The debate of whether to follow Van’s instruction in regards to using pop rivets to attach the canopy to the canopy frame vs. using an adhesive like Sikaflex to do the job without drilling holes in the canopy is a matter of preference. I chose to follow the instructions because I liked the idea of a mechanical connection between the canopy and the frame.
The RV-8 canopy is very long and experiences significant thermal expansion and contraction, and it’s not unusual for the canopy to crack. Rather than obsess about the possibility of it cracking at some point, I’ve decided that it will crack one day sooner or later and that when it does, I want to be able to replace it in a reasonable amount of time. Drilling out pop rivets is not hard and I’ve chosen to go that route with the inevitable replacement. I’m just resigned to it, I guess and I’m taking the approach, which I think will afford the easiest replacement.
Having now been through the canopy process, there’s a part of me that would like to have another “crack” at it anyway, so I won’t be devastated if that occurs.