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Thread: Installing skis - jack options?

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    Installing skis - jack options?

    I've been wanting to get on skis for a couple years now, so I figure it's time to get this figured out. The skis I have have been on this plane before, so hopefully rigging them is easy enough (with an experienced set of eyes to double check everything for me), but I haven't yet figured out the first step. How do I go about jacking the plane up without putting tension on parts that shouldn't have such direct pressure? I don't own any specialized jacks (wing jacks, etc.). Is there a simple solution here, or do I need to rig up something a bit more complex to do this right? I'm flying a PA-18 and installing straight skis.

  2. #2
    1piece@atime's Avatar
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    This isnít the one I made, mine is very similar but height adjustable and has a removable handle. Works great on my taylorcraft and Iím sure it could be modified to work on a cub.


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    cubdriver2's Avatar
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    Almost any Jack will work with normal tires, just pad the top of the Jack where it touches the axle. But with wide tires or skis it tough because they get in the way of the jack base. Made this a few years ago and it works great. If I made it again it would be a 4x4 or steel tube





    Glenn
    Last edited by cubdriver2; 02-02-2018 at 08:35 AM.
    "Optimism is going after Moby Dick in a rowboat and taking the tartar sauce with you!"
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  4. #4
    Farmboy's Avatar
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    Similar to what Glenn does, I'm probably a little less detailed about making a jack. I think Cruiser did this first. A 2x4 cut to length to fit the span, and the bush wheels bugle out so you have to put one end up and then the other to get it against the inner axle stubs. I just use a lightweight floor jack on one side, lifting the 2x4 as close to the tire/ski as possible, swap tire/ski, then set it down, and move it to the other side and repeat. Only one side is in the air at a time, stable and chocked.

    Correction : I did use a sharpie and write "save for skis" on the 2x4. Must be the detail in me.
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  5. #5
    aktango58's Avatar
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    2x6 notched at the end the width of lift strut. wedge between lift strut wing attach point and ground until the tire is off the ground.

    Note: only put the 2x6 at the wing attach point.

    It helps if one person lifts the side of the plane by pushing at the attach points while the other puts the 2x in place.

    Another idea is to lift the plane by the engine mount or float rings if you have a hoist. Beware- do not lift by the engine lift hoop.
    I don't know where you've been me lad, but I see you won first Prize!

  6. #6
    55-PA18A's Avatar
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    I've always just used a small bottle jack on the axle stub on the inside of the gear leg. There was enough room to install the Landes 2500's. Tie the tail wheel down, chock the opposite tire and lift. Don't forget to use this as an opportunity to check and grease your wheel bearings before you need to put the wheels back on.

    Ive wanted to make a crossbar with scissor jacks like shown in Cubdriver2's post. Maybe someday.

    Jim

  7. #7
    cubdriver2's Avatar
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    For years I just used one of those $29 portable floor jacks sold at Wally World when changing my GY 25x4 to skis and back. But with the 31s the bulge was in the way and I needed something else. Now when I pull it back into the hangar on skis I slide the double jack under and just lift the skis off the floor so they don't frost up like when they touch the floor. Quick, stable and simple.

    This one has a big stable footprint https://www.ebay.com/itm/Torin-Big-R....c100855.m4779

    Glenn
    Last edited by cubdriver2; 02-02-2018 at 11:00 AM.
    "Optimism is going after Moby Dick in a rowboat and taking the tartar sauce with you!"
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    cubdriver2's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by stewartb View Post



    Sent from my iPad using SuperCub.Org mobile app
    That's what we all could use. But when the weather is like it is now I've switched back and forth 3 times in the same weekend so I need something quick. Without disk brakes I can do it in under 20 min

    Glenn
    "Optimism is going after Moby Dick in a rowboat and taking the tartar sauce with you!"

  10. #10
    S2D's Avatar
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    $15 Wally world bottlejack works fine on the cub gear. Little scissor Jack on champ gear
    couple 4x4s and 2x6's come in handy for cribbing when going from bushwheels to straight skis.





