Sunday, April 25, 2010

More nutplates on the horizon

I started on the seat ribs today. These are the same things as the baggage ribs in that they will support a floor that in turn supports baggage, although in this case the baggage is me. I wasn't clear from the first step about just how many of these I was supposed to make since the counting scheme when it comes to parts that need to be separated is somewhat inconsistent. As I got further into it, I learned that this is what I needed to assemble:

By the end of the day, I'd also end up being thoroughly confused about 'left' and 'right', something I thought I had mastered years ago. The 'left' part goes to the left of the 'right' part, except when the 'right' part goes to the left of the 'left' part. And vice-versa. In this case, my advice is to try not to think about it and just put the parts where they're shown in the drawing. In fact, to reduce confusion you could just label the parts Ralph and Larry to avoid falling prey to preconceived notions as to positional location based on apparently arbitrary labellings like 'left' and 'right'.

Once you get your head around how many of these to assemble and the idea that you don't really know left from right, you get hit with another puzzler. Now I'm the first to admit that I get spoiled very easily when it comes to time-saving conveniences, and that is certainly the case with the band saw, but I was shocked to see that I was going to have to remove this relatively large chunk of material sans band saw:

Times six eight, mind you, although only four today. The reason the band saw wouldn't work is spelled out for all to see, right there in its name: band saw. Closed loop. No way in. This is only news to anyone that thought 'band' referred somehow to the sound the saw makes when it's running, an idea which would be patently ridiculous if there was no such thing as modern jazz.

I'd have to find an alternative. Quickly discounting any methods lacking the application of a power tool, I arrived at the Dremel tool. Second day in a row!

And there's that bald(ing) spot again! I need to fire that photographer.

The Dremel (well, more accurately, the operator of same) left a very rough edge, but the little ScotchBrite drum took care of it.

Someone at Van's must have realized there'd be some malcontent like me that would grouse about having to do a little more work, so they threw us a bone: factory-dimpled nutplate holes!

Given the easy location for the dimpling of these holes, I can't figure out any other reason for them to have been dimpled at the factory. Still, it's not a trade I would have made. Van's got the easier job out of that deal.

Carefully following the drawings and mentally replacing 'left' and 'right' with 'Larry' and 'Ralph', I clecoed it all together. These tabs are eventually going to support a bolt that will secure the seat belts.

Somewhat out of the ordinary, the holes have to be final drilled for LP4-3 rivets. Usually the rivets will drop right into the holes as-is.

I was a little surprised at the selection of LP4-3 rivets instead of the slightly longer LP4-4 rivets, given that they were going through relatively thick pieces of metal. That said, if there is ever serious stress on these rivets, it will be in shear. In that case, it's the body of the rivet that will take the load, not the manufactured head.

They don't look like much, but all in all it took a couple of hours to get them assembled.

That was the end of page 21-05, and the first step on page 21-05 was.... the installation of nutplates.

Maybe later.

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