Riveting the skins on the horizontal stabilizer was my first attempt at riveting. I anticipated this to be a fun task. NOTT!!!! Getting these little metal things in the little holes just right, turned out to be extremely difficult. Between holding the rivet gun, the bucking bar (used behind the rivet as a hard weight against the rivet to "squish" it down) and the rivets, well... it was difficult. I elicited my other half Julie, to do the bucking bar piece, and well... she did not last too long. Holding the bar, and dealing with the noise of the pneumatic rivet gun was just not very feminine (not to mention those ear muffs messed up her hair too.). You have to stick your arm up inside this thing and hold a heavy bar up against a rivet you cant see. The skin acts like a drum when the rivet gun bangs away at the rivet. It's loud and obnoxious. Its not very prestigious or pleasant.
I was a very discouraged. I could only think of the thousands of these little boogers left to do. And how was I going to possibly get them done when the first 100 has me so frazzled? If the first 100 was not fun, how much fun was I going to have on rivet number 13,197? A week went by, walking by the pieces in the garage (another good reason to build in the garage. Looking at it every day forces me to keep going), trying to build up energy to get back in there and do some more riveting. Enter my buddy Jim Potter.
Boy what a difference he made. Once I got a good partner, things zipped right along and I was back on track with my spirits up once again. AND...He didn't mind getting his hair messed up with the hearing protection. Thanks Jim!!! You got me over the hump. (hopefully he'll come back for the next hump. Time will tell. May have to resort to bribery)
Want to know more about riveting? Check these military specs.
last updated 9/9/99