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-   -   RV-14A #140665 C-FZYQ (https://vansairforce.net/community/showthread.php?t=173917)

2of5 08-02-2019 06:28 PM

RV-14 #140665
 
So, long story: In the late 1980s I was a subscriber to Kitplanes magazine, and saw ads and articles about the RV-3 and -4. That was the plane I wanted to build. I was living at the time near the original location of ACS in Fullerton, so I went there and bought several books by Tony Bingelis, which I still have to this day.

But life and family, as they often do, took precedence. The thought of building took a seat in the "way back" as we used to call it, but I still held onto the books.

In late 2016 I got the itch to look back into building (a RV-7 this time) and set to work locating a partially completed kit. I bought an emp kit from the classifieds here on this site, brought it home and completed the horizontal stab. The vertical and the rudder were done by the previous owner.

December of 2017 my wife and I went to Portland for a long weekend, and my ulterior motive ;) was to get a tour of the Vans mothership. During the tour, I sat with her in their -14 factory plane, and was impressed with the amount of room that it had compared to the -7. I tried at the time to convince my wife that we needed the larger version. But she said we should just continue on with what we already had.

Fast forward to last week at OSH, at the Vans display, I sat with her in the same -14 and in the silver and gray -14A. Without much prompting from me, she agreed that she liked the roomy cabin, and suggested that if I wanted to, we could put a deposit down on the emp kit :eek::)

I didn't waste a minute going back inside and getting in line with my Visa card.

Got the email yesterday with the agreement to sign, and this evening I got my order acknowledgement and wire transfer instructions. I called Anne to give her my shipping information, and she said they have something like 39 tail kits on order from OSH, and that the crating guys are slammed right now. So in 3 to 6 weeks I should be picking it up in Michigan and bringing it through customs home.

I just keep reminding myself "one bite at a time" :)

Tom Martin 08-02-2019 06:38 PM

Tod
Welcome to the world of the RV14. You will find it a great kit with excellent instructions. There are numerous RVs in the area, Windsor, Sarnia, St.Thomas etc. I believe there is an Oshkosh winner in the Lemmington area. This would be an excellent plane for you to examine and try to emulate. Get to know some of the local builders they will be of great help. This forum is wonderful but it is nothing like having an experienced builder actually show you how to do some of the tasks.

Tom Martin
St.Thomas. 519-281-1369

2of5 08-02-2019 06:46 PM

Thanks Tom!

RickWoodall 08-04-2019 07:07 PM

Hi
 
You know they are building and doing videos on the build of an rv14 at ch2a in windsor right? There are three 9a, 2 7s and 6a based in windsor. Stop in and say hi anytime.

RONSIM 08-05-2019 06:33 AM

Think I convinced Todd to step up
 
to the -14 after a few flights in my -6A! Todd and I are both "plus" sized and the -6A cockpit is similar to the -7A, so...?...just a bit tight!

I saw pics of Todd's work on his -7A emp and thought the work looked spectacular --- I am sure his -14A will be of high quality.


Uncle Ron

Quadman 08-05-2019 11:56 AM

RV 7 Emp
 
Hi Todd
I noticed in your post that you purchased a partially finished RV 7 Emp. Did you buy this from a builder in the USA? If so what problems or issues did you have getting it to Canada. I am looking at a partially completed kit from the USA. Any help about the customs and the inspections from MD RA would be appreciated. Thanks

2of5 08-13-2019 08:13 AM

Importing a partially completed kit
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by Quadman (Post 1364365)
Hi Todd
I noticed in your post that you purchased a partially finished RV 7 Emp. Did you buy this from a builder in the USA? If so what problems or issues did you have getting it to Canada. I am looking at a partially completed kit from the USA. Any help about the customs and the inspections from MD RA would be appreciated. Thanks

Hi,
Yep, I bought it from a gentleman in Dayton. I had spent a week in the states for work when I picked it up, and got lucky as my wife was with me and the CBSA agent at the border combined our exemptions and we didn't pay any taxes on it. So no problems at all. When my 14 kit comes in I will pick it up in Detroit, and I anticipate paying PST on the entire amount.

The previous builder gave me a bill of sale, and I contacted Vans with that info, which allowed them to transfer the serial number to me. Give them a call to clarify, they were very helpful.

