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Thread: Flat spring steel gear legs

  1. #1

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    Flat spring steel gear legs

    Anyone know if there is a STC for flat steel gear legs like an old Cessna or Citabria ? The price of the airsorbs is getting rediculous.

  2. #2

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    Yes. I think I have their brochure from the 1970s. They used C-172 gear legs, and advertised(!) a speed of 120. Also Grove Aircraft has a one- piece gear from spring aluminum that has flown on banner tows.

    But you are converting a rugged Cub into a pavement- only machine. The torsion loads on these gear are quite high. Also the expense involved will exceed the cost of new hydrasorbs every five years until you croak.

    opinion.

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    Hello. I know of someone who reportedly has new sets of flat spring gear available (with STC either done or in progress). The persons name is Rick Schneider. I have seen them on a plane on my airstrip. I have heard that the folks who own Airframes Alaska looked at them with some interest in purchasing the STC for addition to their stable of Cub mods. I do not know what became of that. Their web site should provide a contact number and maybe they could provide better information or tell you how to contact the maker. Good luck.

  4. #4
    TurboBeaver's Avatar
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    There is really nothing new about a spring gear on a SC, "Tinny" Headland noted cub builder
    Out in Illiamna Ak started building Cubs up with spring gear in the early 1980's, one of the first
    Ones I ever flew belonged to Non Dalton hunting guide Bob Tracy who had many years on stock
    Gear. In those days 30" Airsteaks were the favorite flavor, Bob told me I wouldnt believe how they
    Worked and he was right, the amount of travel compared to a hydrasorb was amazing, he landed
    That 18 in places that were very far off the beaten path , in some very rough stuff on a daily basis!
    I had a buddy with a GCBC that had Scout gear on it that we used to take one of my English Setters
    Up into the Talkettna Mts and hunt Ptarmigan in the winter on skis, we took turns whos plane we used,
    Landing into flat light in the excitement to get down and shoot after a covey was spotted , you often
    Wound up landing into drifts you would normally not land in. That gear worked vastly better than cub gear
    Because it can travel so much further.Watching a ski out the window as we would hit those drifts
    It almost seamed like the skis were tilting up so far you were seeing the edge of the skis! I cant speak
    Of side loading it as the geometry of a single leg vs a triangle gear wouldnt add up . The spring gear
    Was so different in the perceived "ride" from inside the airplane, it was unreal.Of course the gear legs
    Themselves and where it was attached was being subjected to tremendous forces. I think Tinny
    Just sorta copyed the Scout set up, and welded in some square tubes to mated up with the gear legs,
    On Bobs cub, he used it for years that way as far as I know, there was a few of them running around
    Out there back then. However I am sure those were all then ; "simple field approvals"
    By one of the nicest FAA inspectors you would ever meet , Al Fleaner...........he probably had more
    common sense than his job allows, but if he could work with you, he sure as heck would try
    Too.
    Last edited by TurboBeaver; 02-23-2015 at 05:23 AM.

  5. #5
    Cub junkie's Avatar
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    Spring gear sure makes a beautiful airplane fugly.

  6. #6
    TurboBeaver's Avatar
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    Lol, wonder what a C 185 would look like with Super Cub landing gear on it???[ Scubly??] It does look different I can grant you that.......
    Last edited by TurboBeaver; 02-23-2015 at 08:32 AM.

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  8. #8
    TurboBeaver's Avatar
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    Now that's another way to do it ???? Doug are those C 170 gear legs???

  9. #9

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    I have no idea, it was a banner tow. I just thought, that was simple the way it was done. I wouldnt want to land it off airport the way it was done there.

  10. #10
    n40ff's Avatar
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    ".Of course the gear legs
    Themselves and where it was attached was being subjected to tremendous forces. I think Tinny
    Just sorta copyed the Scout set up, and welded in some square tubes to mated up with the gear legs"

    For sure. There have been many failures in some experimental designs when converting from bungee to spring gear. Attach structure requires careful beefed-up design for sure. Starduster too, Skybolts and Acrodusters come to mind. My Acroduster 2 will have it's original bungee gear, I agree that spring gear results in a relative ugly airplane....

  11. #11
    Cub junkie's Avatar
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    One C-140 gear leg is 31 pounds bare. So that's 62 pounds before axles, wheels and brakes. Robbie Grove can replicate the gear legs in aluminum for you and there is none better in workmanship than his stuff. Those banner tow cubs are certainly made for utility. A friend of mine flew a banner tow PA12 up and down the Jersey shore in his youth. He told me he never got used to the no cowling deal.

  12. #12

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    In the end, is not just putting on an AOSS system cheaper even with the aquisition costs?

