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Finished Riveting Right Wing Top Skins

September 3, 2011

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Well, today was an excellent day.

Joe was planning to come over to finish up the right top skins, so while I waited, I started in on dimpling the aileron skins (just the stiffener holes) with the c-frame.

All went pretty well, except for a place where I dropped the c-frame die on the skin (top surface, of course). It made a little dot impression, so I flipped the skin over on the MDF and gently tapped with a hammer until it came out.

(NOTE: do not put a bucking bar behind it thinking that will be better. The wood has a little give to it, so you don’t deform the skin. If you use the bucking bar, you’ll squish the skin. Ask me how I know.) I think I have to paint the ailerons now (instead of polishing).

Anyway, nice dimples.

Before Joe and I got started, I snapped this picture of the “every other” method I’m using.

The rivet row we're working on here is at the bottom of the gold spar flange.

After a whole bunch of bucking and shooting, we came up with this.

Tada!!!!!!

For the last three rivets, we switched places so Joe could get some experience bucking and I could say I shot a few of the rivets on the skins. Turns out, I like bucking better and Joe likes shooting better.

If you look really closely, towards the foreground on the inboard top skin, I wrote 38, 5, 80, 43. That’s how many rivets we bucked. 166.

0.5 hours on the aileron skin, then 45 minutes (or 1.5 man-hours) on the skins. 2.0 total.

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More Right Top Skin Riveting Prep

August 11, 2011

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Not much tonight. I put rivets in the remaining top skin holes and did some better inspection of the rivets we set a few days ago. All the rivets look great, but I’m less than perfectly content with some of my edges. The tank-top-skin seam has a really tiny step to it. I rolled the edge a little, but I probably could have gone a little more with it. Also, my very nice scarf joint turned out to not be perfectly flush either. It’s not anything I’m going to change, I’m just going to have to accept that I’m not going to win any awards.

Anyway, I put the rivets in and put a piece of tape over each one.

Rivets and tape.

Rivets and tape and rivets and tape and rivets and tape.

After 45 minutes of that, I grabbed my right outboard aileron bracket and decided to tackle the bad rivet and small gap.

Here’s the bad rivet. The shop head just barely started to split.

Yikes.

It also cause the part to separate a little.

This is not acceptable.

After drilling out the two closest rivets…

Whoa. That's weird.

Anyway, I got a small clamp out….

Better.

And re-set those two rivets.

Shop heads look much better, and now there is no gap

Since I had scuffed up the parts a little while riveting, I shot a little more primer on everything.

The blue tape is there to protect the bearing. Didn't want any paint on them.

1.0 hour today…pretty boring. Drilled two rivets out, but now I’m ready for Joe to come over and knock this wing out.

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Riveted Some of Right Wing Top Skins

August 10, 2011

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Well. I managed to get Joe over to the house again, this time over a long lunch break.

This is a horrible picture, but you can sort of see that we got about half of the right wing’s top skins riveted.

We moved the tape off the rivet heads to air in inspection, but I'm going to reuse them later when I put the rest of the rivets in.

We’ve got my rivet gun (4x) set to about 32 psi (really hard to tell) and Joe’s getting good at pulling the trigger to get about 8 hits. Sometimes 7, sometimes 9. About once every 20 rivets, we’ll need to add a few hits, and once in another 20 rivets, it’ll be about 2 hits too much. Slightly flat, but within milspec, and not worth drilling out and making it worse.

It was an hour’s worth of work, but there were two of us, so I’m going to start counting it as man-hours instead of just my hours.

In the next few days, I need to put rivets in all the remaining holes and get tape over them. Hopefully just one more hour until I have the right top skins completely on!

2.0 man hours. 173 rivets (I counted three times), and none needed to be drilled out (Nice job, Joe!).

(I’m going to go back and change the other post to include Joe’s hours.)

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A Few Things Before More Top Skin Riveting

August 6, 2011

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Well, I think Joe might be coming over tomorrow or early next week, so I figured I’d do a few things while I wait for his rivet-shooting expertise.

One of the things that slowed us down a little bit last time was putting the rivets in the holes and putting a piece of tape over each rivet head.

I know I’m not following the standard pattern, so don’t do what I do when you get to this step.

It took about 45 minutes, but now I have all the plans-reading, rivet-legend confusion out of the way.

I'm going to be so excited when these top skins are done.

Looking for something else I could do, I grabbed some snap bushings and started putting them in all of the holes I’d drilled earlier. (Dear girlfriend, I know it is about 200°F outside right now, but MY beautiful picture of YOUR beautiful chili from that post is making me miss football season.)

A few snap bushings and the bags they came in.

While I’m doing that, I might as well feed this conduit in the 3/4″ hole in the ribs.

A piece of Van's conduit cut to length.

