18 Jan 05 - Starting the top Skin

This was a huge day as far as ordering things - there were a few orders parts from Van's that I've been meaning to order, and I ordered a bunch of tools from a couple different tool manufacturers. (I'll take pictures of them and talk about them when they show up in the mail.) Some of these parts are things that we'll need to finish up the stuff that we've been working on, so instead of finishing up the things that have been started, we're going to leave them unfinished (until parts come in) and charge off and start something else.

Something else, in this case, is the top skin for the fuselage. This won't go on for awhile, but it needs to be match drilled, dimpled, and there's a gusset (F-688) that is made by match drilling all of this together. This should keep us busy until parts start to show up.

Oh yeah. Here's the completed sawhorse - now, someone (me) will be able to climb in the back of the plane without tipping it over. Also, I guess we can test fit the whole empennage without worrying that it's going to tip over.
Step one for the quickbuild kits is to drill out the pop rivets that were previously where these clecos are.
It's on there . . . sort of. Doesn't fit really well, yet.
Another view of the same thing.

At this point we discovered that it just didn't really fit all that well, especially where the top and sides curve into each other - the bulkhead has a tendency to want to sit too far forward, and is surprisingly unwilling to pull back. Putting the back of the baggage compartment back helped some (added a lot of rigidity, I guess), but it didn't fix the problem. It's already fluted, but in those points it's not really fluted enough, so time to take it off and re-flute the curves.

Detail of the F-688 gusset that we'll match drill. Right now it's actually sitting just a bit too far forward, so we'll adjust that before we match drill anything.
Test fitting, after fluting - seems a bit better, but not perfect yet.
Another picture? Maybe it'll help someone, so okay.

Kind of inspiring to see this thing on the plane, even if the fit isn't wonderful yet. We'll keep at it tomorrow.

Previous log entry

Back to the log

Next log entry