Welcome! Becoming a registered user of ShortWingPipers.Org is free and easy! Click the "Register" link found in the upper right hand corner of this screen. It's easy and you can then join the fun posting and learning about Short Wing Pipers!

Thanks Thanks:  0
Page 1 of 2 12 LastLast
Results 1 to 10 of 15

Thread: Wing Fabric Attachment to Tank Edge Rib - Not Sewn?

  1. #1

    Join Date
    Mar 2016
    Location
    Merritt Island, FL
    Posts
    638
    Post Thanks / Like

    Default Wing Fabric Attachment to Tank Edge Rib - Not Sewn?

    I noticed my upper left wing fabric wasn't taught near the edge of the fuel tank cover. I removed the tank cover to find the fabric Un-bonded from the upper part of the rib. It wasn't sewn the rib, either. I tried to smooth out the fabric and put a little contact cement under the fabric and screwed the tank cover back in place to hold it while the glue sets. I'm not really happy with that quick fix however, and was wondering if anyone had a recommendation on how to do it better. I think I can probably separate the contact cement I put there. I'd like the fabric to be taught the way it is everywhere else on the wings. Should it be sewn to the rib the way it is on the others? If it's only supposed to be glued down, how do I get the tension back in the fabric and hold it while the glue sets? What glue should I use?

  2. #2
    Administrator Steve Pierce's Avatar
    Join Date
    Nov 2007
    Location
    Graham, Texas, United States
    Posts
    12,986
    Post Thanks / Like
    Blog Entries
    1

    Default Re: Wing Fabric Attachment to Tank Edge Rib - Not Sewn?

    Is the fabric loose outboard of the tank cover or the button rib? both sides are glued not sewn. You have to see what system your irpln is covered in to determine what glue to use.

  3. #3

    Join Date
    Mar 2016
    Location
    Merritt Island, FL
    Posts
    638
    Post Thanks / Like

    Default Re: Wing Fabric Attachment to Tank Edge Rib - Not Sewn?

    Hi Steve, the fabric is loose outboard of the tank cover. My logbook says my TP was covered with Ceconite 102 using Randolph systems butyrate dope. So, I ordered A quart of Ceconite Super Seam cement. I'm still not sure how I'm going to pull it tight over the top of the rib and hold it in place while the glue dries. Maybe a bunch of small clamps of some sort… is the super seam cement like contact cement where you let it mostly dry before applying pressure to bond it down?

  4. #4
    Administrator Steve Pierce's Avatar
    Join Date
    Nov 2007
    Location
    Graham, Texas, United States
    Posts
    12,986
    Post Thanks / Like
    Blog Entries
    1

    Default Re: Wing Fabric Attachment to Tank Edge Rib - Not Sewn?

    Pull as best you can and clamp with clothes pins as close together as possible. Let dry overnight. Might have to cheat and hit it very, very carefully with a heat gun held way back away from the fabric and take your time.

  5. #5

    Join Date
    Mar 2016
    Location
    Merritt Island, FL
    Posts
    638
    Post Thanks / Like

    Default Re: Wing Fabric Attachment to Tank Edge Rib - Not Sewn?

    It worked. Thanks Steve!

  6. #6

    Join Date
    Mar 2016
    Location
    Merritt Island, FL
    Posts
    638
    Post Thanks / Like

    Default Re: Wing Fabric Attachment to Tank Edge Rib - Not Sewn?

    Steve, The story doesn't end. The fabric came loose on the other (right) wing also, a couple days ago. It was "buzzing" or humming at certain angles of attack and speeds. Post flight inspection showed it bubbled loose from the tank cover forward approx. 6 to 8 inches toward the leading edge. So I used the seam sealer with a plastic spatula to squeegee some glue between the fabric and D-tube. That's when the "fun" began. I was using a smoothing sort of hand pressure technique to get the glue to stick down the fabric, trying to stretch and pull the fabric tight toward the tank. Then I noticed the glue began to liquefy the dope through the silver and top coat colored dope. When I realized it, I stopped using the smoothing pressure technique because it was pulling the dope up. Crap. So I adopted a "patting" technique with a soft cloth trying to stick it down, especially around the sewn bumps under the rib tapes. After a couple hours of misery and sweating, I stopped touching it, turned out the hangar lights and went home. Tomorrow morning my preflight will reveal how it all came out. Judging from my aircraft log books, I'm really the first person flying this plane in almost two decades. The previous owner had only flown it a total of 200 hours since 1997. Does the dope glue break down at the unsewn bonding locations like I'm seeing around the tank access? Should I be using something like contact cement instead of seam sealer? Can this situation be improved by application of heat? Looks like I'll try to find a good fabric-dope guy in my area now. My wife commented to me, "maybe we now know why they call them rag wings"... Thanks honey...

  7. #7
    Administrator Steve Pierce's Avatar
    Join Date
    Nov 2007
    Location
    Graham, Texas, United States
    Posts
    12,986
    Post Thanks / Like
    Blog Entries
    1

    Default Re: Wing Fabric Attachment to Tank Edge Rib - Not Sewn?

    Super Seam will melt the dope. You just need to touch up the silver and color after it dries.

  8. #8
    rocket's Avatar
    Join Date
    Dec 2010
    Location
    Talkeetna AK
    Posts
    932
    Post Thanks / Like

    Default Re: Wing Fabric Attachment to Tank Edge Rib - Not Sewn?

    Sub,
    nothing wrong with a sharp co-pilot as long as her wit doesn't cut too deep . Thinking she might be the " supersonic " part of your team...

    Thinking a really good look at the fabric at the top edge of your windshield would be prudent. It is the one place loosing fabric can be a deal breaker. There are a couple on this forum who have first hand experience with this trauma.


    Rocket

  9. #9
    Gilbert Pierce's Avatar
    Join Date
    Nov 2007
    Location
    Germantown, Tennessee 01TN
    Posts
    3,492
    Post Thanks / Like

    Default Re: Wing Fabric Attachment to Tank Edge Rib - Not Sewn?

    I would use Stewart's. It's water based and won't lift the dope. You can coat both sides, wait till it tacks an pull it tight and stick the two pieces together. When you get it where you want it come back with an iron at about 200F and heat seal it. Use bakers parchment paper between the iron and the paint to protect the paint.

    I just repaired a doped horizontal that way. Worked great.

  10. #10

    Join Date
    Mar 2016
    Location
    Merritt Island, FL
    Posts
    638
    Post Thanks / Like

    Default Re: Wing Fabric Attachment to Tank Edge Rib - Not Sewn?

    Thanks Gilbert!

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •