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Thread: Just that close to making it in the hangar

  1. #1
    Paul Jackson's Avatar
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    Just that close to making it in the hangar

    So I got the Wip 3000's installed on my 180 after much gnashing of teeth and $$$ of work. Great day until I arrived back at my new rental hangar and was set to push it in the 13 foot high door.....well the landlord was a bit off and my tail beacon adds a couple inches above the advertised 12' 10" for a 180 on 3000's so I miss by about 4 to 6 inches or so.

    I am looking at the jack the front method and thought I would ping the board here for tried and true methods of raising the front end to drop the tail the required amount. I have heard of dollies but was looking for examples and thoughts. Wise cracks welcome and damn near expected from this crowd. I have to go over asphalt, which is a bit rough, to get to the concrete hangar floor.

    I am trying to limit this project to 3 trips to Home Depot and 2 to Northern Hydraulics. With the price to replace the beacon if I screw this up I am removing Harbor Freight from the equation.
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  2. #2
    G44's Avatar
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    Paul, what a wet blanket on your happy day. Can you just pull down on the tail and with the compression of the mainwheel struts get the tail to come down enough to get in the door? It may be a 2 person operation but at least you will be inside.

    Kurt

  3. #3
    Paul Jackson's Avatar
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    Tried hanging from tail and it didn't pivot it....I move it alone quite a bit too.

  4. #4
    G44's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Paul Jackson View Post
    Tried hanging from tail and it didn't pivot it....I move it alone quite a bit too.

    Well darn, that usually works. Bummer.

    Kurt

  5. #5

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    Install a little hatch in the hangar door where the light would go through - open when moving a/c, shut when not. It will take a little measuring to insure clearance and don't' forget to allow for snow and ice.
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  6. #6
    Paul Jackson's Avatar
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    It's a rental so cutting the door isn't an option. Modern Schwies Bi -fold so it goes up tight to itself too.

  7. #7
    8GCBC's Avatar
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    I had a similar issue with a Piper Navajo vertical stabilizer. Lifting the nose wheel was needed each time.

    For Wips here’s a theoretical idea:

    Jack up the floats in the front under the keel then use a modified furniture dolly under the two front wheels. Use a solid top dolly as to firmly bolt wheel chock in place for the front wheels. Front NLG wheels will lock straight with no weight.

    Make sure to sweep any small rocks away from the furniture dolly’s wheels before rolling.

    Click image for larger version. 

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    Last edited by 8GCBC; 07-08-2020 at 11:01 PM.
    2018 R44
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    scout88305's Avatar
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    I’ve seen heavy built dollies to move gun safes. 2 of those with a tire cradle then both attached to Ibeam. Tug or tow bar attaches to center point of Ibeam.
    Thank a sheepdog today for they are standing guard!

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    Hardtailjohn's Avatar
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    A friend used to fly and wrench for a WX Mod outfit. When they added 340's to their fleet of Twin Comanchee's, they couldn't get the tail through the door on the hangar, so they made a wooden ramp that was about 6' long and a foot or so wide, that came up about 8" nice and gentle, and it ducked the tail down just enough to sneak under. They had a set of marks on the asphalt outside, that the ramp needed to sit in to automatically pop the tail down at the right time, and a flat spot on top the ramp about 5' long so that it stayed down until it was inside. Maybe a couple for your float front gear? It'd be a pain, but better than a lot of alternatives.
    John
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  10. #10

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    Double check the limit switches on your door, too- a lot of them are set conservative at initial install, and you can often gain a few inches.
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  11. #11
    cubdriver2's Avatar
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    "Optimism is going after Moby Dick in a rowboat and taking the tartar sauce with you!"

  12. #12
    skywagon8a's Avatar
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    Is this a "T" hangar or square? Can you nose the plane in? If you can nose it in, you should be able to get the whole plane except for the tail onto the concrete floor. Then just make two small ramps for the nose gears which will lower the tail enough to clear the beacon.
    N1PA
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  13. #13

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    Most of the above plus a low profile beacon.
    Remember, These are the Good old Days!

  14. #14
    SJ's Avatar
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    Measure twice, cut once? You said wisecracks were welcome...

