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Thread: Wheel penetration skiis

  1. #1
    this would be a title NimpoCub's Avatar
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    Wheel penetration skiis

    I have a new SCub bud here who wants a pair of wheel penetration (not hyd) skiis and I told him I'd search the SCub calssifieds. I did, and didn't find any.

    Can you (yeah, YOU) help to locate a pair?
    When he gets back to civilization (& his 'puter) he'll join up here, I was hoping to impress him w/the service here first.
    Nimpo Lake Logan... boonie SuperCubber
    200mi (300km) from nearest stoplight... just right! - "Que hesitatus fornicatus est"

  2. #2
    Snert's Avatar
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    Logan
    I know little to nothing about skis. We don't have a lot of use for them in this part of the world. All I know is that they work better if you keep the curved end up and forward. Since nobody else jumped in, I am considering these for when I move up north again. http://www.trickair.com/
    I don't know if they are approved for your airplane yet and they are probably more than you want to spend.

  3. #3
    pa15j3's Avatar
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    "I am considering these for when I move up north again."
    Really, Snert!!!!!!!

  4. #4
    spinner2's Avatar
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    Landis makes a nice wheel-penetration ski for Cubs. It is their model LW2500. Weight is 90 pounds and you must use 8.00x6" tires only.
    "Fast is fine, but accuracy is everything." Wyatt Earp

  5. #5
    aktango58's Avatar
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    check the aerro ski.

    Retract by spring, down with johnson bar. They work great, and you can still get out on a wet snow day.
    I don't know where you've been me lad, but I see you won first Prize!

  6. #6
    this would be a title NimpoCub's Avatar
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    Hey Gary!
    Nimpo Lake Logan... boonie SuperCubber
    200mi (300km) from nearest stoplight... just right! - "Que hesitatus fornicatus est"

  7. #7
    fly_cubs's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Snert
    SNIP-- when I move up north again.---- SNIP.

    Absolutely unapproved maneuver. Who else would keep supplying my inflate-a-dates?

  8. #8
    pa15j3's Avatar
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    Hey Logan!!

  9. #9
    Widebody's Avatar
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    I'm looking to buy a set before the end of the year.
    I've narrowed it down between the Aero & Landes.

    For those of you who fly them, can you give me some
    likes, dislikes and how they perform for you.

    I have a set of Aero 3000 straights for the deep stuff up north,
    but need some penetrating skis for here in ND.

    Kinda short notice, but lets hear what you got and why.

    Merry Christmas and Thanks,
    Brad

  10. #10
    pzinck's Avatar
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    I have got wheel penetration skis on both 185 and 180hp supercub. They suck in wet snow. Dry snow they are a good compromise if you must get on tarmac or push into a dry hangar. Getting gas is much easier. Wet snow lots of drag taking off and instant drag when landing on sticky snow. I would not go back to straights as i like the versatility, but straight skis perform much better when wet sticky conditions abound.

  11. #11
    mvivion's Avatar
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    Brad,

    Take your pick, frankly. The Landes penetration skis are without doubt the tougher of those skis. They are PROBABLY also heavier than the Aero 2800 retracts.

    The Landes skis also have much more surface area than do the Aero 2800's. They are longer as well, which can be better in rough snow.

    If you are buying new, I suspect the Landes skis are going to be cheaper, though the Aero retracts really aren't that bad.

    If you're buying used, make sure that the Aero 2800s you buy have the later model rigger arms, which are longer. If you find an older set for sale, with the older arms, you can buy the newer arms from Aero. Don't know what the cost is, but it is well worth doing in any case. The older ones were terrible in any kind of deep snow. I understand the ones with the newer arms are much better in that regard.

    If you're buying used, and you find a set of the Landes penetration skis, contact Landes to see if you can get hold of a set of the tailwheels they use on the newer skis. They create a LOT less drag than do the older ones. One trick for getting un-stuck with the Landes penetration skis is to remove the tailwheels from the skis, takeoff, and then put them back on whenever conditions permit. They create a lot more drag than they would appear to. The new style tailwheels are much better, I'm told.

