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RV-7 Construction Log
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Date:  8-3-2012
Number of Hours:  8.00
Manual Reference:  p 7-7
Brief Description:  Left Tank - Interior Ribs

I have a 3-day weekend, so my goal is to finish sealing and riveting the left tank.

Today I got all five interior ribs sealed and clecoed. As mentioned before, I'm using Rick Galati's McDonnell Douglas method of assembling the tank: apply sealant, 100% cleco, then wait a day before riveting. All went fairly well. I mixed one 26-27 gram batch of sealant for each rib, and applied it to both the skin and the rib with an acid brush trimmed to about 1/4 - 3/8 inch long to stiffen it up. This made the application MUCH neater than some jobs I've seen, and also came in handy for forming the fillets.

I did notice that the skin wanted to pull away slightly from the aft end of the rib flanges, so I dry installed the baffle to pull it in to its final position while the sealant cures. You might notice in Photo 3 below that I only attached the baffle with three clecoes at each rib (top and bottom) and two at each corner, due to the fact that I was running a bit short on 3/32 clecoes. I also clecoed the tank to the wing spar to ensure it didn't get tweaked during assembly. Looks great!

I was slowed down a little today, due to having to scuff and clean the rib and baffle rivet lines on the top side of the skin, as well as all the flanges on the ribs themselves . Still, I'm not sure where all the time went. I only timed the third one I installed, and it only took an hour. It was quite warm and humid (by Tehachapi standards) and I did have to take a half hour break betwen the third and fourth rib too cool off and re-hydrate.

To meet my goal of finishing this weekend, tomorrow I'll have to get these five ribs riveted, the plumbing installed, and the end ribs sealed and clecoed. That will leave riveting the end ribs and installing the baffle and z-brackets on Sunday. We'll see...
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Yep, I'm the one doing the work...

Yep, I'm the one doing the work...

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All five interior ribs sealed and 100% clecoed.

All five interior ribs sealed and 100% clecoed.

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I clecoed the tank to the wing spar to ensure that the tank was not tweaked during assembly.

I clecoed the tank to the wing spar to ensure that the tank was not tweaked during assembly.

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