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  #1  
Old 03-26-2020, 06:16 PM
amaris amaris is offline
 
Join Date: Feb 2015
Location: Santa Ynez, CA
Posts: 288
Default first fiberglass attempt - lower empennage fairings

Since I just took the Sportair Workshop for RV fiberglass, I thought I'd practice some before I get to the canopy so I made some lower fairings. This is my first attempt at making anyting on my own. (my wife is starting to get plenty of ideas though!)

I need to trim it to have a nicer line in the lower left corner, but it fits really well otherwise. No idea how I attach it though. There's only room for 1 platenut on the left and so it would need a few on the underside of the HS to hold it. Any other ideas?

Love to hear thoughts from some of the fiberglass experienced.


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  #2  
Old 03-26-2020, 06:25 PM
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10builder 10builder is offline
 
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Default

Click-bond nutplates from The Flight Shop Inc.
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  #3  
Old 03-26-2020, 07:00 PM
BillL BillL is offline
 
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Default Probably know this already but . . . .

Unsolicited recommendation: You need to sand the contact areas (inside) of the upper fairing to allow it to mate to the surface better. Since the gray side is inside a mold, the lumpy side contacts the aluminum. Sanding will allow it to fit much much better. It is common for such molded glass parts.

On the topic: The plans remove some longeron rivets and install screws to hold the standard fairing under the HS.

Nice work, I just did this to my flying 7 before paint for a better overall fit.
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Last edited by BillL : 03-26-2020 at 07:04 PM.
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  #4  
Old 03-26-2020, 07:06 PM
amaris amaris is offline
 
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Default

Thanks, I was thinking about clickbond too.

Bill, thanks. I've not done anything to the upper except cleco it in but have been wondering how I get that to lay flat where it's not.

Because of the radius of the fairing, the usual spots to screw to don't actually touch at the rivet lines. So I may have to go outboard and attach to the forward and rear spar rivet spots instead. Right now that's only 3 attach points but I'd like to get a few more if I can. Possibly the clickbond in the skin will be needed.
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Last edited by amaris : 03-26-2020 at 07:12 PM.
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  #5  
Old 03-26-2020, 10:12 PM
Scott Hersha Scott Hersha is offline
 
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I?ve done this type fairing on two of the three RV?s I?ve built. I attached my lower fiberglass fairing with a epoxy. Drill a few #40 holes for clecoes to hold in place while the epoxy/flox cures, and then fill the clecoe holes. Sand the edges smooth, a little epoxy micro, sand, and you?re done. It?s quick, easy, and looks good for when you?re on your back under your airplane.

?But what if I need to remove my HS.?

In the highly unlikely event you have to remove your HS, get out your trusty dremel with a cut off wheel and make the cut. When you put it back on, you just have to glass over that skinny line you cut. Never had to do that.
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  #6  
Old 03-26-2020, 10:20 PM
sjhurlbut sjhurlbut is offline
 
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Default Check it out

Check out my vid. Clickbond rocks but it?s all about good prep

https://m.youtube.com/watch?v=ek1IniIa6Sk
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  #7  
Old 03-27-2020, 05:16 AM
fixnflyguy fixnflyguy is offline
 
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Default Proseal

My lowers on my -4 are bonded on with Proseal and a couple soft rivets. Likely, you will never need to remove them. The Proseal makes a nice sealed,paintable joint. 10 years of flying, no warpage, cracks or defects.
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  #8  
Old 03-27-2020, 07:25 AM
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DanH DanH is offline
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by amaris View Post
I've not done anything to the upper except cleco it in but have been wondering how I get that to lay flat where it's not.

Because of the radius of the fairing, the usual spots to screw to don't actually touch at the rivet lines. So I may have to go outboard and attach to the forward and rear spar rivet spots instead. Right now that's only 3 attach points but I'd like to get a few more if I can. Possibly the clickbond in the skin will be needed.
Remove any high spots on the underside of the pre-made upper fairing, just as Bill said. When well fitted, close any remaining edge gaps to zero with a liquid shim. Roughen the underside of the flanges with 80 grit. Tape the metal surfaces with a neat strip of packing tape. Mix epoxy with cabosil to the consistency of toothpaste. Apply a bead along the underside of the fairing flanges, screw it to the airframe, and allow it to cure. After cure, sand the edges to their final contour, a nice half-round.

Look close at the edge where the fairing meets the horizontal stabilizer. See the narrow band of cured shim material?



A similar dot of liquid shim can be used to make a solid base under each screw location, so tightening the screw doesn't deform the surface.

Your new scratch-built lower fairing is a nice part...my compliments. Bill E's proseal glue-on suggestion is a good one. Mine is attached with three screws per side, tapped into the longeron. Whatever works.

I know most upper fairings are attached with a whole lot of screws through the VS and HS skins, but it's not really necessary. Build a "hook" at the leading edge, and it locks into place using just two screws in shear, one on each side. At the rear, I use just two screws per side.



I like the screwless look. Be aware that no long fairing will fit perfectly at all temperatures; epoxy glass has a CTE about 2/3 that of aluminum.

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  #9  
Old 03-27-2020, 10:49 AM
amaris amaris is offline
 
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Dan, beautiful work as usual. Looks like you have a lot less inside radius on those underside fairings than I do. Were you able to screw those into the longeron and HS inboard rib rivet holes?
Thanks for the pics, big help!
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  #10  
Old 03-27-2020, 10:59 AM
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DanH DanH is offline
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by amaris View Post
Dan, beautiful work as usual. Looks like you have a lot less inside radius on those underside fairings than I do. Were you able to screw those into the longeron and HS inboard rib rivet holes?
Thanks for the pics, big help!
They're just screwed to the longeron. No screws in the HS, top or bottom.
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