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Thread: Keeping a Quicksilver type aircraft outdoors...

  1. #1

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    Keeping a Quicksilver type aircraft outdoors...

    Hello out there.
    I've been lurking on this forum for some time and figured it was time to join and start asking questions.
    I am located in an area where hangar space is so expensive it essentially rules it out completely (~$400/month).
    I am considering a Quicksilver/Msquared style ultralight or similar style 2 seat LSA on floats, however my only storage option is to keep it tied down to the concrete ramp with all the other GA aircraft.
    Is there a reliable way to keep this type of aircraft covered with custom made tarps or wraps or something of this sort to keep it out of the elements. I'm talking about wrapping up the plane completely... like a mummy.
    The heat/rain/UV would certainly ruin an exposed aircraft in 6 months or less down here (south FL).
    Anyone know of a method, or products to fully protect it while it's sitting out there? Is there some way everyone else is doing this that I don't know about? Or is this a really bad idea for some reason I haven't come up with yet?
    Thanks for any advice.
    -Jeff

  2. #2
    Dana's Avatar
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    Generally, it's a bad idea.

    I recently helped a guy who temporarily (about 3 months) tied his Quicksilver outdoors in Connecticut. After 2 months, the sails were noticeably faded. Florida would be much worse. Air-Tech does sell wing and tail covers that are supposedly opaque, but the hassle of putting them back on after every flight will get old pretty quick.

    An alternative might be a canvas garage/hangar. Not cheap in a size big enough to hangar a plane, but compared to new sails...

    Or consider something like a Kolb, with quick folding wings, and store it in a trailer. I used to fold or unfold my Kolb in less time than it took to pull the tarps over my friend's Quicksilver.

  3. #3
    FlyingRon's Avatar
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    If you can fold the wings or otherwise make it compact, you might see if you can find some high wing pilot who wouldn't mind letting you park it in his hangar under/next to his plane. The Stinson 108 that used to be in my hangar had such an ultralight parked in with it.

  4. #4

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    With an ultralight you do not have enough mass to keep it tied outside. If a heavy or strong wind comes up it will just rip the thing apart. This has happened to others who tie these down at fly-in's. Just a warning and it don't take a lot of wind to do this.

    Tony

  5. #5

    Goggles Dismantle It

    Here is information from the Quicksilver aircraft webpage:

    8. How are the aircraft stored and why (folding wing vs. quick break-down & set-up)?

    Most aircraft are stored, completely assembled and operational, inside a building or hangar. Some people will leave their assembled and operational planes tied down outdoors. Others may choose to remove the wings and tail for storage in a trailer or garage. Quicksilvers, as all fabric covered planes, will need to be sheltered from direct, prolonged sunlight. Protective covers are available to provide a barrier from the sun that will eventually degrade the polyester fabric. Protective coating (paint) with ultraviolet inhibitors is also an option to help preserve the fabric from deteriorating.
    All Quicksilver models are easily dis-assembled for transport or storage. Step-by-step procedures are provided with each kit to instruct the owner/operator in the field assembly process. For the MX series models, the control linkages are disconnected, the tail removed, and the wings detached. The GT series allows the tail section to remain intact. This is easily accomplished with two people and can be done by a single person (in calm weather) with the aid of wing supports. The field assembly process may require an hour to perform as items must be carefully inspected, double-checked, and adjusted. The disassembly process normally takes about 30 minute

    If dismantled it will probably fit in your garage, probably could hang it from the ceiling. I used to hang my Pterodactyl from the ceiling and it has longer overall dismantled package. An hour assembly time isn't that much when it includes the inspections. Takes a regular pilot nearly that long, if not longer, from entering the airport to take off roll if someone hasn't opened the hanger doors, rolled out the plane and did the pre-flight inspections, permissions etc. That also assumes he can quickly find the guy with the key to the hanger, gas pump, flight logs, weather reports, and doesn't have to re-close hanger door before take off.




    Quote Originally Posted by Trapperjeff View Post
    Hello out there.
    I've been lurking on this forum for some time and figured it was time to join and start asking questions.
    I am located in an area where hangar space is so expensive it essentially rules it out completely (~$400/month).
    I am considering a Quicksilver/Msquared style ultralight or similar style 2 seat LSA on floats, however my only storage option is to keep it tied down to the concrete ramp with all the other GA aircraft.
    Is there a reliable way to keep this type of aircraft covered with custom made tarps or wraps or something of this sort to keep it out of the elements. I'm talking about wrapping up the plane completely... like a mummy.
    The heat/rain/UV would certainly ruin an exposed aircraft in 6 months or less down here (south FL).
    Anyone know of a method, or products to fully protect it while it's sitting out there? Is there some way everyone else is doing this that I don't know about? Or is this a really bad idea for some reason I haven't come up with yet?
    Thanks for any advice.
    -Jeff

  6. #6

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    Thanks for the info everyone.
    I hadn't thought about the potential for air frame damage due to high winds while tied down- that's exactly the kind of detail I figured someone else (just not me ) would know.
    I understand myself well enough to realize that if I have to haul a trailer... roll out aircraft... attach wings...blah blah blah... then do all in reverse at the end of the day... I'm not going to ever fly the thing. I work 50+ hours a week as it is.
    The weather here is perfect year around for this kind of plane, but the lack of affordable hangars just makes it impractical. I guess that's why no one else has them nearby.
    Plenty of PPG people around- but it's just not the same as a floatplane.
    Oh well.
    Thanks everybody.

  7. #7
    Dana's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Trapperjeff View Post
    I understand myself well enough to realize that if I have to haul a trailer... roll out aircraft... attach wings...blah blah blah... then do all in reverse at the end of the day... I'm not going to ever fly the thing.
    Right, that's why I suggested a plane like a Kolb that has quick wing folding. It took me 10 minutes from the time I opened the trailer door to be ready for flight. Hauling the trailer is a PITA, but I left it at the airport, which cost me a lot less than hangar rent... but allowed me to easily bring the plane back to the house if I needed to work on it, or for winter storage.

  8. #8

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    Here is what you need. I did not build this, someone shared these pics with me.. But if you have the skills maybe you could build something like this.

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  9. #9
    rwanttaja's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Trapperjeff View Post
    I understand myself well enough to realize that if I have to haul a trailer...
    No need for that part, at least. Rent a tiedown spot, and leave the trailer there full-time.

    Better approach is to find a hangar to share, though.

    Ron Wanttaja

  10. #10

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    Hello,
    I'm not so into the folding wing aircraft- but that does not mean they are completely out of the picture. The Kolb looks fun but I've never been in one.
    I have flown (as a "student") a Breeze on floats in the past and really liked the way it flew and the way the machine was put together. That's basically why I am looking toward this or a Quicksilver type.
    The idea of keeping a trailer at the airport is an interesting one and I will be exploring those possibilities this weekend.
    Thanks for the good ideas!
    -Jeff

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