The wings 13th January 2007.

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The rear spars under construction, a very enjoyable exercise

Santa was very good to me this year

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Rear spars finished ,very easy compared to the main spars. Today was hot so I got my canopy out and sanded the edges to remove all the stress points, bend it past it's final shape to let it cook in the sun for a while.

I thought I would switch to Fahrenheit to see if we made it to the magic 100 degrees but it was not to be , although it did reach 98.5 later on in my steel shed.

Finally got to unpack my ribs ,the excitement builds.

Wing starting to take shape ,every thing went together beautifully, even the holes I measured and drilled in the rear spar matched the ribs perfectly (I used the attach bracket as a template) Lots of work to do yet though making another 2 million little brackets.

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Darth Vader brackets installed , these little beauties support the tubes for the pitot and the static sensors mounted under the right wing.

Gussets in for the first 4 ribs, I was not confident I could get a good rivet set in the top and bottom 4 holes so I put in 1/8th stainless steel bolts and nyloc nuts instead, not helped by me putting the rivets in the gussets that way round. Even with the rivets around the other way though I could not get any of my riveters in there with confidence. I felt it was important the fasteners in the gussets and the spar caps were in properly.

All the hardware for the aileron bell crank which mounts on number 9 aft rib.

A close up of the bell crank and support brackets in 3 stages of construction.

The little piece of metal with the broken drill sitting in it is my home made compass.

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Bell crank assembly almost finished. This all went together very nicely and quite a neatly designed little mechanism I thought , should give many years of faithful service

The short pushrod connection had me thinking for a while. The plans say to file down the brass thrust washer to make a 5 to 15 thou gap between the washer and the pushrod flange when the nut and bolt are tightened. This would only occur if the bush did not protrude past the washer. In my case the bush protrudes 3mm. I had to file down the BUSH to achieve my clearance. The other thing I had to do was ream out the hole in the pushrod flange so the bush would turn in the hole. This I accomplished by rapping some emery paper around a 1/4" drill ,putting it in the chuck of a portable drill and running it back and forth in the hole a few times until the bush was a nice turning fit.

The reason I was confused at first was the way the bush is used. Usually a bush like this is inserted into a tight fitting hole and a shaft would turn inside it. This system does the opposite , the bush is fixed to the bolt and bell crank and turns in the pushrod flange hole. There is nothing wrong with this system it's quite clever and as I said about the main pivot on the bell crank should last for years.

Of course had I read and digested the little note in the bottom left hand corner I would have saved a lot of head scratching. The term plate is what threw me , I call it a flange, I checked the dictionary and a flange can be a plate at the end of a pipe, you are always learning.

The long pushrod connection is no problem you just insert a small spacer bush into the ball joint and bolt the mechanism to the bell crank. The ball in the joint provides the movement.

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Aileron bell crank assembly all riveted together and installed on no 9 rib.

Here I have drilled the bell crank vertical support channel clips that attach to the skins, I wanted to make sure they were flush with the skins, hence the piece of angle sitting on the ribs and the other piece keeping the channel square with the rib.

Getting everything straight ready for the skins, The black rod sticking out of the rib is the Aileron push rod.

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The 27th of February 2007.

The Root ribs, you would not believe me if I said how long it took me to make these things.

On goes the bottom skin, the pre drilled holes line up perfectly with my GREEN lines on the ribs and rear spar.

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The 13th of March 2007.

Pitot and static lines in. Inspection plate on. Tie down bolt in. Flap hinge on and rivets in.

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The last job to do before the leading edge skins go on is dimpling the rib and skin to take the countersunk flush rivets. The Super simple dimple die worked fine with a couple of modifications, I spent quite a bit of time putting flush rivets into bits of scrap before I was happy with a system. I filed a flat on the die as some of the holes in my ribs were a little close to the side. Then I increased the depth of the female die as the rivets did not sit flush initially. I also learned the MAXIMUM size hole you can drill in the rib is 7/64 otherwise the rivet shafts pull through. This created another problem in that the nail supplied with the dimple die would not fit into a 7/64 hole so I just used a smaller nail. Once the hole is dimpled a 1/8th rivet goes in very nicely.

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Finally skins on and riveted the only things left are the fibre glass tips and the root wing doubler. I will do all that when the left wing catches up.

Left wing starting , I have to go through all that again ~~"Sigh"~~ but I won't photograph the process. I am sure it won't take as long as the right wing. Then I will do the flaps and Ailerons. THEN I start on the fuselage.

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Putting the wings in the fuselage. First job is to match the holes up and drill out the blocks to 1/4", It all went smoothly although I should have done this when the spars had no wing on them. The way we had it set up here I could slide the three little locating pins in and out by hand and the holes in the blocks lined up perfectly. Next put the wings in and drill them to the fuse sides. This did not go so smoothly , we had the wings in too far and of course the holes did not line up but at the time we though they were not in far enough. Pack up and put away to try another day. Good learning exercise though.

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Sunday 26th July 2009 almost the last job before polishing and painting

I said almost as I am sure I will find some more jops before I am finished. The wing tips went on with the miminum of effort. The only fibreglass job I did without cursing. They fit fine. I had heard a few horror stories about these things but mine fit like a glove I am very happy with them. Good work Sonex.