Fri May 28 2010

Riveting canopy frame

My friend Scott's dad, Tom, came over today to check out the project as well as help rivet together the canopy frame. We had a little trouble at first due to my having the pressure set too high on the rivet gun which put some dents in the frame. Once we drilled out the few rivets and flattened out the dents, the riveting went much better. The custom bucking bar my brother, Chris, made worked great. Thanks again, Tom and Chris.

After doing this riveting, Tom and I had some great conversation. He knows a lot about aircraft design and brought over some books that show details of airfoil selection. He's currently building a modified version of a Super Cub (with a slightly different airfoil) and hopes to be putting the fabric on next year. This is Tom's second or third airplane (depending on whether you count the partial build of a custom design a few years ago), and he's apparently making great progress since he retired at the beginning of the year.

It was a lot of fun talking with Tom. We talked about all sorts of homebuilding topics from structural design to brake fluids. I'll have to check out his progress some time as well.

After Tom headed out, I installed all the CS4-4 pop rivets around both the forward and aft halves of the outer edge of the canopy frame. With a little filing and sanding, I was able to eliminate any waviness left over from the dents. It really looks good...can't wait to get this puppy mounted up!