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My Savannah S model rebuild Blog


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I had given some thought to sliding panels before but it does make things more complex to do and also the extra weight of the slider bar mechanisms. Mabel will be a bit heavier than normal now due to thicker skins on the wings and fuse sides. The hinged panel is easier the only drawback is to be mindfull of how deep the instruments go back and how high they are on the panel to get the clearance when folding the panel forward. I still havent decided on what I might do yet but at this stage I am thinking a Ipad with the BOM that I have for my EFIS style display and have a analogue ASI and another Ipad for Ozrunways. I have a MGL EMS-2 for the engine instruments. I want to try to keep this panel a bit simpler. Mabel will be the one I fly while I build the S21. "The Mistress" will have a proper MGL 8.5 inch Discovery EFIS/EMS with the V16 radio also a analogue ASI and VS plus Ipad of course for OZrunways and autopilot from the MGL

 

 

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Hi Bob

 

Yes if you paint the item flat you dont get any runs :)....I will make a set as I will need them for the S21 its a bit bigger and the wings are wider as well. I will be closing in the big carport shed outside with plastic to make a spray booth..I dont want to hang anything from the roof as it brings dust down from the top. 

 

I have attached the Rans ones...they are easy to make and with a little mod they can be easily used for the fuselage as well

 

[ATTACH]42679[/ATTACH]

 

Hi again Mark. I was originally going to paint my wings flat, but wasn't confident my reach would be long enough across the width of the wing while also taking in the LE. In the upshot I found it a lot easier to paint them tilted as shown, though I did then lift them flat as soon as the paint was on to minimise runs, and also to get them away from the dustier air near the floor. I would then run round the other side to get best light reflection and check for dry spots, trying to move fast enough to remedy those with a spray of thinners (which further risks running if the wing is tilted, is a lot less challenging if the wing is flat).

 

I didn't experience any dust problems with my overhead rope, but then I wasn't turning the fuse while spraying: I was positioning a side of the fuse, spraying, then waiting for that to go off before repositioning.

 

 

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  • 4 weeks later...

Was up the farm for xmas break so didnt get much of a chance to work on Mabel and busy and tired last week. This weekend I got the last wing out from up the back to pull apart. Used a grinder as I didnt need the skins of course so that makes it pretty quick to get the skins off. The downside is pulling all the left over bottom sections out. Also been working on the rotisseries and the rear bracket for the fuselage to attach to the rotisseri . Trial fitted the stab and elevator and all fits nicely although I did fit a 1/4 bolt to the rear hold down tabs for the elevator.

 

Interesting is that the main spar is undamaged at the main section it was only the addon tip section the angle section is undamaged right at the end of it the other wing had the bottom angle damaged and I drilled and replaced the whole angle. I already have another spar that I have rebuilt ready to fit anyway so will go over this one and we will have another spare.

 

Danny made a mold for the tips as well as mine will need a lot of repair and they are no longer available and I really dont like either of the later 2 versions that ICP have come up with. The tips have come out awesome also stronger and lighter than the originals.

 

The fuel tanks were attacked with a heat gun as was the other wing so trying to decide what to do. We can build a box to hold them nicely then heat them with a heat gun and used compressed air to get them back to the original shape. 

 

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Hi Mark, more progress on a big job there...very impressive!

 

How and why were the fuel tanks attacked with a heat gun?

 

I notice that both my (inboard, regularly used) tank fillers have shifted sideways, presumably as the upper tanks have expanded with the weight of fuel in them. Makes sense, but if I had known I could have offset tham during construction...........

 

 

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I used sikaflex on the rear corners on my tanks to make sure they didnt move sideways at the rear. The front of the tanks are held of course but not the rears. The cross support bar is supposed to hold it but its a lot of weight getting thrown around there when the tanks are really just sitting there. On Mabel the guys have added other stuff to the support bars which made them bigger so they heated the tanks and basically bent them to sit over the support bars....Danny's plane is the same. I would really like to make different tanks as I think we could make much better ones that use pretty much all the fuel in them and they would be about the same weight but its the time. I really need to get Mabel in the air as soon as I can.

 

 

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Hi Mark, more progress on a big job there...very impressive!

 

How and why were the fuel tanks attacked with a heat gun?

 

I notice that both my (inboard, regularly used) tank fillers have shifted sideways, presumably as the upper tanks have expanded with the weight of fuel in them. Makes sense, but if I had known I could have offset tham during construction...........

 

Hi Bob,

 

Shifting fuel tanks is a good sign! ...it means you are flying her ?.

 

I was wondering about which direction the shift is: inboard or onwards? ...also how far? 

 

 

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....Danny's plane is the same. I would really like to make different tanks as I think we could make much better ones that use pretty much all the fuel in them and they would be about the same weight but its the time. I really need to get Mabel in the air as soon as I can.

