Fuel Tank Construction Log, page 1









3/5/98; 4.5 hrs; drilled right tank ribs to rear baffle; made wood shims, and jigged ribs/baffle to spar; strapped skin and drilled to ribs.

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This step involved most of the work session; Much effort was expended getting the edges to line up correctly.







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You will need about 300 clecoes to drill one tank.






3/7/98; 2.25 hrs; fabricated and drilled stiffeners to right tank skin; dimpled stiffeners and ribs.

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3/8/98; 1.25; drilled left tank ribs to rear baffle; jigged with threaded rod and mounted on spar.

3/9/98; 2.0 hrs; drilled left tank skin to ribs.

3/10/98; 2.25 hrs; drilled and dimpled left tank stiffeners; dimpled both tank skins.

3/13/98; 3.5 hrs; fabricated tank front supports and drilled to tanks; fitted and drilled nose reinforcements; mounted right tank on wing and drilled pilot holes for platenuts.

3/17/98; 1.5 hrs; drilled mounting holes for platenuts for right tank.

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Here is an easy method for accurately locating the holes for the platenuts.

The pilot holes were drilled to #30. A platenut was clecoed to the pilot hole.





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A #40 hole was drilled for one of the AN426 rivets.






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The #40 rivet hole gets a cleco.






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Now the other rivet hole is drilled.






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You can save time by lining up several platenuts and doing one particular operation at a time.

After all holes are drilled, the tank is put back into position and the screw holes are match-drilled to #19.



Just in case you may have forgotten to drill some of the platenut mounting holes before you drilled the pilot holes to #19 and are therefore unable to cleco the platenuts to the flange (no need to ask why I needed this tip...), there is still a way you can easily locate the rivet holes.


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Run a screw backwards through a platenut as shown.







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Place the screw in the #19 hole and use the platenut as a drilling template.





3/18/98; 2.25 hrs; completed installing platenuts and countersinking for right tank. Right tank now ready for sealing.


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Here are some gadgets that will facilitate the countersinking process for the platenuts. At top is a scrap piece of stock with a pilot hole for the countersink bit. On the right is another scrap with a #8 dimple formed in the end. A cleco clamp also is handy.

The dimple serves as a go/no go gauge to determine when the countersinks are properly formed.



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Clamp the scrap with the pilot hole behind the hole in the spar flange that will be countersunk. This will serve as a guide for the countersink pilot and minimize chatter due to the countersink wandering in the hole.




3/21/98; 2.0 hrs; completed installing platenuts for left tank. Left tank now ready for sealing.




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