29 March 2015

Bought my airplane a new house.

Having outgrown my current "hangar" I had to buy my airplane a new house.  A couple of shots from moving day.

Here I am with the aft empennage, ready for transport.

Parts placed in the new garage.

Part accumulation continues.

My friend (who has a horse trailer) after we removed the wings from the cradle in the old house.

Me with my wings and refrigerator in my friend's horse trailer, ready for transport.  Can I get a feedbag of oats please?

Even more stuff.

Somehow I didn't manage to grab pictures of moving the EAA tables and other parts on another friend's flatbed trailer.

09 March 2015

Fuselage: Forward fuselage lower structure.

Today saw the riveting of the F-01483-L/R forward bottom skins to the firewall structure, including the attachment of the F-01435A-L/R cover bases.  I had some help from a gracious friend for this job.  We found that propping up the structure as below gave us the access we needed to buck.

Then it was time for the cover bases.

Everything complete except for the vent doors and inlets and the battery box.

Today also marks the last build day at this house.  My build outgrew the basement, living room and guest room.  I hope to resume building at the new house soon.

Update 2-Jul-15:  Do not do what's on the left.  Instead, do what's on the right.  The F-1433 cowl attach plates should be on top of the F-13134C cowl hinge shims.  Page 28-07 makes this very clear.

05 March 2015

Fuselage: Forward mid fuselage lower structure. Completed.

The firewall has been sealed on to the lower fuse skins and muffler shrouds.

After I sealed everything together, I realized I neglected to rivet the F-01435-L/R cover bases to the F-01451-L/R tunnel sides.  There are 2 rivets on each side that need to be set before attaching everything to the F-01483-L/R forward bottom skins.  If they aren't done prior to that point, then there won't be access to the inboard side of the tunnel sides since the F-01453-L/R muffler shroud sides would be in the way.  See red areas below from page 28-05.

Figuring I'd have to use a pull rivet of some kind, I researched my options.  I found that there are no strong 3/32" pull rivets available.  The best I found was the CCC-32, which has relatively poor strength.  So, I thought I might be able to uncleco the tunnel sides to access the rivets.  Sure enough, it was possible.  With some wood blocks to push the sides away from the muffler shroud, I could easily negotiate a squeezer in there.  Crisis averted.

04 March 2015

Fuselage: Forward mid fuselage lower structure. Muffler shrouds on.

For the side shrouds, I did two things contrary to plans:
  1. I did not rivet the F-01453-L/R muffler shroud doublers and F-01465 muffler hanger angles to the shroud sides until after the shroud sides were themselves riveted to the bottom skins.  I saw that the muffler doublers and angles would impede rivet access on the flanges of the shroud sides.  I tested to ensure I could access the doubler and hanger rivets with my squeezer once the sides were riveted down.
  2. I decided to seal and rivet the F-01454 muffler shroud ramp following riveting of the shroud sides because I thought it would be easier to manage riveting the shroud sides without the ramp in the way and wobbling around a lot.
So....after I sealed the F-01453-L/R muffler shroud sides to the F-01483-L/R forward bottom skins, I set the assemblies aside for a few days to let the sealant cure a bit to reduce mess, as shown in the left image.  The right image shows the riveted assemblies. 


I back riveted all of the rivets save the aft 5 rivets on each side.  For those boys, I had to get creative, as I work mostly alone.  A combination of holding the skin with my legs and trapping the assembly between my EAA Chapter 1000 workbenches, let me finish off those aft rivets.

Here is the inboard side of the muffler doubler (left) and muffler hanger (right) for the left assembly.  The excess sealant at bottom of the image is easily cut away later.

Next, the muffler shroud ramp needs to be sealed in.  First, I decided to wipe a thin layer of sealant on the flanges of the shroud sides and ramp to make sure I wasn't completely reliant on an exterior, exposed fillet of sealant as suggest in the plans.

Then I cleco'd the ramp to the right shroud side first.

Then using the space between my EAA Chapter 1000 workbenches, I inverted the forward bottom skins so the shroud could fit between them and cleco'd in the left side shroud.  Access isn't as easy, but my back is good for it.

Next a sealant fillet is applied and smoothed with a Popsicle stick.  Close up of the fillet (left) and looking down (well, up really) the ramp (right).

And here the assembly sat for a few days to let the sealant cure a bit before final riveting.  Thankfully, the riveting of the ramp to the shroud sides can be done with a squeezer.  The boards were to keep the skins straight and weighted down so the latter could keep their shape during sealant curing.

For the aft-most 2 rivets that fasten the shroud sides to the ramp, I could not get a squeezer yoke to fit in there nor could I get a bucking bar in there.  However, I had a long, thin steel bar I obtained for one of the harder-to-reach rivets on the rudder (it didn't work very well for that purpose).  I used that rod with another bucking bar as a fulcrum to help keep pressure against the shop head.  A couple of Popsicle sticks on one side of the bar helped angle the bar to match that of the rivet to prevent the latter from clenching over.  Worked great.

Completed assembly awaiting mating to the firewall.

03 March 2015

Fuselage: Upper forward fuselage. Upper forward fuselage assembly completed.

This is a fairly straight forward part. As I typically work solo, I have to support my work so I have something to work against when applying forces to rivet.

I would suggest riveting the F-01477-L/R connector brackets to the F-01494-L/R instrument panel standoffs before riveting the standoffs to the upper forward fuse assembly.  Putting the brackets on earlier does not impede access to the rivets attaching the standoffs to the assembly.

I was able to squeeze the aft-most rivets.  But it's extremely difficult to access the forward-most AN426AD3-3.5 rivet on each bracket.  I had to come up with a creative way to do it.  Below you can see how I situated a back rivet plate in just the right location.  With my 12" extended back rivet set, I was able to hit it. 

The upper forward fuselage assembly awaits its turn to be fastened to the upper forward fuselage.