Sunday, February 23, 2014

Vertical Stabilizer Complete!

Steve & I got the VS ready for riveting...
 ...and I promptly screwed up by riveting universal rivets in 3 of the flush-head rivet locations at the base of the spar.
 We successfully drilled out the "duh" rivets, and I've decided to save the scraps from my mistakes; hoping for less than a coffee can of them.
These certainly weren't the only ones - I left a few smileys in some rivets, the worst of which we drilled out and replaced.
 Michelle checked in on us and threw a few clecos in! I was cowering in fear of the dynamic duo.
Bob Collins, a fellow RV-7 builder, had a great tradition of having friends and helpers autograph the components they worked on. Steve & Michelle both signed in.
 To save our backs (a little), Steve & I cut a makeshift jig to hold the VS while we riveted her together.
 Michelle, Steve & I each got a shot at squeezing some rivets. Much more consistent than the rivet gun, and more helper-friendly.
 They even caught me on camera. (And note the tape on the bottome of the VS - we learned from my mistake installing the wrong rivets on the rear spar and covered all holes that were NOT to be filled yet)
Securing the rear-spar... Steve did great, but I had some trouble getting sufficient clearance with the 3" yoke on the squeezer and had to drill a few more out, replacing with the mushroom head set and bucking bar. RTB...
And the last 3 rivets! Steve & I each pulled, finishing off our first complete assembly.
Only a few thousand more rivets to go! 
 Mk 1.0 flying workbench:
Thanks to the Taylors for all your help, and to my wonderful family for their trust & excitement.

Empennage: 5.5hrs

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