    I really like Glenns idea for my main hangar. may have to build one.
    Last edited by S2D; 02-02-2018 at 12:15 PM.
    I may be wrong but that probably won't stop me from arguing about it.

  11. #11
    aktango58's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by cubdriver2 View Post
    when the weather is like it is now I've switched back and forth 3 times in the same weekend so I need something quick.

    Glenn
    Takes Stewart about 3 minutes I bet to switch wheels to skis there... notice the hydraulics?

    Buy my Aero Wheel Skis for these times of year, then only go to straits when it gets deep... well, any conversation with you gets deep but you know what I mean
    I don't know where you've been me lad, but I see you won first Prize!

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    I love the high lift of a boom truck. Attaching check cables gets really easy.

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    My IA makes me hold the wing up...............
    Mark
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    Dave Calkins's Avatar
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    A bottle jack or floor jack pushing up on a 2x4 that spans from inboard axle to inboard axle of the gear leg.

    place jack near the axle/gear leg on the side you intend to lift.

    Make sure aircraft is untied and chock the side yu arent lifting.

    Mark or paint the board so yu dont cut it up for some other project.

    .....as described by several others here.

    Wish I had a photo to show how simple. pretty standard and simple method. secure enough for a quick change, but I mever walk away from it or get body parts under it. watch out that you dont bump your shoulder on the tailpipe!

  15. #15
    cubdriver2's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by mam90 View Post
    My IA makes me hold the wing up...............
    That's the quickset way................if your not doing it alone

    Glenn
    "Optimism is going after Moby Dick in a rowboat and taking the tartar sauce with you!"

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    Farmboy's Avatar
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    Right main is off the ground.




    Transmitted from my FlightPhone
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  17. #17
    Dave Calkins's Avatar
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    there it is!

    thanks Farmboy!

  18. #18
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    Quote Originally Posted by Farmboy View Post
    Right main is off the ground.




    Transmitted from my FlightPhone
    A padded alum channel upside down in place like the wood will capture the inner axle so it can't slip out.

  19. #19
    Farmboy's Avatar
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    One can over engineer anything. I Usually do. But unless the aircraft rolls/moves forward or backward, or someone kicks the 2x4 out, the wood doesn't move. Jack pad keeps it from rolling, and wheel chocks keep it from sliding. If your airplane is so light that it will slide easily on the southern yellow pine, put your fuel bags in the front seat to hold it down.

    Wood handles easy. It's soft enough to bounce around in the vehicle with the jack. It's good for taking notes on, as it's too big to lose. You can use it to keep your knees off the ground while finishing up the change over, although a piece of carpet or cardboard works good for that too. If the Airport Lizards come around because they see a Pilot/Mechanic working, you can drive them off with it as a big stick. If the hangar door comes off the track, lean it up against the wall and you can walk up it to fix the door. If your skis are frozen down because someone left them sitting on slush, you can use it and a rock as a good lever to pry them free. In a bind, cut it up for blocking. Getting cold, burn it for heat.

    pb
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  20. #20
    cubdriver2's Avatar
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    "Optimism is going after Moby Dick in a rowboat and taking the tartar sauce with you!"
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  21. #21
    aktango58's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by cubdriver2 View Post
    That's the quickset way................if your not doing it alone

    Glenn
    Actually, an electric hoist from the roof of a hangar, spreader bar to lift eyes and pick.

    Bungees? Easy, lift it higher and let the tip come up, attach, then let the floor push on the tail as you lower the plane and she sets down for the rear attach fitting to be easy!
    I don't know where you've been me lad, but I see you won first Prize!
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  22. #22
    aktango58's Avatar
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    Let me add: it is also possible to go from floats to skis with this method, while listening to Jimmy Buffet and staying warm and dry!
    I don't know where you've been me lad, but I see you won first Prize!
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  23. #23

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    Atlee sells a modified hi-lift jack and large base plate with spikes—little spendy but works great and is solid. Lift wing at end of strut at the stock tie down ring
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  24. #24

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    Excellent! Thanks for all the advice. I'm fairly sure I can get it figured out from this point.

