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Thread: Straight tail ski

  1. #1
    spinner2's Avatar
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    Straight tail ski

    I have a dedicated 3200 tail wheel for Burl’s tail ski. When I put the skis on last month I found my tail wheel needed some maintenance. Not wanting to miss some ski flying time I removed the wheel and made a filler plate from .050” aluminum.

    I took care care of the wheel problem last week and reinstalled it in the ski. I flew with it yesterday with the wheel in place and I sure noticed a difference in drag. A straight tail ski is like a free-castering tail wheel. Until you try it you don’t realize the difference.

    It it has been at least 10 years since I flew without a tail ski of any kind so I don’t remember well what that was like. But I do remember that a tail ski was better.

    Who knows maybe I will remove the wheel again? If I were to do it all over, I’d make the plate out of .125” UHMV.


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    This floor creeper worked well for moving it in and out of the hangar.

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    I cut cut a piece of 1/2” conduit to slip over the axle bolt so the nut could be tightened up snug.
    "Fast is fine, but accuracy is everything." Wyatt Earp
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  2. #2

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    It'd be pretty simple to make a plate that would slide in place under a deflated tire and would be held in place my reinflating the tire. Schneider skis used that method for their penetration skis, and Schneiders needed it.
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  3. #3

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    Also and a skag of some type for better steering. When my 90 Cub was outside all winter I had it on straight skis with a Landis 250 tail ski (dish with a skag) which helps in taxing and taking off in deep snow with the small engine Cub.
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  4. #4
    mvivion's Avatar
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    No doubt that a straight tail ski will slide a bit better early on than a penetration ski, but the real key is to get that tail up out of the snow quickly. If you can live with a straight ski on the tail, that’s great.

    MTV
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  5. #5

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    Nice job ,keep us advised how it works in the field. I made my own too, heavy aluminum, and bronzed bushed small side pedestals. Used cable wire safety retainers just like you would on main skii. will try and post a pic
    If you get lost while flying, don't try hail a cop. Pick up the first railroad you find and hug it until you get somewhere.
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  6. #6
    spinner2's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by stewartb View Post
    It'd be pretty simple to make a plate that would slide in place under a deflated tire and would be held in place my reinflating the tire. Schneider skis used that method for their penetration skis, and Schneiders needed it.
    I like that idea. Wondering though if Burl's ski was low enough to allow a plate to slip between the ski and an un-inflated tire, I got down on the floor creeper and took a look. Nope. The rim of the wheel is about 1/4" above the ski surface. Not enough room to work like that.

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    "Fast is fine, but accuracy is everything." Wyatt Earp

  7. #7

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    Bummer. I’m busy enough that I haven’t installed my skis on the 180 yet. I’ll compare how the BBW version looks in that same profile. I think the BBW vesion has less drag in the snow so maybe that’s your answer. Its only money!
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  8. #8
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    Bob, I thought I would add a skeg if I go back to the plate. Maybe one from UHMW with a bit of width so if it drags on the asphalt it'll wear fairly well. I'm sure I won't make anymore changes this winter.

    Mike, as you know, take-offs with skis is an AOA game and there's a sweet-spot between getting the the right angle and avoiding drag with the tail. That's where I noticed the big difference with the straight ski. With the tail wheel and the penetration hole in the ski, dragging in heavy snow, that sweet-spot window narrowed considerably.
    "Fast is fine, but accuracy is everything." Wyatt Earp

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