<September 1, 2006>

Left Tank Outboard Rib

Since this is a long weekend, I decided to work from home today. This allowed me to get a little earlier start on construction today. I started by riveting the outboard rib to the left tank and then I turned my attention to preparing the inboard rib.

On the right tank I had a little issue. I put too much sealant here and the tank wouldn't fit up against the W-423 joiner plate. The problem was easily solved by scraping out about 1/8" of sealant, but I wanted to avoid the issue on the left tank. I clecoed the W-423 to the tank skin then used its edge to draw a line (pictures here after removing the W-423). I then applied electrical tape to the skin to mask out the area outboard of the line. This way, sealant wont get into the area where the W-423 goes.

After riveting, I removed the electrical tape which contained excess sealant, to reveal a nice clean line.

While the outboard rib was drying, I decided to install the leak test kit from Van's and the baloon called for in the instructions. I pumped air into the tank and the baloon inflated, but after 15 minutes or so the baloon had decreased in size. I was just experimenting today, so I am not willing to say I have a leak just yet. The filler cap could be letting the air out, or maybe I didn't tape the baloon on good enough. Tomorrow will tell.

I mixed up another small batch of sealant and used it to install the fittings on the inboard tank rib. To keep sealant off the fitting threads I used a little electrical tape, which had already been removed when I took this picture.

With the remaining sealant I covered the shop heads or the outboard rib to tank skin rivets as well as the T-410 doubler to rib rivets. I don't know if you need this much sealant here, but it is done.