Archive for August, 2011

Incremental Riveting Progress – 1.0 hr

August 29, 2011 Leave a comment

Monday Aug 29, 2011

Tonight I could only get about 35 minutes of Denise’s time to help me rivet so we shot a bunch on the left side skin working forward and aft of the F-704 bulkhead. Altogether we shot about 65 rivets and I squeezed another 20 or so along the longeron just aft of the F-704.

Categories: Fuselage

Fuselage Riveting Round 2 – 3 hrs

August 28, 2011 Leave a comment

Sunday Aug 28, 2011

For what it’s worth, here is a picture of the inside of the forward bottom skin painted. I masked the forward 1.5 inches to allow the firewall sealant to bond directly to the aluminum. I painted it using Krylon Fusion satin because I had a can of it. This will provide some protection from moisture but the color really doesn’t matter because this area will be covered by carpet.

Denise gave me a hand with riveting today. We did the F-704 bulkhead area and we shot the universal head rivets that tie the side skins to the outboard seat ribs. Some of them are so close to the bottom skin that we could not use a straight cup set so we used a double offset driver. I hate using that tool because it is really tough to set perfect heads. Even using a snap soc the double offset head likes to produce smiles. I had to drill a few out and reshoot them. In the end they came out acceptable but not perfect. I like perfect rivets. But I am reminded that the wings will cover this entire area.

Categories: Fuselage

Forward Fuselage Reassembly, Part 2 – 8 hrs

August 27, 2011 Leave a comment

Saturday Aug 27, 2011

This morning I started by riveting the F-7101 Gear Attach Webs to the F-902 bulkheads and riveting the F-719 Stiffeners to theĀ  F-719B Angle Clips.

Then I riveted the F-684 Gussets to the vertical firewall angles.

And riveted the F-719B Angle Clips to the firewall angles.

Then I installed the firewall with clecos along with the assorted stiffeners, longerons and bulkheads in the forward section. Then I could install the AN bolts that hold the lower longerons to the firewall brackets. I torqued and striped these bolts expecting to never take them off again.

Then I addressed the two center bottom skin stiffeners. I riveted the forward ends first. I could squeeze two but I had to buck the one most forward.

Then I riveted the aft ends. Same thing here, I could squeeze two but had to buck the most aft rivet.

No pictures but I spent some time prepping and priming the interior of the bottom front skin which I think will be ready to install soon. Then I installed some more nut plates.

OK, this thing is ready for an extended riveting session.

I started riveting a few rivets around the spar cutouts. A few I could squeeze but some must be bucked. Wouldn’t you know it, on about the forth rivet I was bucking solo I lost concentration on the gun side and dinged the skin. I hate when that happens. Well this area will be covered by the wing root so it will never show on the finished airplane but I still hate it. Well it’s 95 degrees in the garage and I am tired so I will take a break and pick up when I am fresh or have a riveting partner.

Categories: Fwd Fuselage

Remated Left Side Skin – 2 hrs

August 25, 2011 Leave a comment

Thursday Aug 25, 2011

Tonight I continued preparations for final assembly of the forward fuselage to the aft section. I started by installing a couple of nut plates on the F-902 bulkheads.

Then I made machine countersinks for all the 3/32 rivets on the side of the F-704H Center Section Side Plate for the left side skin.

Then I flipped it over and riveted the skin in place along the spar cutout as instructed. I lost some time on this because the instructions say to “Set the upper five rivets forward of the spar cut-out, leaving the lowest one open” but there are seven rivets on each side, not six! I stopped to search a few web sites on this issue and concluded that they should all be set except the lowest hole on the forward side which will also be riveted to the bottom front skin.

Then I cleco’d the skin to the fuselage.

Categories: Fuselage

Rejoined Aft and Center Fuselage Sections – 1.5 hr

August 24, 2011 Leave a comment

Wednesday Aug 24, 2011

Tonight I spent the first half looking for my air drill chuck key. Turns out it had fallen off the work bench into the trash can which of course was the last place I looked. Good thing I had not dumped the trash. After getting back on track I re-riveted the bellcrank support rib to the aft fuselage bottom skin except for two rivets I could not reach solo. I could have done that later but it was easy enough before the center fuselage was reattached.

Then with the help of Denise and Jennifer I rejoined the center section to the aft section with clecos. I had already inserted the longerons on the weekend so they were ready. It is nice to have this back together seeing forward progress again.

Here are the rivets along the bottom for the bellcrank support rib. I took the picture after I had rejoined the sections.

