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Thread: Tiedowns--Again

  1. #1
    mvivion's Avatar
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    Tiedowns--Again

    A friend lost his Husky at Appleton in a thunderstorm event recently. The airplane was tied down with "The Claw".

    There were reportedly tornados around when this happened, so who knows if anything would have held. He also doesn't know if the Bonanza broke loose first, or his airplane.

    All the claws were pulled out, two were broken.

    Again, not sure anything would have held in this instance, but I saw a lot of folks at OSH (including my neighbor, who arrived with NO tiedowns, and rented the crappy ones that EAA rents) with really poor tiedowns, ones that are obviously far inferior to the Claw.

    http://ssmusser.smugmug.com/photos/85034221-M.jpg

    Pretty sad event.


    MTV

  2. #2

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    I think Iíve seen 10 tornados my whole life and standing at the seaplane base Sunday morning I was expected to see my 11th. About a ľ mile behind the leading edge of the cell the cloud was rolling like a breaking wave. Iím still a little surprised it didnít roll over from horizontal to vertical. Iím sorry to here about your friendís plane. Everyone in the area of OSH at 7:30 a.m. Sunday dodged one heck of a bullet.

  3. #3
    SuperCub MD's Avatar
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    Was there any damage over at OSH? We narrowly saved the Super 18 and my Cub at 8D1 which were loose on the ramp when it hit. It's a tale I suppose I'll have to tell at some point, but I'm still having trouble believing it myself.

  4. #4
    mvivion's Avatar
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    I bailed out of OSH Saturday morning, as a cell moved into the area. Interesting departure, with significant tailwinds on the roll. Glad my wheel bearings were well lubed .

    This one occured Sunday, I believe, and was probably part of the same storm system you folks saw at New Holstein.

    Bummer, in any case. This guy had his airplane well secured and this still happened.

    MTV

  5. #5

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    So what is the best system for keeping the plane on the ground,"The Claw "or "FlyTies"?

  6. #6
    behindpropellers's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by augerin
    So what is the best system for keeping the plane on the ground,"The Claw "or "FlyTies"?
    I do not think there is a "best" system. Nobody can beat mother nature. We had a microburst over our airport here a few years ago. The tie downs that were in the ground with concrete even pulled out. If you are afraid of your plane flying away by itself, sell it and get a mooney That was the only plane not damaged here!!!

  7. #7
    On Patrol's Avatar
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    After Sentimental Journey I was particularly interested in the claw failure. I was told that it is EXTREMELY important for the claw to be positioned directly below the tie down point so that the three points experience equal lift. The claw I saw at SJ that had failed had one of the legs twisted so it appeared that it was offset from the plane attachment at an angle.

  8. #8
    StewartB
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    $30 for 3 Duckbills looks kinda cheap in retrospect. Sad, but true.

    Stewart

  9. #9
    Steve Pierce's Avatar
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    I talked to several people who were at Sentimental Journey and they said the ratchet strap hook failed, not the Claw. Saw some pull tests at OSH where the Fly Tie came out at 800 plus pounds and the Claw came out at 1200 lbs. It was in the Claw booth so who knows.
    Steve Pierce

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    Tiedowns

    Good point, Steve, 2400 lbs pull vs 1700-2500 lbs lift?

  11. #11

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    Fly ties are expensive, but they work. In hard stuff, they are more than adequate, and in really soft I am not sure anything would work.

  12. #12
    Tim's Avatar
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    Steve, The claw that pulled out was on a plane next to me down there, and yes it was bent, then pulled out. ( then came up and hit my airplane)

    Tim

  13. #13
    Steve Pierce's Avatar
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    There most have been a few I guess. I had a couple of people tell me about the rachet strap failing. Glad your airplane wasn't hurt too bad. Did the rudder trim work out?
    Steve Pierce

    Everybody is ignorant, only on different subjects.
    Will Rogers

  14. #14
    behindpropellers's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Steve Pierce
    I had a couple of people tell me about the rachet strap failing.
    What do you expect when you buy your tie downs at wal-mart?

    DUH!!!

    If you absolutly must use the ratchet straps, cut the hooks off (that bend) and put a good carabiner in place.


    Tim

  15. #15

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    $30 for 3 Duckbills looks kinda cheap in retrospect. Sad, but true.

    Stewart
    How do the duckbills compare to the claw and where can I find them?

