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Thread: Float design for performance - some concepts and experiences

  1. #41
    cubdriver2's Avatar
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    Glenn Curtiss did all the early float research. One of the smartest man alive back then. And ball as big as coconuts

    https://glennhcurtissmuseum.org/educ...glenn-curtiss/

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

  2. #42
    BC12D-4-85's Avatar
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    Here's a start of pics of some of the local floats Cubs and similar types might use. The reason for this is these tend to get woven into other threads and are hard to dig out if interested. If this thread takes up too much bandwidth with pics let me know and I'll remove some.

    First are the MCW 1850's for PA-18S-150 STC SA1099WE. I've never flown or seen them in action but was told they do well. Basically molded composite (fiberglass) with metal edging. Don't know the weight. The round tubing structure might slow things down.

    Gary
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  3. #43
    BC12D-4-85's Avatar
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    Here's Aerocet 2200's https://aerocet.com/products/2200

    Gary
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  4. #44
    BC12D-4-85's Avatar
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    Here's Wipline's 2100's https://www.wipaire.com/wipline-floa...e-2100-floats/ Note the tapered booster, flat V bottom in front of the step, and a concave V bottom aft of that.

    Gary
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  5. #45
    BC12D-4-85's Avatar
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    And here's Baumann BF2100's The owner is pleased.

    Gary
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  6. #46
    BC12D-4-85's Avatar
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    Finally but not the last for any reason are the proven EDO 2000 bottoms. The most common in this part of the woods.

    Gary
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  7. #47
    mvivion's Avatar
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    The Baumanns were the best performing float on a Cub/Husky/scout size airplane, at least before Aerocet came out with their 2200s. Too bad Basler bought the company and ended all production.

    MTV
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  8. #48

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    Tell you what,, been parked on the south shore of Lake Spenard since 1985. I have watched thousands of ops on and off the water. It's almost never the float that is the performance factor. My neighbor had low hours, a beautiful cub on baumans. I loved the big hatches and flat top. But John in his maxed out Goose would do better getting in the air. He has since moved, haven't seen his cub around the lake in a while. Hopefully he got it figured out though.

    A good tight set of Edo's rigged well with the fairings on the spreader bars is hard to beat. Quiet, and quicker at everything. Take off those tear drop fairings and you loose speed, add noise and splash more water. There is something that changes the spray pattern. If you watch a cub with edo 2000's and hatches, water from between the float will kind of boil over the float hatches and soak the top of the float. With the fairings only back compartment seems to get wet. Not that it never happens, its just usually turning in a strong wind or something, or taking off with whitecaps. But on a calmish day, it doesn't throw water as much when you push the throttle forward and get on step.

    Putting a little wax on before they go in the water helps performance too.

    At a minimum it makes the lake hood line scrub off much easier.
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  9. #49
    mvivion's Avatar
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    There's no doubt that EDO 2000 floats are simply some of the best floats ever built, at least for small aircraft. And, there are a LOT of them around.

    You are absolutely correct also that there is some requirement for the pilot to participate in the process of getting airborne. Not all do much to help for sure. And, frankly, the EDO 2000s are some of the "friendliest" floats for pilots....they really don't have any bad habits and technique required is pretty minimal....not absent, mind you.

    My experience with the Baumann floats began when we traded in a Model A-1 Husky for a Model A-1B. The B Model Husky was not initially approved on EDO 2000 floats, for reasons I don't pretend to understand, but the Baumanns were. We put that first production B model Husky on those Baumann floats, and they were magnificent! Takeoff performance was excellent, huge hatches with no noted weight limit.....seriously, and they were really fast through the air. As we acquired more Huskys, other float models were discussed, particularly Wipline 2100s. At one point, I took the Husky down to ANC and we put an almost identical Husky on a set of Wip floats. Three of us then each flew each airplane, in side by side takeoff performance trials.....after an appropriate period of practice for all involved to figure out each float. What we found was that takeoff performance was pretty close, with the Baumanns out performing the Wips consistently, by a relatively small distance: Between 50 and 100 feet, but mostly really close to 50 feet.

    The Wip floats also had nice lockers, though placarded for weight, and were really nice floats. The Baumanns were a bit faster in the air....between 5 and 7 mph. These planes both had electronic tachs so were making comparable power, but there's a possibility that they were rigged a bit different. That said, I've always felt that the Baumann floats were fast in the air. They are kind of short, stumpy looking floats, which always puzzled me, but they work.

