Home > VansAirForceForums

-Advertise in here!
- Today's Posts | Insert Pics

Keep VAF Going
Donate methods

Point your
camera app here
to donate fast.

Old 11-19-2015, 04:33 PM
Stephen Lindberg Stephen Lindberg is offline
Join Date: Jan 2005
Location: Olympia, WA
Posts: 272
Default Need help with wood prop

My ten year old Aymer-DeMuth wood prop needs refinishing, I believe. Two photos show my two areas of concern, both on the same blade. The scratches go down to the wood, and there are cracks in the finish letting moisture inside.
Any comments? Can anyone recommend a wood prop expert who could do the work? The airplane is a 180 hp RV4 in a closed hangar. Thanks!
Steve Lindberg
RV-7A N783Z 0-360 Hartzell
canopy skirts, panel
RV4 second owner
Reply With Quote
Old 11-19-2015, 05:57 PM
Kyle Boatright Kyle Boatright is offline
Join Date: Aug 2005
Location: Atlanta, GA
Posts: 4,669

You can do it yourself if you want. I refinished my A/D prop a couple of times before some tiny cracks along the grain of the wood rendered it unserviceable. If you're interested, I'll be happy to share how I refinished mine.

Otherwise, many of the wood prop manufacturers will refinish a prop. You might try these guys. I've talked with the owner at Oshkosh and he seems like a good fellow.
Kyle Boatright
Marietta, GA
2001 RV-6 N46KB
2019(?) RV-10
Reply With Quote
Old 11-20-2015, 06:25 AM
caryr's Avatar
caryr caryr is offline
Join Date: Jan 2005
Location: northwest georgia
Posts: 320

Looks like your problem isn't much deeper than the paint.

I have refinished my AD prop also.

Like Kyle, I have an old one hanging on the wall. It got a 'with the grain' crack and I bought a new one just before Mike passed away.

Treat it like restoring a piece of furniture.
Cary Rhodes
Taylorsville, Georgia
Van's RV-7
First Flight April 2004
Reply With Quote
Old 11-20-2015, 07:05 AM
humptybump humptybump is offline
Join Date: Feb 2011
Location: USA
Posts: 3,181

With patience and attention, you can refinish the AD to put back into service. Here is a short write up from one I refinished:
Reply With Quote
Old 11-20-2015, 07:28 AM
RONSIM's Avatar
RONSIM RONSIM is offline
Join Date: Feb 2008
Location: Largo, FL
Posts: 1,071
Default Sensenich in Plant City, FL

Just did one for a friend with an RV-4 ----- they did a beautiful job for not much money ----

RV-10 Co-built, maintained, flown (sold)
RV-8A Maintained and flown (Sold)
RV-6A (Sold) Bought and Flying (N177RV), upgrades $$$
IO360, 180HP/CS, AFS 5600T, D10A, G650, G430, G327, ADS-B, VIZ385 AP
Very Happy Contributor
Based at KCLW (Clearwater, FL)
Reply With Quote
Old 11-20-2015, 08:23 AM
RV4King RV4King is offline
Join Date: Mar 2009
Location: Houston, Texas
Posts: 31

Call Frank at Performance Propellor. He has refinished and rebalanced my prop and it looks great and runs smoooooth. He's the guy for your prop problems.

Last edited by RV4King : 11-20-2015 at 08:26 AM.
Reply With Quote
Old 11-20-2015, 12:44 PM
Dave H. Dave H. is offline
Join Date: Apr 2013
Location: Oceanside
Posts: 44

Kyle Boatright,

Do post how you refinished yours. I have an A/D that needs it and would rather not spend the $ for Performance Propeller et al.

Reply With Quote
Old 11-20-2015, 06:59 PM
M2Guy M2Guy is offline
Join Date: Nov 2008
Location: Houston, Texas
Posts: 20
Default +4 for Frank at Performace Props

I'd recommend Frank at Performance Props if you want to outsource the activity.

Unrelated to Frank, I shipped my beloved Warnke prop and FedEx dropped it hard on the tip despite the robust packaging and damaged it. Lesson learned is that there is risk in shipping!

If you'd like to do it yourself I'd recommend this economical 10 step method:
1. Sand away the existing finish and inspect for damage. Fill dings with epoxy or epoxy/flox mixture.
2. Use a three inch foam roller from Lowes and roll on a coat for epoxy primer such as PPG K36 or equivalent. Do not use a lacquer based primer! Sand smooth and recoat as necessary.
3. Don't Laugh! - Rattle can spray with Rustoleum Professional High Performance Enamel Spray from Lowe's or Home Depot on the top shelf in the paint section. Rustoleum Link I use the Dark Machine Gray #7587838 color.
4. Spray the Gloss Black #7579838 on the rear of the blades. If you spray it right you don't have to tape the front of the blades.
5. Only spray enough to do the job, if you put it on too thick it will wrinkle at the tips due to centrifugal force.
6. Cure it with some heat, in the summer put it in the attic for a week. In the winter build a foam box and find a way to get some heat into it without burning the house down.
7. Wet sand it with 600, 1000, 1500, 2000 paper front and rear
8. Use one of those Harbor Freight three inch foam polishers and polish the front only with a machine compound from the auto store.
9. Wax the front and rear.
10. Check balance along the way and add material to the light blade. Further balancing is outside the scope of this discussion.

I just hate getting the Devilbiss spay gun out for this activity and all the associated clean up necessary when using the automotive products. I have tried various rattle can products over the last 15 years on my wood blades (three props) and I can say that the Rustoleum Professional has held up the best. In service I consider it on par with the automotive finishes and in some areas superior. My results are posted here: My Prop

Good Luck - Greg
Reply With Quote
Old 11-20-2015, 11:43 PM
Join Date: Mar 2008
Location: Seattle
Posts: 1,412

I would like to add a tip about practical balancing.
I overhauled my Ted Hendrickson wood prop after I damaged the resin leading edge. I thought the balance was correct, but it shook in flight more than before.
Just mark your prop blades so you can identify them for balance ( blade 1, Blade 2), then add tape to the blade you think is the light one. I use electrical tape about 8" from the tip, wrapped over the leading edge, about 2.5" over the front and back. If the prop vibrates more, take the tape off and put some on the other blade. If it runs smoother, add some weight to the blade that had the tape (add some paint to the tip) or remove some from the heavy blade (sand off some paint, or maybe a high spot on the blade compared to the other blade etc)
This is not rocket science.
Scott Emery
EAA 668340, chapter 326 & IAC chapter 67
RV-8 N89SE first flight 12/26/2013
Yak55M, and the wife has an RV-4
There is nothing-absolute nothing-half so much worth doing as simply messing around with Aeroplanes
(with apologies to Ratty)
Reply With Quote
Old 11-22-2015, 12:12 AM
johnf_1 johnf_1 is offline
Join Date: Nov 2012
Location: santa rosa
Posts: 75
Default Wood prop issue

Jeff Bertuleit is Proprs Inc. Just did a great a job rebuilding my antique Pacesetter 200....
Reply With Quote

Thread Tools Search this Thread
Search this Thread:

Advanced Search
Display Modes

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

vB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Forum Jump

All times are GMT -6. The time now is 05:50 AM.

The VAFForums come to you courtesy Delta Romeo, LLC. By viewing and participating in them you agree to build your plane using standardized methods and practices and to fly it safely and in accordance with the laws governing the country you are located in.