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Old Dec 30, 2012, 05:29 PM
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Midnite_rider's Avatar
United States, TN, Memphis
Joined Oct 2011
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Top Flite Sierra Build or Finish

I bought an unfinished kit over Christmas. It's a Top Flight Sierra. I will post some pictures in a little while. But first I have a question. The guy that was building this was not a flyer or a builder so I am going over it to make sure it is all tight. Look at the picture below and tell me how big of a desl that the web does not touch the wing rib. Both wings are just like this and while I am looking at it, if I need to fix it I want to fix it,
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Old Dec 30, 2012, 07:36 PM
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DGrant's Avatar
United States, CA, Clovis
Joined Mar 2004
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Midnite_rider View Post
I bought an unfinished kit over Christmas. It's a Top Flight Sierra. I will post some pictures in a little while. But first I have a question. The guy that was building this was not a flyer or a builder so I am going over it to make sure it is all tight. Look at the picture below and tell me how big of a desl that the web does not touch the wing rib. Both wings are just like this and while I am looking at it, if I need to fix it I want to fix it,
To me that's not a big deal. The shear webbing isn't necessarily meant to touch the ribs.. and in some cases designed not too. Its meant to stabilize the spars, and create triangulation. As long as its glued firmly to the spars thats what matters in this case.. actually what matters most is that its to the plans. You can't got wrong there. Here's a pic of my Dazzler I've worked on for a while..The pic shows the shear webbing in the exact spot called for on the plans.. so that's what I did.. I've seen many other planes that shear webbing doesn't extend rib-to-rib.
So check the plans out, I'd bet the web is right where it calls for... but definatey check the joints out.. if they're loose, a shot of CA should shore them up fine. Good luck with your build.
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Last edited by DGrant; Dec 30, 2012 at 08:18 PM.
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Old Dec 31, 2012, 05:45 AM
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Midnite_rider's Avatar
United States, TN, Memphis
Joined Oct 2011
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Thanks. I just know from looking at the rest of the build that the guy did not know what he was doing. I am not knocking him because I know he was doing the best he could. He made check marks on the instructions as he did things.

Thanks again for the info.... I will take a look at the plans and see if shows them. But I think you are right about them not touching the ribs.
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Old Dec 31, 2012, 06:42 AM
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gene6029's Avatar
Wilson NC 27896
Joined Apr 2009
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I agree with DGrant, they dont need to touch the ribs to be effective. I have built several that didnt touch myself. If it bother you though, you could fill the gaps from behind, touching the rib & back of the web, with small strips, but i dont think its necessary.....Gene
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Old Dec 31, 2012, 07:02 AM
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Traverse City, Michigan
Joined Dec 2005
11,275 Posts
Funny, and no disrespect intended, but when I accindentally cut and install a shear web like that, I fix it.
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Last edited by TomCrump; Jan 02, 2013 at 07:13 AM.
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Old Dec 31, 2012, 08:33 AM
Fueled by Arabica Beans
ChillPhatCat's Avatar
United States, NY, Syracuse
Joined Oct 2008
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I only ever patch shear webbing when there is a significant portion missing. I've never been a stickler over cutting shear webs to perfect length, and I've never had a mechanical failure due to my lack of precision in that matter.

Short answer: no biggie.
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Old Dec 31, 2012, 08:50 AM
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Midnite_rider's Avatar
United States, TN, Memphis
Joined Oct 2011
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I have only built one other plane and I know the webs touched the ribs. I can see the added stability if they do, but I think I am going to go with the "no biggie" idea. I can see that he put the ribs in the slots on the leading edge and there are large gaps in the webs, but it seems pretty strong.
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Old Dec 31, 2012, 09:06 AM
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Midnite_rider's Avatar
United States, TN, Memphis
Joined Oct 2011
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The tail had been covered, but it looked like a patchwork quilt. The control surfaces had also been covered and they also looked bad. I stripped the tail down as you can see from the pic below.

I worked on the wings last night. The sheeting was sitting on top of everything. He missed the part where it needed to all be flush so it could be covered. I cut it loose and dropped it in flush.

Its a good thing he stopped covering when he did. Not the first piece of this thing had been sanded. The tabs were sticking out and the wood had rough spots in it. The wings were the same way, stuff sticking out everywhere. If he had covered it, it would have looked like he covered a handful of dice!

The firewall was not seated all the way and it looked like it was glued in with CA. I backed it up with triangle pieces and filled the gaps with epoxy. It was only touching the sides where the tabs stuck out. I think that should hold it.

Should be a nice little plane when I get it done.
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Old Dec 31, 2012, 09:18 AM
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San Diego, California
Joined Dec 2004
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Shear webs are the strongest when they go from rib to rib, but the question is, do you really need strongest, or just a little help with stiffness????

Les
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Old Dec 31, 2012, 09:34 AM
Fueled by Arabica Beans
ChillPhatCat's Avatar
United States, NY, Syracuse
Joined Oct 2008
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The way ribs are cut with grain going front to back, there is no I-beam strength in that space. The question you have to ask is how much strength is enough strength. Making sure that the webs cover a majority of the span between ribs is only going to take a little bit of strength out of the structure versus making sure they span exactly between the ribs.

In truth, the shear webs shouldn't be attached to the front or back of the spar, they should be placed in between the spars and perfectly cut to fit in that space, they should also be continuous across the span of the wing and front and back ribs should be employed instead of the notched ribs we all know... there's a lot you can do to make planes stronger.
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Old Jan 01, 2013, 09:15 AM
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San Diego, California
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"there's a lot you can do to make planes stronger."

And heavier?????

Les
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Old Jan 01, 2013, 09:49 AM
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United States, TN, Memphis
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Here is a pic of the tail section as I was removing the old covering. I hope to start on recovering the plane today while I am off.
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Old Jan 01, 2013, 01:32 PM
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Wilson NC 27896
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Its great to see you takeing the time to salvage this model. I'm following along with your work....Gene
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Old Jan 01, 2013, 09:30 PM
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Midnite_rider's Avatar
United States, TN, Memphis
Joined Oct 2011
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Gene it's kinda what I do. Most of the models that I have were salvaged to some extent. My everyday flyer is a Hanger 9 Solo Sport that I got from a friend and rebuilt. See the picture below of the blue plane.

I got some more work done on the Sierra today. I covered all of the control surfaces and part of the tail. The control surfaces took forever. I may redo the rudder. I did it first and it took me a little while to remember what to do. It's been a while since I have done any covering.
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Old Jan 02, 2013, 06:17 AM
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Wilson NC 27896
Joined Apr 2009
739 Posts
I guess you remind me of when i was a kid. I couldnt afford any models on my own, so i used to repair planes others were getting rid of or didnt want to repair. It tought me how to build & repair & appreciate them once they were finished. Great job! Keep it up....Gene
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