    I knocked my beacon off on David Jaranon's hangar, it was about 1" too short. Lucky you took it slow and realized it before you broke something like I did!

    sj
    "Often Mistaken, but Never in Doubt"
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  15. #15
    hotrod180's Avatar
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    A guy at my airport had a similar problem.
    He took a torch (propane weed burner?) and heated up two slots of asphalt in front of the hangar,
    and used a rake to create two impressions for the mains to roll down into,
    just as the tail was going through the door.
    If that doesn't give you enough, maybe this in combination with raising the nose?
    Modifying the asphalt might not be an option with a rental hangar--
    although it seems like it'd be easy to repair.
    Cessna Skywagon-- accept no substitute!

  16. #16
    supercub's Avatar
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    let some air out of the tires

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  18. #18

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    Trying to get 10 pounds of crap into a 5 pound bag never ends well..... I won’t bore you with the stories I know of airplanes trying to fit into hangars that were just a little too small. I’d find a bigger hangar.
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  19. #19
    55-PA18A's Avatar
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    Don't forget about any antennas sticking up on top of the plane. Don't ask me how I know

    Jim
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  20. #20
    G44's Avatar
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    Turn your prop horizontal too.
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  21. #21
    aktango58's Avatar
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    Ok, just me, but how about pulling the beacon off the tail and putting strobes on wing tips and tail??

    That would be much easier than all the great ideas above.

    I like the larger hangar idea, and I am showing Lyn this because we had a long discussion on why I though I needed 15' of clearance on my hangar door for my wheel Maule. Amphibs some day with a beaver??
    I don't know where you've been me lad, but I see you won first Prize!
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  22. #22

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    Change the stop point on the door opener.
    DENNY

  23. #23

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    Quote Originally Posted by DENNY View Post
    Change the stop point on the door opener.
    DENNY

    Three hangar neighbors had similar (3" - 8") clearance problems. Of the 3, 1 was able to change the limit stop apparently fairly easily and sneak in (he was the 3" problem)...I didn't help with the work, only observed from two doors down, but it took him longer to fiddle with ladders and measuring than working on the system...the other two hangars already had the door sucking up tight to itself as it was....all 3 were schwiess.

    FWIW...
    Back In Alaska

  24. #24
    Fat Kid's Avatar
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    We had the same problem and made a plywood ramp that we would drive the plane over. The ramp is placed so that when the nose wheel is on top of the ramp tail is going under the door and doesn't come down the other side of the ramp until the tail is clear in the hangar. We also had a tug to push the plane.
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  25. #25

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    Just spit balling here: Using a winch to pull the plane into the hangar, could you drill and epoxy a pin in the floor with a pulley on it, hooking the working end of the cable to the stinger, as you pull the plane into the hangar the cable will get tighter and it will pull the stinger down, lowering the tail. It may take a second winch and some finesse to continue the pulling once the tail is down. This may also be the dumbest idea in this thread......
    Staying alive in an airplane has a lot more to do with mastering ourselves than mastering the aircraft.

  26. #26
    Farmboy's Avatar
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    Two plywood ramps as stated above is likely the simplest, safest and easiest method. Provided that they can be long enough and tall enough to get the 6” of tail clearance. ... and positioned properly each time.
    To get 6” at the tail, do you need 8-10” at the nose wheel?

    Since it’s currently baked enchilada Texas heat in the summer here in new England this week, I’d be looking for a powered unit to move in and out.

    My idea would be to mount a 2-bunk powersports lift on a two wheel trailer or dolly, with a hitch for a tug/cart/tractor. With brackets on the bunks to cradle the front spreader, back under and power up the lift to what ever height is needed. Then drive it in/out and set it back down. All without getting off the seat, ideally.


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  27. #27
    Farmboy's Avatar
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    If you’re really going to harborsalvagedfreight, these may apply.

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    Transmitted from my FlightPhone on fingers...

