Planecation 2011: Day Two

I dropped the kids off at daycare, grabbed a Starbucks, and got back to the airplane factory around 10am. First up, I finished the leftover longeron drilling. Next it was time to trim back the front of the longerons so they are exactly 3/4″ shorter than the 770 side skins. So far so good.

I had been bothered before that I didn’t get a good crisp bend when I made the downward bend in the longerons. The side skins make a revatively sharp angle where the downslope starts at the forward fuselage. The result is about a 3/32″ gap between the vertex of the longeron and the edge of the 770 skin.

My solve was an idea I came across in another builder’s log (I forget which one). I took one of my bucking bars and wrapped it in tape. Then I clamped it to the longeron and to the sawhorse. Pulling up on the longeron and giving it a whack with the hammer I tried to get a more exact bend on the longeron. I was able to reduce the gap by about half in the end.

After that I clamped the rest of the skin to the longeron and drilled the remaining holes.

Next up I had to fabricate some straps that marry the tops of the 704 bulkhead to the longerons.

And here they are in place on the fuselage. It was getting later in the day so I just had time to get the firewall temped into position.

There’s some critical measurements to make sure the firewall is perpendicular to the trust line of the aircraft. I will be studying that tonight before proceeding further. I’m also running out of clecos so I will need to scrounge up some more as I start drilling the firewall tomorrow.

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