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Old 12-30-2017, 08:47 AM
Mudfly Mudfly is offline
Join Date: Dec 2011
Location: Alpharetta, Ga
Posts: 112

Originally Posted by mturnerb
Another question - what did you use to adhere backing plates to lens? I initially tried double-sided tape but it has some thickness that allows the nutplates to "sag" against lens when screws are snugged up. What's safe to use on lexi?

I used proseal. Not sure I would do it again though. I did a little research and couldn't find much on the subject of compatibility with the plexiglass long term.
To check adhesion, I did a test using some of the scrap plexi trimmed from the lens and a piece of aluminum. I scuffed the plexi pretty good and cleaned with naphtha. After the test piece cured, I pulled the pieces apart. Definitely enough adhesion to hold the pieces together, but not like when bonding aluminum expected.
For final assembly of the lens, I applied the proseal to the brackets using an acid brush with trimmed bristles and then clecoed in place with silver clecos through the nutplates. After the proseal set up slightly, I removed clecos and screwed lens in place in the leading edge.
Like I said probably wouldn't do it that way again. Even though I had the lens taped up to prevent proseal where I did't want it , I still had a bit of a mess when the proseal squeezed out from the clecos and screws. I still have a bit of cleanup to figure out there.
Looking back, I think this is a good case for the "kiss" principle. I like John-G's string idea,...especially if you're able to get your fingers on the backing plate to hold some light pressure when tightening the screws.
Shawn Edwards
RV-14A (140174)
Empennage purchased (pre-owned) August 2015
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Old 02-04-2018, 05:50 PM
asw20c asw20c is offline
Join Date: Jun 2010
Location: Edgewood, NM
Posts: 106
Default Leading Edge Profile is the Culprit

Hi All,
I'm slow-building my wings and I've just gotten to the step where I'm installing the landing light lenses. As others have mentioned, I too have a gap at the leading edge no matter how hard I push from the inside. I made sure to orient the lenses correctly, i.e. there is definitely a right side up, but I think I understand now why the lenses don't fit better-it's the shape of the wingskin leading edge. At least it is on my wing. A closer look reveals that the radius of the skin leading edge is tighter than that on the lenses (and the ribs for that matter). I don't know about the rest of you, but when building my outboard leading edges I had to push pretty hard to get the ribs far enough forward to get the rivet holes to line up with those in the skin. The same phenomena is happening with the lense where the leading edge skin has a tighter radius, therefore the lense will not fit tight up against the inside of the skin. Picture trying to get the curve of a baseball flush with the curve of a golf ball; it simply won't fit flush.
I've already done all the trimming so the next step is to match drill the holes for the backing plates. I think I'm going to ask someone to help with this step so that one can drill and the other can hold the lense against the leading edge as hard as possible, but I know there will still be a gap. There is no way around it if the radii of the leading edge and lense are different.
Empennage Complete Except for Tips
Wings Underway
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