 

I wonder why ICP don't use aluminium tanks like some other kit manufacturers?

 

 

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Alu tanks can leak easily and take highly skilled welders to be able to do them properly. Something that is way way beyond my skills. Same as the cabin frames we made. We got a tig welding guru who does high spec welding to weld the cabin frames.

 

I am sure between Danny and myself we can come up with a much better solution to the tanks than ICP have but of course ICP are doing a production so want to make it easy for themselves although they could have put a lot more thought into the tank design especially the way it drains

 

 

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Hi Bob,

 

Shifting fuel tanks is a good sign! ...it means you are flying her ?.

 

I was wondering about which direction the shift is: inboard or onwards? ...also how far? 

 

Hi Hank, the tanks are supported  underneath, the fillers are on the top (obviously!) and situated towards the outboard edge of each tank. I centered them on installation, the fillers have now shifted further outboard.

 

Since the tanks are fixed laterally underneath at the front, and the filler is near the front, I doubt very much this is due to the tank shifting laterally on it's mountings. I think it more likely that the tank has changed shape and bugged out a bit due to the weight of fuel.

 

It's not a biggie, but were I building again, I would do the initial setup with the fillers offset inboard.

 

Apart from that, I have no problems or complaints so far with the tanks. I think if the holes are drilled cleanly and with care, the fittings work fine.

 

And I have been careful to keep my delivery pipes low and level, and avoiding wherever  possible undulations in them.

 

I have had all of them full, and they all drain completely on the ground (though no doubt in a sustained descent it would be possible to unport the fuel feed).

 

I do think the lateral supports under the center of the tanks could be more robustly attached, and I know at least one builder who has done that.

 

 

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Mine have never moved...then again I did sikaflex round the tank outlets and the skin so the tank would be held there by the sikaflex and I also did the rear corners to the skins

 

I used Sikaflex or something similar between the tanks and the lateral supports underneath, to prevent the rear of the tanks from shifting around. I hear some builders add small vertical brackets to the lateral supports, either side of the tank/s, to do the same thing.

 

 

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I used Sikaflex or something similar between the tanks and the lateral supports underneath, to prevent the rear of the tanks from shifting around. I hear some builders add small vertical brackets to the lateral supports, either side of the tank/s, to do the same thing.

 

I have read about the vertical brackets as well ...in addition to the many other suggested improvements for this aircraft, many which are worthwhile. 

 

I intend to 'locate' the tanks somehow but I am conscious that every additional improvement adds weight to my Savannah. I wonder which option weighs more: sikaflex or small aluminium brackets?

 

 

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All four of my tank “filler necks” have moved outboard also. The outboard tanks have never had fuel in them during flight.

 

[ATTACH]42943[/ATTACH]

 

I am very intrigued as to why the outboard tanks shifted outwards without having the weight of the fuel inside the tanks, this being the factor (I would have thought) that would have caused the shift. 

 

 

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I am very intrigued as to why the outboard tanks shifted outwards without having the weight of the fuel inside the tanks, this being the factor (I would have thought) that would have caused the shift. 

 

Highly likely they will have had fuel in them on the ground during initial fuel system testing?

 

 

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Started work on the new dash frame last night. Danny came over and the frame was sanded to size. We are both pushing the dask back towards the front of the plane as the angle is wrong for taller people..its ok for shorties though. Basically its going back to the next set of holes in the boot cowl. It will be fibreglass and carbon frame and carbon fill in section. It will be like the later version with fixed areas either side at the edges. The big difference is the dash panel will be hinged so it makes it a lot easier to get at the wiring and avionics. My throttle is going to be the McFarlane twin wire and will be mounted at the bottom of the dash not in the dash as I need to get used to the centre throttle and because I have twin sticks its no problem. Danny will still have the single stick but his McFarlane will on on the fixed section on the left side.

 

The engine block is for the S21. Its the out of time 2015 engine I bought as is about to be assembled very shortly..just waiting on some main bearings. Danny got the block and cleaned it with some acid based cleaner to remove all the oil then it goes through 2 types of material in the sand blaster and this is how the outside looks. Should at least look great when its all assembled with its new larger capacity cylinders

 

IMG_8214.thumb.jpg.edb77453973a8c20c180435b07c080fd.jpg

 

IMG_8215.thumb.jpg.1e149734d688e075d5c29353e97dc7b6.jpg

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Working on the spar. All cleaned and inspected just need to fit the new tip section I made...it is a bit longer the same as the other wing. One the normal pull rivets and solid rivets go in I will get the whole spar etch primed then the wing can start to go back together

 

IMG_8221.thumb.jpg.1a329e06f8de4c2226c43397ffb7ccc0.jpgIMG_8220.thumb.jpg.5dc578651b53a4227804eadc0f731b21.jpg

 

 

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Hi Marty

 

I made them a bit longer to cover more of the spar as the web at the tip of the spar I had to panel beat a bit so decided to overlay a new section over it with the extra tip section. I made a left and right at the same time although I didnt need it for this left wing but kept it all symetrical

 

 

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Ah - I was just joking (ie if you'd made one spar longer than the other, you'd be flying in circles) - but didn't realise it was for overlap.

