I started to think today about the seatback bulkhead and how it would be nice to paint that in its final color before I assembled it. I don't need to do squat with it for the aft fuselage, so it won't hold up the build process. I have heard a lot of good about the Sherwin Williams JetFlex interior paints. Searching on the VAF forums, I found a post regarding a dealer that sells it:
Advanced Aircraft Coatings
1216 N. Council Rd.
Oklahoma City, OK 73127
(405) 495-7548 Fax
I called them up and spoke to Ron, who was very helpful in talking me about this paint. It comes in two flavors - solvent based and water reducible. He said that the advantages of the water based were it reduces easily with water, less fumes and it is just as tough as the solvent based (also, easier cleanup!). On top of that, it was a little cheaper than the solvent based. He stated that an equal amount of people he deals with use each one. The only downside to the water based version is it has a year shelf life, while the solvent based one is 2 years. Pricing was $37.95 for a quart of tan, and $90.45 for a gallon. He is sending me a color chart so I can pick what looks good. He also stated that a good primer should be applied before this stuff.
After working on the bottom wing skin riveting, I moved onto riveting the F-704 bulkhead. I started with these brackets. I see a lot of builders use a c-frame riveting tool to do this, but I don't have one since I opted for the DRDT-2 dimpler. It was simple enough to position the bulkhead off the workbench so I could use a universal rivet set on my rivet gun pointed straight downward, while I held the bucking bar on the shop head from the bottom. This was a super easy one man job, as gravity help keep the rivet set on the rivet. The arrow points to the rivets that hole on the longer bracket. The rivets called out in the plans were too long, so I went with the next smaller one adn got much better results. I also installed the AN3-12A bolts on the top and bottom. I was going to hold off on this because I thought it might interfere with riveting or dimpling the bulkhead flange, but after looking closer, it wasn't going to be an issue down the road.
Next was onto riveting the sidepieces. The rivets in the red blob could be squeezed, while the other ones were shot with the same method I used for the brackets above.
The completed forward section of the F-704.
The aft section of the 704 is just like the forward section. However, the spacer needs to get riveted. Van's calls for a AN426AD4-14 rivet, but it really needs a -16. Unfortunately -14 is the largest Van's gives ya. I searched around on the forums and found that this is a common issue, and the rivet is not structural. Its only purpose is to hold the spacer.
A zoomed out look at the shop heads.
Next I riveted together the F-711. I left the rivets out of the bottom holes on the bars because these get get enlarged to a 1/4" and attached to the tailwheel bracket.
Also the F-710 bulkhead was slammed out tonight.
Last Modified: June 5, 2023