More work on the Counterbalance Skin

July 20, 2010

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Things have been slow with the airplane recently, right? Well, after a few weeks of letting the garage slowly spiral into a mess of hall closet items (while I’m redoing the floors), saw dust (while I’m redoing the floors), and aluminum dust/shavings (I am working on the plane a little), I decided it was time to get things cleaned up. After an hour of cleaning and organization, I snapped this picture of a nice clean workbench and floor area. Doesn’t really do it justice, but something about a clean workbench makes me happy (notice how I am not showing you a picture of my second workbench!)

(Don't tell the girlfriend I had the vacuum cleaner up on the table going back and forth. It works pretty well, but I accept no blame if you try this at home.)

Okay, finally on to the project. My replacement E-713 came the other day. instead of trying to cleco it on to the already-dimpled skeleton and matchdrill, I am going to trust Vans’ pre-punches and just run a #40 bit through the appropriate holes before deburring and dimpling.

After that was complete, I taped the outside of the skin that I want to protect from primer and scuffed everything up.

Ready to prime...almost. I'm still waiting on a #10 dimple die from Avery. Should be here any day.

Because this part of the exterior side is under the main left elevator skin, I'm going to prime it. Those two smaller holes need to be drilled to #28 before dimpled for #6 screws.

After that, I grabbed my two trim tab horns, and deburred, scuffed, and dimpled the flange holes.

I still need to trim these down per the plans for the electric elevator trim, but I also haven't ordered my electric elevator trim kit yet.

Finally, I disassembled the trim tab to get a little start on that. Here’s the spar, deburred, scuffed, and dimpled on the bottom flange.

The top flange (on the left side of the picture) needs to be countersunk for the upper trim tab skin, because the hinge sits just below the flange, and can't accept a dimpled flange.

2 hours in the shop today, but only 1 hour counts as build time. Hooray clean shop!

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Started Prepping Left Elevator Skeleton

July 2, 2010

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Even though it was my day off, I spent the day trying not to get stung by bees (mowing the forest behind my fence) and meeting the girlfriend for food. After that, I managed to waste an hour or so installing a fan in the garage. Recently, it’s been brutal in the garage, so this morning, while I was walking around Lowe’s, I saw a small ceiling fan for $17. I couldn’t say no. It was harder to install than our nicer fans inside (no little quick-disconnect fan blades or anything), but in the end, it makes me cooler in the garage (double meaning intended).

Huzzah!

Okay, back to work. I think you guys might have seen this picture yesterday, but here it is again…the little riblet I made after drilling.

Looks good. I am proud of this little guy.

Then, I moved over to the spar. These four holes get countersunk because they attach E-705, but the elevator horn has to sit over the rivets but still flush against the forward face of the web.

Beautiful countersinks.

While I had the countersink cage set up, I pulled the trim tab spar out of the elevator and started on it.

Countersink the top flange, dimple the bottom flange.

Aren't these countersinks nice?

After countersinking, both the tab spar and the left elevator main spar were scuffed (more), edge-finished, and then got a trip inside to the sink for a quick rinse before coming back outside to eventually get a coat of primer.

I'm getting close to riveting something, watch out!

Anyway, two very productive hours, and I think I can rivet some reinforcement plates tomorrow if I want. Wuhoo!

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Right Elevator Stiffener Drilling and Dimpling

April 14, 2010

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Another fairly boring night with right elevator stiffeners, but the end is near (end of right elevator stiffeners, not the whole airplane), so I’ll keep plugging away.

My setup for drilling stiffeners. I used the cordless today so I wasn't making too much noise. I'm almost done with this side.

I matchdrilled every hole except for the last hole (closest to the trailing edge.) Some of these last holes are both pre-punched, and just need to be matchdrilled to final size, and some are missing the holes in the stiffeners. You have to use the skin to matchdrill the stiffener.

Down the right elevator.

I unclecoed most of the stiffeners and then re-clecoed the stiffeners (just at the ends) with the elevator off of the table so I can roll it over to drill.

Ready to flip over and matchdrill those last stiffener holes.

One picture of the last hole.

The hole at the end of the "3" is the one I need to matchdrill.

After that, I used a thick sharpie to trace the stiffeners to help with future devinyling. Then, I flipped the whole thing over to start on the other side. Same process, though.

About halfway done with this side.

Then, uncleco from the table to flip over and get the last hole.

Unclecoing from the last hole.

No big deal for you, but I marked all of the stiffeners correctly. The right elevator in the background is sitting upside-down (I just typed right-side-up, and had to change it. See, I’m still confused). Anyway, the ones on the table are on the top surface of the elevator, but the one in the foreground is marked the top (“Top, A”), but is actually the longest bottom stiffener.

This should be "BA" for "Bottom, A."

