Making access panel latches for Myrsky's wings

Maanantai 4.3.2019 - Member of Tuesday Club


There are dozens of access, maintenance and operation panels on the wing of Myrsky. The panels are of five different sizes.


The restoration project team has some original Myrsky wing access panels, but majority of the panels will have to be made. There is a latch in the middle of each access panel to open and close the panel. The “seesaw type” latch has a hinge in the middle and the latch is opened and closed by pushing it with a finger.


Because each access panel on the wing has one or two latches, more than 70 latches are needed on the two wings of the Myrsky and on the test wing. The restoration team decided to make all the identical latches in a serial process.


The frame of the latch is made of two aluminum plates which are riveted together. The access, maintenance and operation panels had been cut from 1 mm aluminum plate, using a laser cutter. This work method was used also to cut the latch frames. Holes for the rivets were also made. The rivets are 2,5x3,5 mm aluminum rivets with countersunk heads. Folds were made on the plate on the inside of the latch, the folds are needed for the hinge and the locking wire.


The first phase in the making of the latch frame was to make the holes for the rivets on the outer plate of the latch so that the head of the rivet will be on the level of the plate surface.  The holes were made with a special drill piece on a vertical drilling machine.


The frame of the latch was made by riveting the inner and outer plates together. A powerful manual riveting tool was used. The inner and outer plates were put on the riveting table with the inner surface on top. Rivets were placed into the holes and then the rivets were pushed into place using the riveting tool.


Each latch frame has six rivets so the tool had to be used several times before the required number of latch frames were ready for further processing.

Photos: Lassi Karivalo

Translation: Erja Reinikainen

Avainsanat: aviation history, restoring, old aircraft, VL Myrsky II, MY-14