7.7.58 Leak test left tank (again), rivet spar & deblue skins

The sealant in the left fuel tank has been curing since Friday so I started this evening by testing the tank. As previously I connected the manometer and inflated the tank to 1 PSI. At first the pressure seemed to drop a bit but then settled down. Once settled I left the fuel tank on test while I did a few other tasks.

The first task I did was to rivet the holes on the spar between the nut plates. These holes are covered by the fuel tank once it’s fitted but for some reason there are no instructions on what to do with these holes.

I didn’t like the idea of not having these riveted so I went ahead and riveted them to the spar.

Doing the outer ribs was easy but the four ribs at the root of the wing were a lot more difficult. The squeezer yoke just wouldn’t fit in the gap with the clamps in the way. After a bit of head scratching I managed to find a way of holding the flange in place while I riveting the main rivet.

I was pleased with the result. All the rivets are in which should add more support to those ribs.

Next I made a start on removing the blue vinyl from the rest of the wing skins. Again I used the same technique as last time with the wooden pole to role the vinyl off.

While removing the vinyl I was disappointed to find some corrosion in various places. The worst of which was on the wing walk doubler skin.

Although irritating it’s not a major problem. I’ll just sand it off before priming but it does mean that I will remove the blue vinyl as soon as I receive parts from Van’s in future.

Once that was done I returned to the pressure in the left tank which seemed fairly stable. I’ll leave it overnight and check it tomorrow.

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