 

From memory with the 701, the tip section is fairly short and only overlaps the main web by 20mm or so, just enough for a row of rivets.

 

 

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because the right wing web on the spar at that extension end was damaged I decided to make the tip extensions longer to cover completely and a bit more the web area so the left wing outer web section wasnt damaged but made them the same as it is just as easy to do the 2 the same albeit left and right folds

 

IMG_8225.thumb.JPG.f5ab3e05ee1f0fae45e7ee8c92f0c800.JPG

 

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  • 1 month later...

G’day forumites, I had the privilege of meeting Mark on Wednesday and seeing the quality of his workmanship and being a tradesman (sheetmetal worker), I know quality when I see it. I purchased a set of flap brackets from him as they are a steal at the price he sells them for. Shows the advantage of mass production and the kindness of a man who is more interested in helping others than making a big fat profit. They would still be cheap at double the price.

Thanks Mark for letting me come and see you and for the numerous texts and emails before and since. Appreciate all the free advice and your Rotax starting/stopping procedure works a treat!!! I will order a McFarlane throttle assembly for my Sav as I found a couple of cracks in the angle where you said I might. Not sure if I will get the vernier type or just the push pull type?

It was super interesting to see the ignition module tester in action and if mine ever fails, I will buy one from you for sure.

Dean

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Thank you Dean for your very kind words. I really enjoyed talking to someone with the passion you have for flying and wanting to learn. I do really like doing this stuff it works the mind and the body and I find it very cathartic. Building things has always been a bit of a passion of mine and I like to do it right. Please drop in next time you are over this side of the island but lets make sure you have more time and we will go out and grab a good feed. It was a very enjoyable day for me. Please dont hesitate to ring me or flash me a txt or email and if I cant solve it I may know someone who can. With the McFarlane throttle I didnt get the vernier type as I have used them before and didnt really think they were that good. Mine are just the normal type in Mabel and also supplied in the kit for the S-21. For a Rotax I think the normal one is more suited to the way you operate the engine.

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Got time to work on Mabel today. This past week has been full on. Had to go over the border into Mexico to pick up a 1 tonne 3.4mtr wide finishing mower that will be used at the farm as I am remodeling the airstrips up there to more like a airfield so need a much bigger mower than the 1.8mtr slasher I use now. Got to do a bit of work on this mower then get it up to the farm. I will get the grader back to finish off the rest of the job soon so the grass can grow and then the mower will be ready.

 

So back to work on Mabel.

 

The second wing is finally all cleaned up and alodined the smaller parts. Setup my super flat building jig on the table and started getting it together. I am not sure if I explained the tank cover skins properly when I did the first wing so this is what I have been doing today. I had precut some 3mm alu strips 12mm wide and cut them to length. These get drilled and tapped with 4mm threads so instead of riveting the tank covers to the spar you use 4mm stainless bolts and these clamp the front D skin and the front of the tank cover to the spar so this makes the tank cover removable of course if you use 3mm rivnuts in the ribs and the lower rear section of the underneath side skin. Easiest way is to mark the centre of a hole in the strip then do the same on the other end then just mark the holes ready to drill and tap them. Also the 2 tank covers have been replaced with just one sheet now so this makes life much easier as well than taking both off when you really need the other one off but the overlap makes that difficult.

I then sikaflex the alu strip to the angle of the spar on the inside and hold it with all the screws pulled up until the sikaflex dries then you have sort of rivnuts without doing any mod to the spar

 

I also cut skin tensioner strips from 0.016 for the 2 tank sections and they are sikaflexed to the underside of the top skin. When its dry and I flip the wing over again to do the top rivets of the skin then I will just drill them through the existing rivet hole in the rib

 

Hopefully the pictures tell the story better than my words

 

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IMG_8336.thumb.jpg.513d59cb66c975c235e0629ab5136625.jpg

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I tapped and drilled the alu strips for the angle on the spar for the tank cover tonight. Then spot the sikaflex so when it gets pulled up by all the screws it doesnt get into the threads and make the screws impossible to get out. Pics should tell the story. Quite a few havent seen these tapping drills. They come in metric and imperial and they are fantastic. i use them so much its not funny. just in the battery drill it drills its own hole and then taps then just reverse out but anything more than 3mm alu becareful as you can easily break it off in the hole. But with care they are great. Also quite cheap I get them from Banggood..

 

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