Wing covering

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Includes: Highlander, Escapade, Summit and SuperSTOL.

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Wing covering

Postby KevinC » Mon Mar 03, 2008 11:08 pm

I am getting ready to cover wings and apparently there are several ways to do it.  Questions that come to mind:

Top or bottom first?
Where should the seams & edges be front and back?
What is the order of work on the concave bottom (glue, shrink, rivet stitch, etc.)?
Dealing with the things that stick out (pitot/static, hinges, etc.) and the fuel tank top/bottom.

Any other 'finer points' or 'I wish I would have's'?

Thanks in advance for your help - what a great resource this is!

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Postby stede52 » Tue Mar 04, 2008 12:57 am

1.  I use two pieces of fabric for each wing and I work from the trailing edge to the leading edge. The bottom of the wing should be done first, that way the top fabric seam will be on the bottom.  
2. you've got the process right on the bottom wing. , pre-drill rib rivet holes, lay out fabric on the bottom as flat as possible, make hole for pitot (if not removable), cut the slots in the fabric for the hinges and make sure every lays flat without tension on any of the hinges. I glue down the trailing edge  at the hinges starting from the center of the wing moving out to each end. Glue the fabric to the ribs starting at the trailing edge of the center rib and move forward and out to each end of the wing, rivet, shrink, tape.
You can also cover each wing with one piece of fabric but I don't think the fabric provided is wide enough to go all the way around.
3. I only glued the fabric to the top of my extended range tanks because they didn't fit close enough to the bottom of the rib so I didn't want to see some weird indentation where I would have glued it.  If I was thinking I would have glued a false rib strip to the bottom of the tank.  Even without the false rib it look fine.
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Postby Gerald V9 » Tue Mar 04, 2008 2:24 am

    Laying up the fabric for the wings is reasonably straight forward.  You may want to put down a couple layers of thinned glue on the ribs and let them dry between coats.  It was also easy to keep the leading edge seams straight by starting from there on snapped lines and working toward the trailing edge.  It also seems to have good control on keeping the tension.  Dave U.(the pioneer) also gave me the suggestion of using a warm (200-225) iron to slightly increase the tension only at the rib locations (reduce any wrinkles on the underside ribs) prior to gluing/revitalizing the pre-applied glue.  Good Luck,  Gerald V9
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