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  #1  
Old 04-27-2008, 10:37 AM
pmccoy's Avatar
pmccoy pmccoy is offline
 
Join Date: Jan 2006
Location: Orange County CA
Posts: 646
Default Slider Frame

All, I have been struggling with the alignment of the slider frame all week. Getting the sides to match the 1/16" clearance to the longeron has been a challenge. Now that I have made progress there, I see the rear bow is also spec'd to match the 1/16" clearance to the upper aft skin. However, where the rear bow is welded at the bottom, it's a full 1/4" in from the outside edge. I can't make the side skin and the top aft skin both be 1/16"?? How did other's handles this area?

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RV9A N35PM S/N:91335
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  #2  
Old 04-27-2008, 11:14 AM
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uk_figs uk_figs is offline
 
Join Date: Jan 2005
Location: Tulsa, OK
Posts: 1,066
Default The plexiglass will change the alignment

When you mount the plexiglass it will pull the frame out at both the front and the back so you have to take that into account when matching the frame to the fuselage. In addition as the frame pulls out it changes shape (at least it did on mine) which messed up the alignment of the forward canopy bow to the roll bar, particularly the height at the center so I would not make final adjustments to the roller height until the end.
I had to tweak mine quite a bit after I had cut and mounted the plexiglass.
In my case the plexi pulled the frame about 3/8 inch.
There are some picture and notes on my blog and Matt Burch has some great stuff on his blog in this area
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  #3  
Old 04-27-2008, 11:25 AM
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mburch mburch is offline
 
Join Date: Feb 2005
Location: Oregon
Posts: 1,269
Default

Thanks for the shout-out, Dave... here's a link to my canopy building log entries, and also some notes I wrote up on canopy construction in general:

http://www.rv7blog.com/category/fuselage/canopy/
http://www.rv7blog.com/docs/canopy-notes/

The one thing I wish I'd done a better job of when I was at the same stage you're at, is paying more careful attention to the height difference between the aft bow and the top fuselage skin. In my case, the aft end of the canopy ended up too high, so I had to bridge the gap with a custom fiberglass fairing. But then again, it's hard to comprehend or explain how the fit of the frame affects the end product, until after you've built your first canopy! Go slow and think ahead, and you'll come out okay.

good luck,
mcb
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  #4  
Old 04-27-2008, 05:03 PM
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Noel Simmons Noel Simmons is offline
 
Join Date: Nov 2006
Location: Lewistown
Posts: 161
Default canoopy

I have done quite a few canopies now and have adopted a fiberglass skirt method. It is still very hard for me to clearly explain the process, and I do suffer from creative spelling, but.

the canopy frame must fit well

the canopy frame must slide and key into the plastic blocks perfectly!
The biggest problem is the "dogs" on the canopy frame need to be aligned (bent) so they parallel the centerline of the fuselage.

the downward angle of the "dogs" must be equal to the rear slider angle (the one with the 1/4" all thread that sets the angle.

As the canopy frame dogs key in the the plastic there can be NO sideways pull.

the Plastic blocks need to be drilled with a drill bit that will allow free movement. the dogs are 1/4" with powder coating & paint if you chose. This increased the diameter.

After the canopy has been completely fit it will pull the dogs outboard so you will then need to modify as necessary the entrance on the plastic block so the dog will make proper (I need to be careful about wording here!) well you get the idea.


tips
Don't worry about the canopy latch until EVERY thing is done

Do find a plastic snap bushing that will fit into the hole on top of the canopy frame where the canopy latch goes. You have one of these in your kit somewhere. It will keep you from scratching it during one of the 50-60 times you will need to install & remove

A 4" grinder works great to cut the canopy, you can buy very thin disks for them. there is no waiting for an air compresser

The 4" grinder can also be fitted with a sanding type disk. this makes the first step of polishing edges easier.

