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RV-7 Construction Log
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Date:  11-16-2014
Number of Hours:  6.25
Manual Reference:  p. 8-10
Brief Description:  Prep for Riveting Forward Side Skins

Every time I think I'm almost ready to start riveting the forward side skins, I find a few hours more prep to do. Today was no exception.

I started out by scuffing, cleaning and priming the forward bottom skin (photo 1). I had intended to mask off the forward row of hole before priming to leave bare metal for firewall sealant. Once the primer has had a few days to cure, I'll mask off the next row back and scotchbrite the forward row back down to bare metal. After priming, I countersunk the bottom horizontal firewall angle to accept the dimples in the forward bottom skin.

Next, I fit the bottom aft corners of the forward bottom skin to bottom center skin. For some reason, I had thought that that corner would fit outside of the bottom skin, but after reviewing another builder's log, I noticed that he had put it inside the bottom skin. Detail D on drawing 28 shows this clearly. Even after about 4 disassembly/assembly cycles and adjusting the skin edges and bulkhead flanges the aft few inches of the bottom skin still needs a little work (photo 2). I'll come back to that when I'm not quite so frustrated.

Next, I dimpled both the horizontal and vertical aft fuselage bulkheads and clecoed them in place (photo 3). Even after dimpling the aft hole in the horizontal bulkhead with substructure dies (that hole has FIVE layers!), I had to countersink it slightly for a good fit.

Just as a preliminary check, I measured for twist at several stations down the fuselage. Right now I have about 0.6 degrees of twist fairly well distributed between the firewall and the F-711 bulkhead. I can easily correct this by hand, but I'll have to clamp the aft deck in place to hold it. I think I'll do that to remove as much twist as possible before riveting the side skins.
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I need to mask off the aft row and scotchbrite the primer off of the forward row.

I need to mask off the aft row and scotchbrite the primer off of the forward row.

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I still need to work on the fit of the center bottom skin against the aft corner of the side skin.

I still need to work on the fit of the center bottom skin against the aft corner of the side skin.

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Horizontal and vertical aft fuselage bulkheads clecoed in.

Horizontal and vertical aft fuselage bulkheads clecoed in.

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