Thursday, June 28, 2012

The Eagle Grows A Tail Feather!

Today there is reason for celebrating at DOG Aviation … the RV-12 grew its first tail feather. The assembly department finished the vertical stabilizer earlier this evening and the finished product looks great! The countersunk blind (pop) rivets created a smooth vertical stabilizer skin and that makes all the extra work involved dimpling all the rivet holes well worthwhile.
                                                   Using the pneumatic rivet puller to set the first skin rivet.
The pneumatic rivet puller is a great tool to own for a project like this. It did a superb job of pulling the rivets and it worked flawlessly. I know that a pneumatic puller is a luxury but honestly, I can’t see taking on a project like this with over 10,000 rivets and not using one. Guessing if you use a hand pop rivet puller, you will likely end up with either a kung fu grip or carpal tunnel syndrome.
                                                       Jan using the pneumatic rivet puller for the first time.
                                                         Jean trying her hand at the pneumatic rivet puller.
                                                             The flush rivets create a nice smooth surface.
                                                      Click on the photo to view a close-up of the flush rivets.
                                Jan and I holding the first of the eagle's tail feathers ... finally a finished assembly!