Sunday, November 24, 2013

Tail Cone Riveting

 Lots of riveting action this last Saturday.

Dan came over and we were able to get quite a few rivets set.

If you look hard through the elevator push rod hole, you can see me inside the tail cone tunnel.  I was on the bucking bar while Dan used the pneumatic.
The tunnel is very tight for this old man!

Here Dan is setting rivets in the seam for the two side skins.

I left the pieces of wood attached to the tail cone bulkheads in place while we set the rivets.  I will remove them when we are done riveting.  It made a nice handhold to pull myself along.

Dan shooting another rivet while I held the bucking bar inside.

Here I am climbing out after a couple of hundred rivets.  Hundreds to go!

I'm not looking forward to climbing back in.


Wednesday, October 16, 2013

I love back riveting.

Ever since I constructed the flap I have liked back riveting most of all.  It works great for flush rivets.

Put a row of rivets into their holes, tape them in place, flip your project over onto the back riveting plate and apply the rivet gun to make a nice shop head.

Like I said, it works great on flush rivets.  But, I had to ask myself, what about universal head rivets?  Is there a way to apply the principles of back riveting flush headed rivets to universal head rivets?

Well, after playing around with the idea I found there was a way.  I mounted a universal rivet set die from a squeezer in to a 1/2" thick chunk of steel.  I clamped it to the bench and squared it up. (Perpendicular to bench top.)

I used some lumber to "shim" up to the height of the rivet set to place the parts I was going to back rivet against.  The shims would help to hold the parts flush or in line with the rivet set.

Here I am getting ready to back rivet some parts for the front horizontal stabilizer spar.

The part is resting on the rivet set and the taped over shims.  When the rivet is lined up in the hole it is very square.

I was able to put all these rivets in place in a little less than 30 minutes.  All the shop heads are great and no smiley faces on the universal heads.

Now, I just have to figure out a way to put the remainder of the aircraft on the bench for back riveting.............


Sunday, October 13, 2013

Not much to report.......

Not much to report this week.  Oh, I've been working.  Just not much to show for my efforts.  Lots of little parts.  The bulkhead in the above picture has 4 parts riveted to it.  It was what I worked on during the week.

This weekend I mostly cleaned the shop.  I started to spend more time looking for tools and parts than working with them.  So, a little housekeeping was in order.

The remainder of this week I expect to get some more little parts assembled.


Sunday, September 29, 2013

Completing final preparations for major riveting event

I have been dimpling and prepping  aluminum for weeks now.  Getting boring.

Here are the right and left tail cone skins all prepped for final assembly.

Bottom Tail cone skins.  Starting to assemble the tail end bulkheads and skin doublers.

Bulkhead 114.75 prepped and waiting for bottom skins and side skins.

I can't remember the number of this bulkhead.  I will look for it later.

Ready for a lot of little parts to Cleco and rivet to it.

 This is a doubler that gets riveted to the unknown bulkhead.

Here are a few of the many shims that will go in between the bulkheads and skins.

I have a few others to wrap up.  It is moving along.  Soon I will be able to start a very long riveting campaign.  That should take me through most of the fall months.



Sunday, September 22, 2013

Inspection Covers

 I finished up the right side inspection cover today.  It came out great.  Nice and large for my big hands.

The one on the left side is another story.

 There is a lot less room between the bulkheads and the lower skin.  So, I compromised and made it a true inspection cover.  I should be able to open it and see if there are any problems during annuals.  (1" by 3")

If there are any problems I should be able to make minor repairs.
A 1" hole saw to remove a big chunk.  I cut the pointy pieces off with a cutoff wheel and filed to my contour lines.

Very tight fit, but should be strong.
I made the backing plate from .040 as I did on the right side.

During the week I will debur and corrosion protect the parts.  Should be able to rivet assembly together.

I might be able to get most of the left skin deburred, dimpled, and corrosion protected by the end of the week if the weather holds.

Moving along.............


Saturday, September 21, 2013

Right side skin tail gear inspection hatch

Pretty chilly day in the Harbor.  Only got up to 60 degree F.  I need to get several parts primed for final assembly before the wind turns to cold.

During the week I completed making my inspection hatch in the right side tail cone skin.  When I finished making the access hole in the skin I needed to make a cover from some .032 aluminum.  I laid a piece behind the hole and traced it out with a fine sharpie pen.

I trimmed the access hole cover with a sheet metal  shear.  Cutting close to the marker line without removing it.  I used a bench top belt sander to size the cover to the hole, careful not to remove to much material.  Looking from the outside of the skin, a nice tight fit.

Next, I needed a way to hold the cover in place so, I cut a frame of some .040 aluminum that I will rivet the hatch cover to, use some nut plates and 6-32 machine screws to secure the cover to the side skin.

Looking from the inside-out of the tail cone, I have the hatch cover Clecoed together ready for final preparation work.  It took me a week of evenings just to make this hatch cover!  YIKES!
(I have a smaller one to make in the left side.)

I completed final prep work on the right side tail cone skin today, along with the inspection hatch cover.  I will need to complete the left side skin.  I'll be starting on that tomorrow.  Should have all the skins ready by end of next weekend. (Maybe.)

Once the skins are ready, all I'll have to do is get bulkhead 114.75 deburred, dimpled, and corrosion protected and I'll be able to start riveting.  Just a couple more weeks of prep work.


Sunday, September 15, 2013

One more thing.......

Thursday was exciting.  At about 01:30 pm the tornado sirens started going off in Kenosha, Wisconsin.  I could see it was dark to the northeast and headed for home.  On the way I spotted a large stovepipe funnel that appeared to be over Lake Michigan heading south.  When I pulled into town I decided to cruise on down to North Point Marina to get a view.

What a view!  It was spectacular!  It went through many very rapid changes.
This is a shot Chris made of the same shot I made in the proceeding picture.  (The one above.)  She had a more southerly viewing point looking northeast while I shot my pic looking due east.  (Northern Unit of Illinois Beach State Park.)

 The rope is almost gone and the main water spout is expanding rapidly.  (Chris' shot.)
Main water spout has developed into a wedge.  It is huge!  (Chris again.)
 Huge wedge water spout from my location.  Pulling out over the lake.  On the move to the southeast.

Final viewable funnel for Chris.  It is east of the outer marker for UGN runway 23.  It was a cool Thursday indeed!