Once I got the transfer completed to me, I sent in my letter of intent to the MD-RA, and they opened a file for me. I never got to the point of requiring an inspection with the RV-7.

Hope that helps!

Good luck

Tom Martin 08-13-2019 10:48 AM

MDRA requires that no parts of the aircraft are closed before inspection. The exemption are parts on a quick build kit. An example would be the closed factory fuel tanks.
If for example, the Vertical stab is closed in they have the right to ask you to open the stab for inspection.
Contact MDRA, I have found them good to work with.

2of5 10-27-2019 05:53 PM

Finally an update
 
I've been too busy building (and working to pay for it all) to make any updates, either here or on the blog rv14a.ca. Until today.

I finally started populating the blog with all the pictures of my progress so far, as well as some lightweight descriptions of my experiences to date.


So far, I've got the vertical stab complete and ready to rivet up to the point of leaving the rear spar (completed) off for the MD-RA inspection required here in Canada. The rudder, likewise. I will need to call my assigned inspector and ask him how far he wants me to go on the rudder so that he can inspect. In contrast to the -7 rudder I was building before, the -14 has lightening holes in the rudder spar, so he may be able to see everything enough to let me finish the entire thing. We'll see.

I've also got the horizontal stab skeleton ready to rivet together, however I've run into a stopping point. The yoke on my Main Squeeze won't work on this substructure, so I'll have to order a longeron yoke first thing tomorrow from Cleaveland. My aching biceps and shoulders may convince me to order a pneumatic squeezer while I'm at it. I did pick up a tungsten bucking bar this week, and I'm looking forward to trying it out on the VS. I even picked up a roll of hockey tape to wrap it in so I don't mar my sweet AKZO primer.

Two goofs so far, which I've described in the blog: first was trying to separate the rudder bottom rib 904A and B using sheet metal snips. The snips bent the rib flange enough to crack it ever so slightly, so I tossed that part in the scrap bin and ordered a new one. Which the USPS lost, and I had to pop for another one at no cost (thanks Vans!) but I did have to pay for 2 Day FedEx shipping. The original lost shipment did finally show up over six weeks later, which I refused and sent back to Vans.

The other goof was last night, when I discovered that I didn't countersink the HS front spar deep enough in twelve places. After I squeezed all the rivets. I guess I was a little apprehensive about taking too much metal off, but it wound up costing me time in the end. I did manage to drill out all twelve rivets with not a spot of damage. I attribute this to the practice I had disassembling an entire Cessna 140 fuselage earlier this year -- I probably drilled out over five thousand rivets. I did replace the flawed rivets, and was able to prime the new countersinks with some SEM sprayed into a cup and then dabbed on with a cotton swab. I didn't feel like mixing up some AKZO for twelve holes.

Speaking of AKZO. That stuff is great (no primer war please). And I've made a decision that some may deem foolish, but I have been priming both sides of the empennage skins. I did some searching online, and found a couple of threads here that described using AKZO on external surfaces during the build. The consensus by those in the aerospace industry was that priming externally won't really hurt anything, the finish painter will just need to wetsand and prep before shooting another coat of topcoat-compatible primer. So I will have extra time, money and energy into full prime, as well as a small weight penalty, but I'm ok with it. I probably will do my own exterior painting as I go along anyway. I'm leaning toward PPG Ford Mustang Orange Fury. ;)

I already had the bulk of my tools from the -7 build, but I did spring for the RV-14 specific tools available from Cleaveland recently, including the modified dimple dies, the elevator bucking bar, the safety pin rivet squeezer set, and some others. I also got their substructure dimple dies for dimpling the ribs and other parts.

As winter is on the way, we had to move almost everything to the basement, where I'll continue assembly of what I have so far, then begin prepping the elevator and the tailcone. Figure that will take me to spring, when I can prime those items and finish up. Hoping to order the wing kit after the first of the year.

And finally a hint to those of you with municipal recycling programs. Not sure how it works in other places, but here in Ontario, recycling bins seem to be subsidized by the government. Meaning I can go around the corner to my local Home Hardware and pick up small bins for $3 each, large bins $6. These are heavy plastic, and much cheaper than buying Rubbermaid bins to store parts in. So I've obtained about six or seven small bins and a couple of large ones, and parts are segregated by type into these bins, i.e. E- in one set, HS- in another, then the wiring harness, cables, etc. in another, then stored on my wire bakers rack or underneath the EAA 1000 tables I'm using.

