Sun Aug 13 2006

Bending elevator tabs

With some wood blocks, I bent the tabs over to close the triangle next to the trim tab. In retrospect, I'd have done two things differently:

  1. I'd have made sure that the bending face of the block was exactly perpendicular to the top surface of the elevator. What I did was kind of split the angle between the top and bottom surfaces. Since the hinge is at the top surface, that's the surface the tab should be perpendicular to.
  2. I'd have offset the block by the thickness of the skin prior to bending up the bottom (first) tab. That would have allowed the top tab to lay more flat over the bottom tab. It doesn't look bad, but when the trim tab's installed, the gap is wider at the top of the elevator than at the bottom.

Overall, it came out pretty well. One thing I did was to rivet the outboard-most four holes of the trim tab spar to the top surface of the skin before bending these tabs. I ended putting blind rivets in the bottom four holes later on after the rest of the elevator was assembled.