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  #1  
Old 10-03-2022, 02:51 AM
rsr3 rsr3 is offline
 
Join Date: Feb 2018
Location: -
Posts: 138
Default Cowling fasteners - stray from plans?

Iím approaching cowling installation and was wondering what pros or cons the Vans piano hinge method might have vs something like say the sky bolt kits.

What did you do with yours and why?

Thanks!
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  #2  
Old 10-03-2022, 04:40 AM
Bevan Bevan is offline
 
Join Date: Sep 2007
Location: BC
Posts: 1,736
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I used the Milspec brand of cam locks rather than hinges for many reasons.

they are adjustable for material thickness (different parts of the cowl edges have varying thickness),

Piano hinges eyelets often break requiring a new hinge to be riveted on which damages paint. Cam lock style are easily replaced but probably wonít need to be.

Cam locks allow quick and easy cowl removal/install. Similar to hinges.

Cam locks are more than hinges visible but I like the look. I donít like the look of hinges.

Maybe it boils down to personal preference. But I really donít want to be replacing a section of hinge.

Bevan
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  #3  
Old 10-03-2022, 06:30 AM
rockwoodrv9 rockwoodrv9 is offline
 
Join Date: Dec 2011
Location: Meridian ID, Aspen CO, Okemos MI
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I am still a bit undecided on if I would use them again but that isnt your question.

If you want to use the skybolts, consider not purchasing their chain saw type receptables. They took much longer to install and act like a chain saw when putting the cowling back on. Using a strip of aluminum would make installing easier and getting things drilled more precise.

Good luck with them and make sure you consider spacing carefully especially at the top-bottom joint at the firewall.
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  #4  
Old 10-03-2022, 06:45 AM
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Mel Mel is online now
 
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I found that hinges work great for the sides, both vertical and horizontal.

I used screws across the top, bottom and each side of the spinner. The top because of ease of cowling installation and across the bottom because the hinges kept breaking.

After flying for over 25 years they all still look great and I would do it the same way today.
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Last edited by Mel : 10-03-2022 at 08:05 AM.
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  #5  
Old 10-03-2022, 07:42 AM
Southern Pete Southern Pete is offline
 
Join Date: Jul 2015
Location: England
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If you deviate from the plans it will take significantly longer.
+1 for hinges on the straight bits.
I have found the hinges on the back of the top cowl and the underneath of the bottom cowl to be difficult to live with and have recently converted to skybolts, see first statement! Cowling installation and removal is much easier.
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  #6  
Old 10-03-2022, 08:17 AM
Freemasm Freemasm is online now
 
Join Date: Nov 2017
Location: Orlando
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Default Opinions are like Cowboy hats....

https://vansairforce.net/community/s...d.php?t=207879

There's probably enough opinions in the attached link to weight what you want to do. Hey, 2.6% thought it a dumb question.
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  #7  
Old 10-03-2022, 08:22 AM
lr172 lr172 is offline
 
Join Date: Oct 2013
Location: Schaumburg, IL
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Mel View Post
I found that hinges work great for the sides, both vertical and horizontal.

I used screws across the top, bottom and each side of the spinner. The top because of ease of cowling installation and across the bottom because the hinges kept breaking.

After flying for over 25 years they all still look great and I would do it the same way today.
Same here and don't regret the decision.

Larry
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  #8  
Old 10-03-2022, 08:36 AM
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MacCool MacCool is offline
 
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I Really like the SkyBolts for their convenience and security. However, they are definitely more noticeable than the piano hinge approach to securing the cowl.

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  #9  
Old 10-03-2022, 09:11 AM
D-Dubya D-Dubya is offline
 
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Location: Beaumont, Texas
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One thing I haven't seen mentioned yet was that the internal hinge pins are not comfortable to remove when the engine and everything inside the cowling is hot. Reaching your arm up inside the oil door on a hot engine can bring on involuntary vocabulary outbursts.

Early in my build, I had an experienced builder tell me that you have to be thinking about maintenance and easy access when you're actually flying this thing. He put quarter-turn fasteners (a.k.a. cam-locks) along the aft edge of the top cowling and hinges that can be accessed externally on the side seams. After you have top off, access to rest is easy. The underside of the bottom cowling aft edge also had quarter-turn fasteners. I did the same and haven't regretted it.
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  #10  
Old 10-03-2022, 09:28 AM
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wirejock wirejock is offline
 
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Location: Estes Park, CO
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Default Sky bolts

I used Skybolt everywhere.
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I cannot be, nor will I be, held responsible if you try to do the same things I do and it does not work and/or causes you loss, injury, or even death in the process.
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