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Thread: Schneider Wheel Ski Plate Question

  1. #1

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    Schneider Wheel Ski Plate Question

    I picked up a set of Schneider Wheel Skis I plan to install on my Cessna 180. They did not come with the plates but I figured building a set would be pretty simple. I do have a copy of STC SA1917NM but note there does not appear to be any mention of the plates in the paperwork.
    I was wondering if the plates were included originally with the skis or was this something the end users fabricated. I believe as no hardware is used to attach the plates to the skis they would not be considered installed equipment. Any pictures of these plates would be greatly appreciated.

  2. #2
    www.SkupTech.com mike mcs repair's Avatar
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    Rick Schneider has a plane for sale you can get his contact info from there and ask him. https://anchorage.craigslist.org/avo...217629902.html


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  3. #3
    Scooter7779h's Avatar
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    I had like serial numbers 007 and 008 of the 3000s. It was before the STC, got them field approved. It was another early owner that came up with the plate idea. Most of the other owners got news of this (pre-internet) and built our own. I don’t ever think it was part of the official drawings and STC. It was a survival trick.

    Not a big deal, plate bottom is approximately 1/16” smaller than wheel hole and same thickness. Then a second piece of thinner flat stock (0.040?) is cut that is square in shape and slightly narrower than the distance between the two tunnel stands. Make sure you flush rivet a piece of UHMV plastic on bottom to match what’s on skis.

    Operationally you would deflate the tire enough to start plate in from front of the wheel and turn wheel to pull plate down ski until the “plug” fell in ski wheel opening hole, then re-inflate tire to hold plate in place. I also attached a cable to the front of plate so when removing using opposite process you could pull plate out with cable to get the “plug” up. All and all what a pain in the @ss but saved me many times. Imagine doing all that in 2 ft of overflow. Needed those plates though to get off the snow/slush/overflow. Then trying to find a lake good enough to land on and remove plates and then take off with wheels penetrating so you could get back to a runway at home base. Arrrrg!

    My wife was never so glad to see me get rid of something for my airplanes than those Schneider wheelskis. She bore the brunt of me having plane stuck a lot and then plate up and de-plate to get home. I can’t believe I put up with it for 3 or 4 winters, but I was MUCH younger then

    YMMV, but probably not too much.


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  4. #4

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    If you need the plates you'll need to remove the little wheels, too. May as well make provisions to make that easier while you're at it.
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  5. #5

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    Not necessarily- Have had the plates bail me out but have never pulled the tail wheels- not saying it wouldn’t help, but not required to see big benefits from the plates. Might have to do some testing to see how much it helps... As stated, these skis are truly a sorry compromise, but better than nothing- just keep your expectations super low; like overweight-turkey-in-quicksand low...
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  6. #6

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    I never had Schneiders but my neighbor did and through the years I had my fill of them while helping him. We landed in what is a fairly unforgiving creek bed where taking off requires good performance. He got to the point of removing the little wheels every time the plates went in and toward the end he had Atlee make some sacrificial skid plates that replaced the tail wheels even when the tires were in play.

    Don't get too discouraged by these comments. I know guys who like Schneiders, too. They'll do fine in most conditions. The gloppy wet snow in spring is what I remember being the worst. And overflow, but all penetration skis suck in overflow.
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  7. #7
    Scooter7779h's Avatar
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    Schneider Wheel Ski Plate Question

    For the record I never removed the rear wheels. It was either going to move and hopefully get enough speed with the main wheel plates in to fly or not. Without the main wheel throwing snow/slush/water up on the back of ski, with plates in and ski cleaned off you had a chance.

    I did raise the rear wheel axle about an 1” so rear wheel had minimal penetration. That helped noticeably.

    Like you said no penetrating wheel ski is good in overflow, but I did fly the Airglas 2500LW on season on 53M and they were far better than the Schneiders. I did twice experience the brake caliper and wheel rotor disc frozen from snow spray on taxi and takeoff. Come back and land on paved runway with one brake locked up could get exciting. Good thing I know how to keep plane straight and tail behind me. Never got stuck all season. Glad I found the parts to get the Fli-Lites repaired though!


