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Old Dec 04, 2008, 12:13 PM
Registered User
Central Michigan
Joined Nov 2005
191 Posts
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Adding tape for strength.

I have a flat FF wing on one of my planes that just has quite a bit of flex into it and I was thinking that maybe adding some tape would help take away some of the flex.

So my question is.......Is there a particular method or pattern to use when trying to use tape to add some strength.


Thanks

RC
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Old Dec 04, 2008, 01:02 PM
Jack
USA, ME, Ellsworth
Joined May 2008
17,219 Posts
If a wing is flexing upwards on the ends, adding a strip of nylon filament or package strapping tape to the bottom of the wing from the root towards the tip, on the centerline of the chord, will stiffen the wing and reduce bending.

Covering the wing, top and bottom, with clear or colored package sealing tape will also stiffen the wing some.

Then there are things like using carbon fibre strips or CF "tow" applied with adhesive. In any case, the material is applied on side away from the direction of the flex and spanwise across the flex.

If you try the filament tape and it does not stick to the foam well, you can mask off a strip the width of the tape and then spray a light coating of a aerosol contact adhesive like 3M 77 on the foam, letting that dry to the touch, and then applying the tape.

Jack
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Old Dec 04, 2008, 01:07 PM
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Quebec, Canada
Joined Aug 2006
172 Posts
if you are using filament tape, when you put a strip on topside, place an equal length on bottom side exactly opposite. If say the wing span was 15" ,and the 15"tape was place 4" from the leading edge, then another 15" piece would be placed on the bottom of the wing 15" long 4 " from the leading edge. Where you place the tape depends on where the foam is too flexible. If there is too much twist then some tape could be added chord-wise or even in an "X" , mirroring the tape on top and bottom. If the tape does not give the expected results, braces made from bamboo skewers epoxied in place usually will fix that, with a minimum weight penalty. hope this is clear.
Wb
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Old Dec 04, 2008, 03:13 PM
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Chicago, IL
Joined Dec 2006
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If your plane has a flat FF wing, I'm assuming it's not a very big plane... probably less than 36" wingspan. If it's a high-wing plane, use some dental floss or fishing line to add flying wires from the bottom of the fuselage (perhaps tied to the landing gear if you have it) to about 2/3 out on each wing. A lot lighter and a lot more effective than tape.

If flying wires are not an option, buy a pack of bamboo skewers at the grocery store -- (a pack of 100 costs about $1.50 at Dominick's) -- I've seen them in lengths up to 18", but 12"-14" are most common.

Embed the skewers in the foam and glue them in with epoxy or Gorilla Glue (the clear Gorilla Glue dries fast and really penetrates into the pores of the foam). Then you can cover the "surgery" with wax-paper and lay books on it until it dries. The skewers will be a lot stiffer than packing tape, without adding too much weight and without costing much. The wax-paper prevents the glue from leaking out and gluing your wing to the desk. Instead of wax-paper, use packing tape and just leave it in place after the glue has dried.

I often embed skewers along the leading edge of the wings, then cover with packing tape. This makes the wing much more durable if you land in a tree.
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Old Dec 04, 2008, 03:48 PM
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Central Michigan
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Thanks guys...that information helps alot. Will give it try and see what happens. Was hoping not to add weight with bamboo or carbon but I may have to if the taping doesn't work. May try the dental floss approach.

RC
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