use anything else to attach the skids in place?

What measurements did you use to set the holes?

The instruction that I have lack this information and go directly from setting up the skids to attaching the braces for under the cabin. They skip this part.

Also - did you use a drill press to drill the holes in the skids brackets - and also the skid T attachments that are used for securing the skids to under the cabin?
Log: 26 JULY 2009

The skids were finally put together today after much deliberation on exactly what measurements to use and where to drill and how.

The instructions (my opinion) jump around a bit and it's hard to keep track of what they are talking about without photos. [ I have photos of exactly what I did in my photo log]

Instruction on the skids start at (i) and (j) - and state that a 3/8 inch measurement should be marked for the first rivet hole. I believe the instruction are illustrating the vertical part of the T-Fitting - but what about the horizontal?

To keep it simple, I measured in 1/2 inch and down the side 1/2 inch - this is my first hole in both the front and back end of the T-Fitting (Black in color and joins the bow to the skids)

From the vertical mount - I measured towards the front 1/2 inch and this is my third hole. The vertical edge (found by rubbing a metal ruler along the side to mark a line) showed me where to measure down 1/2 inch from the top for the forth hole and 1 inch down from that for the fifth hole. (See photos)

I used a 1/8 inch drill bit to drill a pilot hole and cleco each hole in place - then returned to drill out the 3/16 hole - cleco in place - then went back and removed each cleco and rivet each with 3/16 rivet that came with the kit. Use the support bracing to build a rivet gun support -they are hard to compress until they break off. WEAR SAFETY GLASSES.

I used painter tape to find the center of each bow. I first marked a horizontal line using a metal ruler (another builders idea) and crossed it with the lines that were used to start the bend at the factory (see photos) - that gave me two points which were transferred over to tape - laid flat and measure the center (13 5/8 inches) (Total: 27 1/4 inches across from bow-to-bow). Once you find the center on the rear bow mark it on top.

Then use this mark to measure left and then right 8 inches - this is where you will line up the fuselage. (See photo) The front looses a 1/2 inch - so it's (15 1/2 inches) so just move inward 1/4 on both sides and mark the front bow.

Now everything is lined up and ready for the fiberglass supports to be drilled, sanded, painted - then put in place with rivets. John Snider suggested that I use "3/16 inch wide area washers" from Wicks to spread out the load for each rivet. Which I am ordering per the end of this post.

This will secure the fuselage to the bows which have been secured to the skids. I will sand and paint the skids tomorrow, sand and paint the fiberglass supports, and finish drilling each hole -so when the washers come in - I will just have to rivet them in place.

The next big project will be body filler and sanding the main cabin.

When I first started building I used hand rivet pullers. I even bought one for 1/4" rivets. By the time I'd pulled a few rivets manually I realized that an air puller is much easier and also more accurate (pulls straight). Here is an example of one:

Habor Freight and others carry them, they are cheap for the value they provide. You need air, of course, but you'll need that sooner or later anyway. Air drill motors are great for aluminum, also light and powerful.


Can any one send me pictures of how to set up the bolts and other various washers and what not of the cable assembly that supports the skids?



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