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Thread: Recovering my cub

  1. #1
    Herc's Avatar
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    Recovering my cub

    I'll be recovering and throwing in a 160 this fall. Looking for any suggested mods while the fabric is off. All I'm planning on while the fabric is off is listed below.

    New boot cowl
    O-320-b2b
    Baggage doors
    2000lb stc (still researching if I can do this with my 13 rib wings, looks like I can)
    CGR-30P and 30C
    Reinforced fabric patches where I'll cut for a belly pod


    I was quoted roughly 32k for the recover including minor repairs and I'm budgeting 25k for the new engine. That leaves me another 10k for the avionics and any other repairs that come up outside the original quote.

    Interested in any "must have" mods I should do Click image for larger version. 

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  2. #2
    www.SkupTech.com mike mcs repair's Avatar
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    quoted roughly 32k

  3. #3
    www.SkupTech.com mike mcs repair's Avatar
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    doing all that in one step, is sure to find you many unexpected issues $$$$ & time.... most do it in multiple steps....

  4. #4
    Herc's Avatar
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    So... you don't think 32k is accurate for a cover job? I'm open to opinions and ideas and I definitely want to do it in a single step. I'm not saying my budget is unlimited but I can afford to put 70k max at it.

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  5. #5
    www.SkupTech.com mike mcs repair's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Herc View Post
    So... you don't think 32k is accurate for a cover job?

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    what do you define as a cover job? first step is send it to the sand blaster and see if it returns....

  6. #6
    Herc's Avatar
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    I'm looking for an IRAN only.

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  7. #7
    www.SkupTech.com mike mcs repair's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Herc View Post
    I'm looking for an IRAN only.

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    just give it a coat of paint instead.....

  8. #8
    Herc's Avatar
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    It needs new fabric. Do you have any suggestions for what I should do once the fabric is off?

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  9. #9
    mvivion's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Herc View Post
    It needs new fabric. Do you have any suggestions for what I should do once the fabric is off?

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    Re read post #5 above. You MAY be buying a fuselage. Almost every “recover” winds up finding problems that must be fixed. These are old airplanes, and most have live a tough life. Wait until the fabric is off and the frame is cleaned up and THEN decide what your budget is going to be.

    MTV

  10. #10
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    What needs or might need to be done is unlimited. Years ago when Grade A was being used, aircraft got covered every 10 or so years. Now with ceconite an airplane can go 30, 40 years and even longer between recover. Point being, it's probably been a long long time since the air frame has had a good looking at. I would think a recover should include a sand blasting of the air frame, painting of the air frame, any air frame repair needed, new floor panels, new cables, new pulleys, new rudder springs, new engine control cables, new glass all around, new hoses. These are just a few items that pop into my mind. Some may or may not need replacing, depends on when they were done. I'm sure there's additional items that others can share. I believe Poly Fiber estimates about $5,000 just for materials to recover a cub. There's lots of variables when recovering an airplane. Good luck.

  11. #11
    Herc's Avatar
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    I appreciate the input and I realize the price will go up once the fabric comes off, I actually counted on it. This aircraft has not been recovered in over 30 years. Back to my original question, is there anything I should look at doing once the fabric is off? If I'm buying a new fuselage I'm ok with that. But what am I missing?

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  12. #12
    www.SkupTech.com mike mcs repair's Avatar
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    Recovering my cub

    Quote Originally Posted by Herc View Post
    It needs new fabric. the fabric is off?

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    Why would you put new fabric on without inspecting/blasting it first. A coat of paint is just as good then....

  13. #13
    www.SkupTech.com mike mcs repair's Avatar
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    It’s a very sad day when you do all the mods, and then send it to the blaster only to find out it’s been sunk and only half of it is left and any good.


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  14. #14
    Herc's Avatar
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    It will be blasted and coated. I dont understand where the disconnect is here. I plan on having the fuselage blasted, put into a jig, and coated. If its so bent out of shape or corroded to the point that a new fuselage is required then so be it, I'll end up buying a new one. Mike, I have a ton of respect for you because I've been reading this forum for years and you always have good and knowledgable advice, what can you tell me other than just repaint it?

