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Old 05-27-2016, 03:58 AM
nacoblio nacoblio is offline
Join Date: Dec 2015
Location: Tacoma Wa
Posts: 19
Default well it happened

Moved to the Tacoma area this month. After we got settled we decided to make the pilgrimage down to the RV plant and check things out. I had planned on maybe getting the practice kit and preview plans at best. After my wife and I got to go for a flight we ended up with a RV7 emp with electric trim and a practice tool box. For anyone who is on the fence about this and can get to their shop in Aurora Or I would good. The flight was amazing and with the 7 the first kit fits easily into a car.
So now that we have taken the plunge I am looking for recommendations on tools. We had not planned to pull the trigger so soon on this so I imagine it will be a week or two before we can really start working. I plan to spend this weekend getting my garage set up so that part should be taken care of. The information that I could really use some advice on would be tools. There are so many options out there from all the different companies. For the rivet gun I am looking at a kit from browns that seems to have everything I would need.
there are some upgrades in the 777 kit vs the 73. Are the extra parts worth the investment? is this a product worth getting?
Dimple die and dimpling
We are going to be using the DRDt2 dimpler. I do have a question about the dies. The dies from cleveland seem to be twice as expensive as the ones from aircraft spruce. us there a good reason for this? Are they worth the extra investment? Are there any dimple die that we need other than the ones from the vans web page. 3/32" Rivet Dimple Die ** 1/8" Rivet Dimple Die #8 ScrewDimple Die? Any you wish you had but didnt or had but didnt need?
any further advice you might have for a brand new guy would be appreciated. Thanks

Last edited by nacoblio : 05-27-2016 at 04:02 AM.
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Old 05-27-2016, 04:11 AM
Vlad's Avatar
Vlad Vlad is offline
Join Date: Oct 2008
Location: Utah
Posts: 8,440

Congratulations! Tail kit is the most memorable part of the airplane. Enjoy your build. Yes and yes on Cleveland dimple dies.
Where is N666BK?

Не имей сто рублей, а имей сто друзей.
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Old 05-27-2016, 06:41 AM
StuBob StuBob is offline
Join Date: Oct 2015
Location: Indianapolis, IN
Posts: 258

Cleaveland dimple dies are probably worth the cost. I've stopped buying from anyone else because they're so easy to deal with. I spent days agonizing over tool kits and wound up with Cleaveland for that, too.

While you're waiting for tools, do the inventory. It takes longer than you think it will and it's absolutely no fun. Best to do it thoroughly before you have new tools to distract you!
Stu F.
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Old 05-27-2016, 06:48 AM
Nova RV Nova RV is offline
Join Date: Aug 2015
Location: Leesburg, VA
Posts: 577

I would suggest you buy a complete RV tool kit as it's cheaper in the long run and you will use all of the tools in the kit eventually and having the tool already when you need it will save lots of time. Several companies sell them and there are lots of posts here on VAF about them. I agree with the DRDT2 choice, I love mine and there are plenty of dimples to be made.
Chris Moon
Leesburg, VA


RV-14A kit # 140243 (flying as of 11/18)
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Old 05-27-2016, 06:50 AM
BillL BillL is offline
Join Date: Sep 2007
Location: Central IL
Posts: 6,320
Default Dimple Dies

I don't know if Cleaveland gets the dies from Avery now, or makes their own, but the additional cost of good steel and heat treatment is worth the price. You don't want to get battered dies part way through the build.

I made a few of my own and they start out pretty but deteriorate rapidly. Good for the few specialty locations where needed.

FYI - you can access much of the Avery site using the Way Back Machine.

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Old 05-27-2016, 07:03 AM
tomhanaway tomhanaway is offline
Join Date: Aug 2006
Posts: 329

Probably two of my most used tools were the pneumatic rivet squeezer ( many diverse opinions on this) and a tungsten bucking bar.

As you go along, you'll discover many specialty tools that make a specific job so much easier. These tools can always be resold on VAF or, like me, you'll hold on to them because they're just so neat.
Tom Hanaway
Moved to Murphy, NC
repeat offending-8A N116TP-Now Flying
based in Copperhill, TN 1A3
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Old 05-27-2016, 08:20 AM
Raymo's Avatar
Raymo Raymo is offline
Join Date: Nov 2014
Location: Richmond Hill, GA (KLHW)
Posts: 2,340

Welcome to the club! You have started a journey well worth traveling. Be patient, read the plans, then read them again.

Don't forget to post lots of pictures. It appears you already have that part figured out.
RV-7A - Slider - N495KL - First flt 27 Jan 17
O-360-A4M w/ AFP FM-150 FI, Dual PMags, Vetterman Trombone Exh, SkyTech starter, BandC Alt (PP failed after 226 hrs)
Catto 3 blade NLE, FlightLines Interior, James cowl, plenum & intake, Anti-Splat -14 seat mod and nose gear support
All lines by TSFlightLines (aka Hoser)
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Old 05-27-2016, 10:03 AM
wirejock's Avatar
wirejock wirejock is offline
Join Date: Oct 2005
Location: Estes Park, CO
Posts: 4,760
Default Congratulations

Congratulations Nick
+1 on the tungsten, full set of cleveland dies, pneumatic squeezer with several yokes, adjustable set and quick change pins.
+1 on the inventory. Get organized.
Set up your documentation method.
Build a couple EAA work benches.
Larry Larson
Estes Park, CO
wirejock at yahoo dot com
Donated 01/01/2021, plus a little extra.
RV-7A #73391, N511RV reserved (2,000+ hours)
Empennage, wings, fuse, finishing kit, now FWF
I cannot be, nor will I be, held responsible if you try to do the same things I do and it does not work and/or causes you loss, injury, or even death in the process.
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Old 05-27-2016, 10:37 AM
ppilotmike's Avatar
ppilotmike ppilotmike is online now
Join Date: Jan 2010
Location: Denver, CO
Posts: 2,013
Default Welcome

I second Larry's comments above. Good choice on the DRDT-2 Dimpler. You won't regret it or the pneumatic squeezer. The "Complete" tool kits are, in my opinion, a good way to go. You will find yourself adding to whatever tools you buy, sometimes out of necessity and sometimes out of preference. Good luck!
Mike Rettig
EAA Chapter 301
VAF Dues Current
RV-10 - Working on engine / prop installation
F-14 (Pedal Plane - Daughter's Project) "Flying"
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Old 05-28-2016, 10:23 AM
RV74ME RV74ME is offline
Join Date: Dec 2015
Location: Auburn, AL
Posts: 239

I just finished my -7 empennage kit. Bought my tools from Cleaveland, and I strongly recommend them. Outstanding customer service!!
Steve T.
RV-7, Lyc IO360
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