After finishing up the installation of the control column assembly, I noticed that it didn't rotate very freely :-( I reshimmed it a couple times but was never able to get it to free up. After reading several threads on Van's Airforce about control rigging I determined that something was wrong. You want the control column to rotate with little or no friction- which was definitely not what I was experiencing.
I unbolted the assembly and pulled it out and then checked the bearings. The left bearing was very stiff and did not move freely. I tried using some Tri-Flo on it to free it up with no luck.
I decided to replace the bearing with a new one. The problem is, the bearing is securely riveted in place and there was no simple way to remove it. I decided the best way to proceed was to pull the entire rib out of the assembly. I removed the front panel from the ribs, then unbolted the rib. Then I carefully drilled out the rivets holding in the rib and removed it. Then I could easily drill out the rivets holding the bearing assembly and then drill out the bearing assembly rivets and pull out the bearing.
Extracting the bearing from the bearing assembly didn't free it up. The bearing is obviously not right and must be replaced.
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