Aft Fuselage,  Build Log,  Empennage

Aft Fuselage Begins

With the elevators all but finished, save the twelve blind rivets I’m going to have to install on the bottom of the left and right skins, I started on the aft fuselage. Right off the bat, the plans have you fabricate the horizontal stabilizer mounting bracket and rudder stops from bare aluminum angle. Both of these took more time staring at them to figure them out than I’d like to admit, and I still didn’t get them quite right. First up, the horizontal stabilizer attach bracket:

HS attach bracket dimensional drawing
The final shape, showing what should be cut away

For the most part, this one went pretty well, although the width in the end was about 1mm (fun fact: the USA is awesome but the Imperial system of measurement sucks!) too short. I doubt that would ever be problematic, but it isn’t what the plans call for, so a re-do is in order.

Next up was the left and right rudder stop fabrication:

Top view
Final fabrication with material cutaway

This one was the harder one for me to visualize based on the plans above, but I ultimately worked it out with the help of some previous builders:

How the rudder stop layout should look

Cutting this proved to be tricky due to the nature of the angle aluminum. I got the primary shapes very close, but ended up with some undesirable extraneous cuts:

I over-cut the underside of the rudder stop
This was just stupidity on my part

I just can’t live with that kind of workmanship, so I’ve ordered replacement aluminum stock and will give it another go when that comes in!

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