Originally Posted by Blizzard
Got all the elevator parts clecoed together and thought I'd see how how the fairings would eventually fit in. I was expecting them to nestle perfectly inside the E-903 Outboard Tip Rib. Not even close. As much as a quarter inch gap between the two surfaces. Am I missing something? Wondering how that much gap would ever be dealt with come time to match drill and fit them in place?
From my experience with the RV8, the fiberglass tips supplied in the kit must be fitted to the elevators and horizontal stabilizer just like metal components. At the moment, the fiberglass pieces have no structural stiffness and they can be easily bended and fitted to the metal tips. You may even have to sand down the edges so they will fit nicely to your parts. Assuming the fiberglass tips are manufactured perfectly, there is no guarantee they will fit perfectly to all the horizontal stabilizers or elevators because the builders introduce small inconsistencies to their final metal parts.
The tips are made thin enough so you can mold them to close tolerance with the metal parts using clecos. Imperfections can be filled using epoxy+microballoons to save weight. However, microballoons applied by hand tend to have voids but you can finish the surface to perfection using lightweight Bondo before painting. All the classic Glasair and Lancair need a lot of fiberglass fitting+sanding that make you wish you are building a Vans airplane.
A note on the tips. You should follow Vans instructions of stiffening the fiberglass tip with a piece of fiberglass sandwich foam core. This will truly make the tip structurally stable before you microballoon. I use the pink foam from Home Depot.