    Thanks

    Bill
    Flat Country Pilot
    Farm Field PVT
    54 C170B

  16. #16
    mvivion's Avatar
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    Duckbills are commonly used to anchor guy wires for utility poles. You can generally find them at electrical supply houses, and at some lumber yards.

    I've used Duckbills for years as permanent tiedowns, and for emergency tiedowns in wilderness settings.

    The problem with duckbills in places like OSH or such is that the grounds keepers are not gonna be happy when their mower hits that cable loop you left there. You would have to dig them out to retrieve them, which would leave a rather huge divit, which also would get the grounds keepers a little twitchy.

    Duckbills are great in the boonies, where digging them up, or even leaving them isn't that big a deal. But for temporary tiedowns around "civilization", I think the Flyties or the Claw are your best alternative.

    MTV

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    As far as ratchet straps are concerned, they abraid easily after repeated jerks during wind. Throw them away and learn how to tie some knots. A bowline at one end and three half hitches right up tight were they can't slide will never loosten. Put your lock knot down on the loose end of the line so it doesn't beat aginst the aircraft. Use nylon line, not nylon with mixed fiber or certainly not poly line.

    Carry long lines so that you can reach reach something to tie to. Bury a dead man if need be. Quarter to wind so there is less lift. Wing covers with spoilers work wonders. I watched two aircraft flying on the lines and one with mesh wing covers and spoilers just bouncing around a little. If push comes to shove, tie junk on top of the wings, sleeping bags, seat coushins, tents or just loops of line. Spoil the lift.

    Claws do work well but should be put so the pull is straight up. If you tie to small sapplings, tie in series to a bunch of them. Duck bills work well in firm soil but not at all in sand. Make sure your drive rod fills the whole bottom and put a steel washer that fills the bottom of the duckbill or you may drive the bottom out of it.

    Unless you have the new heavy gauge rear struts on your cub, they are very vulnerable when the wind hits from aft. The flaps are vulnerable as well.

    Put a tie down outboard of the lift strut attach point. If nothing elso a seat belt strap with an inspection cover in the bottom of the wing works fine. A judge in Anchorage was killed a number of years ago when a lift strut attach fitting failed because it had been tied down with chain. One of our Fish and Wildlife planes had a front attach fitting fail and cause the aircraft to roll inverted into a river. Dodge makes a support piece that goes in the lift strut attach fitting that beefs it up. I have also seen the loop at the upper end of the lift strut fail, tie through it and around the lift strut.

  18. #18
    btracy's Avatar
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    Does anybody use the MAS tie downs?
    http://www.aircraftspruce.com/catalo...mastiedown.php

  19. #19

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    Quote Originally Posted by btracy
    Does anybody use the MAS tie downs?
    http://www.aircraftspruce.com/catalo...mastiedown.php
    Works great in cork.

    John Scott

  20. #20

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    Quote Originally Posted by Longwinglover
    Quote Originally Posted by btracy
    Does anybody use the MAS tie downs?
    http://www.aircraftspruce.com/catalo...mastiedown.php
    Works great in cork.

    John Scott
    I'll to that
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  21. #21
    WWhunter's Avatar
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    btracy,
    While I haven't specifically used the one's you are asking about, I have some cork-screw type tiedowns I use when I only want basic holding. I picked them up at Oshkosh a couple of years ago for about a buck a piece. You can pick up the same thing at any "-Mart" type store or pet center. They are bigger then what you show and are used to tether a dog to. You can also go to most any farm type store and buy tie down augers. The auger type are better than the screw type. I posted sights to give you an idea of what I am referring to.
    www.properpet.com/product/prestige/P3530STK99/
    www.tiedown.com/fkits.html
    Keith
    Don't take life too seriously ... no one gets out alive!

