Originally Posted by Jyuma
You may be making too much out of the riveting issue. I'm in the early stages of the emp build, just starting to rivet the skins, but so far all of my fears about riveting and what tool to use have evaporated. I'm not saying that I won't run into some special circumstances down the road but so far all that I've needed is my cheap Arrow hand squeeze model RH200 pop rivet tool and some Advil.
I did buy a hand squeezer for standard rivets and a set of dies for my pneumatic rivet squeezer, had it for at least 30 years and it still works great. I don't know the manufacturer but it has the overlapping letters CP in a circle embossed on the side. This is not a tool to be trifled with.
Good luck with your build. I'll be rooting for you.
I’m not sure if I read this right but if you meant to say you are going to pull 15000 rivets with a hand puller, you will end up with carpal tunnel.
You definitely need a puller with the rotatable head when you get to the fuselage. You’ll also want a pneumatic puller. The compressor for this need not be huge but once you are running a compressor you might as well get a 30 gallon or so to run all your air tools. I bought a Kobalt 26 gallon super silent at Lowe’s for $300 and it is barely large enough for air drills and die grinders. The key is it is quiet enough to tolerate as it will be running with air tools.
I have a Nova 4000 rpm air drill from Pan American Tools for $120 and several Harbor Freight die grinders for deburring with 1 in, 2 in scotchbrite wheels and the small discs. They are about $15 each. Using these in drills was a pain in the butt. I couldn’t find a cordless drill that didn’t have significant runout in the chuck which ruined several pieces of thin aluminum when match drilling. My $180 Dewalt cordless drill was the worst. These are apparently made for carpenters, not metal working.
I know some guys try to get by super cheap on tools. But what’s another $1000 or so when you are spending $80K+ building an airplane. Make the job easier and more enjoyable for yourself.