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RV-7 Construction Log
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Date:  2-5-2012
Number of Hours:  3.00
Manual Reference:  Section 6
Brief Description:  Rudder Assembly - Part 4

I THOUGHT I was ready to cleco the main skins on and get to rivieting. Woah! Not so fast! I had neglected to bevel the edges of the counterbalance skin to allow for a smooth transtion of the main skins. A sanding block with 80-grit worked great, but was a bit tedious to avoid scratching the spar and the rest of the counterbalance skin. Of course, I smoothed out the 80-grit scratches with maroon Scotchbrite, then cleaned and reprimed the counterbalance skin.

That taken care of, I again thought I was home free to get down to riveting, but it was not to be. The left skin went on nicely, but I couldn't get the right one to pull up to the spar. Turned out the D-stiffener (4th from the bottom) was interfering with a rivet on one of the hinge bearing reinforcement plates. Even the one on the left skin was close enough to justify trimming (see Photo 2 below). I trimmed and deburred the offending stiffeners about a 1/16 or so, but still couldn't get the skin to fit to the spar. As it turned out there were several more stiffeners interfering with the spar (or at least close enough to justify trimming). The problem was that I had trimmed to a point about 1/4" above the radius, rather than all the way to the vertex. It was a tedious job, but I finally got them all trimmed properly and deburred.

By the time I got the skins clecoed back on, it was time to head off to a Super Bowl party.
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Beveling the counterbalance skin for a better main skin fit.

Beveling the counterbalance skin for a better main skin fit.

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Interference from improperly trimmed stiffener.

Interference from improperly trimmed stiffener.

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Ahhh... that's better...

Ahhh... that's better...

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