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Old 11-14-2017, 05:16 AM   #1
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Default My Skybolt rebuild log

I bought this Skybolt last summer and flew it home from Illinois to California. I knew it needed to be recovered but what we found, especially in the wings, really scared us. ( My buddy Chris Gomez is dong the wings, saving me!)


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Old 11-15-2017, 02:37 AM   #2
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Looks like a lot of fun. Enjoy. Keep the pictures coming.


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Old 11-15-2017, 04:10 AM   #3
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Looks like you found some corrosion also. Any other changes planned?
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Old 11-15-2017, 04:30 AM   #4
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Wow, did the previous owner keep her outside? Yep you have a lot of work ahead of you. A least you had a safe cross country in her.
Looking forward to seeing your progress.
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Old 11-15-2017, 05:36 AM   #5
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The plane was built in 1975. it spent part of it's life in Florida and when I bought it it had been kept in a lean to for a while (did a number on the gauges, radio etc) except for the corrosion on the trailing edge of the horizontal the fuselage was in pretty good shape except...

the gear attach. Both gear had bent attach bolts. The gear was bent an somebody tried to stop the deformation with washers...

tons of unsafetied bolts, and the funniest thing was the forward brake pedals used Mil H 6000 as the pivot. More pictures to follow.

here is the plan:
-powder coat fuse
-add a baggage door in the turtledack
-new panel with AFS engine monitor and I pad mounts
-new floorboards
-smoke system (always wanted this )
-rebuild everything systems wise
-Catto prop (replaces heavy aluminum one, any body need a prop?
-Fix the wings-
-so far Chris has finished the r/h lower wing. he built all new ribs, new compression struts, new drag wires, in reality the only thing we could save were the spars and the tip bow.
-paint in NavyClick image for larger version

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Old 11-15-2017, 06:55 PM   #6
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That sounds like a long list! Awesome to see another one resurrected.
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Old 11-15-2017, 08:40 PM   #7
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That seems pretty typical on Skybolt LG. I'd put the ears in closer and probably go one size bigger on the bolt if I was building from scratch.

I just finished a Skybolt LG mod for the Grove LG with radius blocks. Doing two more this winter. Then I'll do mine eventually. Takes care of bungee & bolt problems. Looks good too.
While you've got it torn down, would be a great time to do the mod.

Nice looking Skybolt. Do you have a paint scheme picked out yet?
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Old 11-15-2017, 08:54 PM   #8
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So, I glanced through the thread and saw the first pic in #5 thinking, "oh, strange way to attach a rudder pedal..."

Nope. That's the gear attach point. Wow.
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Old 11-15-2017, 09:49 PM   #9
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I need to check my plans and as built status. If I've got that big of a gap something will be changing.

Thanks for pointing out the situation.

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Old 11-15-2017, 10:12 PM   #10
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Was that the forward or rear landing gear attach point?
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Old 11-16-2017, 01:04 AM   #11
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Rick you might try doing what I did to the Skybolt I had. I bent up a "U" channel to fit inside the landing gear wire pull fitting and edge welded it to the gear lugs and partly across the fitting. Most do not recommend welding across the entire fitting, and my Skybolt had a 540 and weighted about 1400# Empty. Just an idea that helps reduce the distance? Dave
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Old 11-16-2017, 02:07 AM   #12
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The damage was to the front gear attach fitting. Mike Melvill help me build some big bushings we welded to the gear and then welded new doublers on the tabs. More pictures tonight trying to catch up to where I am today.

I'm based out of Mojave and since my father-in law was a gunner in SBD's and stationed at Mojave during WW2 I'm paying tribute to him with my paint scheme. My wife has been a ton of help and very understanding as to how much time and money this involves. I've also had help from friends to get this far.
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Old 11-18-2017, 03:23 PM   #13
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Here is the idea for my paint scheme
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Old 11-19-2017, 06:33 AM   #14
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It makes the airplane look fat.
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Old 11-19-2017, 08:23 AM   #15
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Looks good to me Rick as a Marine Corps Vet I love the Navy and Marine Corps pre war Biplane fighters, but then I may be a bit prejudice. Go figure.. Dave
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Old 11-20-2017, 01:09 AM   #16
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Nice tidy shop...I like!
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Old 11-20-2017, 01:31 AM   #17
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6B2 = what ?
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Old 11-20-2017, 01:38 AM   #18
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Yea Ryan I noticed the wall of Tool Box!
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Old 11-20-2017, 03:44 AM   #19
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Normally the numbers and letters mean what flight and your position in the flight you are. I took liberty and put 6 as the month I got married and 2 as the year 2002. My new n number will be N62RW, for Rick and Wendy. The B is for bomber since my father in law flew in SBD's during WW2.

Corny, maybe, but my wife supports me so much in my bad economic decisions I wanted to try and thank her any way I could.
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Old 11-20-2017, 04:02 AM   #20
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Paint scheme looks great!


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