Commenced solid riveting on wing spars.  Almost completed one spar - found it difficult to set the rivets along the top of the spar doubler because of the bend at the top, so have ordered a 5.5" head which should be long enough to prevent the spring on the air gun from hitting the bent section when setting.

Happy with most of the rivets - had a couple that I had to drill out and re-set because of damage to the head caused by the gun slipping, but 99% worked fine.

Also cut the front upper strut fittings (7V2-5) and tie-down rings (6W9-1) from 0.125".

Learned a lot about setting solid rivets - hopefully the other spar will be problem-free!

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Comment by Marty de la Motte on November 22, 2011 at 4:46pm

Thanks Brian,

Good idea re the trigger limiter, I'll try making something similar.  Cheers!

Comment by Brian Fitzpatrick on November 22, 2011 at 1:52pm


Solid rivets.  I've used them wherever possible but had a heck of a time trying not to damage rivet heads or aircraft skin because I applied too much air to gun.  Pulling trigger too far was always the problem.  When gun started bouncing the trigger would be pulled all the way.

Since I am by nature ham fisted I reduced air pressure so there was just enough for rivet size and more importantly I cut a piece of aluminum about 5 mm wide and made a ring which I managed to get behind the trigger so it could only be pulled so far.  A bit of experimenting as to width of ring.

Nonetheless I do not believe riveting solid rivets will ever be care free.  Hope this helps.  Brian

Comment by Marty de la Motte on November 14, 2011 at 12:13am

Thanks Kit!

I can't see myself ever getting to the point of enjoying solid rivets, it's more a case of tolerating the process... I even changed the elevator skin setup to enable a folded TE so I didn't have to solid rivet it... and considering doing the same for the wings (eg similar to the 750 design).  Will still solid rivet the slats TE.

One of the things that attracted me to this design is the use of pop rivets.  I love being able to set up a line of rivets and zip along with the gun pulling them.

Still - horses for courses - good on you for having the patience to solid rivet everything, you'll end up with a strong airframe!

Comment by Kit Herbert on November 13, 2011 at 9:12pm
If you get to the point where you enjoy bucking rivets, you might consider using solid rivets to assemble your wing and flight control skeletons. In talking with the good folks at Zenith you can use one diameter smaller rivet and the same spacing. 3/32" rivets are easy to buck and there is weight and cost savings as well. I am using solid rivets on everything except the flight surface skins. If you can rivet the spars the rest will be a breeze. Happy building!

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