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    mvivion's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Scooter7779h View Post
    For the record I never removed the rear wheels. It was either going to move and hopefully get enough speed with the main wheel plates in to fly or not. Without the main wheel throwing snow/slush/water up on the back of ski, with plates in and ski cleaned off you had a chance.

    I did raise the rear wheel axle about an 1” so rear wheel had minimal penetration. That helped noticeably.

    Like you said no penetrating wheel ski is good in overflow, but I did fly the Airglas 2500LW on season on 53M and they were far better than the Schneiders. I did twice experience the brake caliper and wheel rotor disc frozen from snow spray on taxi and takeoff. Come back and land on paved runway with one brake locked up could get exciting. Good thing I know how to keep plane straight and tail behind me. Never got stuck all season. Glad I found the parts to get the Fli-Lites repaired though!


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    Oh yeah...frozen brakes. The technique is to bounce them on first touch to break them free, then land. Fortunately, my bouncing skills are well developed.

    Ski flying....how to make winter colder.....

    MTV

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    Schneider Wheel Ski Plate Question

    Quote Originally Posted by mvivion View Post
    Oh yeah...frozen brakes. The technique is to bounce them on first touch to break them free, then land. Fortunately, my bouncing skills are well developed.

    Ski flying....how to make winter colder.....

    MTV
    Well if I was in a Carbon Cub with defective Legacy Gear I would have balled it up in a twisted mess on fire. Good thing it’s just a good old true flying PA-12 with Atlee Long gear.


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    I always intentionally make “frozen brake” landings regardless of type aircraft or time of year.... That’s my story and I’m sticking to it.....

  11. #11
    RaisedByWolves's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by mam90 View Post
    I always intentionally make “frozen brake” landings regardless of type aircraft or time of year.... That’s my story and I’m sticking to it.....
    I like that one. I’m going to have to use it too


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  12. #12
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    So, here is a helpful tip if you want to be a “penetrator”, noun: evil soul who sport’s penetrating wheel-skis, particularly when landing on someone’s hard fought groomed snow runway”.

    I learned it from a penetrator who was a great stick and Iditarod Air Force pilot who was dealing with the one frozen brake syndrome very frequently during high flying periods of IAF. He would come into McGrath and pavement wheel screaming near crash ground loops. If you’ve ever been to an Iditarod checkpoint there’s dozens of cases of the gasoline antifreeze “Heet” that’s flown out for the mushers cook stoves. Just isopropyl alcohol really. Anyway, god rest his soul, recently gone West, IAF pilot figured out a better use of the Heet. Now this procedure has a long pending EPA review. Pour several cans liberally over brake calipers, wheel rotor, and everything nearby. Apply liberally. Repeat. Take off and hopes it doesn’t all fling off. Seems to work. @BobBreeden stopped by my cabin for some flying and asked what’s with the 10 cases of Heet on your deck. You may now know part of the story of a past penetrator.

    (BTW: Iditarod gives left over Heet away at checkpoints when race over to save flying out.)


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  13. #13

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    Brakes had a tendency to freeze at altitude in the jets. Several Global Express’s had issues on landing including at least one that went off a runway. Explained it to our CEO, and let him know about the required firm landing if we had departed in snow/slush conditions. He used to come up after we landed somewhere and say “I didn’t see any snow on the runway when we took off”. When we got a G550 it had 4 external cameras, one which was on the belly and looked forward. He’d always let us know where the nosewheel was relative to the centerline. Helpful fellow.....
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  14. #14

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    The potential for low ground clearance skis grabbing soil in spring conditions when the surface is thawing is a much bigger threat than a frozen brake. The same is true if landing straight skis on thin snow and you grab some gravel. Ride 'em, Cowboy.
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