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Finished the first assembly in the Practice Kit

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Tonight, I finished the first assembly in the practice kit. Only a few notes, and some lessons learned.

Big lessons learned:

  1. The soldering iron leaves a mark if you aren’t careful, be gentle, and go slow enough that it melts the vinyl.
  2. Deburring holes was very easy, even with just an oversize drill bit.
  3. Buy a nice countersink. I faked it with a drill bit, and the results will not be acceptable on the real project.
  4. Less scratches tonight, but still a lot. I need to get some scotchbrite pads and self-etching primer to rehearse the prep and priming phases.
  5. I want to experiment with priming before dimpling. I’ve heard people have had good results (said another way, no bad results due to priming a weirdly angled surface in the dimple.)
I got out the soldering gun and tried my hand at removing the vinyl covering in a straight line.

I got out the soldering gun and tried my hand at removing the vinyl covering in a straight line.

MY FIRST RIVET. It is so beautiful.

MY FIRST RIVET. AN426AD3-3. It is so beautiful.

Three more rivets. I squeezed and bucked with flush and cupped sets. I am using a 4X gun, which means I had the pressure all the way down to 20 psig. It worked really well for the AD3s, but I might need more pressure for the AD4-4s.

Three more rivets. I squeezed and bucked with flush and cupped sets. I am using a 4X gun, which means I had the pressure all the way down to 20 psig. It worked really well for the AD3s, but I might need more pressure for the AD4-4s.

The final (and blurry) product. It's probably for the best that you can't see the fingerprints and scratches on it.

The final (and blurry) product. It's probably for the best that you can't see the fingerprints and scratches on it.

I am very happy that I did this part of the practice kit first. Now I know how to proceed on the real kit, and nothing with drilling, deburring, dimpling, countersinking, or riveting will be new to me, even on the practice kit. (I plan on displaying the practice kit prominently, so it better look good.)

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