    If it matters, the Aeros are probably going to be easier to install/remove, though there's more "stuff" to connect and disconnect. The Landes skis will require some serious jacking or better yet a hoist.

    If you plan to be in rough stuff quite a bit, I'd lean toward the Landes skis-they are hell for stout. The Aeros aren't nearly as tough, but...

    MTV

  12. #12
    pzinck's Avatar
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    Mike i have the newer style tailwheels on my cubs landes skis, the 185 has the older big springs and larger tailwheel. Do you know if the older landes skis can be converted to the smaller tail wheels? You seem to indicate it is being done?

  13. #13
    aktango58's Avatar
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    Brad,

    I have Aero skis. I used them on the 90 hp champ and PA-12 trapping. I got the 12 in some overflow and got stuck. But heck, I needed hip boots the water was so deep on the ice...

    I flew the Champ off of 1,400' on a gravel bar one time in the rain with knee deep fresh wet snow, took a couple of passes to get a path nocked down, then she came out.

    The same champ I flew continuously off of 970' at the cabins, but groomed the strip for that. Me fuel and 150 lbs was all I could take.

    Hands down the ability to lift the tires out is worth the extra $.

    Coming into an airport at the end of the day and pulling the release so you can pull up to the pump is great, especially after you just left a lake with wet snow that penetration skis would not work...

    If you are really serious but can not decide, if you will pay to ship them I could send you my set to try for a couple of days. They have no rigging as I am in the middle of changeing from normal gear to 3" extended. They require 600x6 tires.

    Aero ski also certified them with all the back filled in, and I was/am going to make an emergency plate to slip under the tire for strait skis like my old Schnider had. REAL performance than.

    If you want to try them, let me know. I was going to put them on after Jan 18 when I get the doc's ok for lifting 25 lbs.

    George
    I don't know where you've been me lad, but I see you won first Prize!

  14. #14
    aktango58's Avatar
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    Mike,

    how much strenght before we break the gear and gear attach fittings? When you do have problems, aluminum is very easy to fix compared to glass, for me anyway.

    The new/old arms? are you taking about the attach fittings on the plane? Yes the new ones drop the skis down so zero tire is through, a big difference.

    If the ski swing arm is different, I am not aware.

    The gear needs to have a fitting welded on the bottom, or be drilled for the bolt on fittings. I think my short gear has the drill holes so you could use thoes.

    Or, feel free to make a trip up here, (alaska airlines is easy) and spend a couple hours with me changing to the skis, (I am limited to pushing the hoist button right now), and we could take her out for you to try.
    I don't know where you've been me lad, but I see you won first Prize!

  15. #15
    mvivion's Avatar
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    You're absolutely right on potential damage. Working skis in rough snow puts more loads into an aircraft's structure than probably any other type of off airport flying there is. Is tougher important? Dunno, never got that far, myself.

    You're correct on the attach points vs the arms.

    pzink, I know of at least one fellow who's converted a set on a 185 to the new style wheels. He claims an impressive improvement in performance, and he would know. I don't know what he went through to do that, though.

    MTV

  16. #16
    pzinck's Avatar
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    Thanks mike, i will give them a call and see if there is a kit. Possibly some people are just modifying on their own. I have also been told about removing the spring/tailwheels if in a jam on a small strip with adverse conditions. Some say to deflate the tire as well. I was thinking a flat tire may create more drag though by catching slush.

  17. #17
    Widebody's Avatar
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    Thanks for the reports guys.
    That's what I like to hear.

    That's a hell of an offer George, much appreciated, but I'll take
    your guys word on them. That's good enough for me .

    I can check tmrw on price with Aero, but does anyone know off hand.
    Got Landes price off website.

    Thanks,
    Brad

  18. #18
    aktango58's Avatar
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    This is pulling it out of my hat, or a lower place... But around $6,000 sticks in my brain!

    I happen to have a set of fittings from an Aeronca oleo gear champ that have the lower holes! If you can use them...

    FyI: when you need parts or help, refer to T.J. good guy thread to get an idea what the folks there are like...

