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Old 02-15-2006, 06:15 PM
abuura abuura is offline
Join Date: Jan 2006
Posts: 39
Default Rudder trailing edge: fixing the curve

Last night, I suddenly realized that I had forgotten to attach the aluminum L to the trailing edge -- and confirmed that the adhesive had already set. This morning I went about experimenting with the riveting sequence and orientation in order to try to "pull" the bow out of the trailing edge, which stood at .063" right at the middle of the rudder. After some very careful and deliberate riveting and measuring, I determined that putting the head of the rivets on the convex side (resulting in shop head inside the bend) was aggravating the curve. So, I put several rivets on the concave side, set them part way using the squeezer and set (beveled to 11 degrees), and found that the curve was gradually straightening out. I drilled out the convex side rivets and continued to set the rivets per Vans' instructions. The final product is a trailing edge that varies by a maximum of .015", which is barely visible. Moral of the story is, it's fine to read the freakin' instructions 10 times but the only time that really matters is before applying the adhesive. And then, if your trailing edge is not straight before you start riveting, don't despair!
David Abrahamson
Reston, VA
RV7, N98DA, TMX-O360, CS, slider
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