What is it about these little airplanes?

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Postby lazflyn » Wed Jan 28, 2004 10:28 am

I'm standing in my 30 degree hanger, with the door open, shivvvvverrring, wondering why this nasty smelling stuff doesn't clean off the tape residue faster. I scrub and scrub, slowly working along my wing, trying to get rid of the sticky mess. As I stand there working, I start to wonder. Why do I do this? Isn't there a better life? Will this thing ever fly? The longer I stand there the more I start to wonder why I drove so far as I did to get this thing. What is wrong with me? Are Lazairs worth all this work? What is it about this airplane that has caused me to be where I am at today.

What is it about Lazairs? What do people like? Please post what it is about Lazairs that you like.

MarkDJ.
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Postby lazair » Wed Jan 28, 2004 12:06 pm

MarkDJ, LOL

damn cold to be doing that stuff now.

Make sure when you cover it it over 50F


Lazair

PS wait will it 90F and you in shorts only flying at dusk.
You will then be an official "LAZAIRITE ADDITED ONE "
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Postby Shannon » Wed Jan 28, 2004 4:26 pm

You shouldn't be asking yourself these questions now..... much too late for all that.
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Postby lazflyn » Thu Jan 29, 2004 9:38 am

Well, I'm not actually recovering. I had to dig into the d-cell for what I thought would be just a few ribs that had laid down. Boy was I in for a surprise! Someone had decided to repair this already before and had not bothered to check the compatability of the glue they were using and the foam. So I ended up cutting 31 new ribs. Not a big deal since some of the originals were still good so I had a pattern.

Boy am I glad I listened to Mike McKusick and opened up the wing. Can't believe some people would do what they do. But they do do what they do. Does that make any sense? Why wouldn't someone check their choice in glue with a chunk of foam BEFORE they mess with a wing. Boggles the mind.

I do plan on recovering the wing for a complete restoration. But due to the fact that we love to cover our planes with the rarest form of plastic film on the earth (ie. Tedlar), I won't be able to cover till I get my hands on a 100 feet or so. Fortunately my Tedlar is in pretty good shape. At least, that is what I think now after seeing my friends new Lazair. The covering on that is hidious. He most definitely needs to recover, or at least, replace a few sections. It's kind of funny, in a way, because his needs new covering and the airframe is in pretty good shape. My covering is pretty good and my airframe looks as if it sat in the bottom of a lake (corrosion, rust). But I guess that makes sense. His sat out in the Arizona sun. Mine sat out by the Great Lakes.

Just so you know, the questions came because I was suffering from the mid winter/mid project blues. As of late though, it has warmed up a little. This has helped me get off my butt and back into the hanger. It doesn't seem like it now, but I do believe I have an airplane. And a Lazair at that! Life is good.

MarkDJ. :D
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Postby Shannon » Thu Jan 29, 2004 3:32 pm

Hey Mark, How to you plan to cope with the corrosion on your airframe ?

Shannon
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Postby fly_michigan » Thu Jan 29, 2004 10:10 pm

Mark,
It could be worse. You could be in looking inside a bare storage trailer in the cold weather and saying to yourself: "I cant beleave I sold my Lazair project, I loved that plane!"

Good luck and keep your chin up!

Bryan Dever
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Postby ozzie » Fri Jan 30, 2004 4:38 am

over xmas i found a set of wings from one of the series 1 just the wings not to bad some mice had been at the foam. one wing's leading edge skin could be pushed down about 3/8 inch before it came up against the rib. it seems that the spar was not pushed down in the sling in the factory. it has hundreds of hours on it. the engine nacelle had actually cut a thin line thru the upper part of the skin for about ten inches. i will be adding a 2 mtr section of .020 on both wings. i opened the leading edge along the top of the spar. and not one rib was touching the skin(can i claim warranty dale) i stared at it for a while then got a couple of cans of expanding foam and a plastic tube and ran a bead around the edge of the foam ribs (messy stuff) and closed it up as i went . worked just great. the slit in the skin was repaired by cutting a strip of 020 and using really good epoxy glued it inside the wing and the new 2mtr lenght will go over the top. might have a go at using this on th wing ribs to fix the mice damage. lots of pitting in the leading edge from how it was stored in the trailer upside down with the condensation so ill do the treat sand and paint bit on these wings. ozzie.
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Postby lazflyn » Fri Jan 30, 2004 10:12 am

Well, my friends, all I can say is wow. With all this support it's no wonder these little airplanes have survived all these years without support from the manufacturer. I think I'm starting to see what it is I like about these little airplanes.

Bryan,

You're right Bryan. I will repent and get in my full hanger. Thanks again for all your help loading up the Lazair. As promised, I will send you photos and video when I get it flying (not of the first flight though - bad luck). And, if I may ask, why is your trailer empty? Where is your new bird? I'd hate to be taking away something you are not replacing.

Shannon,

Thanks for the info on corrosion. What is the extent of the damage, you ask? I'm not well educated yet in the metal analysis world, but I would say the damage is minimal. I'm just a hard to please picky little perfectionist. Looks like it is mostly just on the surface (maybe just starting to pit). Shouldn't take much to look like new. Painting sounds like the complete way to go. I just like the look of buffed aluminum. I do understand though that mere buffing isn't going to protect the metal. Painting sounds like it will allow my grandson to enjoy my Lazair (long lasting protection - I'm 30). I personally would prefer to stick with the polished metal look, that Bryan started for me (he started buffing it while it was his). What are your suggestions if I would like to keep the metal finish, yet inhibit the corrosion and protect it from further damage (I know, I know, I want the cake AND the icecream).

Ozzie,

Sounds like you have (in my eyes) a major rebuild. That is an interesting idea using expanding foam to secure the ribs. As I stated earlier, I cut new ribs and reglued them using a urethane adhesive (3M #8609). Worked great till I tried to close up the skin. The glue was too thick and pushed out the ribs to the exent (didn't take much) that I couldn't pull the metal skin back over them and still line up the holes. After I stared at it in disbelief, I resorted to sanding every rib back to the original size using a template. Took awhile, but the skin lines up nicely now and the ribs are very tight.

Thanks for all your help guys!

MarkDj.
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