    It is obvious that good character was passed from father to son...
    I don't know where you've been me lad, but I see you won first Prize!

  19. #19
    Scouter's Avatar
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    I have Aero R2800s. They had been modded with slightly wider plastic before I bought them, I think it helps quite a bit. They are a decent ski if its not a work for a living plane. Last winter we finally had decent powder, and I was happy with the performance on my plane. They are kind of a fred flintstone design, with the lever down, spring up deal, cable releases to the cockpit, and heavy as well. Mine weigh 57 lbs per ski. I had Scheneider penetrations on it before, a big improvement from those. The problem was the mashed potato snow on a 42 degree day. Cold hard conditions they worked ok. There are quite a few sets of R2800 here in Maine on cubs, they all work well on the lighter airplanes. There are a couple used sets for sale local as well, if you have some interest I can check them out for price.

    Jim

  20. #20
    aktango58's Avatar
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    Wide body,

    I had AWB hydraulics on the first cub, now Aero. Aero are lighter, less $ and fly well.

    For work? well, a little of a pain, but not that bad compared to the weight and cost of the hydraulics...

    If I were ordering a set, (assuming use in deep or wet snow), I would ask for the plastic to be wider than the ski, and fill all the back possible. Then I would build the plates mentioned before just because!

    Let us know what you do, I might modify mine soon...
    I don't know where you've been me lad, but I see you won first Prize!

  21. #21
    Ursa Major's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by aktango58
    Wide body,

    I had AWB hydraulics on the first cub, now Aero. Aero are lighter, less $ and fly well.

    For work? well, a little of a pain, but not that bad compared to the weight and cost of the hydraulics...

    If I were ordering a set, (assuming use in deep or wet snow), I would ask for the plastic to be wider than the ski, and fill all the back possible. Then I would build the plates mentioned before just because!

    Let us know what you do, I might modify mine soon...
    Any chance one of you guys could post some photos of the Aero R2800s? I'm not sure I have ever seen a set. I sold my Airglas L3000s when I left Alaska. Straight skis worked well up there. Now that I can keep the cub in a hangar, I could sure use some decent wheel skis here in N. Idaho. It just keeps snowing, and snowing and.....
    Mike

  22. #22
    aktango58's Avatar
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    There are a couple of threads on skis that mention Aero 2800's directly. Do a search and there are pics...

    There is also a photo or two of some with the tail wheel put on top of the ski. I can not find the thread this was in, but somewhere on gallerys...
    I don't know where you've been me lad, but I see you won first Prize!

  23. #23
    arcticflyr
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    I have a set of LW-2500's I bought used at a good price to try them out, I'm very happy with them. I had concerns I thought the same thing that MTV spoke of. After some research the things that fowled landees wheel skis in the past are gone on these. First they are not fiber-glass, they are injected plastic, very strong. The UHMW bottoms are not bolted over the top of the normal bottom. The UHMW is the bottom and is bonded to the plastic shell that makes the ski. The spring steel to the tail wheel is gone also, it now is a little "shopping cart" wheel molding in the tail of the ski. I think there was some mention of them being very heavy, not sure but I think the LW stands for light weight, I don't know what mine weigh but I do know I can pick up the ski with the gear leg attached and put it in the truck while talking with someone so there are very light. The main's must be kept aired up, if left to leak down they squish out and rub on the ski. They are a bit twitchy on hard surfaces not ground loop just side to side as the fore and aft wheels try to track anything they can. They do require 3" gear and need some tabs welded on, best to take them to airglass for it, there are specs for in the paper work. The 3" is only for the borer prop. Anyway I like mine they do not perform like straight skis, none will. They do perform better than I thought they would.

  24. #24
    M1's Avatar
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    I have a set of LW-2500's on my cub, and so far they have performed well. Just as everyone says, the best is with powder snow. I've used them on crust, the kind where the tire will break through now and then, still no real problem. Wet snow is just plain sticky, so you can expect longer takeoffs, but they still performed ok in wet conditions,

    Mike

  25. #25
    JMBreitinger's Avatar
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    I have the LW 2500s on my 150 HP Cub and like them a lot. I am still learning what they will do. Every day is a learning experience. Some days, every landing is a learning experience. The workmanship is great. I bought them new two years ago. About $6,000 installed.