I probably could have gotten some from Lowe’s or something, but this stuff fit these 3/4″ holes perfectly.

I was smart enough to start in the middle and work toward the inboard and outboard ribs.

Tada!

Here’s a closeup of both the snap bushings and the conduit. had to use the flash so you could see under there.

Ready for wiring anyone?

Of course, I didn’t tell you that I had to uncleco the lower outboard skin, so my last trick for the evening was to re-cleco it. I could have waiting until during our riveting session tomorrow so I didn’t have to go off and on again with the skin, but I’d rather waste my time than Joe’s.

Ready for riveting.

1.5 fairly boring hours.

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Right Float Sender, Riveted Leading Edge to Spar

July 23, 2011

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Guess what? I worked on the airplane today, so the observant of you should realize that I am NOT on my way to OSH. Boo.

No use worrying about the spilled milk, though. More time for me to work on the airplane.

I need to leak test the right tank, but first, I have to finish sealing it up completely. Last post, I got everything sealed except for the float sender. Here’s the plans shot showing the sender, but it’s showing it mounted to the access plate. Mine will be the same dimensions, but entering from the rear of the tank in the second bay.

A couple 90° bends, and I'll be cooking with gas.

That was easy.

To install in the sender, you line up the plastic piece with the slot in the metal housing, and slide the float wire in.

Can't get any easier than that.

Now, let’s clean up and get this thing sealed in there.

Five #8 screws after swishing in some MEK.

After cleaning up a whole bunch, I put the rubber gasket in place with some sealant (couldn’t decide if I needed some or not), then put the float in, then more sealant around the edges, and some sealant for the screws.

Looks good to me.

I retested the sender and noticed 240 Ohms to 80 Ohms (I think I saw something lower before). That’s okay, my EFIS (Electronic Flight Information System) will calibrate the range of fuel levels based on resistance later.

Okay, that was about a half hour, and there are plenty of hours left in the day, so let’s move on. I think the next thing on the docket is to get the leading edge on the spar permanently. I have the leading edge landing light installed, and the tiendown bracket is good to go.

A changing of the plans picture…to the wing rivets and skins page.

Always fun to change plans.

After a few long minutes of getting the spar holes countersunk, I rubbed the scotchbrite pad over the length of the flange, cleaned up with MEK, then taped off to get some primer on there.

Ready for primer.

Sorry the light kind of precludes the primer from showing.

Okay, before I just start riveting the leading edge to the spar, I want to make sure everything lines up again. So, I want to put the tank on the spar, and the opposite skin from where I’m working.

Before I can get the tank on, I need to grab some nutplate for the inboard tank z-brackets.

Looks like AD3-4 and K1000-3 nutplates.

Here they are.

Done. I couldn't countersink very well along the spar bars, so I went a little light and used oops rivets on the very top and bottom (right and left here) holes.

Then I grabbed the outboard lower skin, and got it clecoed on.

Here's just the leading edge clecoed.

Then, I grabbed the tank and put screws in every 5th hole.

And a screw in every hole along the tank/leading edge joint. Everything lines up great and looks awesome.

I told you it looks awesome.

With the leading edge 50% clecoed, I decided it was finally time to show the FAA I’m really building this airplane. Sorry this awesome picture of a pre-squeezed rivet blocked the shot.

My visor says "Foxy's" on it. Anyone? Oh, and that rivet size looks appropriate, let's get to squeezing.

After 65 rivet squeezings, I had the upper leading edge skin riveted to the spar.

The leading edge looks so cool with no clecos in it.

After 65 more rivet squeezings, I had the lower leading edge skin riveted to the spar.

Oh man, I'm so excited.

GOOD DAY IN THE SHOP, high fives all around.

So….0.5 hours toward the tank. 2.5 hours toward the wings.

6 rivets for the spar nutplates, and 65 rivets each on the top and bottom of the leading edge. That makes 136.

Wuhoo!

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Right Tank Outboard Rib Reinforcement Rivets

June 22, 2011

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Nothing special tonight. Just set these three rivets.

Uno. Dos. Tres.

Oh, then I started making sure I had a nice fillet of proseal on the interior side of the rib, and it just kept getting messier and messier, so I finally just buttered up the whole surface of the reinforcement plate.

The reinforcement plate is under all of that proseal.

Yikes. I came back to the exterior side and put dollaps on each of the rivet heads.

Messy. I need to stick with the syringe for rivet encapsulation.

0.5 hour. 3 Rivets.

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Riveted Right Inboard Leading Edge Rib

June 20, 2011

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Now much to report tonight. I riveted the right leading edge inboard rib to the skin, along with the W-423 (?) joint plate.

15 perfectly set rivets here (on the bottom side of the skin)...

and 14 perfectly set rivets on the top.

29 rivets, 0.5 hours. It don’t get no better than this.

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