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  #1  
Old 12-29-2020, 09:38 PM
alpake alpake is offline
 
Join Date: May 2012
Location: Eagle, ID
Posts: 1
Default 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
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  #2  
Old 12-29-2020, 10:39 PM
fgwilliams fgwilliams is offline
 
Join Date: Nov 2018
Location: Auburn, AL
Posts: 18
Default 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.
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HS done
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  #3  
Old 12-30-2020, 01:30 AM
avatty avatty is offline
 
Join Date: Sep 2015
Location: Walnut Creek, CA
Posts: 44
Default

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.
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Walnut Creek, CA
RV-14 slow-build - fuselage kit in progress
1949 Cessna 140A - IRAN'd 2017
Dues paid for 2021
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  #4  
Old 12-30-2020, 04:48 AM
Jetmart Jetmart is offline
 
Join Date: Sep 2019
Location: Windsor, Ontario
Posts: 304
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by alpake View Post
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!
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Glenn Martin
Windsor, Ontario
1942 Tiger Moth
2017 Waco YMF-5
Kit # 140694
Started October 22, 2019
Engine, prop, and cowling to complete
2021 Dues Paid

Last edited by Jetmart : 12-30-2020 at 04:52 AM.
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  #5  
Old 12-30-2020, 08:35 AM
BravoAlphaRomeo BravoAlphaRomeo is offline
 
Join Date: Jan 2020
Location: Edgewood, KY
Posts: 17
Default

Jetmart - hats off to you. That is one heckuva lot of progress in 14 months You must have put in some long days....
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  #6  
Old 12-30-2020, 08:50 AM
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9GT 9GT is offline
 
Join Date: Jan 2010
Location: Southern Michigan
Posts: 2,077
Default

I had no problem riveting the empennage section of the RV-10 by myself.
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Howell, MI
RV-10: #41686 Under Construction
RV-9A: #90949 Under Construction
RV-10: #40637 Completed/Sold 2016
Cozy MKIV:#656 Completed/Sold 2007
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  #7  
Old 12-30-2020, 11:04 AM
Jetmart Jetmart is offline
 
Join Date: Sep 2019
Location: Windsor, Ontario
Posts: 304
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Quote:
Originally Posted by BravoAlphaRomeo View Post
Jetmart - hats off to you. That is one heckuva lot of progress in 14 months 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.
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Glenn Martin
Windsor, Ontario
1942 Tiger Moth
2017 Waco YMF-5
Kit # 140694
Started October 22, 2019
Engine, prop, and cowling to complete
2021 Dues Paid

Last edited by Jetmart : 12-31-2020 at 04:33 AM.
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  #8  
Old 12-30-2020, 10:34 PM
n982sx n982sx is offline
 
Join Date: Apr 2010
Location: Chicago, IL
Posts: 363
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Quote:
Originally Posted by avatty View Post
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.
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Built and Flying RV-14A N626KM SN 140093 http://n626km.com
Built and Flying Sonex N982SX http://n982sx.com
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  #9  
Old 12-30-2020, 11:11 PM
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PaulvS PaulvS is offline
 
Join Date: Aug 2019
Location: Western Australia
Posts: 529
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Quote:
Originally Posted by n982sx View Post
+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!
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Building RV-6A #22320 O-320 FP. Wings and tail complete, working on fuselage
Flying my Aeroprakt A-22 STOL and the aero club's RV-9A while I build
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  #10  
Old 12-31-2020, 03:37 PM
Jake14 Jake14 is offline
 
Join Date: May 2014
Location: Seattle
Posts: 343
Default

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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