    Nowadays, I suspect the Wipline floats and the Aerocets are the hot ticket on a Husky or Scout.

    MTV
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  10. #50
    BC12D-4-85's Avatar
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    Good point about the driver having some skin in the game. Getting there takes time of course, and doing lots of different loads and conditions. Not going to get at that level fresh out of a rating. Unfortunately many just fly for fun, and aren't tasked to get stuff from here to there which becomes The School. Also I suspect MTV and maybe others are what amounts to a very limited instructor base when it comes to reality float flying. Find them and learn.

    Edit: As far as performance between floats I've considered them to be a tool to get around on water. I like using the best tool for the job if possible and affordable. As far as cruise there's always some consideration for that but it's been 2nd on my list.

    Gary
    Last edited by BC12D-4-85; 09-01-2022 at 08:03 PM.
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  11. #51
    55-PA18A's Avatar
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    Interesting comment about the spreader bar fairings for the EDO 2000’s. I’ve never seen any close up. How are they attached? Are they something that can be purchased and put on?

    Do the “spray rails” commonly put on 2000’s have any performance attributes, or are they mostly to help keep water out of the prop? Seems like they might help push water under the float, but I’ve never been able to watch them in action.

    Jim

  12. #52
    BC12D-4-85's Avatar
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    Found this older thread on Float Performance which I missed earlier. Never too late to take prompt corrective action when I screw up (my former supervisor used to tell me). Have a read there and maybe combine the ideas and experiences>

    https://www.supercub.org/forum/showt...forming-Floats

    Gary

  13. #53
    BC12D-4-85's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by 55-PA18A View Post
    Interesting comment about the spreader bar fairings for the EDO 2000’s. I’ve never seen any close up. How are they attached? Are they something that can be purchased and put on?
    Jim
    See P/N 43 pics. Used to be made from a molded semi-flexible plastic-like material. Painted silver that with time and a lack of maintenance (paint) would turn white and slowly disappear off the floats. Water can intrude and freeze during cold weather if no low point drain established. Riv-nuts or similar were installed into the floats and the fairings screwed on. Stepping on them results in eventual destruction, but they likely help performance both on and off the water.

    Gary

  14. #54
    RaisedByWolves's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by 55-PA18A View Post
    Interesting comment about the spreader bar fairings for the EDO 2000’s. I’ve never seen any close up. How are they attached? Are they something that can be purchased and put on?

    Do the “spray rails” commonly put on 2000’s have any performance attributes, or are they mostly to help keep water out of the prop? Seems like they might help push water under the float, but I’ve never been able to watch them in action.

    Jim

    I'll have to look, but there was a company out of canada selling them. Took a bit of work to split them and get them to fit good. Screws and nuts hold them on.
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  15. #55
    skywagon8a's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by 55-PA18A View Post
    Interesting comment about the spreader bar fairings for the EDO 2000’s. I’ve never seen any close up. How are they attached? Are they something that can be purchased and put on?

    Do the “spray rails” commonly put on 2000’s have any performance attributes, or are they mostly to help keep water out of the prop? Seems like they might help push water under the float, but I’ve never been able to watch them in action.

    Jim
    Check with Kenmore. They were included as a separate kit with all 2000s and 2130s which were shipped after at least 1970. https://www.kenmoreairharbor.com/contact-parts.html

    They are installed using AN526-C-832R6 screws (72 pcs.) and C-7000-832-C Tinnerman (56 pcs). 16 AN526-C-832R6 hold the 40122 splice plate which joins the two sections under the spreader. This information comes from EDO drawing #40119. As I recall there are pilot holes in the fairings. Be certain where you drill the holes that you have clearance inside for the tinnerman. Some of the pilot holes are too close to a hat section inside the float, so you may need to move the hole a little bit.

    The only negative issue in using them would be if you operate out of salt water. They could trap enough water to start corrosion.
    N1PA

  16. #56
    skywagon8a's Avatar
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    An example of #10. I did a poor job with this sketch.

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ID:	62451 The Seamaster amphibious floats were made in Renton Washington with a double keel. These floats had a rectangular aluminum box with a fiberglass bottom and side sections. At the time only Wipline had a similar sized amphib. The Seamasters were approved on the 185, 206, Helio and Cherokee six. How many of you have flown a Cherokee six on floats? It's a nice flying floatplane. Too bad the low wing interferes with docking etc. Unlike aluminum amphibs with thick keels, these floats can only make one landing gear up on pavement. Later EDO wanting to build an amphib larger than their 2790s bought the Seamaster and marketed them as the Dolphins. These floats couldn't take the abuse in a working environment of rough water. There was at least one in which the side section ripped off. Thus EDO scrapped the Dolphin and developed their own 3500 amphib.

