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Thread: Hints for Homebuilders Videos-What are your ideas?

  1. #1
    EAA Staff / Moderator Charlie Becker's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jul 2011
    Oshkosh, WI

    Hints for Homebuilders Videos-What are your ideas?

    Okay, so we've published over 220 Hint for Homebuilders videos and we'll be filming some more tonight. We can always use more ideas so I'd like to hear what topics we should put on list for future shoots. Remember the topic should be able to fit in a 3-8 minute segment.

    So what should we put on the list?
    Sonex flight testing complete. Building a Super Cub clone, check it out at

  2. #2

    Join Date
    Aug 2011
    Hmmm, things I would've never have done right if I hadn't been shown:

    How to properly drill out a rivet. Seriously. The first time I drilled out a rivet I ruined a piece of tubing.

    How to anneal aluminum tubing (very cool technique for tubing up to an inch in diameter - the ink from a red Sharpie pen evaporates at the appropriate temperature; make two lines on either side, heat it until one line disappears, roll the tube while applying heat, and work the torch over the other one. When it is gone, stop heating the tube! Now one can flatten and bend it without cracking.)

    How to bend a piece of aluminum that itself is a 90 degree angle along the length around a radius. I'm going to have to tackle that one this weekend for the turtle deck on my Nieuport.

    (Can you tell I'm building a tube and gusset plane?)
    The opinions and statements of this poster are largely based on facts and portray a possible version of the actual events.

  3. #3

    Join Date
    Jul 2011
    Justin, Texas
    Charlie: A couple that I can think of right quick...using cynoacralate glue to hold hardware together while inserting in awkward locations...using it again to glue nuts and washers to sockets or wrenches for the same reason....drilling out steel/CRES/Ti hardware when heads are too messed up to use normal tools...using a compass/finger to lay out lines parallel to edges whether curved or wire to hold Adel clamps tight when you need to remove the bolt but don't want to let the clamp get loose...using double face tape to hold parts together while piloting holes.

    Coming from an aircraft production background, there are lots more out there that would help builders along with some tool usage tips too. A couple of those might not make sense to you, so PM me for a better explanation.

  4. #4
    How about vid on Vortex Generators? Before and after performance results (minimum liftoff airspeed, power off stall, power on stall).

    I put these on my low wing, 520 lb Fisher Avenger (installed on the wing and tail; 3" apart on the wing and 1.5" apart on the underside of the stabilizer). I think it's one of the best performance enhancement that one can get - and for very little money. Also, it made a noticeable difference in ride quality. It rides smoother in turbulence than it ever did before. Also if one ever has to land off airport, that 5 to 8 MPH slower touchdown speed is a real safety benefit.

    Your Sonex would make for a good test case; posting before and after results, along with your impressions of the difference in overall ride quality.

  5. #5
    Anymouse's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jul 2011
    Here's something y'all might do for the composite guys. How to make an inspection cover...

    1. Cut a hole the size that the actual cover will be. This will eventually be the cover, so don't hack it up. It may be helpful to determine how big the hole should be, then add width of the flange (both sides).

    2. Smooth the edges of the cover making it symmetrical, or whatever shape you want. If it's not symmetrical, it will only fit one way.

    3. Cover the inspection cover with tape and wax.

    4. Insert the the cover into the hole. Hold it there with wood and tape so it stays flush.

    5. Fill the gap between the cover and the hole with Aerosil or some other structural filler, depending on the composite system you're using.

    6. Laminate over the hole with three layers of glass, or however much is needed to match the original material. This will form the flange.

    7. After curing, drill holes for the screws.

    8. Tap out the cover.

    9. Grind down the excess glass to make a uniform sized flange.

    10. Place nut plates on the flange, holding in place with clecos.

    11. Drill holes as needed and rivet nut plates into position.

    12. Secure the inspection cover with proper sized screws.

    You will now have a flush, perfectly sized inspection cover.

    BTW... This will work with almost anything that needs a flange.
    Someday I'll come up with something profound to put here.

  6. #6

    Join Date
    Jul 2011
    I've enjoyed the various videos about jig construction, including quickie jig fixtures using hot glue.

    How about a video that demonstrates using laser levels for aligning jigs? I'll be tackling a vertical wing jig in the next couple of months.

    Thanks for asking.

  7. #7
    Norman Langlois's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jul 2011
    Northwood ,N.H. USA
    Came upon this one today. I hate working fiber glass with masking tape and having to remove it or leave it behind. I do not know if this is a new discovery or just that I haven't come across this solution. This is a fiber glass over styrene, with epoxy. Just a new sponson float for my U/L. Since I had already completed the plane I had this product on hand. If one is a new builder most would not.Unless they had already built a plane and used the Stewart's system. Styrene will not except solvent based adhesives .The Stewart fabric adhesive seems to be an excellent alternative to masking tape. Use sparingly and cover patiently one can get a tight wrap over an object and even tack down with a hobby iron. After you are pleased with the package have at it with the epoxy resin.Name:  The Finished Airplane 013.jpg
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Size:  96.1 KBName:  The Finished Airplane 012.jpg
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Size:  96.2 KB I was still using masking tape but If i do another I will not .
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    Last edited by Norman Langlois; 09-18-2011 at 06:40 PM.

  8. #8

    Thumbs Up Suggestion

    Vaccum bagging.
    More on composites.
    The rest of your series is terrific!

  9. #9
    How about a video showing how to use the Olfa P-800 heavy-duty plastic laminate (Formica) cutter to cut aluminum or the home made improved version described here:

  10. #10
    How about antenna placement, coax wire runs, what not to do.

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