New Elevators for 53L part 1

The elevators on 53L were found to have a severe twist in them from the original builder. This was offset with a large trim tab on the vertical stabilizer. We decided to remake the elevators to remove the twist and replace the .016 skins with .020 skins as many people have reported cracking in the thinnner skins.

The parts from Vans are pretty basic. No holes in the skins like the RV-6 elevator skins, and pieces of aluminum to fabricate brackets from. The elevator horns did come with some lightening holes in them, but not powdercoated as I understand is done with the steel parts on the over higher number RVs.
A lot of time was spent in laying out the lines on the skins to make sure everything was going to line up correctly. Then the stiffeners need to be measured for each position and cut from the supplied 4' sections of angle. The angles have to be cut at an angle at one end when it fits into the tip of the elevator. I used a jig on the drill press to make sure that each hole is in line on the angle.
First row of stiffeners clecoed to the elevator skin.
The other side of the elevator skins was done exactly the same as the first side.
After removing all of the stiffeners, the holes were deburred then it was time to dimple the skins. I use the C frame tool from Averys for this procedure.
















Then dimple all of the stiffeners.
Next is to rough up all surfaces with scotchbrite pad, clean and prime parts.
After drying, the stiffeners are back-riveting to the skin.
I put all the rivets for one side in at a time and cover with tape.



















Between the heavy steel plate under the skin and the back riveting tool for the rivet gun, the riveting went really fast.