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Thread: Experimental SuperCub building

  1. #1
    Jr.CubBuilder's Avatar
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    Experimental SuperCub building

    How many other SuperCub fans out there are building your own Cub or SuperCub?
    I'm working about two hours a night on a SuperCub after my usual eight hours a day in Dilbert land. Progress is slow, but I don't care because I enjoy the building as something in itself. I haven't updated my website in quite a while, but I'm getting fairly close to building a jig to set my tail post and stabilizer tower on the fuselage.
    I've been working off of the NorthLand CD drawings, the SuperCub projects of a couple other friends (who are several thousand hours further down the trail than me) whatever I can absorb while skulking around the shops in Yakima, and an awefull lot from the discussions and project pictures on this site.
    I'm using a Lincoln 175pro to do the welding, and an Ox/Act torch to do bending. I'll probably be buying as many of the fittings and fixtures as I can afford to, but I wont start that till finish welded and I'm convinced that it is straight enough.
    In the mean time, I'm saving money to either buy my own plane or finish off this project. My goal is to get a very basic SC built with an o320 a few safety mods, weld on float fittings, and maybe some extended gear.

  2. #2
    Bill Rusk's Avatar
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    Got a Smith Kit on order. Building an 0-320 narrow deck, high performance motor with the help of Lycon. Live outside Chicago near Rockford, Illinois.

    Bill

  3. #3
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    I've got a Smith Aviation Bushmaster kit in the works. The wings should be showing up any day. I'll have the fuselage in early 2005. (After Nick shows it off at the Alaska Airmens show.)
    I'm still having the "more power or less weight" debate with myself. Nick Smith suggests a lycon pumped-up O-360 as the best choice in engines. I keep trying to talk myself out of a O-540, (so far I'm loosing). With this kit being basically a 4 place SC and my intended usage is a family camper, I keep telling myself I need the extra ponies. But then who am I to disagree with Nick?
    One change I am going to do is install a set of Oleo?s instead of the spring gear. I like hydraulic damping in my landing gear.

    Kelvin

  4. #4
    Todd C's Avatar
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    I fit the experimental category and am using a combination of the Northland CD, Piper prints and Wag-Aero drawings for my project. At this point I'm planning on using wood wings since I have most of the parts to build them now. How I got there was I started to build the wings for a Wag-Aero Sport Trainer but decided I wanted a Super Cub instead so I'll install flaps, wing tanks and build the front spar to the Super Cub specs. It's not too difficult at this point since the wings are not assembled. My project is in Tulsa, OK.

  5. #5
    Bugs66's Avatar
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    I am just getting warmed up in the bullpin. I ordered a tack-welded fuselage from Spraker in Florida. Won't have it for a couple months. In the meantime - I'll start to gather the weld-on fittings. I plan to order a wing kit from Ernie at www.de-aircraft.com . He sure is a bargain right now. His complete kit for both L&R wings is around $7K. That includes flaps and ailerons. I am trying to decide between riblet or standard wing. Ernie sure loves the riblet. From what I hear, it's superb.

    I am in Spokane, maybe we can share some knowledge (although you probably have way more than I do at this point).

    Bugs

  6. #6
    Laz's Avatar
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    I'm building a Wag Aero 2+2 (PA 14 knockoff). I have a 0320 narrow deck that I will overhaul for it. I plan on copying a set of Dakota wings .
    I have the fuselage finished up to the interior and will start on the front sheet metal next.
    Laz

  7. #7
    Cub junkie's Avatar
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    I have an Exp. Cub project ongoing for about five years, I have the Carlson wing kit and then decided to chop it up and install flaps. My project is sort of an inbetween, J3 style top deck and Pa18 fuselage fittings for the struts and landing gear. I bought fittings from Northland for this. Im the kind of hard headed builder that has to build everything myself, I wish I would have just worked some overtime at my day job and bought a Smith kit but I just prefer to build my own fuselages and other weldments. My engine is a narrow deck O-320, its run out but I can get the airplane flying with it. I also recently aquired a PA12 fuselage that was DOA, Im determined to fix it.

