Got the tank skins dimpled tonight. I dimpled all the holes I could reach with the pneumatic squeezer the other day, but the majority of the holes need to be done with a dimpling frame.
I’ve been using the DRDT2 which has been working great. One issue I’ve had is that the handle can be at an awkward angle. It’s especially noticeable when you’re holding a larger skin and have to reach across to the handle. I came up with a quick and easy fix. I have a set of removable bar ends that I took of my mountain bike. They fit perfectly on the DRDT2 handle, and give a very comfortable place to get good leverage on the dimpler. And when I’m done, I can just take it off and put it back on the bike!
I also dimpled and countersunk some of the tank attach pieces. There are a few parts I’m going to prime tomorrow. Most tank parts will be un-primed, as you don’t want to prime the parts that are going to be in contact with fuel.
I also noticed something tonight that other builders have mentioned. In the beginning, the instructions Van’s sends for the plane really hold your hand, and tell you EXACTLY what to do. But as you progress thru the build, they assume that you have learned when certain things need to be done, and don’t spell out each little step.
Tonight was the first time I really noticed it. There are shims that are connected to the tank attach brackets. The plans show what rivet to use to attach the shims, but they don’t say specifically to dimple them, or countersink the underlying bracket. After dimpling and countersinking many other parts in this plane, I know what I need to do, but I did reread the entire page of instructions just to make sure I didn’t miss something.
Here is the part in question: