Fuselage Fwd Skin Riveting

Build Crew:



There are pros and cons to flipping the fuselage. It is a decision that is made based on whether you plan on working with someone else to rivet the skins on. If you keep the fuselage upright you can theoretically rivet most areas solo allowing a more flexible schedule, but a higher degree of difficultly (and thus quality escapes). If you flip the fuselage (like I did), it allows for mostly easy riveting as long as you have someone with you. Since I’ve accrued quite a dedicated build crew I decided going the two-person route would work for me. Plus… isn’t the build all about community?


With the fuselage flipped I went about coordinating the first of many build sessions with Sam, Jack, and Adam. First major milestone would be the fwd side skin riveting. For the most part, the flipped fuselage worked to our advantage allowing easy access to the backside of the rivets for the bucker. By using small stools, and a shared tool tray we each had access to what we needed.

There is one area, the LG Box Weldment, that I knew was going to be a pain. But I didn’t realize how much. Suspecting the challenge, I brought in the big guns (Sam) to man the bucking bar. The challenge is due to the very limited access to these rivets. Many folks cut larger access holes to make access easier, but I figured Sam was up for the challenge. We only ended up needed to drill out a few rivets, and overall I’m happy with the results. Maybe some day Sam will write a guest post on “Secrets to LG Weldment Bucking”. Until then, here are some photos of the work.

With the tough work out of the way (possibly the hardest riveting of the entire fuselage??), Sam came back for one more evening session where we cranked out the remaining left side skins, and started work on the center section rivets. I’ve got a weekend full of buckers (Adam, Brant, and Jack) lined up, so hopefully this weekend we can get a lot more progress completed. Until then… Happy Building!!

Left side fwd skin done!
center section lower rivets in on both sides

Bonus Material - New Kaizen Foam Draer

For those Tool Box nerds out there, I finally found some time to aggregate another drawer full of tools into some kaizen foam. It was a miscellaneous set of tools so still trying to figure out what to label the drawer, but enjoy the beauty that is a well organized drawer!

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