  13. #13

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    The banner tow gear is aluminum. Very soft aluminum and very heavy. It would actually be very good on rock or gravel. Not for a low time pilot though, it could start a pretty good bouncing cycle on a hard surface runway. Grove made them.

  14. #14

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    I changed my Decathlon from spring steel to spring aluminum (made by Grove, as is all ACA gear). It lands just the same, but doesn't seem to sway as much. I mostly land on pavement, but have taken it up to a mountain strip where my buddies insist they need 26" blimp tires. Did fine. Weight reduction was 14 lbs, which really helps in the Dec.

    I am with the AOSS suggestion, although I have not noted Hydrasorb failures here in big tire, paved strip country.

  15. #15
    mike mcs repair's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by tempdoug View Post
    I have no idea, it was a banner tow. I just thought, that was simple the way it was done. I wouldnt want to land it off airport the way it was done there.

    they use that off airport... on Shniders version... that mount is spring steel, so it will flex some... Aluminum gear has been used for decades? on his BushMasters he said

    the old thread on this
    http://www.supercub.org/forum/showth...eider-cub-gear

  16. #16

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    I have no idea on strength, but just looking at where it only grabs the two outside tabs on the landing gear fittings,in the front, im not really a fan of that, right or wrong. Always thought something should be grabbing the inside tabs also. opinion.

  17. #17
    PerryB's Avatar
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    I wouldn't even consider spring gear on a Cub and the AOSS conversion costs about the same as 6 sets of hydrasorbs, so they're not as bad as they seem. I just had to replace mine about two weeks ago so I feel your pain. My last set went about seven years so I can't complain.

  18. #18

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    I am learning something, I think. When you guys say you replace the Hydrasorbs, you are talking about the hydraulic damper, right? We replace the rubber bands all the time, but I do not recall a hydraulic unit going bad. These sand bars must beat the crap out of them.

  19. #19
    mike mcs repair's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by bob turner View Post
    but I do not recall a hydraulic unit going bad.
    seen many dead ones and bent ones... over $300ea. for that shock unit now...

  20. #20
    mike mcs repair's Avatar
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    little different mounting on Schneider. than shown here

    http://www.supercub.org/forum/showthread.php?41885-Schneider-cub-gear&p=524934&viewfull=1#post524934

  21. #21
    Cub junkie's Avatar
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    Except for the unique end fitting Hydrosorb's look like something that costs 40 dollars at auto zone.

  22. #22

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    Thanks for all the info. I realy like the original post from 2 years ago Mike. Had no idea it would reduce drag that much. I don't see the structural issues that would be a concern in rough terrain, rocks etc.. I have only started getting familiar with Cubs the past 7 years, but I'd say near 75% of the hydrasorbs I have checked when I change bungees are bad. Last one found bad before Christmas was cracked 1/2 way thru shaft at threads. This bird was getting bouncd down paved runways a bunch though. Steve, that picture is interesting you posted. Looks a little different design from the Schneider pics. Good info though. I like it. Thanks guys.

  23. #23
    mike mcs repair's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by PerryB View Post
    the AOSS conversion costs about the same as 6 sets of hydrasorbs,
    BULL Sh1t...

    apples to apples = $2110.00 set hydosorbs & shock struts, AOSS = $2995.00 according to websites today(updated correctly?? burls says 2008?? links bellow)

    http://www.univair.com/piper/piper-p...trut-assembly/

    http://www.burlac.com/full_catalog_2008.htm

  24. #24

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    Mike
    I think the ASOS is up a bit $3,300 or a bit more if I am right. Not that the price is bad for what you get and I would gladly pay the price if I need to replace mine because it is great gear for the price. As far as the spring gear structural issues, it is not the up and down issues that you worry about (I have bounced high enough to scratch my head thinking of going around) it is the stump, log, tussock and dead stuff in front of the tire you worry about (I think that is where mike makes his money). There is a big strut from the back of the cub gear to handle the load. Take that away and now what keeps the tire/gear from being swept off. There is also side loading issues when on skis. Not that the spring gear is bad you just have to pick the gear for the job. As with all things aircraft it is the stick controller that makes it really happen. The good ones make it all look easy!!!!
    DENNY

  25. #25
    PerryB's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by mike mcs repair View Post
    BULL Sh1t...

    apples to apples = $2110.00 set hydosorbs & shock struts, AOSS = $2995.00 according to websites today(updated correctly?? burls says 2008?? links bellow)

    http://www.univair.com/piper/piper-p...trut-assembly/

    http://www.burlac.com/full_catalog_2008.htm
    I didn't replace the entire assembly including the strut leg and airfoil cover just to get new hydrasorbs. The hydrasorbs are a little over 700/pair. I forgot to include the cost of bungees in my remark. I was wrong on the AOSS price. Had recently been told it would be around 4000 for a pair (had been considering the swap), this must have included labor. The original post was about the high price of hydrasorbs and my point was they are still the lesser financial evil. I apologize profusely for my numbers being off, but aren't you taking this rather personal?