  22. #22
    cubdriver2's Avatar
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    When that storm hit at Lockhaven, my friend Dan and I were trying to take his tent down and stuff it in his J3. We had already checked our tie downs, the wind seemed to be blowing 30+ and getting stronger. The sky was as ugly as I had ever seen, but when the midwest guy started to get scared, I knew we were in trouble. We were going to stay with our planes in case something started to come loose, but as stuff started flying past us at 50+ "seamed like 100mph" we both said screw this. We were running for cover, and were right in front of Tims 2+2, when the Aeronca Defender on his right, shot straight up,12-15' in to the air, turned, came back down at an angle, and the top of its wing was under Tims wing, and than it started flying again because it was now facing in to the wind. Lucky for the Aeronca driver and Tim"hey I think you still owe me a cold one" that, cub club Joel and his dad Bob, Dan and I got the Aeronca turned downwind, or it would have looked like the Hindinbergh with us hanging on. The wind blew the rain so hard that I thought it was going to take our hide off. Sorry, back to the tie down, The Airknockers tie downs were not ratchet straps, they were those, friction type motorcycle pull straps. In my opinion the Claw broke because the friction device on the strap was overloaded by the lift from the wing, it released the tension on the strap so it got about a 10' running start. The only thing that stopped it from flying away is that when they make those straps, they fold the end of the strap over a few times, than sew it, it was to thick so it snagged on the hook end. That sudden stop at the end of the 10' of slack I think is what broke that Claw. That Aeronca looked like it was lunched from a catapult.The other two Claws were pulled out of the ground. If you walk around at a flyin and look at the Claws in use, most of the pins are not nailed all the way in. My Claw held, and I still use it, but I think the pins should be longer. Tie it down good boys, but the guy next to you probable won't! I saw a guy that had three 8" screwdrivers stuck in the ground, one on each rope.

    Glenn

  23. #23

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    The cub has been parked outside at Lake Spenard since 1981. Most of the year it's tied with duckbills driven about 4 feet into the ground or by 24" blocks of 2x4 under the lake ice. Just about every year we have 100mph+ winds at one time or another. Nothing has ever failed tie down wise. We have the Atlee over the spar straps. In a heavy wind I put two ropes on each wing usually one going forward from the Atlee ring and one going back from ring at the end of the strut, and tie the tail down snug. Duckbills can be bought in different lengths and strengths from Ak Industrial Hardware. You can buy the driving rod or just use a piece of rebar to drive them in. A good pair of bolt cutters can cut the cable if you can't leave them in the ground, it's easier to do that than dig 'em up. You can drive them into a lake bottom and if you happen to run over 'em with a float there's nothing sharp to hit and cause damage.

    Good tie downs, plus having the plane aimed into the wind and having mesh spoiler covers on the wings and tail feathers has worked.........

    Over the years the cub just west of the slip has been destroyed twice in the winds - both times after breaking free.

  24. #24
    okmike's Avatar
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    What do you think about theses set out at an angle?

    http://www.tractorsupply.com/webapp/...g=true&cFlag=1

    I've been using the Claw straight down and if get scared I set them out at an angle for backup.

    We put some of the bigger/longer ones in at our airport but they have never really been tested.

  25. #25
    btracy's Avatar
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    First these are nothing like the ones from the pet store that you are comparing them to These are 15 to 18 inches long the tops are welded shut so that they wont pull open like the ones from the pet store. My dad has had a set of these for years but I have never seen anyone else with a set. I didn't even know that there were still made till I seen them listed at Aircraft Spruce. I was hoping to know if anyone has any real experience with them.
    In the sand I think they will hold better than anything that just drives in.

  26. #26

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    Hello Bill - How have you been?
    I have the so mentioned tie downs and they have NEVER
    moved a fraction of an inch out of the ground. They have proved there
    worth through the worst of the New Holstein weather over the years.
    I have seen many "Claws" pull out of the ground at New Holstein.

    Mark

  27. #27
    cubdriver2's Avatar
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    At lockhaven, it is solid hard packed gravel under the turf. The screw in type were almost impossible to get in the ground, and if you were lucky enough to get them in, you could pull them right out with little effort, the action of screwing them in augured loose the gravel that was supposed to hold them in. I guess no one tie down is perfect for all situations. The guys with more room " Stinsons, Howards", carry 3/4 rebar 30" long with a tee welded on top, but tough to fit in a cub.

    Glenn

  28. #28
    Iflylower's Avatar
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    I use the claw and am mostly happy with them...

    Regarding the pins, I try to nail em to the stop. They are such a pain in the *ss to get out, I figure it must be safe. Tornadoes, that's another story. I've seen planes messed up, just from the beating they take in the tie downs.

    My only wish for the Claw would be a secondary lip on the nail so you could punch 'em in tight, but have a lip that you could get a claw hammer under them for extraction.

  29. #29

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    Has anybody used disposable trapping stakes for tiedowns? I haven't tried them yet but they hold well in just about every soil type and they are cheap. All that's required is a driver(smooth stake with a handle). They cost about $20 a dozen(Minesota trapline). Sometimes I use them to winch from when no trees or brush are available.

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