Dana's SA100 rebuild

Discussion in 'Starduster' started by Dana, Jan 1, 2018.

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  1. Jan 1, 2018 #1

    Dana

    Dana

    Dana

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    I haven't done any actual work on the plane yet since I got it home after the accident other than pickle the engine for storage but but new year's day is a good time to take stock and define the plan for the upcoming year(s), and start this progress / advice thread. This was supposed to be a year of just flying and taking care of the little things any new used plane needs, but forced landings in rough fields have a way of interfering with plans...

    The fabric shed is done, staked down, and the raised floor is keeping things dry inside. I've indicated the prop flange and found it within specs, run the engine, drained the oil, and put in preservative oil and desiccant plugs, which I should check/change before too long.

    Realistically, the actual repairs aren't the largest part of the work; the plane was somewhat rough when I bought it and it would have been due for restoration before too long, anyway... though I had hoped to fly it for a few years first. Oh, well.

    The first thing to do is to strip the fabric from the wings and see what the apparently undamaged wings look like inside. This isn't as simple as I hoped as it appears rivets were used instead of rib stitching so I can't just slice it away, I have to drill out all the rivets. Then to decide whether to do rivets again or just stitch it. That has to wait for warmer weather.

    Then strip the fuselage, clean up all the oil mess, reprime, and reassemble. As far as specifics, this is the "to do" list so far:

    Crash repairs:
    Splice or replace RH upper wing spars
    Replace one rib
    Replace or repair one broken compression strut
    Repair RH upper wingtip
    Inspect, repair as necessary other wing spars
    Repair right front cabane strut (apparently damaged during the extraction)
    Repair aft fuselage & fin (straighten or cut/reweld TBD)
    Rebuild rudder, probably from scratch, it's pretty crumpled
    Straighten elevator, it's only slightly bent
    Rebuild LH landing gear
    Repair or replace fiberglass nose bowl

    Other things, in no particular order:
    Redo oil cooler lines (cause of the accident)
    Replace plywood floor boards (broken out to facilitate wing removal)
    Remove riveted on metal skins on forward fuselage, reinstall with rivnuts
    Repair cracked fiberglass wheel pant (not on plane during crash)
    Replace tires (they needed replacing even before the crash)
    Replumb wing tanks to drain into / refill main tank instead of 3 way valve
    Clean up all the wiring
    Redo the elevator trim... currently a Cub style jack screw on the stabilizer which fights the extra tail wires which were apparently added later
    Replace the metal propeller with a wood one to lessen stress on the thin O-290G flange
    OR, replace the engine (keeping eyes open for a good O-290-D or O-235)
    Repair or remove the primer (hasn't worked since I bought the plane)
    Reverse the carb heat linkage (currently forward is on)
    Rebuild the brake master cylinders (the RH side was spongy even after bleeding)
    Get the weight & balance right, it flew like it was nose heavy even with full aft trim

    And finally, recover, repaint... leaning toward Oratex because I hate painting, but the cost may drive me to something else. I really like the paint scheme currently on the fuselage with the white stripes widening at the front but I'll probably go blue and silver instead of blue and white. Though the classic yellow, black, and white Curtiss Hawk scheme might look cool on a Starduster...
     
  2. Jan 2, 2018 #2

    will moffitt

    will moffitt

    will moffitt

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    I feel bad for you Dana. On the good side you will have a nice ride when you are finished.

    will
     
  3. Jan 2, 2018 #3

    TFF1

    TFF1

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    Once its done it will be yours for sure. Covering to one color does not take too long unless you end up redoing for perfection. Its the stripes that takes time. Looks like a good plan. I still hate you have to do all of it.
     
  4. Jan 2, 2018 #4

    Neil

    Neil

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    You might want to keep an eye out for an O320A or B. Almost no weight difference as compared to a 290, easier to find and cheaper to buy parts.
     
  5. Jan 2, 2018 #5

    EAABipe40FF

    EAABipe40FF

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    Might keep the jackscrew trim and remove the extra wires?

    Keep an eye out for a cheap flyer. Might make sense to walk away if right priced airplane comes along?

    Otherwise good plan. I feel for you. I've decided to probably keep mine and learn about engines......I'd be taking the 320 apart if it wasn't 4 F in my hangar. At least I have another ride.

    (I'll be screaming to the engine gurus):)

    Hang in there,

    Jack
     
  6. Jan 2, 2018 #6

    Dana

    Dana

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    An O-320 would require a different engine mount, no? Not to mention the increased fuel consumption...

    Maybe, I don't know if the extra tail wires are a reaction to a real or imagined problem, but a lot of Stardusters have them.

