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RV-7 Construction Log
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Date:  1-15-2012
Number of Hours:  2.50
Manual Reference:  Section 6
Brief Description:  Today's Task 2 - Prep and Prime HS Skeleton

Time for the dirty work!

It was very tempting not to prime alclad parts all, seeing how well my 57-year old 170 is holding up, but I just can't quite bring myself to do it. I'm compromising by only priming the faying surfaces (for the most part), that is, the surfaces that are in contact with each other when assembled. Of course all non alclad surfaces get several coats.

I'm using a similar prep method to what I used on my Harmon Rocket parts. First I'm scrubbing the parts with scotchbrite and Dawn dishwashing soap. This removes any oils from the parts as well as providing "tooth" for the primer. You're done when the rinse water sheets off completely. If you've missed a spot, the water will bead. I sometimes see this on inside bend radii, but it's no big deal to go back and hit it again. Just to make sure the parts are CLEAN, I'm wiping them with spray gun cleaning solvent after they are dry.

Dupont Variprime, the primer I used on the Rocket parts is no longer available in California, so I'm going to give Duplicolor self-etching primer in a rattle can a try. I don't think I'll miss the cleanup involved with using the spray gun.

It got up in the 60's today, and with the sun out it seemed warmer outside than in the garage, so I gave painting outside a shot, hopefully decreasing the amount of the stuff I inhale. This was probably a mistake, as it was windy (even on our potting table up close to the house), and a LOT of the paint never made it to the parts. It took about 1 - 1/4 cans just to do the HS skeleton! I've read where other guys have done the whole airplane with 8 cans or less. I think I'll break out my supplied air respirator and just do the spraying indoors from now on.

No pictures today; you'll get to see the results as I post pictures of the assembly.
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