2of5 11-02-2019 07:27 PM

New squeezer arrived
 
So in the last post I mentioned that I needed to order a longeron or flange-nose yoke for my Main Squeeze squeezer from Cleaveland Tool. I got on their website Monday to order and realized that my arms and shoulders were still hurting from using the manual squeezer. So I took the plunge and bought their pneumatic squeezer kit. I emailed Mike and asked if they could substitute the flange-nose yoke for the 3" yoke that comes standard with the kit, as I already had the yoke with my Main Squeeze. Mike emailed me back right away and said it was no problem. I completed the order with Annette, and everything arrived Wednesday. I'm 4 for 4 on great service by Mike, Annette and the rest of the crew at Cleaveland!

After getting things set up last night (Friday) I had a cinch job of finishing up the rest of the rivets in the front horizontal stabilizer spar thanks to the new squeezer. I'm looking forward to more rivets to squeeze.

I also countersunk the 400+ holes in both spars and the stringers and prepped both skins tonight with Prekote and maroon Scotchbrite and warm water. Prekote says to prime aluminum within 24 hours of prep, so I'll warm up the garage first thing in the morning and prime the skins inside and out. And then use the leftover AKZO and a Q-Tip to touch up all the countersinks I made on the spars and stringers.

And my Amazon-provided torque wrench also arrived on Thursday, so I finished bolting the elevator center hinge bearing bracket onto the rear spar, then torque sealed it.


2of5 11-05-2019 04:01 AM

VS "done" as far as Canada allows
 
November 4: riveted the VS skin to the skeleton. I wrapped the tungsten bucking bar in hockey tape to try to keep the scuffing to a minimum. Got it all completed in one session. All but the front two rivets on the VS-706 tip rib. There?s no room to get a squeezer or bucking bar in there, so it looks like I?ll have to fabricate something to be able to get those last two done.



And the rear spar is clecoed into place for now. Because Canada requires a pre-closing inspection, no parts of the structure can be enclosed beforehand. So I?ll have to leave the VS (among other parts) incomplete until I get enough done to have the inspector come out. This would probably include the VS, HS, possibly elevators and rudder, wing bottom skins and the bottom of the fuselage under the floor panels.





Some blue masking tape on the flush set makes quite a difference in reducing marring. I got about 20 rivets out of one piece of tape.


Canadian_JOY 11-05-2019 09:26 AM

Your level of attention to detail is going to serve you very well throughout this build. Looking terrific so far.

BTW if your MD-RA inspector is reasonably local, it can be quite worthwhile to have your inspector pop in for a progress inspection if you are ready to close up the tail pieces. That way you can get sign-off on those items, finish them and have the satisfaction of having fully finished parts that will be ready to hang on the airplane. I know MD-RA charges for mileage, but if your inspector is close it might be worthwhile to pay him the going rate for a quick visit.

2of5 11-16-2019 03:10 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Canadian_JOY (Post 1384328)
Your level of attention to detail is going to serve you very well throughout this build. Looking terrific so far.

BTW if your MD-RA inspector is reasonably local, it can be quite worthwhile to have your inspector pop in for a progress inspection if you are ready to close up the tail pieces. That way you can get sign-off on those items, finish them and have the satisfaction of having fully finished parts that will be ready to hang on the airplane. I know MD-RA charges for mileage, but if your inspector is close it might be worthwhile to pay him the going rate for a quick visit.

Thanks for the feedback! :) Unfortunately he's a couple of hours away.

2of5 11-16-2019 03:16 PM

HS Done
 
At least as far as I can go until the pre-closing inspection:

November 9-16: After clecoing in the 905 nose ribs, I riveted them into place. Then the completed front spar/interspar assembly was put into place and clecoed in. Skipping every other hole, I still managed to run out of silver 3/32″ clecoes. I ended up working from one side to the other, moving clecoes to the other side as I completed a section.





Once things were clecoed into place, I began riveting the skins to the flanges of the front spar, then riveting the skins to the interspar ribs up to the stringers. Then the skin was riveted to the stringers on each side, then the remaining ribs were riveted to the skins. I used the tungsten bucking bar and flush set on the rivets that I couldn’t reach with the squeezer.

