Riveted Right Tank Drain Flange and Fuel Cap Flange

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Tonight was supposed to be easy. All I wanted to do was set 6 rivets in the drain flange, and 10 rivets in the fuel cap flange.

If that sounds ominous, it’s because it is.

Just like yesterday, I cleaned everything up, then goobered up the drain flange and clecoed it to the skin.

Then, I dabbed some sealant in three of the six holes, covered them with tape, and squeezed them.

The first three went fantastically. (Still sounding ominous?)

Then, on the second three, I really messed up. I was setting these with the shop heads up, so when I accidentally let the squeeze rest on the shop heads a little before really starting the squeeze, the manufactured heads pushed out of the countersinks (worse than any rivets I’ve ever set before).

Oh man, I don’t want to have to drill out rivets with proseal on them.

Oh man, I don’t want to have to drill out rivets with proseal on them.

Oh man, I don’t want to have to drill out rivets with proseal on them.

Oh man, I don’t want to have to drill out rivets with proseal on them.

Oh man, I don’t want to have to drill out rivets with proseal on them.

Oh man, I don’t want to have to drill out rivets with proseal on them.

I wrote that six times for a reason. I drilled out the three (!@#$), reset them, had to drill out two of those (!%$^&@#$%), then had to drill out one of those ($^#@*(@!^%$*#^@*&#%$&@^) and finally got an oops rivet out to fill the enlarged hole.

You can see here, the oops rivet is the bottom one, and the lower left one is not really set correctly, but it’s not structural, and for however much I WANT to drill it out to make it perfect, I’m leaving good enough alone.

4 perfect rivets, one horrible one, and 1 oops rivet. (sigh)

During this whole ordeal, there was proseal everywhere, so I had to get an MEK-soaked towel out and start cleaning up. It broke my rule about not cleaning with MEK until it’s cured, but I couldn’t leave it the way it was. After cleaning everything up, I made sure I had fresh MEK down on both sides to prevent leaks.

Oh, remember yesterday when I promised you my rivet encapsulation was improving? Check these out!

How awesome are those!?

Wash, rinse, repeat on the fuel cap flange (except I went back to backriveting).

I had to remember to use different sized rivets on different thickness areas of the flange, but I copied Brad Oliver.

On the top and bottom rivets, 2 total, (skinniest part of the flange), I used AN426AD3-4, the adjacent ones (4 total), I used -4.5 rivets, and on the middle 4, I used -5 rivets.

Easy as pie!

UPDATE: Notice anything missing? like the VENT CLIP THAT EVERYONE ALWAYS FORGETS AND I SPENT A WEEK REMINDING MYSELF TO NOT FORGET!?

Ugh.

Of course, I had already broken my rule once, so I went ahead and cleaned the top  of the skin up.

Looks sooooo good!

The drain flange ended up being okay, too.

Not the prettiest, but you'll never notice while I'm flying.

1.0 hour. 16 rivets. 6 drilled out. (boo!)

Oh, and how great is my girlfriend!? While I was outside slapping sealant all over the garage, she was inside making spaghetti with meat sauce (and fresh basil!).

Life is good.

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