Right Elevator Priming

November 17th 2018, 4h

I primed all the parts of the right elevator.  The primer base become way too tick, after mixing, the primmer still had some lamps, which clogged the spay gun. Afterwards I mixed the primmer more and was able to get rid of the lamps.  I still need to follow up with Steward System to see if the primmer based is no longer good.


Elevator Skin Riveting and Right Skeleton Prep

November 10th 2018, 7h

Riveting the left elevator skin and riveted the trim plate to the skin.




Bent both left and right elevators




Prepared the skeleton for the right elevator:

  • matching drilling the reinforcement plates
  • match drilling spars and ribs
  • match drilling counter balance skin
  • installing the counterbalance weight
  • match drilling the skeleton to the skin
  • match drilling the horn


Elevator Skin Prep and Riveting

October 28th and November 4th, 8th 2018, 8h

Prepared the stiffeners for both right and left elevators:

  • We cut the stiffeners.
  • We smoothed all the edges.

Prepared the skin and stiffeners for both right and left elevators:

  • Removed the venyl protection.
  • matched drilled the skins to the the stiffeners.
  • Deburred both skin and stiffeners.
  • Dimpled skin.
  • Dimpled stiffeners.



Back riveted the the right elevator


Rudder Riveting and Trailing Edge Prep

October 27th, 28th and November 4th, 7th, 8th 2018, 18h

Riveted the horn brace. It was a bit tricky to get to some of the rivets.  The pneumatic riveting gun end up slightly damaging the the horn brace circle.  I fixed it by straighten it and sending it.


Installed the counter wait.

Riveted the counter balance skin and associated parts. The back riveting gun moved while riveting one of the rivets, bending the skin a little.  I checked with van and they said it is ok to proceed and that I can try fixing it with mallet.  The mallet fix did not work, but the bend is not that bad, so I decided to proceed with the current state.


Riveted the skeleton to the skin.  Some of the back rivets to attach the counter balance skin to the skin were tricky to reach, but by the end we were able to get all of them.  When getting toward the trailing edge, the pneumatic riveting gun, nor the backing bar could fit, so I had to convert those to pop rivets.

Fitted the bearings.  One of the bearing did not go all the way.  I checked with Vans and it is expected that this bearing would not go all the way.  As long as I see a couple threads outside the platenut, they said that it is good.  I checked that I have a couple threads.



Did some prep work for the trailing edge.  We primed the skin; however, after checking with Vans we found out that we should not have any primer on the skin around the trailing edge, or on the trailing edge.  So, we had to remove the primer, which was time consuming.  Then we buffed the area.


To get a straight trailing edge, I got an aluminum angle, matched drilled the holes in the trailing edge to the angle, deburred them and clecoed everything.  The trailing edge looks straight.  At the point of glueing the trailing edge, I realized that the proseal I both mentioned that it is for Granite, this did not seem right.  I called Vans, and it was not the correct proseal, good catch . I bought another proseal from Vans



Rudder Priming and skeleton Initial Riveting

October 13th and 20th 2018, 8h

With the decision of priming everything, we went ahead and prime all parts of the Rudder.

Afterwards, we got to the riveting parts, we riveted the fore spar, but the we faced few issues:

  • the bolts and platenuts mentioned for attaching the reinforcement plates did not fit together, the pitch of the thread seems different.  I decided to follow up with Vans about this.
  • Riveting the trailing edge of the rudder is pretty complex.  It is very important to keep the vertical stabilizer straight for good flight performance, unless you wait to experience some pretty non linear dynamics!  We read the instructions, but they are not very clear, so I decided to call Vans about this one as well.




Vertical Stabilizer Priming and Riveting

October 13th and 20th 2018, 8h

With the decision of priming everything, we went ahead and prime all parts of the vertical stabilizer.

We thought that the primer sets in 30min, so we went ahead an clegoed all parts together. Then once we got to the riveting, we realized that the primer was not fully set; it was getting pealed by the clegos.  We decided to go ahead with the riveting anyway, then prime again later.

We rivets all parts of the vertical stabilizer, except the few holes that it was mentioned to leave non riveted for assembly with horizontal stabilizer and other parts later on.

Then we went back and fixed the priming. The vertical stabilizer is looking nice and ready for storage.




Horizontal Stabilizer Priming

October 13th, 2018, 4h

After doing some readings and a discussion with technical counsel, I decided to prime all parts to extend the longevity of the airplane, given that I live by the ocean in Half Moon bay.

I looked up few options of primers and decided to go with a two part EkoPoxy Primer which I use with a finishline FLG-IV HVLP gun kit.

After experimenting with the setting, we were able to obtain some good results.