I had to drill out a couple of rivets whose shop heads were overdriven and flattened out. And looking back, I should have started riveting the skin on the bottom side of the HS, as the first part of the rivets set resulted in some skin “lumpiness” that I’m not too pleased with. The second side turned out better once I had more practice.

I did finally get in contact with my assigned MD-RA inspector, who informed me that every rivet must be visible in response to my question of how far could I assemble. So again, I will leave the rear spar clecoed into place, and the two inboard HS-905 nose ribs will be left out to allow a clear view of rivets in the front of the horizontal stab. So for now, I’ve put the partially completed assembly on the shelf, but will finish the front spar to nose rib blind rivets once I pick up my swivel nose rivet puller I ordered from Aircraft Tool. There is simply no room for a regular rivet puller when trying to pull those dozen rivets.

On to the elevator next. I will be travelling to Colorado for work starting tomorrow, so I'll be packing the first batch of elevator parts, some sandpaper and my deburring tools to work on in the hotel. No sense wasting downtime in a hotel.






RickWoodall 01-27-2020 05:39 AM

MDRA
 
If your inspector is Mac, great guy. There are several 14's being built around our area. If you can piggy back on one of their inspections, likely wont get hit too much for travel and then able to close up and move on. Just an idea.
Work looks excellent. Nice job.

2of5 01-27-2020 06:33 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by RickWoodall (Post 1403404)
If your inspector is Mac, great guy. There are several 14's being built around our area. If you can piggy back on one of their inspections, likely wont get hit too much for travel and then able to close up and move on. Just an idea.
Work looks excellent. Nice job.

Hi Rick,
Yep, it is Mac, we've played phone tag, he left me a message about rivet visibility. I've been down to CH2A, and just volunteered with Perry for the Flight Chops build, and met another local builder as well. I actually thought of coordinating inspections yesterday while I was deburring, thanks for the tip. And thanks for the feedback!

Champ 01-27-2020 07:11 AM

Todd,
I just noticed your signature address is the same as mine. It would be great to get together on RV stuff. I have an RV-8 at Leamington airport C-FDTQ. I?ll send you a PM.

Dennis

2of5 02-15-2020 07:15 AM

Elevators
 
Been busy lately, so updates are behind.

December 14-29: Cut and fit all the elevator parts, then disassembled for deburring and priming.










2of5 02-15-2020 07:23 AM

Rudder assembly Part 2a
 
January 12 ? February 4: I had been putting this task off as I was apprehensive about riveting the trailing edge and keeping it straight. As it turns out, the double flush riveting was easier than I thought it would be and the finished trailing edge is pretty dead-on straight.

Having a flat surface is essential, and my EAA1000 workbenches are good in that aspect. But in order to help it a bit more, I used a leftover Formica kitchen countertop that I had been holding onto from our last house. And I went to Home Depot and picked up a 1-1/2?1-1/2 inch piece of steel angle. My original thought was to match drill the trailing edge to the steel angle, but decided against it as overkill, so I just used it to enhance the flatness of the countertop.

I was going to follow Van?s instructions and use the double-sided tape method, but had spoken with other local builders who mentioned that they had some adhesion issues with the tape. So while we were in San Diego in December, we made a side trip to Aircraft Spruce in Corona and I picked up a pint kit of tank sealant, among other items.

I put down some painters tape to keep things from getting too messy and then match drilled the trailing edge directly into the bottom surface of the MDF countertop. I mixed up the first batch of tank sealant and then clecoed the right rudder skin and trailing edge wedge directly into the MDF surface after applying a very thin layer of tank sealant. Mating surfaces were scuffed with 150 grit sandpaper and cleaned with acetone and then 91 percent isopropyl alcohol and allowed to dry thoroughly.

This assembly was then allowed to sit for a week (Sunday to Sunday) to cure. The angle was clamped to the edge of the countertop just to serve as an additional source of flatness.





After curing a week, now comes the part where you need four hands. I mixed up another batch of tank sealant, then applied a very thin layer to the upper surface of the trailing edge wedge and clecoed the lower corner into the workbench as described in the instructions. Here?s where the MDF countertop was an inadequate surface for what was to follow.

I don?t have photos of this process, as we both had our hands full. The ?upper? (left) rudder skin is fixed at the bottom trailing edge corner and then is rolled downward onto the tank sealant, clecoed to the benchtop, and the stiffeners are blind riveted to the shear clips attached to the ?lower? skin, gradually rolling the skins together.