    Cheap flyer... this one was supposed to be the cheap flyer! But yeah, I'd definitely consider moving on if the right plane came along. I'd love a V-Star as it'd be a lot cheaper to operate and maintain, but they're scarce as hen's teeth. I'd consider a nearly complete project but building from scratch just isn't in the cards now. Money's tight right now but except for spruce spar stock a lot of the required work won't cost much or anything until I get to covering.
     
  7. Jan 2, 2018 #7

    EAABipe40FF

    EAABipe40FF

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    Many early O320's have the same conical mount. Indeed since I have a factory Acroduster 2 conical mount if I were to go with a 360 I'd look for one with the straight mount too.
     
  8. Jan 3, 2018 #8

    Neil

    Neil

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    The O320 A and B engines have the same mount as a 290
     
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  9. Jan 3, 2018 #9

    TFF1

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    If you are funky engine spec hunting, the HO-360 used in the schweizer CB300 is a conical mount angle valve. Talk about a weird combo.
     
  10. Jan 3, 2018 #10

    Dave Baxter

    Dave Baxter

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    Quote:
    And finally, recover, repaint... leaning toward Oratex because I hate painting, but the cost may drive me to something else. I really like the paint scheme currently on the fuselage with the white stripes widening at the front but I'll probably go blue and silver instead of blue and white. Though the classic yellow, black, and white Curtiss Hawk scheme might look cool on a Starduster...

    Dana having a plan to fix your airplane is a good thing, and it seems you are on the right track. As for the Curtiss Hawk Snow Owl paint scheme, you would not be the first to do so on the SA-100, and as you can see it looks pretty good! Dave

    N60R 1.jpg

    N60R 2.jpg
     
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  11. Jan 3, 2018 #11

    Lotahp1

    Lotahp1

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    WoW Dave. That’s another one I have not seen before! I wonder where it’s at today?

    Dana, I’d stay away from the oratex. It’s just not a good product for planes beyond ultralight...in my opinion. I know it’s used on others etc etc. think of the edges, and when you wipe it down and oil, grease etc etc starts to stain every edge of the exposed edges of pinking tapes etc etc. I hate painting also...but the end result will be countless times better if you use a “real” aircraft covering system. Personally I like the looks of AirTech and have talked to the rep and he said there wouldn’t be a issue using Stewart’s glue in place of there’s. AirTech primer is much like the PPG primer DPU174 (I think that’s it) that American Champion uses. Anyway...I just wanted to try and sway you early to pick a good aircraft covering system and leave the RC iron on stuff to the RC planes.
     
  12. Jan 3, 2018 #12

    Dana

    Dana

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    Well, I have awhile to consider covering and painting. I'm not familiar with AirTech. Whatever I use I want to be repairable without sanding through the topcoat, so anything like urethane or automotive enamels are out. I don't care about a super shiny finish anyway. I'd be comfortable with Ceconite and dope, I doped an awful lot of R/C models back in the day, but it takes so many coats. Stits is easier but I hate the toxic smell. Stewart maybe, I used a variant of it when redoing the rib stitching on my Fisher.
     
  13. Jan 4, 2018 #13

    Dennis5678

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    Dave Baxter,
    Nice photo of Air Progress Mag. Do you have the Magizine? Would love to read the Pilot Report that Budd did on her. There is no Pilot Report on his web site on this.
     
  14. Jan 4, 2018 #14

    Dana

    Dana

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    Ditto. Somebody must have a copy of Budd's pirep?
     
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  15. Jan 4, 2018 #15

    planebuilder

    planebuilder

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    Dana, maybe I misunderstood, but you said the fabric is riveted on the wings? Are your ribs wood or aluminum? Can you post a pic when able?
     
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  16. Jan 4, 2018 #16

    TFF1

    TFF1

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    I have read it; I dont know if I have a copy. He liked it; I remember. His standard "its not a Pitts" but he also said its probably an airplane most should consider if you dont want a Pitts. It would be nice if he could revisit the old article planes with a fresh pirep note.
     
  17. Jan 4, 2018 #17

    Dana

    Dana

    Dana

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    Yes, the plane has aluminum ribs. But I must be mistaken about the rivets... I started pulling the fabric off the broken tip and found rivets, but looking at a picture I see normal rib stitching elsewhere, which will make life easier. Probably rivets were simply used adjacent to the tip rib, I'll have to look more closely.

    IMG_20171021_105143065_HDR.jpg
     
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  18. Jan 4, 2018 #18

    TFF1

    TFF1

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    If I remember, there was rivets, but the spacing looked wide so I think they went back and laced it too.
     
  19. Jan 4, 2018 #19

    planebuilder

    planebuilder

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    Were aluminum ribs common or normal on the SA100?
     
  20. Jan 4, 2018 #20

    will moffitt

    will moffitt

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    I agree, it is not a Pitts but at half the price of a Pitts the Starduster keeps my testosterone level up. I like the 250' takeoff and the climb rate. Would like to read the report also.

    will
     

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