Highlander Belly Pod?

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Highlander Belly Pod?

Postby TaterTot » Wed Nov 08, 2017 1:16 am

Maybe this has been answered before but I could not find anything when I searched. Has anyone put a belly pod on their highlander? If so, can we have some pics?

Thanks a bunch for any info!

Bill
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Re: Highlander Belly Pod?

Postby SheepdogRD » Wed Nov 08, 2017 12:15 pm

Welcome to the Forum, Bill.

I haven't seen or heard any discussion about installing a belly pod. But, considering the amount of weight people carry with these airplanes, it certainly seems possible. There are plenty of attach points. There's room underneath, especially if you specify the longer extreme gear and a SuperSTOL tailwheel. The only conflict that comes to mind would be positioning the header drain valve(s).

Big performance hit? Probably not; look at the surprisingly small reduction in cruise speed when floats are added.

In fact, adding a pod would be like suspending a single float underneath. Because the shape of the belly is determined by the builder and the way the bottom stringer is installed, you could simply make that flat -- or nearly flat -- and allow more space underneath for the pod.

Sounds pretty interesting.
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Re: Highlander Belly Pod?

Postby Tralika » Wed Nov 08, 2017 1:00 pm

The fuel strainer on the belly of the Highlander would not prevent the installation of a belly pod. C185 has fuel strainers on the belly as well. There are holes in the top of the belly pod to gain access to the strainers. You just reach inside the pod to take a sample. It's a good idea to do that before you load up the pod with a bunch of bulky stuff.
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Re: Highlander Belly Pod?

Postby TaterTot » Wed Nov 08, 2017 5:32 pm

Yes Sheepdog that was my thought regarding the load it seems some folks carry. Why not fabricate a belly pod for other gear and free up some of the interior space. Unfortunately, I don’t have those kind of fabrication skills :(

No highlander here yet. Just some thoughts on how I’d outfit it if/when I get one.

Thanks for the input!
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Re: Highlander Belly Pod?

Postby z987k » Wed Nov 08, 2017 8:24 pm

You'd have to be carrying some really light bulky stuff to need one. With 2 people in mine, I can fill the baggage to the ceiling with backpacking style camping stuff, but carrying other things, you run out of payload pretty quick. Most highlanders are over 700lbs, 24 gallons of gas and 2 180lb adults only leaves you 100lbs tops. If you're not carrying that other adult, take the right seat out and use that space instead.

That's what I do anyways.
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Re: Highlander Belly Pod?

Postby av8rps » Wed Nov 08, 2017 9:58 pm

I've always thought it would be great to have a easily removed belly pod for a Highlander like is used on a Piper Supercub. I personally would use it for additional fuel as it is a great place being low on the airframe and in a good place for CG control. A 12 volt pump could pump fuel up into tank or tank be valved to run engine directly. That would do a great solution to not enough fuel for those needing more.

The baggage area on the Highlander and SS is so large already I can't imagine needing more baggage area. But more fuel for long trips would always be good, especially if you only put it on aircraft when you planned a long trip.

I agree with the comments about minimal drag reduction. I doubt it would do much. But I'm sure somewhere on Supercub.org they have that info.

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Re: Highlander Belly Pod?

Postby TaterTot » Thu Nov 09, 2017 2:07 am

z987k wrote:You'd have to be carrying some really light bulky stuff to need one. With 2 people in mine, I can fill the baggage to the ceiling with backpacking style camping stuff, but carrying other things, you run out of payload pretty quick. Most highlanders are over 700lbs, 24 gallons of gas and 2 180lb adults only leaves you 100lbs tops. If you're not carrying that other adult, take the right seat out and use that space instead.

That's what I do anyways.


Yes...I think it be perfect to throw light bulky items in there that really take space like a small 2 person tent, sleeping bags, etc., or fuel like Paul mentioned. I’d also rather carry those smaller turtle pacs in a belly pod than the cabin. It seems like no matter how hard I try to keep things clean and dry I fail. I’m the guy that ends up with most of the tube of caulk on me instead of my project! :(

Just thinking out loud. Thanks
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