  8. #8

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    I am building a 2+2 also with the D&E 66" riblet wing 8 ft flaps. The rt wing is done and about 80% done on the left. The extended leading edges and Earnies compresion members work well. The only drawback so far is the flap /aileron hangers hang down below the wing enough to be head knockers.50 gals fuel 160 hp 0320 D2B with 9/1 pistons.Tail feathers are done, 3" longer landing gear are finished with 850's The fuselage is basically together with gear fittings done but no spar fittings or tailfeather mts. yet. It is 4" wider at the front door post. This Small thread proves the need for an experimental forum in my opinion. I bet most of us check out all the forums anyway. It would be nice to have exp. all in one place.

  9. #9
    Bugs66's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Dan2+2
    I am building a 2+2 also with the D&E 66" riblet wing 8 ft flaps...
    Hey Dan, any chance of you putting up a photo gallery with pictures of your D&E wing? I think this would be a first on the web. There are no pictures of the D&E wing at all, anywhere that I could find. So if you had to do it again, would you go riblet or regular? I have heard nothing but good things about the riblet.

    One thing I wish is there was a small parts kit that had all the fuselage attachments/fittings in one bag. Another nice parts kit would be all the pulleys, bushings, bearings.

    Do you guys know if the 2+2 pulleys, controls, cables are compatible with the PA-18?

    Bugs

  10. #10
    Jr.CubBuilder's Avatar
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    Airframes Inc. http://www.supercubs.com/ has a bunch of those fittings, and those are PMA parts. I've heard good things about the quality of his parts from another builder. Northland http://www.northlandaircraft.com/ also has a bunch of that stuff for sale, but they aren't PMA'd. I got my floor tabs from them and they were ok although the cut edges were rough, but far better than anything I could make in any reasonable amount of time.

    What is this ribblet wing, and why is it supposed to be better than the standard metal rib wing?

  11. #11
    Bugs66's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Jr.CubBuilder
    ...What is this ribblet wing, and why is it supposed to be better than the standard metal rib wing?
    66" cord riblet airfoil. Here is what Ernie has told me about it:
    With 180hp and regular wheels:
    1. Take off in 50 feet.
    2. Land in 100 feet.
    3. Cruise 130mph.
    4. Extended flaps
    5. Different fuel tank than stock Cub but he sells them.
    6. Over 80 kits sold

    I wish more guys with the riblet wing would chime in and tell us about them.

    Bugs

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    to 50 feet
    land 100
    cruise 130

    i want a set of those wings also. this is too good to be true. i havnet heard of ernie but i will give him the befefit of the doubt. he should come here and substantiate these figures if they are true. if they are not i would wonder what else he might not be truthful about with his wings. or maybe he never claimed this stuff.

  13. #13
    Jr.CubBuilder's Avatar
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    Hmmmm..........doing some rumaging between problems here, and apparantly Ribblet was the designer of the airfoil. He wrote a book about it and makes great claims in the area of drag reduction. However, from what I'm reading it sounds like there wasn't any real wind tunnel testing done on his airfoils. I think I'm still planning on DakotaCub, or Univair wings.

  14. #14
    JoeW's Avatar
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    super cub building

    My hat is off to all you folks working on your projects. I cant seem to get started. I have the tools, the ox/acet welding set, going to welding school, practicing about two hours a night, and still have cold feet, and cannot force myself to order the tubing. Even have the northland CD and wag plans. WHATS THE SECRET TO GET STARTED!!!! Anyone have a supply list on what tubing they ordered, and where from?

    Also considering a T-craft (that may need work) or a high priced J-3 ($30's K) Most likely can finance a already build plane, vs trying to find cash. Cant work overtime w/ my federal job Oh well,


    Any help is appreciated Joe

  15. #15
    Bugs66's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by flyer
    to 50 feet
    land 100
    cruise 130

    i want a set of those wings also. this is too good to be true. i havnet heard of ernie but i will give him the befefit of the doubt. he should come here and substantiate these figures if they are true. if they are not i would wonder what else he might not be truthful about with his wings. or maybe he never claimed this stuff.
    Give him a call. He loves to talk Cubs and about his wings. I believe the new Bearhawk and Patrol have riblet (or is it ribblet?) airfoils. That may explain why they get good cruise numbers too.

