Over the last couple nights I kept working on the leading edge assembly. Because of the limited clecos I wasn’t able to get them completely done, but there were a few items I learned along the way. One of the big realizations is that there have been changes to the kit over time, but the instructions don’t necessarily reflect that. For example, the W-708 inboard rib did not always have pre-punched holes. There are full instructions on how to align and drill that are no longer necessary. This also applies to the W-423 “Joint Plate”. The plans state using some aluminum sheet to fabricate the piece, but it turns out this is now already fabricated out of the same material that the tank skins use. (They are actually still attached to the tank skin, and need to be removed). In my opinion this is a little disappointing that there would be such large changes to the actual build process but the instructions remain the same. Coming from an aerospace company (medical delivery drones), I know how important it is to provide accurate and up-to-date documentation to ensure reliable builds. No matter, it is what it is, and with this new understanding, I will increase my scrutiny on instructions and plans, and ensure it all makes sense before moving forward with the actual work.
First things first, I separated the W-423 Joint Plates from the tank skin cutout. These joint plates are what is used to eventually connect the leading edge assembly to the tanks. I tried both the pneumatic angle grinder, and the smaller dremel. I found that the dremel was easier to use (with the smaller cutting wheel).
Once the W-423 was separated and deburred, I inserted it between the W-708 rib and the leading edge skin. It fit as expected. This completed the left leading edge assembly.
Next up? Rinse and repeat for the right side Leading Edge Assembly. Unfortunately, I ran out of clecos (even after pulling as many as I could off of the main skins), so I only got about half way through before I had to stop. The good news is that I should be getting an additional 200 clecos tomorrow, so I can get back to work!