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    Farmboy's Avatar
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    Geez Brian, donít stop us. We can beat a dead horse a really long time.

    Since I just swapped again, I timed it.
    (No hubcaps)
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    Transmitted from my FlightPhone
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  27. #27
    Dave Calkins's Avatar
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    nice low profile setup Tim!

  28. #28
    cubdriver2's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Dave Calkins View Post
    nice low profile setup Tim!
    But, he's confused why his sliding hangar doors were dragging on the floor.

    Glenn
    "Optimism is going after Moby Dick in a rowboat and taking the tartar sauce with you!"
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  29. #29
    Tim's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Dave Calkins View Post
    nice low profile setup Tim!
    Dave That winch was on a DC 3 arm that sings out to load stuff. the freight company sold out and had this winch sitting in a corner of a big hangar. I knew the owner and talked him out of it for $50. It,s 24 volt but I just use a 12 volt jump pack, works great.

    Tim

  30. #30
    Dave Calkins's Avatar
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    Tim, careful with those cable clamps. Saddle always goes on the "live" leg......
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    S2D's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Farmboy View Post
    Geez Brian, don’t stop us. We can beat a dead horse a really long time.

    Thats funny !! I was thinking the same thing. We might even drift off on a totally unrelated subject .
    I may be wrong but that probably won't stop me from arguing about it.
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  32. #32
    BC12D-4-85's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Dave Calkins View Post
    Tim, careful with those cable clamps. Saddle always goes on the "live" leg......
    Gramps told me once "never saddle a dead horse" Changed the clamps and never forgot. He was my age and I was a kid just a few years ago.

    Gary

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    hotrod180's Avatar
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    First time i heard that was kn a jobsite in 1988, never forgot it.
    Funny how a catchy phrase can help with remembering.
    Cessna Skywagon-- accept no substitute!

  34. #34
    WanaBNACub's Avatar
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    Lots of great ideas. I built a wing jack out of an old bumper jack from a mid 70s car. Picked it up at the junk yard for $20. Works great. Your welcome to borrow it if you want.

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  35. #35

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    I picked up a small used ATV lift for 100 bucks. A 4x4 between the gear and whole front is off the floor. Also good for lifting the tail when working on tailwheel.
    DENNY
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  36. #36

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    This was my solution for supporting the airplane inside a T-hangar..(flat tire would cause wing damage)Click image for larger version. 

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  37. #37

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    Took a fair bit longer than planned, but I finally got the skis on today. Thanks for the help, gentlemen! Will post a picture or three once I get out.

  38. #38
    cubdriver2's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Brian M View Post
    Took a fair bit longer than planned, but I finally got the skis on today. Thanks for the help, gentlemen! Will post a picture or three once I get out.
    I always like to lift the tail up at the angle it flys and lift a wing till the ski comes off the ground to check my work before flying.

    Glenn
    "Optimism is going after Moby Dick in a rowboat and taking the tartar sauce with you!"

  39. #39
    hotrod180's Avatar
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    Seen all SC photos here....
    Cessnas are a bit of a different story.
    I've made & used a couple different "jack points" which slide onto / clamp onto the gear leg,
    and a bottle jack or floor jack is used to hoist the airplane up.
    None were all that satisfactory.

    What I do now is use a nylon bike-binder strap as a choker around the gear leg,
    and raise it up with the engine hoist I finally broke down and bought last year.
    Works pretty good, and no scuffing the paint on the gear leg or having to knock the tapered jackpoint off with a hammer.
    Cessna Skywagon-- accept no substitute!
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    This method is about as safe as you can get, and cheap to build. I already had the chain hoist for float change-over.
    Last edited by NunavutPA-12; 12-09-2018 at 05:06 PM.
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