After finishing all of the stiffener drilling, I took them inside to deburr. After all of the deburring, I grabbed this shot of the placemat on the kitchen table. (Don’t tell the girlfriend. I got it cleaned up.)

Aluminum shavings galore after deburring. This is kind of a stupid picture, but I already uploaded it, so I'm not going to hold back.

After deburring, I rubbed down the surface that needed to be dimpled, (not the perpendicular surface, and I definitely didn’t do any edge-finishing).

Deburred and scuffed, ready for dimpling.

And I would like to draw your attention to the following three dimples. Don’t they look lovely?

Looks like a professional dimpled these holes.

It was the girlfriend!

Girlfriend dimpling. (She kept giggling after each one. And after each time I said "dimple." There may or may not have been red wine involved.)

Anyway, she made it about 8 dimples before getting “bored” (I think her hands hurt, too). Back outside, I found this little guy.

he's pretty small, but looks kind of scary.

No real identifying marks, but I’m sure someone will be able to help out.

Anyone have any ideas?

As if I hadn’t had enough drama for the night, Ginger came out, grabbed some wood, and took it inside to chew up all over our staircase landing. Here are some of the remnants.

It's better than her eating the window sills. Or the banister. Or our patio chairs. Or my soul.

Anyway, I spent a few more minutes with the Permagrit block rounding the edges of the stiffeners. Next up, edge-finishing with the scotchbrite wheel, scuffing, cleaning, and priming. Then, same dance with the skin and the backriveting!

An hour and a half. Boom shakalaka.

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Riveted E-615PP Trim Reinforcement Plate

April 6, 2010

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WUHOO, tool order arrived!

3 things in the order, $154.90. Ouch.

Also included was this AWESOME sticker.

Where should I put this?

Here?

Here?

Here?

On the airplane? no.

Finally, the air compressor won.

Decorated air compressor.

Look at that beautiful tungsten bucking bar.

Old and new.

Also, I got two more dimple die sets. #6 and #8, on the right.

Just for comparison. #40, #30, #6, #8. Still need a #10.

Alright, back to work. First up, using the #6 dimple dies on the E-616PP Trim Cover Plate.

Nicely dimpled. I don't think it matters that you take off the blue vinyl. Maybe that was a bad idea.

Here’s the bottom side (top side when mounted on the bottom of the elevator on the airplane).

Peeling off the blue vinyl.

Then, edge finished and scuffed for priming. I’m going to wait to prime this until I can actually by the electric trim motor since you have to drill more holes. Just thinking ahead: can I countersink and use NAS rivets for the trim motor mounting brackets? Nope. These are pretty structural (hold the motor, and therefore the trim tab, in place.) I’m sure those directions will confirm the need to dimple. I’ll need to dimple E-616PP and the brackets that are used to attach the trim motor.

Ready for priming, except for all of the extra holes I have to drill, deburr, dimple, and rivet.

Same deal on E-615PP.

Ready for priming.

On the fancy priming stand.

After shooting primer to one side of E-615PP, I decided to add 4 holes for each of my new dimple die halves.

4 holes drilled.

Tada.

7/32″ seems to work well for holes in a home-made dimple die holder stand.

7/32" is a good size hole for these.

Then, I shot primer on the other side of E-615PP. While I waited for that side to dry, I edge finished E-616PP.

Look at that nice edge. I love the scotchbrite wheel.

Now that E-615PP is dry, let’s do some riveting! I grabbed the K1100-06 nutplates (or platenuts as Van calls them) and the 14 required rivets. Remember from March 28th, I am using NAS1097 rivets here.

I am going to be using NAS1097 rivets here (smaller head than AN426 rivets) so I can countersink (instead of dimple) the holes here. That saves me from having to dimple the nutplate ears, which will save me a lot of hassle.

I finally found the rivet callouts.

I thought that because I countersank (verb tense?) the reinforcement plate that the 3.5 would be way too long, but the -3 was definitely too short. I grabbed 14 NAS1097AD3-3.5 rivets.

-3.5 (length) should work here.

I put all of the nutplates in with a single cleco and a single rivet, taped into place before starting to squeeze them. I hindsight, I should have backriveted these. So dumb.

Half of them done.

Then I did the other half.

Nice and flush. There is one that is almost proud, but doesn't affect the cover plate, so I may not try to muck it up further by drilling it out. We'll see if I can sleep tonight.

Once I got those 14 set, I grabbed the An507-6R6 screws and got the cover plate screwed on.

Ready to screw down. see in the lower left where the shadow under E-616PP is a little bigger? The dimpling kind of warped the plate. I'll have to try to coax this flat again.

I couldn't get the screws in all the way without a lot of effort. Is this normal for nutplates?

Anyway, 14 rivets set in just under an hour. I’m going to mark an hour today (a little long), then short myself on a post in the near future.

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