    I realize I would probably be money ahead to just sell the dammed thing and buy one thats been recently recovered, I dont want to go that route.

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  15. #15
    wireweinie's Avatar
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    What are your plans for the panel? What type of flying do you do?

    Web
    Life's tough . . . wear a cup.
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  16. #16
    Herc's Avatar
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    I like my panel the way it is, although I need some engine monitoring. The flying I typically do is 70% backcountry exploring around 1500lbs and 30% at max gross landing at small strips for hunting.Click image for larger version. 

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  18. #18
    Herc's Avatar
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    Thank you. This is exactly what I was looking for. Sent from my SM-N975U using SuperCub.Org mobile app

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    BC12D-4-85's Avatar
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    Sell what you have and buy what you want. But nobody's advice trumps plans.

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  20. #20
    nanook's Avatar
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    What year cub and who did the last overhaul on the fuselage? Big difference in going through a fifties cub and a seventies model. How much time on the airframe?
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  21. #21
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    I like the others think you are being very optimistic in your cost estimates for that airplane. From your picture that airplane has been used hard in the years before you bought it. Sure it has a few different shades of paint, that's only cosmetic. The beat up boot cowl proves that the previous owner rode it hard and put it up wet. Now with a serial number of 823, is it eligible for the 160 hp engine without extensive mods? Has anyone gone over the lower longerons with an ice pick? What evidences of the landing gear having been forcibly removed and repaired are there. Is the rear doorpost rusted out?

    Does it still have the 0-235 engine? You will also need a propeller. Granted I'm a long way from Big Lake but if your picture is accurate, I'd be inclined to listen to Mike mcs repair. I suggest that you spend a few $$ and have mike look it over. Even if he doesn't do any work, you will learn whether or not your $32k estimate is close.
    N1PA
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  22. #22

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    There was a SuperCub in NC that was for sale then sold a year or two ago. I traveled to look at it, when they moved it to SC. A Local pencil whipper put a fresh Annual on it, you could stick a screwdriver through the lower longerons, wing damage from hitting a tree, bunch of other issues, flight controls and fabric just nasty. I walked away in disgust. It was sold to some guy in Alaska sight unseen. It wasn’t you was it?
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  23. #23
    wireweinie's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Herc View Post
    I like my panel the way it is, although I need some engine monitoring. The flying I typically do is 70% backcountry exploring around 1500lbs and 30% at max gross landing at small strips for hunting.Click image for larger version. 

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    You have a lot of real estate on that panel. A little planning and you can shrink it considerably. A CGR-30P (no -30C) will put all engine instruments in one 3 1/8" hole. Winters makes 2 1/4" altimeter and airspeed instruments. Keep the vertical card compass and move the ELT switch to the left overhead panel so that either pilot or backseat can reach it. Change the breakers to Klixon style (smaller). Can't see what com you have but consider a Becker or Trig and a stand alone intercom. Don't install ADS-B unless you NEED it (not WANT it). Move the battery under the pilots seat. B&C or plane power alternator on engine accessory drive. All lights changed to LED's.

    What you must install, make as light and small as possible. Move needed items as close to the CG area as reasonable. And don't install anything that isn't absolutely needed.

    Web
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  24. #24

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    I would agree with mike, Do it in stages. At least do not strip touch the wings until the fuselage and engine are done. You can hopefully get it done by May, fly the summer and then do the wings, tail the next year. Lots of 2 year rebuilds around with pilots not flying for the full 2 years. 25 grand for a good engine overhaul (new cylinders/cam/lifters/cases and crank sent outside for line boring and inspection/rebuilt assessors) should be doable. The things that really slow you down are redoing all that interior stuff. Are you going to be able to help and slow the mechanic down? If you are doing a new boot cowl do a 3-4 piece one. Lots of nice mods to do while the fabric is off the will make life easy in the future. Are you going to Skwentna fly in? I can show you some of the stuff I have.
    DENNY

  25. #25
    Mike Whitehead Low Lead's Avatar
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    Am I correct that's a 1951 airframe? 69 years is a long time - personally I'd rather assume this recover will be good for 25 years (maybe less in AK) and put my money into a new airframe.

