After bending the elevator in the home-made bending brake, here it is all clecoed together.

Next I’ll prime the skeleton…

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Finishing the Rudder, Part 2   September 16th, 2006

Ok, it’s all done!

Have I mentioned that bending the leading edge was a beatch? I got my brother to help we eventually got it. The center section looks less-than-perfect, but definitely not too bad.

Screwing the Rod-End bearings into the platenuts requires a special tool. Since the platenuts are squished for extra retention, you can’t just use your fingers for these things.

First I built a tool from PVC, to keep from damaging the rod-end bearings:

This tool worked for about 50% of the way in. At this point, it started slipping, so I had to build something else. This time I used a cutting disk on a dremel tool to cut two slots on a 14mm hex socket. After polishing it, it worked great for screwing the rod-end bearings the rest of the way as called out in the plans:

After these were in, it was time to test fit the rudder to the vertical stabilizer!

Fabiola says this thing is starting to look like an airplane!

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Finishing the Rudder, Part 1   September 11th, 2006

I haven’t been able to put in a lot of time into building in the last few days. I did manage to almost finish the rudder, though. After removing the clecos and aluminum angle, I used the backriveting plate to drive the rivets, as described in the manual. Wasn’t as a big a deal as I thought. The edge came out fairly straight, with about 0.08 inches of ‘bow’ when laid flat on the table.
I also used duct tape and a 3/4 inch pipe to bend the leading edge. Doing the first side was not too hard, but the second side was a major pain in the ass. First, it’s a lot harder to form when you already have the other half formed, since they will interfere with each other. Second, this is really a two person job. Here you can see the first side getting ready to be bent, and what it looks like afterwards.
I have more pictures to come on the two sides after bending and riveting…
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