    Also the Seamaster had a terminal velocity on the water. This speed was just below the speed needed for a 206 to fly. So it was necessary to use normal seaplane take off trickery for all takeoffs. These floats are better suitable for a Helio than for planes with higher stall speeds.
    Last edited by skywagon8a; 09-02-2022 at 07:00 AM.
    N1PA

  17. #57

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    These fairings are on my 2960s.
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  18. #58
    skywagon8a's Avatar
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    You are missing the strut's fairings.
    Quote Originally Posted by kg View Post
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ID:	62455These fairings are on my 2960s


    Are you aware these fairings were developed on the Piper Comanche? Piper used to put everything on floats. The Comanche's speed was not very impressive, thus they underwent a speed improvement program which evolved into the fairings which EDO then included with the 2790 and 2960 floats.
    N1PA
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  19. #59

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    Quote Originally Posted by skywagon8a View Post
    You are missing the strut's fairings.
    I see.. this explains the reference above about stepping on them.

    This was my first summer on floats. This thread has been very informative for me! Thanks!

  20. #60
    skywagon8a's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by kg View Post
    I see.. this explains the reference above about stepping on them.

    This was my first summer on floats. This thread has been very informative for me! Thanks!
    There should also be a set of spreader bar fairings on the outboard side of the floats covering the ends of the spreaders. The same as the ones you have shown without the big hole in the middle.
    N1PA

  21. #61

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    I have what looks like a plug or cap on the outside of the spreader bars. I looked at another set of 2960s and they don't have these. They just have the open end of the spreader bar exposed.

    Reference post #48 above, perhaps it would be beneficial for me to find and install these additional fairings. I don't care about a knot or two of cruise speed but if they help getting off the water ........

    My plane is coming off floats today. I'll try to get some pictures of the bottom of the floats for comparison to the others.
    Last edited by kg; 09-02-2022 at 10:30 AM.

  22. #62
    BC12D-4-85's Avatar
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    There's a few EDO's in Fairbanks that still have some of the original fairings. Most get lost or discarded especially if float gear changes are an bi-annual event.

    Actually this summer has been a slow one for float flying. First a month or more of poor vis due to forest fire smoke, then the rising cost of 100LL now near $8/gal. That and pilots aging out or losing interest has reduced the floatplane traffic, and conventional gear too for that matter.

    Gary
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  23. #63
    skywagon8a's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by kg View Post
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    I have what looks like a plug or cap on the outside of the spreader bars. I looked at another set of 2960s and they don't have these. They just have the open end of the spreader bar exposed.

    Reference post #48 above, perhaps it would be beneficial for me to find and install these additional fairings. I don't care about a knot or two of cruise speed but if they help getting off the water ........
    The plug is expansion foam to keep stuff out of the hollow spreaders. The fairings you are missing will only effect speed. They will do nothing for the takeoff run. Post #48 is addressing the 2000 floats which have a triangular flat plate holding the spreader to the outside of the float, unlike yours which passes through the float. If you don't care about ant potential drag reduction..... forget about them.
    N1PA
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  24. #64
    BC12D-4-85's Avatar
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    Pete,
    Do you know or have you heard of the speed increase available via typical float fairings? Just a rough guess would suffice. I can see some getting on step if the rear spreader submerges (like it can do) and the spreader attachments brackets have a flat face into water flow (like the 2K's mentioned above). But in the scheme of things all those rudder control wires, flying X wires, struts, boarding steps, fuselage and float fittings, cross-float wire, exposed hatch covers, and so on create drag. It's amazing the ship still can fly.

    Gary

  25. #65
    skywagon8a's Avatar
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    I've never heard any specific numbers mentioned other than the Comanche had a considerable increase in speed with the fairings. I've also never made any attempt myself in researching any differences. EDO did make a version of the 2870 with enclosed water rudder controls in a cleanup effort. I've forgotten why they dropped the idea.