Do NOT use scrapers, blades, or any other metal cutting device to de-burr edges USE only sandpaper stuff! canopies are expensive (ask me how I know!) I still cry at night.

for a bad, blurry, not quite the angle that will let you see what you are looking for you can visit my website, I have an rv-9a and a -7a you can look at the canopies.
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  #5  
Old 04-27-2008, 07:06 PM
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frazitl frazitl is offline
 
Join Date: Jan 2005
Location: Las Vegas, NV
Posts: 488
Default

The 1/4 " gap where the rear frame tube is welded to the square horizontal part of the frame is for the plexi to "nest" in. In otherwords, the plexi sits above the square tube, and on top of the round rear tube. I found it harder to pull the lower skirts against the fuselage than the rear skirt. The hardest part is the bottom aft corner of the skirts. My advice would be to fit the square tube to be 1/4 to 3/8" inside the fuselage side, and then expect the plexi to pull it out when mounted.
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  #6  
Old 04-27-2008, 08:22 PM
alpinelakespilot2000 alpinelakespilot2000 is offline
 
Join Date: Jan 2005
Posts: 3,703
Default

Peter-

In my opinion, Matt Birch has, by far the best website for a step-by-step guide to the slider canopy (links above). I followed his steps and came out with a canopy that I'm really pleased with. It fits so well that it's a little tight opening actually.

BTW, if you're planning on using a metal rear skirt, take heed of the above advice re: making the rear bow fit the rear skin perfectly. The top of the plexi must be in line with the top of the aft skin. If it doesn't fit perfectly, it's going to be really hard to get the rear skirts to fit nicely. I've seen very few metal rear skirts that look nice. I suspect that those who do end up with nice metal skirts had that rear bow perfect. I ended up going fiberglass and have no regrets. Had to learn another new skill though!

Good luck with yours.
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Last edited by alpinelakespilot2000 : 04-27-2008 at 08:35 PM.
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  #7  
Old 04-28-2008, 12:32 AM
mike109g6 mike109g6 is offline
 
Join Date: Feb 2007
Location: Shepherdsville, KY
Posts: 280
Default Canopy

Quote:
Originally Posted by pmccoy View Post
All, I have been struggling with the alignment of the slider frame all week. Getting the sides to match the 1/16" clearance to the longeron has been a challenge. Now that I have made progress there, I see the rear bow is also spec'd to match the 1/16" clearance to the upper aft skin. However, where the rear bow is welded at the bottom, it's a full 1/4" in from the outside edge. I can't make the side skin and the top aft skin both be 1/16"?? How did other's handles this area?

Pete,
I beat the heck out of my slider frame for a week and to no avail. Those square side tubes just will not bend without creasing. Concentrate on the aft bow-width and height. Remember that they can be moved fore and aft also, not just up and down/side to side. Find the best compromise. Spend your time on the metal side and aft skins. You can really work them to shape if you take the time; to correct for some misalignment. Mine came out really nice, I think, with them being very flat against the aft skin when closed. FYI-the side of a wood work bench really works well to twist and curl the aft skins, leave yourself plenty of overlap when cutting them out and trim to fit AFTER they are shaped, drilled to bow. Also don't cut the front roll bar height on the slider until AFTER you have fitted the windshield-ask me how I know. Back on the slider frame-if I had just made some minor aft bow adjustments and concentrated on the skins I would have saved myself two weeks of work that resulted in zero improvements. I think that those instructions were written when the entire slider frame was round tube, and have not been updated since they went to the square sides.
Mike H 9A/8A
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  #8  
Old 04-29-2008, 08:02 AM
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pmccoy pmccoy is offline
 
Join Date: Jan 2006
Location: Orange County CA
Posts: 646
Default Slider Fram Gap

Gents...

Thanks for the advice. I have walked away from bending the slider frame two or three times already. It's has been frustrating for me so far.

It seems a bit weird that the plans harp on the 1/16" edge distance, then tell you to bend it back in 1/2" for the canopy spread. I think I will take the advice above, and try to make it as straight and smooth as possible. However, the side rails will be 1/4 to 3/8 off of the edge to allow for the spread.

Thanks.
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  #9  
Old 04-29-2008, 08:55 AM
dhusk dhusk is offline
 
Join Date: Jan 2006
Posts: 126
Default Very timely

Boy, is this thread helpful. I'm at exactly the same point in the build. We spent the better part of a Sunday afternoon struggling with how to bend, what is the right positioning, etc.

We will try again in a couple days, but armed with the information from this thread, I think we have a chance now.

Thanks, everyone.
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RV9A - finishing kit
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  #10  
Old 05-01-2008, 06:12 AM
R.P.Ping R.P.Ping is offline
 
Join Date: Jan 2005
Location: Peoria, AZ
Posts: 233
Default Shim It

"However, where the rear bow is welded at the bottom, it's a full 1/4" in from the outside edge. I can't make the side skin and the top aft skin both be 1/16"?? How did other's handles this area?"



You progressively shim it on top of the frame with three pieces of progressively shorter overlapping .032 aluminum picking up 3 rivet holes building up to.096 at the weld area.
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