    Bugs

  16. #16
    WIflier's Avatar
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    Luv Cubs

    Built and flying a 100hp. Wag-Aero Sport Trainer with VG's what a hoot to fly. Building wide body Supercub (Airframes Inc.) and a Wag 2+2 I could be talked out of the 2+2 project it would save somebody a lot of time and not hurt the pocket book to much.

    Laz were still planning to try and stop by to see your project in July if your around and it would work out for you. Happy building everyone the trouble is its getting to be real nice flying weather now.


    Si

  17. #17
    Bugs66's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by D.A.
    From the looks of the length of this thread I'd say we're going to be planning an EXP SC Fly In in the next few years. How cool is that!
    Good building everybody.
    Dave
    That would be great!

    One other thing, Ernie at D&E said he can get fuel tanks for $400-500 ea. That's around $500-700ea cheaper than all the other places.

    Bugs

  18. #18

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    JoeW

    Take a look at the Northland drawings and figure out how much tube you would need for the small stuff ( rudder pedals, brake pedals, stick sockets and so on) and order enough tube to build those parts ( and possibly duplicates) cut some metal and begin burning some gas ( you could even take them to class with you so your instructor could watch over you ) if you don't like how they turn out pitch the parts and start over. The most you would spend would be 50 bucks. If they turn out ok then you have your start to your airplane. Depending on what you are building you could move on to the cabane V and lower shock struts. When you are happy with those move on to the stabs and elevators, fin and rudder. By the time you have all of that stuff done you will have the confidence to tackle the fuselage. Start small and work your way up to the larger assemblies.


    Matt

  19. #19
    Jr.CubBuilder's Avatar
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    Yeah JoeW, Matt is right. Just order six feet of 4130 from AirCraft Spruce. Check the plans for the right size (I think it was .625X049 for the rudder peddals) make a jig out of some plywood to hold the pieces for tacking, then make a dozen of them and have some fun. Use the best four, or make some more if they aren't right. Chop up the rest for practice or scrap. Initially you have to accept the fact that you are going to take three steps forward then two back with some of this building stuff. My stabilizers came out looking great, but I hung them on the wall as junk because of one mistake. I've also had to very carefully grind a tube off of a part, make it right and reweld it just like replacing a rusted out tube on an old factory plane.
    After you make the rudder peddals take some time for introspection and ask yourself if you got any entertainment value out of them. If you decide that it was more work than fun, don't torture yourself any further as you will have more fun flying a rental or buying an old plane to fly. I believe that building for reasons other than personal satisfaction is a mistake. When it's done I'll have as much or more money in mine than I would in buying a used one.

  20. #20

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    The wing from D&E has metal spars with the aileron and flap bellcranks and pulleys all mounted to the rear spar so it is different from the pa 18. I have one tank ready to mount . It is 25 gals. cost was 890 dollars for both tanks ready to mount. Very good quality with front and rear fittings sight gauge and vent fittings and rear drain fitting. If I knew how to put pics and had the equipment I would love to have a site to foster discussion of the 2+2 and critique my work to improve my results. I have a piper J4 and my dads J5 to fly. I flew the J5 2 weeks ago after a 27 year rebuild, well that s how long since it last flew. I like it better than the J4 so far. Tonight I will start the leading edge skins and epoxy prime some stuff on the 2+2.

  21. #21
    Bugs66's Avatar
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    Dan,
    How is Ernie's builder's manual for the wing? Easy to follow? Are you building the wing on a table or vertical on a jig? Maybe somebody with a digital camera who lives near you can help out with the pics.

