I'm currently in the process of restoring an A-10D that I bought in Florida in July of 2001. I noticed on your website that you've provided photos of the articulated control stick for the B-10 guys who want to convert to a floor mounted unit. I've had some problems with mine and made a few design changes. When I disassembled it for inspection the aluminum pivot bushing fell out. The two spot welds that held it in place in the lower stick assembly had cracked and broken. Interestingly, the breaks were almost invisible. The second thing I noted was that the ball joints that connect the vertical control rods to the upper stick assembly were very loose. They popped off in my hand with very little effort. I contacted Larry Smith at Ameriplanes, but he didn't have any replacement parts fabricated. So, to save time (and money) I replaced the upper end of the lower stick with a steel sleeve and bearing assembly. It added some weight, but it doesn't rely on tack welds. The new sleeves

are held in place by two AN3 bolts. I also made the stick about 1/2" higher than the original to accommodate the sealed rod end bearings I used to replace the ball joints. I noted that the A-10 in the company's assembly video used a similar arrangement. An additional note, the "TEE" joint at the base of the lower stick on the older planes used a similar tack weld arrangement. The newer ones were welded completely around the side tubes. The older ones should be inspected regularly for cracks and, if possible, the owners should consider having a professional reweld them.

I've attached some photos of my redesigned stick assembly for anyone who may be interested. Restoring this thing has been one hell of an effort, far more than I expected. Nothing is easy.

I'm in the process of replacing the old tank behind the seat with a new Weedhopper unit. Unfortunately it's a different shape so I may end up leaving the Podsterior on the ground.

Scott McCarthy    Tiverton, RI

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