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Chronological Updates, June, 2013
29 June 2013
Apparently this is a one-update month. I did some basic looking ahead and determination of dependencies—which parts need to be worked on in which order, which assemblies need to be finished first in order to make room for others, etc. Basically, everything is log-jammed behind getting the left fuel tank sealed, and the leaks keep appearing. By my count, I am now up to 7 leaks, two of which appeared after I added the huge fillet of sealant around the entire skin/aft baffle joint. Ugh. To be fair, I was in Alaska for half of this month... so I've had less time to work on the plane that I could have.

After letting the massive fillet dry while in Alaska, I came back and pressurized the tank (again) to find this little seep:

This may never end.

It's one of the rivets that attaches the baffle to the skin, so both sides were accessible (thank goodness). The leak was only coming out the skin side. I drilled the rivet out and put red Loctite around the hole to let it seep into the joint between the skin and baffle. This was over a week ago. Today I pumped the tank up again to see if the Loctite would hole the leak, which it seemed to be doing nicely. No leakage detected at this rivet hole at all, despite the lack of a rivet. However, I was still losing pressure... so I did a full soak in soapy water of the whole tank again.

This time, a small pinhole in the massive fillet was giving off air. GAAAH!! So I've now gone through and dried off all the soapy water, and gone over the fillet with a flashlight looking for pinholes, including those that don't appear to be leaking. Tomorrow, when any remaining water in there should have evaporated off, I'll put Loctite in all of the pinholes I can find, and give that a day or two to cure. Then I'll do another small batch of sealant and cover all of the pinholes with sealant... and that of course will take a couple weeks to cure. So get ready for an uneventful first half of July on this construction log...

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