View Full Version : Making a right one out of a left one.

01-11-2005, 02:35 AM
As some of you know, I'm building an Experimental the hard way. Took a bunch of parts and put them together, as Johnny Cash said, "One piece at a time."
The object of this project is to see how light I can make a working Cub.

So far, I ain't had so much fun since "The hogs eat my Motherlaw!".
I started with an old rusted out J3 fuselage, and pieces from 3 Cub wings. After I cut and whacked on the fuselage, I wound up with 2 original wing fittings, 1 gear fitting and a few miscellanous tubes. Everything else I replaced.
I removed all the controls from the rear, (I don't trust anyone flying my Cub from the back seat).
I installed a left window and door, ( The next one will be different, I learned a lot from that little mod.).
I did not do this for entry in the left side. It took me 20 years to figure out how to get into the right side without falling on my face, I don't want to go through that process again. I did it so I could remove both doors and windows for weight control. Each side weight approximately 14#s. Thats 28# I can leave at home.
By doing the above, I had to relocate the trim controls, trim indicator, throttle and fuel selector.
Of course, I did the "X" brace, reversed dog leg, seat belt attachments to the fuselage, retractable shoulder harness etc.
I also moved the elevator cables/pulleys under the floorboards for a level area from the rear seat aft.
I also eliminated all the foo/faw channels aft of the fuselage to the tail section. Similar to the AE/HE PA-12s from WWII. Its called a flat backed Cub. There are pics. in the gallery. (Its ugly!)
I increased the area of the elevators and rudders, squared off.
Original Cub gear, (Thanks to Murph!)
25x11x4 Wheels and tires modified to accomodate single puck Cleveland brakes.
A CHROME PLATED FLAP HANDLE,( thanks to Sodak,) I'll have to put grey duct tape on it, or I'll be laughted out of moose camp.
I'm now up to the wings. I found out I have 2 each, left wings!
The left one went fine. I installed original Cub ailerons for flaps and moved the ailerons outboard to the tip. I had to shorten the aileron to make it fit. Help from John at Dakota Cub was great!
I'm putting Wayne Mackeys slats and droop ailerons on the wings.
Have you ever tried to make a right wing from a left one?
I am at that point now. Do you know how many small pieces there are in a Piper wing? Me neither, I don't want to know.
I need to go get a regular job selling shoes at Kennys and quit screwing with planes!
If you didn't want to waste your time reading all this crap, You should have read the last sentence first!
PS, Winters are long in Alaska!

01-11-2005, 10:33 AM
Pretty sure it can be done. And not too complicated. There may be a few parts that are not inter-changable left to right, but most should work. Should be a matter of disassemling all the components, end for end the spars, & reassemble. Will be time consuming, but, after all winters are long in AK right. Sounds like a fun project, good luck.

Ruidoso Ron
01-11-2005, 10:55 AM
No problem! Just flip it over and bolt it on. Might have a little tendancy to roll to the right, but some trim tabs (big ones) on the ailerons should fix that. Only big problem I see is attaching the struts. :o

01-11-2005, 11:27 AM
I'm assuming you have metal spars. Should be no problem, Swap everything over end for end and even the strut fittings will work. Compression struts, aileron and flap hinges will be in the same locations. You may have to relocate the rib locations slightly so they match the other wing.


SuperCub MD
01-11-2005, 02:46 PM
Because all Piper ribs have the mount tabs bent in the same direction, the holes for the rib attachment on the spars will be about a inch off between left and right spars. You'll either have to redrill all the holes in the spars, or replace the spars. I think everything else should be the same, (except the fuel tank).

01-11-2005, 05:29 PM
[quote="T.J. Hinkle"]As some of you know, I'm building an Experimental the hard way.
I also eliminated all the foo/faw channels aft of the fuselage to the tail section. Similar to the AE/HE PA-12s from WWII. Its called a flat backed Cub. There are pics. in the gallery. (Its ugly!)

I like what Joe Passient did with the back deck on his Grizzly Cub fuselage. He ran the top longerons from the tail post up to the upper deck like a PA-20 http://www.cubpartsalaska.com/photos.htm His design still gives you the look of a turttle deck without the added weight and a stronger fuselage (wider truss) to boot. Take care. Crash

Dave Calkins
01-11-2005, 05:33 PM
You won't be able to use the original leading edge skins for the other side....probably weren't expecting too anyway.

I need to come see this project TJ. I can buzz down one of these nice Jan. SouthCentral days now that we're gaining light.

Where are you at? Got snow for a skiplane or maybe enough room for a PA-28.

I don't care what anyone says about it........if you're spending your time the way you want, build it the way you want. I love your last sentence...long winters.


01-11-2005, 10:17 PM
I'm making the rear top deck foo/faw junk so it will hinge from the rear of the passenger compartment. The hinge pins are removable so I can throw it in the brush when I want to go light. In the winter, for Caribou hunting I can put it on and put light stuff, wing covers, sleeping bags etc. there. It will secure down to the fuselage with Dzus fasteners. I'm interested in how it will fly in this configuration.
The fuselage is at my place in Nikiski. I'm waiting on Waynes instructions for the droop ailerons mods, then bead blast and paint.
The wings are at Doc Isaacs place in Soldotna. His strip is unusable because of ice. You would need to put studs on your tires to get there now. Give me a couple months to get stuff lined out and I'd be happy to show it to you.
I'm going to fly it ( If it will fly!) for a while with just square tips. Then I'll put on aluminun splates. Fly it for a while then put on Hoerner tips. Fly it for a while then put on droop tips. I've listened to the the BS about the different tips for years, I'm going to find out.
I'm also making provisions on the ribs to install a fence on the top of the wing between the ailerons and flaps. I'll fly it for a while without, then add them and see if I can see any difference.
The wings will have full span leading edges of .016 aluminum. with no nose ribs. However, I did add 2 nose ribs and used the normal Piper material for the fuel tank bays. 5 gallon cans raise heck with that area. I'll have to try to keep it out of the brush with the thin leading edge material! If I ding it, I can repair it with an empty Coors can and some pop rivets!
I added the Dakota Cub rear spar beef up material, it looked like a good idea.
I wanted to add the Aeromod lower wing but , have
not been able to get the installation instructions.
If I wasn't doing this, I'd be at home watching Oprah on the TV and drinking beer. I may not be "gainfully employed" but at least I ain't walking the streets.
Its a lot of fun not having to screw with the faa.
By the way, I need 2, standard Cub 18 gal fuel tanks. Anyone in Alaska have any for a "brother in law price?"

Steve Pierce
01-11-2005, 11:25 PM
The wings will have full span leading edges of .016 aluminum. with no nose ribs. However, I did add 2 nose ribs

T.J. I don't understand. How are you doing the leading edges without nose ribs? Are you just using the full span ribs and no nose ribs in between?

01-12-2005, 01:22 AM
Yep, except in the fuel tank bay area. Extra weight you know. Every pound equals 6 inches more on the take off roll.