Categories: Fuselage

Priming and Painting – 5 hrs

August 21, 2011 Leave a comment

Sunday Aug 21, 2011

Continuing with the priming session today I decided to go ahead and prime some additional sections of the side skins on the interior so I can paint those surfaces now. That includes the area forward of the seats and the baggage area above the side panels. So I scuffed and cleaned those surfaces and shot a coat of primer in those areas.

Then I cleaned the remaining stiffeners and bulkheads from yesterday and primed those as well. I’ve debated long enough on the interior paint question so today I bit the bullet and started spraying some of the interior parts with Rustoleum Hammered Gray. I sprayed the forward section of the side skins, arm rests, some of the stiffeners and doublers, and the center rudder pedal support brace as you can see below. I went with the simple Rustoleum approach because the Sherwin Williams Genesis runs about $140 per quart plus another $60 for the two-part primer system. The Rustoleum is not as durable but I can paint everything I need for about $20 and I can easily touch up scratches.

Here is a view of the color on the side skin. Denise and Jennifer like this color best of all the samples I had. I worry that it may be too dark but in the end if I install side panels there won’t be that much exposed. We’ll see how it all looks when I start assembling the pieces.

I also primed the wing steps. They are steel and are particularly susceptible to rusting so even if I have to strip them later this primer will protect them.

I’m getting close now to reassembling the fuselage so I primed a couple of areas on the aft fuselage that will be overlapped by the center bottom and side skins. I didn’t want to spray in the garage so I just used a brush and painted a light coat of Ekoprime on them.

Categories: Fuselage

Finally Priming – 7.5 hrs

August 20, 2011 Leave a comment

Saturday Aug 20, 2011

I finally made it to a priming session today after more than a week of part preparation. I finished dimpling the right side skin last night and started countersinking the left main longeron. Wow, there are 180 holes to countersink in each longeron and that does not include holes for the F-721B Aft Canopy Deck. I finished countersinking this morning and I used the scotch-brite pad to scuff up both longerons.

Then came cleaning and drying. I washed the parts using Simple Green to get dirt and oils off the surface and I dried the parts with clean towels. I set up the spray gun with Stewart Systems primer and began shooting parts. The longerons were the most difficult because they are so long.

Here are some of the parts I primed today including both side skins. Unfortunately there are still a bunch of skin stiffeners and bulkheads to prime. That will have to be my project tomorrow. Tonight I take my sweetie to dinner.

Categories: Fuselage

Still Deburring and Surface Prep – 1.5hr

August 18, 2011 Leave a comment

Thursday Aug 18, 2011

Surface prep continued with the right side skin tonight. I deburred the edges and started dimpling holes.

I also put a light coat of primer on the outside surface where the wing step mounts.

Categories: Fuselage

Right Side Skin Prep – 1 hr

August 15, 2011 Leave a comment

Monday Aug 15, 2011

With a long day at work today I had only a little time to work on the RV so I removed vinyl from the inside surface of the left side skin and scuffed the surface with scotch-brite.

Categories: Fuselage

Back to the Aft Fuselage – 4 hrs

August 14, 2011 Leave a comment

Sunday Aug 14, 2011

I noticed something odd today. There are two 5/8 inch holes very close together in the F-715L seat rib. One was drilled into the rib on drawing 22 where it says to enlarge a tooling hole to 5/8 inch and the other was drilled based on drawing 28 where it says to enlarge a tooling hole in the F-770 side skin and drill through the underlying F-715. Something doesn’t seem right here. I’ll have to call Vans about this one.

Update Aug 15: I spoke to Ken at Vans this morning and he said the two close holes are no problem, although he did not have an explanation for why it this would happen. I suspect the tooling hole on the F-715L might be in the wrong place. In any case he said the fact that the rib is doubling up with the skin in that area makes it a non-issue. He even said I could drill another hole in this area for wiring or pitot if I needed to.

Back onto the left side skin I dimpled all the holes that need dimpling using the DRDT-2 and my hand squeezer.

I took a while to map out what needed to be dimpled and what didn’t. I used drawing 28 as my reference and marked up the skin with a sharpie with notes. An X means don’t dimple this hole.

I also masked the area around the wing step, cleaned it with MEK and shot a coat of primer onto that surface.

When I got down to the aft fuselage stage it was apparent that I should not have riveted the bellcrank rib to the bottom skin because you have to remove the F-706 to dimple the second (aft) row of holes on the skins. So I proceeded to drill out 28 rivets to get the F-706 off. Wow, this is going back to what the aft fuselage looked like two months ago. Well, once the F-706 was out I dimpled the holes along the joint to the center section and along the line of the main longerons. So this piece is ready for reassembly at least. But the longerons still need lots of countersinking and priming.

Categories: Fuselage