  28. #28
    Wag2+2's Avatar
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    Just a thought: depending on how much the mains raise the floats and the strength of the hydraulics, use 4 low profile dollies and raise the landing gear.
    Last edited by Wag2+2; 07-09-2020 at 08:42 PM. Reason: Typo
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  29. #29
    Amy's Avatar
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    Ask Wip to show you his setup for ducking his Caravan tail under the door. I’d try to explain it but I’d be guaranteed to mess it up

    Loading and weight can affect the tail height by a few inches too, in either direction. I usually recommend adding at least a few inches to avoid clipping a beacon off unexpectedly.
    Proud owner of a collection of airplane pieces (sometimes in one big piece) known as the Oklahoma Kid.
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  30. #30
    Paul Jackson's Avatar
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    Well here is where I ended up today. Trip to Northern Hydraulics for a set of wheel dollies for the nose. I will jack and lower onto them with a 4X4 bolted on and set of chocks to hold nose gear in. I also have a 5 gallon bucket with sand and rope to hang from tail handle to pull it down. Last, I am looking at the struts as the floats are fresh OH and they may have a bit of "charge" in them that my smooth landings make moot.

    The landlord is also an amphib guy and uses the bucket and push method for his 185 on Edos. I believe the magic here is in the combo and my solution will require a push tug and tow bar. I am fabricating one next week and shopping Craigslist for that perfect lawn tractor that was only driven to church every other Sunday.
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  31. #31

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    My tug is an old ATV!
    DENNY
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  32. #32
    Steve Pierce's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by SJ View Post
    Measure twice, cut once? You said wisecracks were welcome...

    I knocked my beacon off on David Jaranon's hangar, it was about 1" too short. Lucky you took it slow and realized it before you broke something like I did!

    sj
    Pretty funny comment concidering the photos I got yesterday.
    Steve Pierce

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  33. #33
    SJ's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Steve Pierce View Post
    Pretty funny comment concidering the photos I got yesterday.
    Dooooh...

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    "Often Mistaken, but Never in Doubt"
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    Just that close to making it in the hangar

    The Schweiss bi-fold, strap lift door can be opened manually by removing the brake cover on the motor. When we poured the slab in the hanger...the mixer truck didn’t clear the door. I raised the door to the limit switch stop. Using a ladder to access the door motor, cranked up the door until the structure...err...bound up. Marked the door frame at the lower casters. Then readjusted the limit switch until I was a quarter inch from binding up the door assembly... don’t recall what the clearance is...but we got the mixer truck into the hanger. The door is a 40’ by 12’. The truck is 12’ 6” or so.


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  35. #35
    skywagon8a's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Mark_Moyle View Post
    The Schweiss bi-fold, strap lift door can be opened manually by removing the brake cover on the motor. When we poured the slab in the hanger...the mixer truck didn’t clear the door. I raised the door to the limit switch stop.
    Good thing when the truck got rid of it's load, the springs didn't raise the truck too high to get it out.
    N1PA
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  36. #36
    Paul Jackson's Avatar
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    I think I am going to get one of these and eliminate the tug, the jack, and pretty much the mystery.

    https://www.trade-a-plane.com/search...0&s-type=part#

    Thoughts.....it has to work it's made in Canada

  37. #37

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    Quote Originally Posted by skywagon8a View Post
    Good thing when the truck got rid of it's load, the springs didn't raise the truck too high to get it out.
    Walking beam suspension...tire squat wasn’t a factor...had about 3/4” clearance.


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  38. #38
    aktango58's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Mark_Moyle View Post
    Walking beam suspension...tire squat wasn’t a factor...had about 3/4” clearance.


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    You have a full sized mixer truck in Platinum? Man, I can not imagine the effort it takes to keep that going with all the mass amount of mud you must make a year.
    I don't know where you've been me lad, but I see you won first Prize!

  39. #39
    Paul Jackson's Avatar
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    Here is a pic of the temp solution while the guys in Quebec weld up my fancy smancy tug lifter thingy. Works decent but it is a two man job to push it in.Click image for larger version. 

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    Thanks for the help...amphibs are great but they do add complications.

  40. #40

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    Quote Originally Posted by aktango58 View Post
    You have a full sized mixer truck in Platinum? Man, I can not imagine the effort it takes to keep that going with all the mass amount of mud you must make a year.
    Yup.. brought in back in 2008 to pour the platinum concentrate recovery building. Then a Basket ball court, hanger floor and new powerhouse. Next is a hydronic heated slab for a new post office.


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