View Full Version : Fluting Stamped Ribs

01-15-2005, 12:34 AM
I have stamped ribs with my D&E wing. I believe Univair ribs are stamped as well. I was not surprised to see some ribs warped from manufacturing, as many kit plane ribs often come. So it looks like I need to do some fluting. The all metal kit builders do this widely. No problem with metal skins. My question is, how does fluting stamped ribs affect a fabric covered wing? It would seem logical to avoid where you plan to rib stitch. Any other gotchas, tips, or don't do's?

Thanks again for any help.

Steve Pierce
01-15-2005, 07:24 AM
You shouldn't have to make very deep flutes from what I saw of a D&E wing recently. The Univair rib is beefier and has some small flutes. I guess they could make a slight dip in the fabric but I don't think it would be very noticable. I am thinking Champ ribs are fluted. I will have to look when I get to the shop.

01-15-2005, 08:18 AM
You could use a shrinker on the ribs and not have any flutes at all, although fluting won't hurt anything.

01-15-2005, 01:30 PM
Yeah, I don't believe any deep flutes are needed. Some are just slightly bowed and I want them to lay flat. I made some fluting pliers last night. Will be working on it today.

I am not familiar with a shrinker. What is it?

Steve Pierce
01-16-2005, 07:55 AM
Look at any of the tool suppliers. A shrinker actually packs the metal together with a set of dies that squeeze down and in. They also have stretching dies for the same unit. Comes in handy if you do much sheet metal fabrication.

01-16-2005, 04:16 PM
Thanks for the help. I did fluting last night and it worked very well. All is good. I am going setup a project web site soon.