April 22, 2010 – I decided to make riblets for the trim tab and the elevator cutout. After a lot of debate and consultation, I decided to use pieces of fiberglass-faced aluminum core. I used a scrap of floor panel material from the big ones I work on. I said “SCRAP”, as in: I pulled it out of the trash.
I made some cardboard templates, then traced them onto the material, and cut it out. I then trimmed, sanded and filed until I got a good fit in the openings.
When I was happy with the fit, I made new facings out of .020 T-6, spread sealant, and clamped the pieces together. Besides reinforcing the face of the rib, I thought having the aluminum there would make for a cleaner and more weatherproof finish.
After the sealant set up for a day or two, I trimmed the aluminum facings to match the shape of the ribs.
I then test-fitted each rib, and removed honeycomb material to clear fasteners that would be installed in the tab and the elevator that would interfere with the rib.
Since I have ordered a new hinge for the tab, I couldn’t install the ribs in it yet, so I went ahead and installed the rib in the elevator.
The rib is only sealed in, so I used a healthy amount of sealant and clamped the rib in place. When the elevator and tab are all done, I’ll edge-seal all three ribs at the same time.
Here’s the rib in place. I think this’ll work just fine.
I also cleaned, treated and primed the parts for the trim tab, then I riveted the lower edge of the spar and the control horns in place.
Time : 5:05