    Bugs

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    The manual is a bit confusing in that it covers a 2 tank bay or single tank wing. So some pics are of one and some the other. I was a bit confused over drag wire placement because of these pictures. I called Earnie and he explained exactly what to do. The ribs are 3 piece, nose rib center rib and aileron rib. On the D&E website they look like one piece.The center rib is predrilled for the spar rivets and the nose and tail rivets.Overall I like the wings. The Price is hard to beat too.I do have a digital camera and my better half has offered to help me figure out how that works so maybe I can get some pics going.

  23. #23

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    WIFlier. What do you have for the 2+2? I might be interested.

  24. #24
    Bill Ingerson's Avatar
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    Ernie at D&E aircraft

    Hi guys! I met Ernie and his wife not long ago, I live about 15 miles from him. Ernie has more experiance on plane design than you might realize. His wings are great! The quality of construction is first class. He told me that he gets more speed with his wings because of the angle of the nose is lower while cruising with his wings. I thought he said $15,000 for both wings but maybe Im mistaken. Check out his web site or give him a call for prices. He also told me he can put one wing together in two days. He then said it would take us about two weeks, just because he knows the wing so well. He also said that he was almost done with a better manual, the older one is somewhat confusing. Ernie has been around planes most of his life, it would be hard to find someone with his experiance.

    Bill

  25. #25
    Crash's Avatar
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    Pictures

    Why is it we can build an airplane but we have to ask our wives to post a picture of it? Why are they so smart when it comes to computers. She always asks me how I know so much about mechanical things. I tell her it comes with the penis. What am I missing here? Crash

  26. #26

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    Crash, there are just certain things a man can not do; I mastered the picture posting thing but I'll be damned if I can figure out how the washer and dryer works in my household.
    I feel real lucky to have found a woman with these special skills, other wise I'd still be wearing the same airplane T-shirt from 14 years ago....

  27. #27
    Bugs66's Avatar
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    Re: Ernie at D&E aircraft

    Quote Originally Posted by Bill Ingerson
    ... I thought he said $15,000 for both wings but maybe Im mistaken. ...Bill
    Hi Bill! Thank you very much for the update. As soon as I sell my boat I'm ordering a set of wings from Ernie. I talked to him several times over the phone. His wing kits are $7100 for BOTH wings, including flaps and ailerons. You can get a standard Cub wing from him also for approx the same price.

    Looking forward to Dan's pics! Dan, tell your wife we owe her big time!

    Bugs

  28. #28

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    Pictures of my D&E wing with the 66" riblett airfoil are in cubdriver photo page 3 and 4. I could not figure out how to create a seperate album. Make whatever comments you want I am thick skinned and can learn from your critique. The first thing my dad said when he saw the first solid rivets i did was You &*%ed up. I redid the ones he didn't like. I owe my wife a massage!

  29. #29
    Bugs66's Avatar
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    I started a new topic on Dan's wings:
    http://www.supercub.org/phpBB2/viewtopic.php?t=3738

  30. #30
    Bugs66's Avatar
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    I ordered Ernie's regular PA-18 wing kit today. It has 8 ft flaps and extended ailerons. Horner/Dakota style tips. The leading edge skin is extended beyond the front spar. Extruded D channel leading edges for aileron/flaps. Should be nice! I am going to go pick these up in the next two weeks or so. $6686 for the complete wing. This price was right up my alley. The ribblet is $8195.

    I was going back and forth on the ribblet wing. I decided to retreat and go with the more familiar PA-18 wing. I didn't feel like messing with the stock pulley geometry, special fairings, etc.. I'll order his tanks when I go to his shop.

    I'll eventually setup a web site with my log and photos.