  26. #26
    RedEye's Avatar
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    Will we ever see or is anyone working on a set of wheel-skis or wheel penetration skis for use with Bushwheels ? All the penetration skis that I've seen create so much drag with the small tire. The bushwheel would seem to be much better at reducing drag at the penetration location.

  27. #27
    mvivion's Avatar
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    David,

    Frankly, I think a bigger tire sticking through the penetration in a ski would make things worse, not better.

    My AWB 2500 skis, with 8.50 tires really need longer rigger arms for that size tire. It's amazing how much drag a tire just barely sticking down through the ski bottom creates.

    Our old aircraft division modified several sets of AWB 2500 hydraulic skis to fit them to Super Cubs equipped with Goodyear 25 inch Airwheels. Those skis worked okay, because the rigger arms were long enough to pretty much get the tire out of the snow when in skis position.

    Frankly, if you're going to penetration skis, I think the manufacturers have already answered your question: Use the smallest tires you can, cause the bigger the tires, the more drag in the snow.

    MTV

  28. #28

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    David just wants that cool big tire look! David, I assume the BW's are in the hanger and the skis are on? You could use floats on Vermilion for all the slush on it.

  29. #29
    RedEye's Avatar
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    My thought is that if you have an inch and a half sticking through the ski, the larger the diameter the less drag there would be. Imagine a 31"er in packed snow vs. an 8.50. No comparison right. Now do the same with it penetrating the ski. Less drag...no ???

    Russ,

    Skis are on. Been to Red Lake a few times. No slush up there, but plenty of drifts, though not too terribly bad.

  30. #30
    Widebody's Avatar
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    Got a call into Landes, I was leaning that way at the start.
    Both sets sound good and I appreciate all the reports.
    The hard rough snow from cold temps and wind we get
    in ND seem to favor Landes, more surface area and longer
    in length will also help them perform better in deep snow.
    Tough to beat Aero's, when you can have just the ski in the
    snow though.

    Thanks
    Brad

  31. #31
    Matt 7GCBC's Avatar
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    As MTV said, it is amazing how much drag just a small area of tire penetratring through the ski can create. Knowing the difference in performance on my Aeroskis with the skis up or down, I would hesitate to go with a wheel penetration ski if there is an option for retracts. Just getting the rear ski wheels out of the snow more and putting the rear ski axle on top of the ski on my aeroskis increased performance immensely. Look at the photos in my gallery to see what I'm talking about. I told Troy? at Aeroski about this and he mentioned looking into this, but haven't talked to him since - very good people to deal with. Have also talked to the folks at Landes regarding the LH4000s and they were equally pleasant. I would be happy to answer any questions on the R2800s that I can. Just mounting them up today. Merry Christmas.
    P.S. Ursa, feel free to stop down to the lower part of the state to check them out.

  32. #32
    Dave Calkins's Avatar
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    I've waited to comment. There was a time early in the life of this website when I was a real 'thread hog'.

    A couple of points:

    The Landes LW2500 is a hand-layed fiberglass-cloth/vinylester-resin composite. It is relatively easy to repair to like new appearance compared to repairing a welded-aluminum structure like the Aero R-2800 to new appearance.

    Individual skis of both brand of ski seem quite light when picking them up and moving them around by hand. One mention of 57 pounds per ski for the Aero must absolutely be a typographical error or those skis are filled with sand. The Aero R-2800 is a light ski, just like their straight skis.

    Both brands of ski will require welding attach points to the gear legs, and both will benefit from 3" extended gear.

    Landes runs 8.00x6 tires, the Aero's are for 6.00x6 tires.

    I've got alot more to say about both of these skis. I have been around both brands. I'll let this digest for awhile.

    PS some guys here like to run a tundra tire on their AWB skis. It has been said that if you're gonna wreck your airplane, it will be on floats. It has said if you're gonna wreck you airplane, it will be in the winter on skis.

