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Thread: PA-12 Gull wing or Split door?

  1. #1

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    PA-12 Gull wing or Split door?

    Hi, new to the group and new to owning an aircraft so advice would be appreciated. I have a 1946 PA-12 and I'm looking to change the door for ease of getting in and out and for safety. Not sure how to start the process to replace an original door. Any opinions on comparing the gull wing and the split door and how to go about it would be appreciated. Forgot to mention it's a Canadian certified plane (not sure if that matters) so it would have to certifiable. Thanks.

  2. #2
    www.SkupTech.com mike mcs repair's Avatar
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    gull wing is only option....

    how would you do split? it's to low to lift struts

    if you do gull wing consider my articulating version... i will look for example video... no idea on paperwork for you over there....

  3. #3

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    Thanks for the reply. Thought I saw a split door on a PA-12 but I must be mistaken. Any help to point me in the right direction is appreciated.

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    PerryB's Avatar
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    I put a lot of thought into it when I had my rebuild done in '13. There's really no good way to put an 18 style door on a 12. The front seat is too far forward relative to the opening to board like an 18. With the 18 you sit on the sill and swing in. At least with the swing-up door (I have one, all plexi) you have the area ahead of the strut to step with your right foot (with a long step of course) before going in with your left. I've never boarded a stock 12, but it must be a real PITA. Consider a long step to be mandatory equipment.

    --I've seen a couple split doors where the bottom half hinged in conventional fashion, and the top half swung up. I think some Citabrias were made this way also. All that does is give you a nice big window in flight (which is nice) but does nothing to enhance boarding or seaplane ops. The swing-up/seaplane door can be opened in flight but it makes a lot of buffet in the back seat area at cruise speed. I open mine for various observation purposes, and at those times I'm putting around at about 1900 RPM and 55-ish MPH with 1/2 flaps. It's perfect for that. Also look into a swing-up left side window. I love mine.
    Last edited by PerryB; 02-06-2020 at 09:11 PM.
    After Monday and Tuesday, even the calendar says WTF !
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  5. #5

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    The V sill would need to be squared to parallel with the header. You'd lose a lot of opening for little gain in utility. Search the site for seaplane doors on PA-12s and you'll find a couple of good threads about one-piece doors.
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  6. #6

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    Will do, thanks.

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  8. #8
    Cubus Maximus's Avatar
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    split door 12:



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  9. #9
    Gordon Misch's Avatar
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    Crosswinds STOL cargo door. Swing-up, and large. Requires some fuselage welding, so best done uncovered.
    Gordon

    N4328M KTDO
    My SPOT: tinyurl.com/N4328M (case sensitive)
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  10. #10

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    The gull wing door with shock strut to hold open has been good for me. The shock struts works on the ground and in flight. In a slip it likes to close. I like the full glass door and the passengers Seem to like it as well.

  11. #11

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    I put a Cub door in my 12 that I had for 43 years. It must b e done during a major rebuild. The right side of the fuselage must be rebuilt as an 18 and in mine I had previously extended the left side tube to the left gear fitting. We refered to the fuselage drawings of the 18 to obtain the field approval.. Stu
    Last edited by reliableflyer; 02-07-2020 at 01:17 PM.

  12. #12

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  13. #13
    WhiskeyMike's Avatar
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    I've had a couple of split doors. The top swings up and the bottom is hinged forward so that it can open all the way flat to the boot cowl. Basically the door is cut in half and the top half hinged so it swings up. Now the bottom half can swing all the way forward. It was field approved

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  14. #14

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ID:	46913Cub door installed in my 12

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