    I do know the spray plates on the bows of the 3500s reduce directional stability enough so that I left them off all the installations I did after the prototype.
    N1PA
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  26. #66
    RaisedByWolves's Avatar
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    Hereís the only pic I have of the 2000 fairings. The new ones came as one piece, the old ones were split, so I did the same to the new ones. The cub was faster on floats than wheels
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  27. #67

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    I know this is primarily about Cub size floats but for reference these are the bottoms of Edo 2960s.

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    Aft of the step:
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  28. #68

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    Quote Originally Posted by BC12D-4-85 View Post
    Pete,
    Do you know or have you heard of the speed increase available via typical float fairings? Just a rough guess would suffice. I can see some getting on step if the rear spreader submerges (like it can do) and the spreader attachments brackets have a flat face into water flow (like the 2K's mentioned above). But in the scheme of things all those rudder control wires, flying X wires, struts, boarding steps, fuselage and float fittings, cross-float wire, exposed hatch covers, and so on create drag. It's amazing the ship still can fly.

    Gary
    I had the Edo 2000's re-lacquered a couple of years ago. A guy in Wasilla did that work. He destroyed the fairings when he took them off. I got them back in a box but all torn up. I ordered some from a outfit in Canada. Used the old ones for a pattern, but when he did the floats he filled the holes with rivets so it took a little effort to get everything back together. Most people say you don't need 'em. My cruise on a calm morning was right around 100 IAS.

    Now I am back up to the 106/107 range and it's quieter.

    We had a twin comanche for a while in the family and there were Lou Presti speed mods put on that made a difference. Cleaning up small things can net surprising results.
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  29. #69
    BC12D-4-85's Avatar
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    This is where we get to the term - equivalent flat plate area. That's words for adding a flat plate facing the aircraft in flight equal to the surface area and resulting drag of...in this case....those unfairinged (not a word) float to strut fittings for spreader bars into floats. So yea they are probably drag inducing things as they're flat into the wind and water. Alternatively, I suppose anything resembling a golf ball will pass air relatively unhindered. Wind tunnels are made for this stuff to test the options for reduction of drag.

    Gary

  30. #70
    skywagon8a's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by kg View Post
    I know this is primarily about Cub size floats but for reference these are the bottoms of Edo 2960s.
    This thread is about all sized and shaped floats. An expansion of the overall knowledge base is always productive. If some little tidbit is presented here which makes one more aware and can help to make an improvement in the floats, their installation, safety or anything else, is all welcome. As time marches on much personally acquired knowledge becomes just hearsay. This is just one attempt to "make a hard copy" of that knowledge.
    N1PA
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  31. #71
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    Edo 339-JHS/ 2250 anfibs.
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  32. #72
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    http://www.aerofairings.ca/parts.htm


    Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk
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  33. #73
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    Float design for performance - some concepts and experiences

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    this is what I ended up with on the 2000ís. Spilt them in half
    The original ones were screws and nuts holding the fairing on.
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  34. #74
    skywagon8a's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by RaisedByWolves View Post
    The original ones were screws and nuts holding the fairing on.
    Should have been tinnerman nuts.
    N1PA
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  35. #75
    mvivion's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by RaisedByWolves View Post
    Edo 339-JHS/ 2250 anfibs.
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    Great floats! Unfortunately, EDO didn’t build many sets.

    MTV
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  36. #76
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    Quote Originally Posted by skywagon8a View Post
    Should have been tinnerman nuts.
    That would have made my life easier. These were mid 90ís floats built by lake in Sanford Maine. Iím assuming they were original. They also had stripcaulk around all the screws. Aerofairing also has the lake heater delete fairing, and a bunch of cub parts. The quality was really good.


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  37. #77
    RaisedByWolves's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by mvivion View Post
    Great floats! Unfortunately, EDO didnít build many sets.

    MTV
    Iím happy with them. Electric pump would be nice, but I canít complain with the price.


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  38. #78
    skywagon8a's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by mvivion View Post
    Great floats! Unfortunately, EDO didn’t build many sets.

    MTV
    !0 sets. There was rumor of 100 sets being built for the Army for use on L-19s but no documentation of this could be found. So 10 sets total and Tom's is #10.
    N1PA

  39. #79
    RaisedByWolves's Avatar
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    I talked to J J when I got them he said they were identical to 2250 for the bird dog, except the internal valving in the shock struts were different for the higher weight. He said they didnít work too well on the bird dog, and didnít know how many sets were made for the military


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  40. #80
    mvivion's Avatar
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    A friend had a set on a 172 with 180 hp. Worked good on that.

    MTV

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