    Lots of Cubs get wrecked on wheels, but it has been said that if you're gonna wreck your skis, it's gonna be doing wheel ops on rough stuff with the tundra tires down with wheels skis installed.

  33. #33
    Widebody's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Dave Calkins
    .
    I've got alot more to say about both of these skis. I have been around both brands. I'll let this digest for awhile.
    OK it's been long enough....Let's hear the rest

    And...Which ones would you buy?

    Brad

  34. #34
    Dave Calkins's Avatar
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    Hi Brad, write the check yet?

    My experience with the Aero R-2800's is limited to installing, flying, and modifying a set of them on an A-1B for an owner who is very persnickity, and seeing them around and talking to owners who have modified them.

    My experience with the Landes LW-2500 (Landes Wheel- 2500lb.-load rating per ski) is owning, flying, and modifying them on a PA-14 150 HP, and flying them on Gary Landes's personal 150HP PA-12.

    Compared to Fli-Lites, AirGlides, or AWB's, the Aero's and Landes light. Both require welding to the gear legs and will benefit from 3" extended gear as I said before. Both have a little tailwheel on the ski that WILL throw gravel at the tail and aft fuselage of the airplane. I have dealt with both manufacturers, and both are EASY to talk to and can be taken at their word.

    The attach points for the Husky gear legs with the Aero's and the arm geometry do not allow the tire to be raised completely out of the snow, leaving about an inch, and the tiny 6.00x6 tire are tiny! and throw lots of gravel and don't float well on soft ground like a grass strip in the spring...at least you have the skis to sink-up to.

    The newer Landes ski-tailwheels are far superior to the old Maule ski-tailwheel and leaf spring-style deal. Weight is saved, and drag is reduced. I wouldn't even consider flying the old style.

    Either of these skis will not perform well in slush, mashed potatoes, crusty snow, or slightly packed snow where the tire is able to break through the surface and the forward portion of the tire is big drag.

    Fluffy deep snow, uphill landings and downhill takeoff the Landes are great skis.

    Let me get down to it. If the Aero's on the Husky could get the tire completely out of the snow, I still wouldn't have them on that airplane. It's a heavy airplane, and the place where the Landes shine (deep fluffy snow), the Aero's 'tip-up' and plow. The forward-rear areas are all wrong, and the Aero needs more tail area to keep them from tipping up. I am not the first to voice this theory. A well-know skier-mountaneer-jet captain-mechanic-Cub owner with more back-country/mountain-pilot experiences and who has covered more ground than me and likely everyone else here, who operates a Cub on Aero R2800's has mentioned this and tried several ways to deal with it by adding more UHMW here, there, removing it here, there, trying bigger tires, back to 6x6's, mounting the tailwheel bracket on top of the ski instead of dragging it in the snow like the stock Aero, etc. agrees with this. He happens to for several years performed the maintenance on the most famous of Cub-driver's airplanes and played much in that pilots neck of the Alaskan Wrangell/Saint Elias wilderness with Aero R2800 skis while the other guy is on straight Landes's.

    The great equalizer in the mountains is the uphill landing and downhill takeoff.

    I simply cannot have a ski that will tip-up in the DDddeeeeeepp snow like those Aero's. This is where Landes's work great. This, plus the toughness of the glass ski makes my decision

    Now, what if there was a relatively inexpensive retractable wheel/ski that could run 8.50x6 tires and had all the right proportions, no ski-tailwheel, and was 30% lighter per ski than, say Landes 2500 straight skis? NO compromises? That is what a guy needs.

    DAVE

  35. #35

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    If a set of wheel-penetration skis cost 6,000 dollars, it would almost be worth it to have a little patience and spend an extra $ 1500 - 2000 and buy a good used hydraulic ski. Hydraulic skis are better than the penetration skis and whats another $2000 when your already spending $6000?

  36. #36
    aktango58's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Dave Calkins
    I've waited to comment. There was a time early in the life of this website when I was a real 'thread hog'.

    A couple of points:

    The Landes LW2500 is a hand-layed fiberglass-cloth/vinylester-resin composite. It is relatively easy to repair to like new appearance compared to repairing a welded-aluminum structure like the Aero R-2800 to new appearance.