    Bugs

  31. #31

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    Hello everyone,
    I'm building a cub. It's sort of a Wag Supersport with a few modifications.
    Supercub tail feathers, supercub elevator control, extended baggage.
    I have a Lycoming 0-320 to bolt on. I read a thread here somewhere about the Husky and problems with the elevator trim. I don't know what kind of trim system a Husky uses. I would like to know if a trim tab is adequate or is the jackscrew the best way to go? A trim tab is cheaper easier and the front of the horizontal stabilizer is mounted better.

    thanks,
    Mike

  32. #32
    Bugs66's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Michael Tracy
    Hello everyone,
    I'm building a cub. It's sort of a Wag Supersport with a few modifications.
    Supercub tail feathers, supercub elevator control, extended baggage.
    I have a Lycoming 0-320 to bolt on. I read a thread here somewhere about the Husky and problems with the elevator trim. I don't know what kind of trim system a Husky uses. I would like to know if a trim tab is adequate or is the jackscrew the best way to go? A trim tab is cheaper easier and the front of the horizontal stabilizer is mounted better.

    thanks,
    Mike
    Mike,
    I will have a PA-18 fuselage. I want to use the Super Sport balanced tail group, which is supposed to be the same as PA-18 (except rudder profile). Are you using this tail group also or did you get them elsewhere?

  33. #33

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    I have the supersport balanced tail group on order. Tom at wag-aero said it is the same as the pa-18. My airframe is down to floorboard tabs and landing gear attach fittings. My landing gear fittings arrived Saturday and came from Airframes inc. I talked to Earnie at D&E aircraft Last year and plan on using his wing kit. I enjoyed the recent post on the subject. I'm welding my landing gear this month with 1 1/2 inch axles. I have a set of 850/6 tires and tubes and plan on using grove wheels and brakes. I still don't know if I will use a trim tab or a jack screw. I also have Northlands pa-18 cd. I have over 19,000 hours in helicopters flying all over the world but only a handfull of cub hours. Need all the good advice I can get.

    thanks
    Mike

  34. #34

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    Trim System....

    Mikey,
    The Husky trim system uses a spring loaded elevator cable. The trim system mearly loads or unloads the spring. Bad. Eliminates control feel.
    Go with the jackscrew system.

    Mike too.

  35. #35
    Crash's Avatar
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    Trim

    The best thing about a Cub is the jack screw trim system. Nothing will take weight like a Cub. Crash

  36. #36
    T.J.'s Avatar
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    Yep,
    Crash has correctly accessed the situation. The Cub jack screw is hard to beat. I think its the best so far.

  37. #37

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    I've been reading the posts on different subjects from thrustline to airfoil
    and exaust system to tire size. I figure if I use all of these mods my cub will cruise at 280 knots have a usfull load in excess of 2000lbs drink 3 gls per hour and takeoff and land in 27 feet. What an airplane. OK maybe not.
    I am getting a lot of good information to think about and I do have a few decisions to make. The tailwheel for one. The best advice I was given for my Maule tailwheel was to tie a rope around it, dip it in a bucket of cement,and when it hardens use it for a boat anchor. It's worn out anyway
    but I can still make a better boat anchor than that. Getting back to reality there must be a tailwheel that works and costs less than a Scott 3200.
    Any ideas would be helpfull.

    Mike

  38. #38
    Steve Pierce's Avatar
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    Scott 3200 is the best I have found for rough stuff. I prefer the solid Maule on a light plane like a J-3 but they are still made by farmers in GA and the quality reflects it. Not saying anything bad about farmers in GA but most probaly farm better than they machine parts for tailwheels.

    I have a question about the jackscrew. Why can't you get a new aircraft certified with the jackscrew trim system?
    Steve Pierce

    Everybody is ignorant, only on different subjects.
    Will Rogers

  39. #39
    Todd C's Avatar
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    I ordered plans for the "Bob Wheel" designed by Bob Barrows for the Bearhawk and am probably going to build one for my project, unless I find a Scott 3200 at a garage sale for cheap.

  40. #40
    Cub junkie's Avatar
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    Re: Trim

    Quote Originally Posted by Crash
    The best thing about a Cub is the jack screw trim system. Nothing will take weight like a Cub. Crash
    The cub jack screw system is one of the many reasons its a more versitile aircraft than others in its catagory. Clyde Smith jr. told me Piper engineers told him the Cub has a greater CG range because of the jack screw system. This is a big help to the guys that load it heavy and take off. Its a pain to build from scratch but its worth it to you guys just getting started in new construction, dont leave it out. Kevin

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