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-   -   Empennage/Tail Kit Question (https://vansairforce.net/community/showthread.php?t=190554)

alpake 12-29-2020 08:38 PM

Empennage/Tail Kit Question
 
I'm thinking about building a QB RV-14A, which would be my first RV build. Previously, I built a tube and fabric kit (mostly by myself) which had a comparatively small amount of riveting, nearly all of which could be squeezed or pulled. I'm trying to understand how much of the riveting of Empennage/Tail kit could be done by myself, without help. Any input any of you may have would be much appreciated!

Thanks,
Ken Pabst
Home Base: KEUL
N114KP, Phase 1

fgwilliams 12-29-2020 09:39 PM

Just a little
 
On mine, most help was needed on horizontal stabilizer skins. The deeper rivets were tough alone. Second time around, I got help. It can be done alone but a little help is necessary on this piece.
The side skins will require two also.
Once you get to the bigger pieces it turns into a two man job to rivet.

avatty 12-30-2020 12:30 AM

Here's the rub: You can build the empennage/tail kit 100 percent solo (I did), but to do that you have to become proficient in all of the different riveting methods (plus some improvised ones), that you will need to complete the rest of a standard kit. At least for me, that was a lot of worthwhile work.

If you are looking at a QB, you might not want so much of a time investment, and might be better served by working with someone who has been there before. So it may be a bit of a sliding scale, depending on which approach you favor.

In retrospect, the one skill I wish I had learned earlier was back riveting, which I really didn't tackle until the fuselage kit. It would have been like having an extra set of hands in riveting the aft fuselage skins, and probably other areas as well.

Jetmart 12-30-2020 03:48 AM

1 Attachment(s)
Quote:

Originally Posted by alpake (Post 1489732)
I'm thinking about building a QB RV-14A, which would be my first RV build. Previously, I built a tube and fabric kit (mostly by myself) which had a comparatively small amount of riveting, nearly all of which could be squeezed or pulled. I'm trying to understand how much of the riveting of Empennage/Tail kit could be done by myself, without help. Any input any of you may have would be much appreciated!

Thanks,
Ken Pabst
Home Base: KEUL
N114KP, Phase 1

I am a first time builder, never worked with aluminum and did not know how to rivet using any method other than pulled rivets. I riveted 99% myself. You will be able to find help for the few that you can't reach. I purchased the empennage kit a year ago to see if I would like it and could do it. I figured it was a small investment and the only real way to know. Figured if it did not work out I could recoup a good portion of my costs. If you built previously you will not have any problems. I have a few small projects to finish and then hang the engine. Go for it!

BravoAlphaRomeo 12-30-2020 07:35 AM

Jetmart - hats off to you. That is one heckuva lot of progress in 14 months :eek: You must have put in some long days....

9GT 12-30-2020 07:50 AM

I had no problem riveting the empennage section of the RV-10 by myself.

Jetmart 12-30-2020 10:04 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by BravoAlphaRomeo (Post 1489812)
Jetmart - hats off to you. That is one heckuva lot of progress in 14 months :eek: You must have put in some long days....

Not really, I am retired, Just over a 1000 hrs in 12 months of work and its a QB.
Covid has really sped up my project as there is not much else to do other than flying. When I started I was going to work on it to fill in time, had no completion date in mind, and it was going to be about the journey. Covid changed all that. I was lucky enough to order everything early when Covid first emerged.

n982sx 12-30-2020 09:34 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by avatty (Post 1489764)
In retrospect, the one skill I wish I had learned earlier was back riveting, which I really didn't tackle until the fuselage kit. It would have been like having an extra set of hands in riveting the aft fuselage skins, and probably other areas as well.

+1 to that.

You can back rivet a lot more of the plane than most people think, even round head rivets. It really comes in handy if you work mostly alone.

PaulvS 12-30-2020 10:11 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by n982sx (Post 1490053)
+1 to that.

You can back rivet a lot more of the plane than most people think, even round head rivets. It really comes in handy if you work mostly alone.

What technique do you use if you are to back rivet alone, i.e. how do you do it if your arms are not long or flexible enough to reach both ends of the rivet? I'm trying to figure out how I can do the fuselage working mostly on my own. Although I've got a couple of unskilled potential helpers, I'd rather spare them from any mistakes!

Jake14 12-31-2020 02:37 PM

I back-riveted the fuselage by putting the aft body on a table and positioning the fuselage using shims and wedges to make sure the rivet head is flush to the back rivet plate. a feeler gage comes in handy to make sure. Not a fast job, each rivet takes about 5-10 minutes and the ones along the lower curvature sometimes more. In some cases a floor jack pushing the back rivet plate up against the fuselage worked as well. Get lots of wood blocks and foam to wedge things together. Not a job for the impatient :-)


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