    Individual skis of both brand of ski seem quite light when picking them up and moving them around by hand. One mention of 57 pounds per ski for the Aero must absolutely be a typographical error or those skis are filled with sand. The Aero R-2800 is a light ski, just like their straight skis.

    Both brands of ski will require welding attach points to the gear legs, and both will benefit from 3" extended gear.

    PS some guys here like to run a tundra tire on their AWB skis. It has been said that if you're gonna wreck your airplane, it will be on floats. It has said if you're gonna wreck you airplane, it will be in the winter on skis.

    Lots of Cubs get wrecked on wheels, but it has been said that if you're gonna wreck your skis, it's gonna be doing wheel ops on rough stuff with the tundra tires down with wheels skis installed.

    Dave,

    While your first statement may be true I need to state a point or two:

    I hate fiberglass work. It would rather build an entire new ski from aluminum... personal issue there...

    Weights... Aero skis 104 lbs by official wt/bal... fittings, axles, release...EVERY THING!

    Weld attach points... WRONG... Aero Ski offers a bolt on attach option that you drill one hole through the back of the gear behind the axle, run the bottom cabane vee bolt and the new bolt through for the inside, then the outside is supported by a piece that goes inside the axle. No welding needed.

    Wrecking? it is bad no matter what you do, but some truth to the rough stuff with skis still on...

    About the Husky rig, Are you sure that the 'new' style does not allow the tire above the ski????

    Again, with a plate built for under the tire, (not an option on landes) the Aeros would be much like the strait 3000's.

    I can not argue the deep snow performance dave talks about, but I also am not trying to work my cub in thoes conditions. The deepest I have had these in was about three feet of fluff. I need to leave a paved strip with no snow, and be able to land up river on snow, often times the snow is wet.

    There is a hassle factor on any wheel ski. The great thing is we have options!

    Dave, thank you for your info. I did not find the same problems on cruchy snow, but my tires are above the ski. maybe I am just not flying into enough tough conditions any more...

    There are days to have strait skis though!
    I don't know where you've been me lad, but I see you won first Prize!

  37. #37
    Scouter's Avatar
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    I tracked down the gent with the used set of R2800s here in Maine. They are 2 seasons old, used little. Champ gear, so to use on a cub they would need rigging kit from Aero, not sure of the cost. He wants $5K for the pair. email me at jcrane@hughes.net and I can put you in touch with him.
    Dave: I am going to weigh one of my Aeros tomorrow, I think they weigh over 50 lbs/ski, seems like 57 sticks in my mind. Ive not flown them in severe deep fluff, what you describe with the nose tipping up is interesting.

    Jim

  38. #38
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    Good points all, Dave. I've had to go fish several folks out of deep snow who were flying the Aero 2800's. I suspect that the different mounting on the new Aero's would fix the wheel sticking down through the ski thing...It sure does on a set on a Cub and a Scout I've seen lately. I can't see where the Husky would be any different. What you describe sounds like the old mounting bracket setup.

    But, if you REALLY want a set of skis, get a set of Thomas Dietrich's Rosti Fernandez retractable wheel skis. They are expensive, but they'll out perform ANY ski, straight or otherwise, on the planet.

    Not cheap though, so spend a little less on that new instrument panel, and forgo the autopilot on the Cub.....

    MTV

  39. #39
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    I went from a champ to cub with my skis, I think it cost $350 for the fittings and made the cables myself. Aero sent me the dimentions to the cable...

    MTV, are thoes great skis certified for us to use? are you using them?

    if so, where are you parked, they would be cheaper that way!
    I don't know where you've been me lad, but I see you won first Prize!

  40. #40

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    But, if you REALLY want a set of skis, get a set of Thomas Dietrich's Rosti Fernandez retractable wheel skis. They are expensive, but they'll out perform ANY ski, straight or otherwise, on the planet.

    Our set is currently AOG, as well as two other sets on a Cub and a Husky in ANC. While I am optimistic we will work through the problems all three of us have experienced, the jury is still out on these skis for us.

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