Highlander T3 Tailwheel Suspension

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Re: Highlander T3 Tailwheel Suspension

Postby FredHoffman » Tue Oct 10, 2017 6:20 pm

I didn't think there was enough meat on the tail spring channel to drill the holes for the rear block either so I made a bar that went the full length of the channel and slightly past to mount a block to clamp the rear of the channel. We'll see how it does soon. I didn't change anything on the plane so I could go back to the tailspring if needed. Best case would be to think about this before covering the airplane and I would have welded on fittings the sideplates on the T3 could directly bolt to.
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Re: Highlander T3 Tailwheel Suspension

Postby z987k » Wed Oct 11, 2017 5:54 am

Winston wrote:Doubling up the leaf spring was not an option for me since my Highlander tail spring channel is barely deep enough for the main 3/8" thick spring itself. Any additional spring might allow the main spring to rotate out of the channel on the one 3/8" bolt. Welding on the channel was not an option since I don't want to mess up the fabric. The T3 has 25+ hours on it and is working great.

Winston

That channel will eventually crack from side loading if you're abusing the plane a little bit anyways. I'm either going to put a T3 on or figure out a way to get a u-bolt on there like all the heavier airplanes have.
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Re: Highlander T3 Tailwheel Suspension

Postby FredHoffman » Wed Oct 11, 2017 10:38 am

It would seem that the loads with the tail spring would be worse as there is only one attach point. A plus for the T3 is it should soften the loads as the shocks would be more gradual, negative is I have about 1.5" more leverage on the channel plus the locking tail wheel. I wonder if all the highlanders eventually crack in this spot? I could also machine a larger block that drops down, is longer and grabs and supports the channel.

I did notice on the wild west highlander this area wasn't covered and large access panel was added, I wonder if that was to make future repairs simple !
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Re: Highlander T3 Tailwheel Suspension

Postby Winston » Wed Oct 11, 2017 4:18 pm

I got my T3 assembly direct from the designer, Dan Dufault <[email protected]>. He included an adapter block for the Highlander tailspring channel. I did not use the two small bolts shown in the photo but insead drilled a 5/16 hole up through the block, channel and where all the fuselage tubes come together forward of the aft vertical stabilizer tube. This gave me two bolts to secure the mounting block with. Getting at that bolt on the inside isn't easy though unless you haven't covered the fuselage yet. You can see the head of the 5/16" bolt in the first photo. The system works great so far.
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Re: Highlander T3 Tailwheel Suspension

Postby FredHoffman » Wed Oct 11, 2017 8:44 pm

Thanks for the extra pics. Looks like my block I made will pretty much do the same thing as what was sent to you. Mine T3 was much different and would have worked well if the channel was deeper. Looking at build pictures there is a wide variation in tail spring channels. Here is a picture of my T3 original mount, I am sure mine is an older version.
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