    I just sleep better knowing I have better steel, better welds, lower TT and way less corrosion. The money you put into stripping, inspecting, patching and powder coating could go part way to a new frame with all the options.

    Just my 2 cents though. I like that panel layout as the blue areas look easy to scan.
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  26. #26
    G44's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Low Lead View Post
    Am I correct that's a 1951 airframe? 69 years is a long time - personally I'd rather assume this recover will be good for 25 years (maybe less in AK) and put my money into a new airframe.

    I just sleep better knowing I have better steel, better welds, lower TT and way less corrosion. The money you put into stripping, inspecting, patching and powder coating could go part way to a new frame with all the options.

    Just my 2 cents though. I like that panel layout as the blue areas look easy to scan.
    I agree strongly with what Low Lead said. Piece of mind. It sure would be a shame to put a lot into a nice re do only to have rust or corrosion to show up a few years down the road. You may think everything was checked out but something that old still could have some surprises. When you are done if you go new you will have a more valuable airplane that would be easier to sell if the need ever came up. You can decide what upgrades you want to incorporate into the new build, money well spent in my opinion. Dont throw good money after bad.

    Kurt
    Last edited by G44; 05-24-2020 at 04:28 PM.
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  27. #27
    Herc's Avatar
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    Thank you everyone for the insight, I'll be back to my computer later this evening where I'll have access to my logs and I will be able to answer each question in better detail. I misunderstood the doing it in stages comment, it does make sense to do the wings or fuselage first. I still plan on completing the entire thing in one go. But if there's any surprises it would be nice to still have portions untouched. Denny, I'm planning on attending the skwentna fly in, it would be nice to meet some of you guys.

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  28. #28

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    Buying a new fuselage has several advantages. If you do I would not have it painted or power coated until you fit the interior and rig the tail and wings. I don't think I have ever seen a new fuselage that did not need several tabs, fittings, welding done to it. Bunch of guys at Skwentna that will help you spend your money.
    DENNY
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  29. #29
    www.SkupTech.com mike mcs repair's Avatar
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    When you are done, give us an update on the final costs.


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  30. #30
    Steve Pierce's Avatar
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    Herc, I have done 5 ground up restorations on never recovered Super Cubs. The $32K you were quoted for a recover seems very, very low to me. Fabric and the chemicals are $5K. I tell people I can probably recover the airplane for $50K. There are the known issues, the things we find once uncovered and sand blasted and then the are the "while we are here we might as well". I strip all the fabric, remove the U channel around the tube forward of the right "D" window and sandblast and epoxy prime. Then make the repairs and fuselage mods. The X brace in the top deck and seat belts to the floor are a must in my book. Also put an X in the tail, 1/4x28 nut welded over the rear liner tube oil hole and tabs for a lower clean out from the jsckscrew to the tailpost. I also like Butch's large baggage door STC where the diagonal tube is removed and replaced with a dog leg. Once all the welding is done the repairs and mods are blasted, epoxy primed and the fuselage top coated with white catalyzed polyurethane.

    Are you planning on new wiring, fuel lines, control cables etc?

    Wings, steel fittings on aluminum, dissimilar corrosion/rust? Same for ailerons and flaps where the aluminum spar is rivited between two steel fittings. Leading edges and false spars usually need replacing. etc. etc. I call it a"Snow Ball".
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  31. #31
    Steve Pierce's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Low Lead View Post
    Am I correct that's a 1951 airframe? 69 years is a long time - personally I'd rather assume this recover will be good for 25 years (maybe less in AK) and put my money into a new airframe.

    I just sleep better knowing I have better steel, better welds, lower TT and way less corrosion. The money you put into stripping, inspecting, patching and powder coating could go part way to a new frame with all the options.

    Just my 2 cents though. I like that panel layout as the blue areas look easy to scan.
    Piper had excellent welds. Seen more issues with new fuselages and weld issues than ever seen on a Piper frame. I know the early fuselages have some mild steel in them but have yet to see any major issues with that. Corrosion is an issue with them all but knowing where to look and blasting I have not had any issues down the road. Worst fuselages I have done were wrecks had $7K into them vs $14-15K for a new one.

