Advice Please, Which Order for Sealant Drilling & Pop Rivets

Hello, I going to start panelling my chassis soon and wondered which is the correct order to follow I have a pre cut floor panel do I

(a) Apply sealant, clamp in place, drill holes, pop rivet
(b) Clamp in place, drill holes, remove and apply sealant, pop rivet

Thank you
 

Shaun

Supporter
Agree with Brian, get yourself a rivet spacer best tool I had at the time and means nice straight lines of even rivet holes, then Cleco's I used loads for a nice dry fit of all panels and don't be in too much of a rush to rivet then if they are in areas for pipes and cables, I had to drill a few panels out before I learnt
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Oh and an air rivet gun if you can....
 
I just use a big drill (if you are using 1/8" rivets I would suggest something around 10mm) and turn it by hand, Just remove the Burr, try not to countersink the hole. Best wear a glove or you end up with cut marks from the flutes in your fingers after a few hundred holes!
 

Eddy McClements

Supporter
Agree with Brian, get yourself a rivet spacer best tool I had at the time and means nice straight lines of even rivet holes, then Cleco's I used loads for a nice dry fit of all panels and don't be in too much of a rush to rivet then if they are in areas for pipes and cables, I had to drill a few panels out before I learnt
View attachment 113856
Oh and an air rivet gun if you can....
^^^^^ What he said.
LAS Aero spacing tool:- https://www.lasaero.com/products/article/Z00TTVJ85
Pneumatic blind rivet gun:- https://www.ebay.co.uk/itm/313438992698

I still haven't final-rivetted the last few panels, while I finish fitting wiring / aircon / fuel lines. Wait until you're sure before you bond & rivet.




Great thank you, any suggestions on best way to deburr, thanks
I like Noga deburring tools:-



and one of these tips:-



takes a couple of seconds to accurately & neatly deburr a hole.
 

Neil

Supporter
Brian has the sequence correct. My method of deburring rivet holes is to use a countersink. A machinist friend years ago made some nice aluminum handles for three sizes of countersinks which made the job easy. Only remove the burr, don't countersink the hole! I frequently use an pneumatic/hydraulic rivet gun made by FSI for its pulling strength but I use others, too.
Rivet spacing and edge distance can be found on websites such as the EAA, etc. If you are using a high strength alloy such as 7075-T6, 2024-T3, or 6061-T6 it pays to use high strength rivets such as CherryMax, etc, This adds significant structural strength to your chassis. If, on the other hand the panels are soft aluminum and their purpose is only to close out the openings, at least use AVEX rivets, not hardware store pop rivets.
 

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Terry Oxandale

Skinny Man
I'm going to ask perhaps a silly question, but one that has always been on my mind. What is done on preparation of surfaces for this? Suppose I want to panel a steel chassis with aluminum sheet. Obviously paint or some coating must be used to prevent rust, but I would assume the aluminum to steel adhesive bonding must be free of any coating. So if that assumption is valid, what is being practiced in protecting the bare steel that is not coated (the transition between the adhesive and the remaining painted surface (after removing paint from the chassis where each panel surface will be bonded)? I can't imagine painting or coating the chassis AFTER the aluminum panels have been attached, thus the reason for this question.
 

Neil

Supporter
I did not want to bond the stressed panels on to the epoxy primed & polyurethane painted steel tubing so I simply sealed the interface with a blue foam RTV made by CRC. This keeps water from penetrating the faying surfaces and also seals the rivet holes. The CRC container is pressurized and the foam is dispensed directly from a long plastic nozzle.
 

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I would assume the aluminum to steel adhesive bonding must be free of any coating
Better off having some coating (paint or powdercoat) on the steel to prevent galvanic corrosion in case they come into contact. Aluminum panels are also usually painted, powdercoated, or less often anodized.
 
Hello, I have been trying to figure out the best way of dealing with this issue without much luck any help would be appreciated

So drill a hole in a panel and through to the chassis and then lets say I damage the panel before riveting and I need to make a new panel is there a simple way of aligning the chassis holes with the yet to be drilled holes in the new panel,

I guess I could just transfer the measurements from the chassis to the panel then fingers crossed the holes align...

Is there a better way?
Thanks
 

Neil

Supporter
Neville;

There is a simple tool for getting the rivet holes aligned correctly. It is called a "strap duplicator" and they are available from aviation supply dealers such as Aircraft Spruce for about $10. Order one for each hole size you need; a 1/8" rivet would require a #30, for example. Here is how to use it:
 

Terry Oxandale

Skinny Man
Nice tool Neil. I would push back that this tool is accurate for angled brackets (as shown initially) due to the thickness of the register or pilot stub (removing that thickness--1 mm maybe?-- skews the hole when drilled for the bracket riveting. Straight-on paneling, as shown later in the video seems to be that best utilization of this tool.
 
^^^^^ What he said.
LAS Aero spacing tool:- https://www.lasaero.com/products/article/Z00TTVJ85
Pneumatic blind rivet gun:- https://www.ebay.co.uk/itm/313438992698

I still haven't final-rivetted the last few panels, while I finish fitting wiring / aircon / fuel lines. Wait until you're sure before you bond & rivet.






I like Noga deburring tools:-



and one of these tips:-



takes a couple of seconds to accurately & neatly deburr a hole.
They also do left handed blades for us leftys
 
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