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  #1  
Old 01-01-2021, 06:45 PM
dwaynebob dwaynebob is offline
 
Join Date: Jan 2005
Posts: 36
Default RV-3b Retro Wings

I am searching for information as to what is involved with doing a retro -3b wing on a previously flying RV-3. Things i'd like to know...

1) is the QB wing $7800 or is that just the kit?
2) Is there a website/blog/photobucket that shows the process?
3) Has anyone done this and would you mind talking me through the process a bit?

I realize the center section portion needs to be replaced but I haven't seen many details. Some of you may have seen my current wing center section and there are some issues, a couple of the pieces need replacement. I am not a builder so I am getting help from an experienced builder, so I apologize for my lack of correct terminology.

DBob
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  #2  
Old 01-01-2021, 07:25 PM
David Paule David Paule is offline
 
Join Date: Dec 2009
Location: Boulder, CO
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1) That's just the slow-build wing kit. You'll have to contact Van's for a QB price.

2) I haven't come across any, probably because this is a fairly rare event. If you find one, let us know.

3) Same basic answer.... but I do think that a small number of people have done it.

Dave
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  #3  
Old 01-01-2021, 08:36 PM
dwaynebob dwaynebob is offline
 
Join Date: Jan 2005
Posts: 36
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That's bad news...I have budgeted for 8k. My wings had CN-1 completed, but not CN-2, so I started drilling out the rivets on the wingskins. Because I have problems with the center section, maybe my solution will be to replace the center section, but I'm told match drilling is not going to be at all easy.
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  #4  
Old 01-01-2021, 09:32 PM
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Ironflight Ironflight is offline
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Location: Dayton, NV
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I don’t think I have ever heard of anyone putting a B wing on an early fuselage, but that doesn’t mean someone hasn’t done it ... but it sure would be an expensive upgrade to a fairly inexpensive airplane!

Yes, the center section will have to be replaced, and man - you build the center of the fuselage around that!


Paul
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  #5  
Old 01-01-2021, 10:08 PM
David Paule David Paule is offline
 
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Location: Boulder, CO
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It seems to me that if you replace the wings with B wings, there would be a chance that the aft spar carry-through might also need to be replaced. The wing attachment holes have little room for misalignment and might need to be made to suit the new wings.

On the B wings, there is a fork at the inboard end of the aft spar that mates with a straight bar through the fuselage. Perhaps you should buy the RV-3B plans thumb drive to see the differences between the B version and yours. If the carry-through on yours has the fork, it will certainly need to be changed.

As for the main spar bulkhead, on the B it has a front and a back. If yours does too, then perhaps the way to manage it would be to replace one or the other of these at a time, letting the remaining one help hold the fuselage in alignment. Keeping the front turtledeck on would improve the rigidity of the fuselage while making it even more difficult to switch out the bulkhead. The instrument panel and any center console will also add to the change process work load, I think.

Dave
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  #6  
Old 01-01-2021, 11:24 PM
RussellT RussellT is offline
 
Join Date: May 2016
Location: Albany Western Australia
Posts: 85
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As Paul said the fuselage is built around and away from the center section, which (with the 3B) is matched to the wing spar and splice plates. To fit new bulk heads would mean pretty much jigging and deskinning the entire fuselage. And as Dave mentioned the rear spar is an unknown, the margins for variation there are very small to non existent.

Looking at the bolt hole damage I would be brainstorming a fix, firstly cleaning it all up and taking the torn metal back to radius, refit your wings, then in consultation with Van's come up with a fix. Possibly additional bolts at strategic positions suitable to the spar integrity with doublers on the outside along with custom shaped splice plates tie the repair together. Good luck with it, it's a challenge for sure.

Russell
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  #7  
Old 01-02-2021, 04:24 AM
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Lufthans Lufthans is offline
 
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Location: Hilversum, The Netherlands
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The previous owner of mine has refitted B wings to a (not yet flying) pre-A fuse. I'm not sure what was involved and how he's done it, so I am afraid I can't be of much help, other than mentioning that it HAS been done before, apparently.
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  #8  
Old 01-02-2021, 03:09 PM
dwaynebob dwaynebob is offline
 
Join Date: Jan 2005
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All good information folks, thanks for help. My adviser has been helping me a lot and we came to the conclusion that fixing what I have is better (and easier) than retrofit. Paul's point about an expensive fix for an inexpensive airplane is particularly on point. We are making progress and if the RV gods allow it, we may have it ready next year this time. I am not a builder, so I am the weak link in the process, learning a lot with a lot more to learn.
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  #9  
Old 01-02-2021, 03:44 PM
David Paule David Paule is offline
 
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What part pf the country are you in? I know of one older model RV-3 at the Longmont, CO airport.

Dave
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  #10  
Old 01-02-2021, 04:00 PM
dwaynebob dwaynebob is offline
 
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I'm in SoCal, KREI....If you know any RV-3 builders in the area would love to get their 2 cents. My adviser is very knowledgable about RV's and brings great experience (and lots of patients) is helping/coaching. We have both scratched our head more than a few times because it's an early -3, completed in the 80's, so getting drawings has been a bit of a challenge. We have the new Van's thumb drive and hardcopy plans but not all of the build is the same as the early one, especially the wings. Our approach has been to talk to Vans first (very few have a working knowledge about the early kits) and then incorporate best practices in GA, consulting with my local mechanic. Funny story when I ordered the CN-2 kit from Vans. They called me the next day and confirmed, "Are you sure you want this kit, it is very rare." I explained what I needed it for and the reply was, "oh...ok". Goal is safety, simplicity, reliability....and plenty of margin.
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