With all the movement entailed at the beginning of this process, the lower 10 or so holes in the MDF hogged out and wouldn?t hold a cleco. In hindsight, I should have used a piece of aluminum angle, which I happened to have around. To compensate, I used a piece from the trim bundle that Vans throws into the kit as a makeshift clamping surface to allow the clecos to grip. Not the best solution, but it worked out fine.

To ensure that things stayed together, I used some bucking bars, hammers, lead counterweights and an exercise weight (wrapped in tape) to hold the skins at these lower holes together a little better for a couple of days. The upper set of holes seemed to hold up better, and these stayed clamped much better.





I allowed this completed assembly to cure for a full two weeks just to make sure. In the meantime I cut out the foam trailing edge ribs and started work on the tailcone pieces listed in 10-02 and 10-03. I also fabricated the F-01411D HS attach bar support. These were all completed, deburred and are ready for primer as soon as it warms up enough.



After putting it off long enough, I decided to dive into the double flush riveting that I had been dreading. I took my back-riveting set to the garage and clamped it into the vise and drove the roll pin out with a drift punch. This left me with a small diameter flush rivet set.

Following the instructions, I assembled the rudder spar assembly into the completed skins with no issues. I then riveted the skins to the spar using the squeezer as much as possible. The last few rivets on the bottom had to be driven with the gun as the yoke I have isn?t deep enough.








2of5 02-15-2020 07:23 AM

Rudder assembly Part 2b
 
I put a strip of painter?s tape down the trailing edge then labeled the holes 1 through 10 and then repeating. I also taped the edges of my back riveting plate to avoid scratching, even though I have already rounded them off and polished them.

Now for the task I had been apprehensive about. I loaded the holes with rivets, applied rivet tape and flipped it over. Starting in the center, I partially set every tenth rivet following the instructions in Section 5. After the first few, I started to get the hang of the process, starting perpendicular to the back rivet plate, then smoothly pivoting to perpendicular to the trailing edge wedge in one motion. After each round of rivets, I eyeballed the trailing edge to ensure it didn?t start creeping out of straightness. So far so good.





After getting all the rivets 90% set, I went back over the trailing edge and finished setting them in the same every-tenth pattern, checking for straightness along the way. I ran my fingers along the rivet line, finishing any that felt like they were proud of the surface more than others. The final results turned out better than I expected. I suspect the tank sealant and the leisurely cure time helped keep everything together well during the riveting. Nothing shifted at all. Any tank sealant that squeezed out was cleaned up with acetone, and the rudder was put on the shelf with the other mostly-completed parts. On to priming the elevator and tailcone parts and waiting for spring. In the meantime I am starting on a PVC tubing spray booth in the garage.






Champ 02-15-2020 10:54 AM

Todd,

If you run short on clecos let me know. Having built both wings together I have lots.

Dennis

2of5 02-15-2020 04:47 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Champ (Post 1408060)
Todd,

If you run short on clecos let me know. Having built both wings together I have lots.

Dennis

Thanks Dennis! I'll keep that in mind. :)

Jetmart 02-15-2020 04:52 PM

Todd you will have to come over when I do mine.
Did you consider squeezing them?

2of5 02-15-2020 06:09 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Jetmart (Post 1408121)
Todd you will have to come over when I do mine.
Did you consider squeezing them?

I did, but the angled dies I bought from Cleaveland were set up for the opposite angle for the elevators. They're held in alignment with a wire spring, but it wasn't removable.

2of5 10-24-2021 04:24 PM

First update in a while...
 
Now that things have settled down, I went ahead and placed my SB fuse order back in August, and my finishing kit last week. I'm expecting the fuse in or around April and the finishing kit next August.

We'll probably be moving between now and then to a place with a larger garage but I have some fiberglass work to keep me busy, also collecting other smaller items along the way.

2of5 04-19-2022 01:56 PM

SB Fuselage on the way!
 
Last week, Vans website said my kit would head to crating around April 25 to May 15.

A day or two later I get an email that it headed to crating. Then the next day an email saying my kit had shipped. :eek:

They've really sped up the process it appears. I've been following its progress across the country, and tracking shows the truck just left Minneapolis on its way to Detroit, I think I should be able to pick it up this weekend if ABF is open.


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