  26. #26

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    Anyone have a worn out hydrosorb that they want to get rid of? PM me.

  27. #27
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    I destroyed a hydrasorb unit once just by dropping it on the floor and denting it a little....

  28. #28
    kase's Avatar
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    Just had some aoss delievered for a super cub. $3688.00 with shipping

  29. #29
    Steve Pierce's Avatar
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    How much does it cost for the spring gear STC, parts and labor to weld everything in? How much more/less does it way? How much higher will the spring gear send you up into the air when you drop it in. AOSS isn't cheap but I really like it.

    Posted Using the Free SuperCub.Org Android App!
    Steve Pierce

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  30. #30
    Eddie Foy's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Cub junkie View Post
    Except for the unique end fitting Hydrosorb's look like something that costs 40 dollars at auto zone.
    Thats all they are. I thought a boat was expensive before I bought my first plane.

    Eddie
    "Put out my hand and touched the face of God!"

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    [QUOTE=Steve Pierce;623037]How much does it cost for the spring gear STC, parts and labor to weld everything in? How much more/less does it way? How much higher will the spring gear send you up into the air when you drop it in. AOSS isn't cheap but I really like it.


    Having honest answers to Steve's questions here would be really nice. Also real speed/drag numbers and comparison of failure figures in different loading conditions. If such exist??

  33. #33
    Steve Pierce's Avatar
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    Here are some pictures of one I worked on. It was faster.
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    Steve Pierce

    Everybody is ignorant, only on different subjects.
    Will Rogers

  34. #34
    Steve Pierce's Avatar
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    The structure. Note, tow brakes in the front and no rear brakes.
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    Steve Pierce

    Everybody is ignorant, only on different subjects.
    Will Rogers

  35. #35
    Cub junkie's Avatar
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    Looks like the truss structure necessitates the unique torque tube split.

  36. #36
    180Marty's Avatar
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    I went down to NE Missouri to talk to Dave Hendricks about putting his mods on my PA 12 back in the mid 80's. He showed me one that had a bunch of his STC's and it had spring gear on it. I'm trying to find the pictures I took of it. Maybe tomorrow I'll find them. Ed Beautte recently rebuilt his dad's plane that I looked at years ago and it has 18 gear on it now.

  37. #37
    PerryB's Avatar
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    Now I'm going to call B/S -- on the claimed speed increase. 14-15 mph...... believe it when I see it. The test aircraft supposedly went 82 with a 74-56 prop and 8.50's @2200 rpm. There is either something very wrong with that a/c or the flaps were down! The 97 mph figure is about right. Also, I appreciate the thought behind the mounting bracket that connects the front and rear attach points, but in a significant pothole/log/rock strike I have my doubts whether it's going to prevent a bent longeron or not.
    For the record, I like the AOSS system but the cost of conversion caused me to stay with hydrasorbs/bungees when I recently discovered a leaker. Is there any reason the AOSS shrouds couldn't be airfoil shaped ?
    Last edited by PerryB; 02-26-2015 at 08:37 AM.

  38. #38
    TurboBeaver's Avatar
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    This thread may be way to forward thinking for some
    Of the fellas that are stauch cub gear advocates. Considering the very limited total travel of a hydra sorb,before it bottoms out.
    There is certainly no getting around the plain fact that
    Spring gear has the advantage of much greater movement, at seams like some cub guys ,dont like the
    ”looks" of spring gear, ok, but that sure doesn't mean the gear
    Does not have merit. I am wondering if someone
    Should contact Cessna and inform them what a
    Huge mistake they made years ago, and send letters
    Out asap to all 170/180/185/188 owners to keep
    Them restricted completely to pavement .( Someone should have told
    Ray McNutt all this before he spent 40 years bounching his old beloved C 180
    Off every rock pile over in the Wrangle Mts) Because
    There are some guys on SC.Org that don't like the
    "Looks "of spring gear, and feel it is basically hopeless off a paved
    Runway ???
    Good gosh if I had all my bent, twisted and broken, cracked
    Cub gear legs piled up in one heap I would love
    To take a picture of them and post it on Here! Cub gear is good gear however, I wonder why I kept one of Atlee's reversable ones taped to my left strut for years
    And was dam glad I had it many times to get the
    Heck back home..............

    Now this is all just in fun ,so don't get your props twisted!
    Last edited by TurboBeaver; 02-26-2015 at 09:15 AM.

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