Riveting the Leading Edge   January 29th, 2008

After about a week of letting stuff dry, I started the process of riveting the leading edge. I first assembled the ribs and skin back on the spar, using two ratchet straps. I then removed the leading edge from the spar and put it in the cradle.

I discovered that by using a bit of masking tape on the rivets, not only do they stay in place as you rivet, but it also keeps the skin from getting marks or scratches from the rivet gun. Before, I would put masking tape on the rivet set, but it starts desintegrating after a couple of rivets, and it is very hard to take off. By putting the tape on the rivet, the rivet set stays clean and it comes off very easy later.

It took me a couple of days to get all the rivets. Here is the finished product:

And if you still can’t quite place where this goes on the plane, here is another picture with the piece oriented in the horizontal plane. This piece belongs on the left wing, so imagine you are looking at the front of the plane. On the picture below, the tank mounts just to the left of the leading edge (and together form the complete wing leading edge. The rest of the wing goes behind the leading edge, and the wing tip goes to the right of the leading edge.

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