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Sep 02, 2018, 05:21 PM
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Great Planes Super Stearman repair


Hi Folks,
Today was an OH CRAP day..... My Super Stearman ARF tip stalled to the ground , Nothing terrible, some tears on the wings, support for the landing gear cracked, cabanes and fiberglass fairing for the landing gear cracked ,( was showing signs of stress cracking anyway) the plane itself is solid with the exception of the landing gear support structure,
This is going to be a winter repair project.
Im looking for feedback on others who have worked on these planes, the landing gear supports are between a boxed in construction between the engine firewall and wing support firewall.....How did you access the landing gear support construction so it can be made solid again?
I can take pics of the damage if that hellps.
Last edited by Stev64rey; Sep 02, 2018 at 06:00 PM.
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Sep 03, 2018, 09:03 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Stev64rey
Hi Folks,
Today was an OH CRAP day..... My Super Stearman ARF tip stalled to the ground , Nothing terrible, some tears on the wings, support for the landing gear cracked, cabanes and fiberglass fairing for the landing gear cracked ,( was showing signs of stress cracking anyway) the plane itself is solid with the exception of the landing gear support structure,
This is going to be a winter repair project.
Im looking for feedback on others who have worked on these planes, the landing gear supports are between a boxed in construction between the engine firewall and wing support firewall.....How did you access the landing gear support construction so it can be made solid again?
I can take pics of the damage if that hellps.
Pics would definitely help. Never had to repair the gear on mine but did work on the cabane mounts after clipping a tree. Similar problem of access through the inside. I recall using some sticks to wedge the cracked part from inside and weights on the outside. Hopefully this helps.
Sep 09, 2018, 10:17 AM
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Ill post pics soon, I got home projects that need attention. ...
Mar 03, 2019, 11:22 AM
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Hi folks,
5 months after my last post i finally got to put the Stearman on the bench, taking the landing gear off revealed cracking and shear of the support, the front edge was pretty loose so I took a screwdriver and easily separated the plate from the fuse with minimal effort. The construction is a mortise and tenon on the front and back edge. Shown in the pictures
My first thought for repair was to trace out the plate how it was originally made on new plywood of the same thickness. But then it hit me that i would only be able to insert the tenon to one end and not into the other.
My second thought is to make the tenon on one end only and epoxy a hardwood support block across the length of the other side, and then epoxy the plate with one end of the tenon inserted and other onto the sopport block.
I want myrepair to be as strong as the original , the Stearman held up some hard landings without issue and yet gave a clean break when it took an uncontrolled crash in high grass without tearing apart the fuselage construction, I was pretty impressed with the minimal damage considering how hard she went down.
I am no means a expert at repair, I am learning as I go and want to start of on the right track.
Thoughts and comments?
Last edited by Stev64rey; Mar 03, 2019 at 11:33 AM.
Mar 03, 2019, 02:14 PM
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whiskykid's Avatar
I would trace the existing plate, square up the broken side!

after cleaning up the surfaces on the fuse, I would, (assuming the plate is 1/4 ac ply) would maybe go with some 3/8 basswood sq. stock, and glue a piece just longer then the slot, and epoxy it flush with the bottom(looking from the bottom) of the slot! that should give you just a smidge over factory gluing surface!

just makes sense too put the tenon on the front, so as too take the strain of the gear pulling backwards!
Mar 03, 2019, 05:03 PM
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Dang it! Good point...
The rear tenon was intact so Itraced and made a new piece already. I didnt think about making the tenon on the front instead. The mortise widths are different between the front and back so flipping the plate over isnt an option.
The rear is larger, so its really a matter of cutting more material off the one I made.
Its a challenge making nice jigsaw like tight fit when only working with basic hand tools
Wish I invested in a small bandaw and a disk sander with a table fence.
I keep buying more planes instead 🙄

Thanks for bringing that up
Mar 04, 2019, 10:51 AM
Play that funky music right
kenh3497's Avatar
Whiskey has it right for the fix. I would highly recommend buying a "nice" band saw at the very least. You will be amazed how much you will use it. Especially if you ever decide to do a major repair!


I have a 10" model from Sears/Craftsman. Don't know if it is available since Sears went tits up. Rikon has the same saw and we have a big box store (Menards) has sells the Rikon unit. https://www.menards.com/main/tools-h...4452321111.htm


A Wen brand from Walmart, Home Depot and others looks very similar and maybe better in some ways and comes with a stand! Looking closer at the Wen I just might sell my Craftsman and buy the Wen!!!


Ken
Mar 05, 2019, 01:48 AM
team sleprock
whiskykid's Avatar
ok a lil disclaimer, I do have a 16" scroll saw!

with that said, you would be amazed at what you can do, with a razor saw and a lil patients!
Mar 05, 2019, 03:36 PM
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That scroll saw should work for this type of repair or bigger projects.
Mar 08, 2019, 03:28 PM
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I looked that Wen and ordered it through Home depot. The Ryobi they had in stock didn’t have the rip fence the wen has. I should get it next week.
Theres some covering tears on the upper wing that can be worked on in the meantime.
And clear out a spot for the bandsaw.....
Mar 11, 2019, 07:54 AM
Play that funky music right
kenh3497's Avatar
Quote:
Originally Posted by Stev64rey
I looked that Wen and ordered it through Home depot. The Ryobi they had in stock didn’t have the rip fence the wen has. I should get it next week.
Theres some covering tears on the upper wing that can be worked on in the meantime.
And clear out a spot for the bandsaw.....



Good for you! You will find many uses for that saw. Don't let anybody tell you you can't do interior cuts with a band saw. When I cut formers I make a diagonal cut through the perimeter of the former and then cut out the inside. Then an appropriate thickness of ply, usually 1/32" is glued in the saw cut and sanded smooth. If possible I try to make the cut where it will be backed up by another part but I don't think that is 100% necessary. I used to have a couple of photos but can't find them.


Please do tell us what you think after you've used your saw for a bit.


Ken
Mar 11, 2019, 08:05 AM
Play that funky music right
kenh3497's Avatar
Please do take the time to follow the tips in this video. It will make you a happy camper!!



Band Saw Clinic with Alex Snodgrass (35 min 13 sec)



Ken
Mar 20, 2019, 11:51 AM
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I got my Wen band saw yesterday, and i also picked up a cheap belt and disk sander combo from Harbor Frieght.
Ill be taking them out of the boxes in a couple days.
Hopefully whats included in the box is what’s recommended for cutting and sanding Balsa applications.
Last edited by Stev64rey; Mar 20, 2019 at 01:07 PM.
Mar 20, 2019, 12:03 PM
Play that funky music right
kenh3497's Avatar
Quote:
Originally Posted by Stev64rey
I got my Wen band saw yesterday, and i also picked up a cheap belt and disk sander combo from Harbor Frieght.
Ill be taking them out of the boxes in a couple days.
Hopefully whats included in the box is what’s recommended for cutting and sanding for Balsa applications.



If you talk to the saw blade people they will tell you the blade is to course for the thin materials we cut. I just go a little slower and get a respectable cut. I always cut to large then sand to fir anyway so it isn't a big deal. I do a lot of my sanding, by hand, with 80 grit to rough shape. Anything finer takes to long to make something happen.



I predict you will fall in love with the saw. There was a short thread on the Harbor freight sander in the Builders Workshop Forum here on RCG. I don't really remember any details but the O.P. did make some tweaks to the sander.


Ken
Mar 20, 2019, 01:10 PM
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I do know the band saw is two speed.
I believe whats in the box is 14 TPI blade, not sure the width


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