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Old 08-20-2023, 02:41 PM
cajunwings cajunwings is offline
Join Date: Jun 2007
Location: new iberia la
Posts: 967
Default Easy fix.

My opinion is replacing the skin will cause more issues than what you currently have. I filled a hole where a transponder antenna was located with a backing doubler and a filler plug made from the same thickness aluminum as the skin. AC 43.13 is a great reference for how to do this. You would need to slightly curve the filler plug to match the wing curve. I used a single NAS 1097 rivet to secure the plug to the doubler. You could over dimple just a tad and sand the filler plate down a couple 1/1000 ths so everything is just below surface level. After that a trace of micro, bondo ect will make it disappear after priming.

Don Broussard
RV9 Rebuild in Progress
57 Pacer
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Old 08-20-2023, 03:19 PM is offline
Join Date: Jan 2017
Location: Battle Ground WA
Posts: 722

My big question is, Can you get to the back side of the dent/hole? If you can clean and prep the area for the patch. (on the inside) Then just glue it in place with some epoxy. let it cure and then fill the outside of the hole.
No rivets at all.
I can't imagine how it could break loose.
If just gluing the patch in doesn't seem to solve it to your satisfaction then put a piece glass over it and more epoxy.
To be honest. If it were my problem? I would just put a piece of glass with epoxy on the back and fill the front with epoxy and filler material and move on.
I personally do not think an aluminum patch would be required.
My luck varies Fixit
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Old 08-20-2023, 04:16 PM
Kojo Kojo is offline
Join Date: Oct 2020
Location: Englewood Cliffs
Posts: 21

Thanks for all the suggestions.

The piece to the side of the hole (which has been drilled out in the second picture) is to placed behind the skin as a doubler. Will be riveted to the skin from within the wing. I have access from the wing tip. I did make a circular version (per AC43-13) however found the rectangular version easier to conform to the leading edge. The question becomes, what is the best filler to place in the defect once the doubler is placed behind the skin. I have fashioned a circular piece but fixing(riveting) would warp the piece given the small seize.Thought there might be an established filler approach. AC43 does not discuss this.

To answer some questions, the pictures may not be that clear but AC circular doubler is 2.5 " in diameter suggesting 8 rivets angled a t 45 degrees. There are 8 on this doubler which is not larger the 2.5 " and the rivet/drill distances are within "code" of 4-6D. Already have a pitot/AOA Garmin mounted to wing. Already have the Premier Z-tip landing lights ready for installation. JD weld sounds like a good idea. Would consider new skin as the very last resort.

Would any consider patching with West System Epoxy Resin and sanding this down to conform with the remaining wing?

Hoping Vans has something soon and will share with the group when I hear of something.

Thanks again.
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Old 08-20-2023, 04:52 PM
Taltruda Taltruda is offline
Join Date: Oct 2017
Location: Las Vegas, NV
Posts: 1,689

Drop the bucking bar a few more times and install some .50 cal guns in there!!
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RV-4 flying…
RV-8 empenage finished 10-2020

Wings Started.. 11-2020
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Old 08-20-2023, 05:14 PM
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PaulvS PaulvS is offline
Join Date: Aug 2019
Location: Western Australia
Posts: 1,633

If the hole is in the last bay then I think it is not necessary to fit a structural patch. The stresses are low, which is why bigger cutouts for landing lights go in the last bay.

I would attach a 1.5 inch square curved patch on the inside with JB Weld. It sticks very well if the surface is roughened and cleaned.

The cosmetic depression can be filled wth epoxy micro filler at the time of working on the other fibreglass parts in the finishing kit. Bondo type polyester filler could also be used but it may shrink slightly.

Vans support is slow at the moment.
Paul vS (yes I'm also a Van)
Building RV-6A #22320 O-320 FP. Airframe structure 95% complete, now working on integration, plumbing and wiring.
Flying my Aeroprakt A-22 STOL and the aero club's RV-9A while I build
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Old 08-20-2023, 05:23 PM
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fl-mike fl-mike is offline
Join Date: Jul 2005
Posts: 1,983

I’m feeling a landing light….
Mike W
Venice, FL

N164WM RV-6A Slider/O-360/FP Sold 4/2022
N184WM (RV-8) Flying. Titan IOX-370/ CS/G3X. 2023 SnF Outstanding Workmanship award
N184P reserved (RV-8QB) Empennage kit, QB wings, QB fuselage, finish kit, and engine in the shop
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Old 08-20-2023, 05:32 PM
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Webb Webb is offline
Join Date: Oct 2007
Location: Jackson, MS
Posts: 1,876

If you can get to the backside, I would make a new doubler that matched the curve. Push it against the skin and drill match. Countersink the skin.

Make a 3/4” round filler with same curve and rivet it in on the doubler. Rivet the inside doubler. You will have a very small ring to fill. Mix epoxy with balloons and fill ring. Sand it. When painted, the patch is invisible.

An exterior patch works but is ugly. An interior patch will be invisible once filled and sanded.
Webb Willmott
RV8 - Current Build
N414WW Reserved
V35B - Flying
RV7A - N32WW (Sold)
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Old 08-20-2023, 06:27 PM
agent4573 agent4573 is offline
Join Date: Aug 2019
Location: Mountain view
Posts: 813

Epoxy with microbeads will fill it easily. Personally I wouldn't even rivet the backplate on, just some black rtv or proseal it in place. That part of the wing isn't carrying heavy stresses so it doesn't need to be a structural repair (verify with vans). I used a small back plate and micro to fill in my QB stall warner hole and after paint you can't tell it was ever there.
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Last edited by agent4573 : 08-20-2023 at 06:51 PM.
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Old 08-21-2023, 09:38 AM
Kojo Kojo is offline
Join Date: Oct 2020
Location: Englewood Cliffs
Posts: 21

Terrific suggestions all around.

Tom (Las Vegas) was the most entertaining and brought a lot of chuckles.
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Old 08-21-2023, 10:27 AM
andoman andoman is offline
Join Date: Jul 2006
Location: Payson, AZ
Posts: 227

Since bucking rivets in the leading edge will be a challenge, consider CS4-4 flush pull rivets along with the adhesive of choice. They will provide a desired clamping force while the adhesive sets.
Please, photos of your finished fix.
Good Luck!
"The plane won't build itself..." RV-7A N7.62MM sold
-RV4 purchased. Extensive refurbishment complete. “Takes off by it’s self, flys hands off, lands by it’s self...”
-HRII with F-1 Mount and Gear: First flight 08/11/23!!!
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