I am a rib stitch guy, but . . .

Bob Turner

Well-known member
Apr 4, 2018
Today I was attaching the tank rib to some new fabric on a Citabria. I have a new technique - Poly Brush, let it dry, stick the reinforcing tape on, coat that heavily with Poly Brush - you have heard all that before.

I always put pencil marks where the rivet holes go, so it is essier to find them under the fabric and tape. Once everything is dry, then a rib stitch needle and an awl finds all the holes.

The shop was alerted that I needed a rivet puller - I figured that when I got there after the paint dried they would have the fancy pneumatic puller ready - but no . . .

So I inserted all the rivets - looked like a porcupine up there - and asked Alex if we were doing them with air or by hand. He grinned and handed me a "Milwaukee" battery powered puller.

Stick it on the rivet, pull the trigger, and presto - river set, pin broken, and automatically hauled into a receptacle! I think there were 12 rivets, and I was done in three minutes.

Moral of the story - if you are doing an entire wing you need one of these!

Back to rib stitches - I have graduated to the Stitts "rabbit/palm tree/island" method. If you ever need to rib stitch anything, check this out!



Well-known member
Apr 3, 2018
Tacoma, WA
I bought one of those Milwaukee electric rivet squeezers when I started my Kitfox build. Just getting the spar inserts riveted into the spar tubes was nearly 100 stainless rivets.
66 more for the drag/anti drag fittings.
Now I'm looking at 84 for each of the four lift strut attach fittings.
I cannot fathom doing that manually