    I see you are from Hood River. I take it you know Hayden Newhouse?
    Steve Pierce

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  32. #32
    Steve Pierce's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by G44 View Post
    I agree strongly with what Low Lead said. Piece of mind. It sure would be a shame to put a lot into a nice re do only to have rust or corrosion to show up a few years down the road. You may think everything was checked out but something that old still could have some surprises. When you are done if you go new you will have a more valuable airplane that would be easier to sell if the need ever came up. You can decide what upgrades you want to incorporate into the new build, money well spent in my opinion. Dont throw good money after bad.

    Kurt
    That is why you buy a new Husky, right?
    Steve Pierce

    Everybody is ignorant, only on different subjects.
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    Herc, if I were in your shoes, here's what I'd do... Take the 70k that you said you have to spend, and put it towards building an experimental. Continue flying your cub as you build. Take your time and build the experimental exactly as you want. If it takes 2 or 3 years to build it, so what, you'll have a new plane, and when it's done, sell your old cub. It seems like a ratty old cub needing a rebuild still sells for 35-40k. All said and done, I think you'd be money ahead to go this route.

  34. #34
    G44's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Steve Pierce View Post
    That is why you buy a new Husky, right?
    Um, no.... You buy a new Husky if it fits your mission better.

    Kurt
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  35. #35
    Mike Whitehead Low Lead's Avatar
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    I see you are from Hood River. I take it you know Hayden Newhouse?
    Hi Steve - I know Hayden. He's an impressive A&P with a long career ahead of him. I won't say too many good things about him here as it's a public forum and it may put his humility at risk. I've heard he was born with a tailwheel attached but it could be a rumor.

    I've talked old airframes with him and he's cut into a few of them. I'm not sure when Piper phased out mild steel. I once worked at a little commercial aircraft company in the Seattle area and probably have an irrational fear of metal fatigue and welds I can't NDT.
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  36. #36
    NoFlaps's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Herc View Post
    I like my panel the way it is, although I need some engine monitoring. The flying I typically do is 70% backcountry exploring around 1500lbs and 30% at max gross landing at small strips for hunting.Click image for larger version. 

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    Combat pants with knee pads??


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  37. #37
    CamTom12's Avatar
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    They make good hunting pants!
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  38. #38
    Herc's Avatar
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    Crye Precision, Excellent hunting/camping pants!

  39. #39
    Herc's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by nanook View Post
    What year cub and who did the last overhaul on the fuselage? Big difference in going through a fifties cub and a seventies model. How much time on the airframe?
    3105 aircraft total time
    Fuselage / wings overhaul and recovered with
    ceconite
    in 1985 2638TT

    Edited to correct aftt
    Last edited by Herc; 05-30-2020 at 01:27 AM.

  40. #40
    Herc's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by skywagon8a View Post
    I like the others think you are being very optimistic in your cost estimates for that airplane. From your picture that airplane has been used hard in the years before you bought it. Sure it has a few different shades of paint, that's only cosmetic. The beat up boot cowl proves that the previous owner rode it hard and put it up wet. Now with a serial number of 823, is it eligible for the 160 hp engine without extensive mods? Has anyone gone over the lower longerons with an ice pick? What evidences of the landing gear having been forcibly removed and repaired are there. Is the rear doorpost rusted out?

    Does it still have the 0-235 engine? You will also need a propeller. Granted I'm a long way from Big Lake but if your picture is accurate, I'd be inclined to listen to Mike mcs repair. I suggest that you spend a few $$ and have mike look it over. Even if he doesn't do any work, you will learn whether or not your $32k estimate is close.
    New extended gear was installed in 2014. I have replaced all gear bolts each year when I swap back to wheels. They each go in "easy" but I replace them one at a time.

    The boot cowl has a couple punctures up top and some holes drilled to stop cracks but other than that its in decent shape. Just figured why not replace it when I'm doing the recover.

    I've had a couple people look at the lower longerons and no damage was noted, but who knows what will be found once the fabric is off

    It currently has an O-290-D2 in it and is eligible for the 160 without extensive mods

    good idea having Mike take a look at it, I had not considered him because in past recovering posts I looked at I believe he said he is usually booked up pretty far out.

    It has a low time borer prop already so I'll just hang onto that for the time being with the hope that CATTO gets certified.
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