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Craft Air Rearwin Speedster resurrection

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Old 09-06-2010, 07:13 AM
  #1
phatbob02
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Default Craft Air Rearwin Speedster resurrection

I've developed a knack for restoring junk planes and I thought I'd chronicle this refurbish. I always regret not having before and after pics, so this time I will.
I enjoy the challange and seeing peoples faces when they see their trash in the air once again.

It's a "out of production" Craft Air Rearwin Speedster that was offered to me by an older fellow that was visiting our field.
He didn't have the plans so if you do, HELP!

This may take a while but I'll post my progress.
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Old 09-06-2010, 08:19 AM
  #2
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Default RE: Craft Air Rearwin Speedster resurrection

Looks like a neat challenge Phat. It is exactly what I like to do also. I have an eight foot span 1937 Super Buckaneer that a Friend of mine, he is also an old timer, built many years ago. He let someone else 'use' it and fly it for some time. They finally returned it to him and he gave it to me! I have since torn it down and started refurbishing it.
If you are as serious about this sort of thing, I have a tool that is essencial. It is the Dremel Multi Tool! Much like the Fien Multi Tool, not sure of the spelling, 7 tools in one. It's only 99 bucks and really 'cuts' the work down. I'll see about posting the video I did on disecting. Plunge cuts are a snap and skimming a surface to get rid of ridges and other imperfections are easy. I cut the maple motor rails out with in three minutes. Splitting sheeting off of ply inner bracing is easy too.
If you would like to chat about it give me a call or e-mail. 802-433-6602 or bigbird111@myfairpoint.net. I have Vontage and can return your call at no cost to you and talk as long as we like.
The video files will need to be e-mailed to you as I can't get them here from 'there' in my files.
later dude.
bird.
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Old 09-06-2010, 04:57 PM
  #3
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Default RE: Craft Air Rearwin Speedster resurrection

Hi Bird,
I have the multi-tool, but I would like to see your vid.
I had a fellow, that has the kit, reply and sent me some dimensions that I needed.
I stripped the entire plane and it's a mess, but I'm up for it. It's a "Builders Kit" and it wasn't built by a builder.[]

I was told the plane was flown twice, and crashed twice.

I thought it would be easier to build a complete wing half rather than trying to scab on the wrecked section.

I dissected the wing and have the left side with the ply joiners extending out. I was able to make a masonite template from a rib and made five ribs at a time using my shaper table.

I had to stop because I don't have a supply of balsa. I'll get more tomorrow.


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Old 09-06-2010, 05:56 PM
  #4
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Default RE: Craft Air Rearwin Speedster resurrection

Your new ribs look great! There is a ton of ply in that center section isn't there?
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Old 09-06-2010, 09:20 PM
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Default RE: Craft Air Rearwin Speedster resurrection

Phat, can you send me your e-mail? I'll send the video to you. I'd like to post it here but can't figure out how.
bird.
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Old 09-06-2010, 11:45 PM
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Default RE: Craft Air Rearwin Speedster resurrection

Phat, I finally figured out how to get the pics here. This is an Astro Hog that I rebuilt. It is in sad shape. I dissected it to pieces! I cut the nose, cheek block and firewall out. I also de-skinned the wing and cap strips, leading edges and trailing edges. It looked like a plucked chicken! I will post the new pics on the next post.
bird.
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Old 09-06-2010, 11:54 PM
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Default RE: Craft Air Rearwin Speedster resurrection

Phat, here is the Astro Hog as of tonight. I just covered the fuse tonight. A far cry from what it was before.
bird.
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Old 09-07-2010, 12:12 AM
  #8
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Default RE: Craft Air Rearwin Speedster resurrection

Phat, this is my Astro Hog built from a kit. The V-Stab vibrated and broke top and bottom spars in the H-Stab just at the center section sheeting! Not much holding the V-fin. I will put hard wood spars and tail bracing in the new.
The videos are not supported by this blog. Perhaps that is something they can work on getting set up so we can. Contact me by e-mail and I will send them to you.
bird.
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Old 09-07-2010, 04:15 AM
  #9
phatbob02
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Default RE: Craft Air Rearwin Speedster resurrection


Quote:
ORIGINAL: vicman

Your new ribs look great! There is a ton of ply in that center section isn't there?
Vic,
There was 5 pcs. of ply in the center not counting the Dihedral brace. There is also a rear Dihedral brace made with 4 pcs. of 1/8 x 3/8 ply which I salvaged.
I'm building the entire center section. When I stripped the 3/32 sheeting, it was a mess. Nothing was square.
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Old 09-07-2010, 04:36 AM
  #10
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Default RE: Craft Air Rearwin Speedster resurrection

Bird,
Really nice job on the Astro Hog! It looked like a Goldberg Cub someone had left in our club shed. The sad part is I don't have "before" pics.
I've posted it before but while we're at it, here it is again.
I built the entire tail, soldered new landing gear, repaired the wing and entire nose section, made struts using K&S airfoil aluminum, and I had Callie Graphics make the decals. I found the windshield at fiberglass specialties and used a GreatPlanes cowl. It's covered in Solartex and is powered with an OS 61 FS.
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Old 09-07-2010, 10:12 AM
  #11
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Default RE: Craft Air Rearwin Speedster resurrection

Very nice indeed. I have used the K&S strut also but I put dowel down thru it to stiffen and then slot the ends and put brass flat stock in it and a couple of very small screws. By the by, I went through your gallery. Nice birds. I have a Hangar 9 T-6 also, I'll bet you like it as much as I do. Man, that thing really zings with and OS 61! What a great flier!
Do you ever get up, or over to Vermont? Sure would love to have you and some of the guys from the club visit. We have a great sight and next year we will be having a lot of fun flies and war bird events. We have a couple of guys here with S-BAAK's that hover. Nice birds. Here are a couple of pics of the field and one of some fat balding old guy. Not much of a view from the pits but if you look left, you can see Camel's Hump Mountain in the distance. Might not be able to see it in the pics. I'ts one of those things where you have to be there to enjoy it. This is my GP Stearman before and after I whacked it! I have a great and simple way of doing simulated stitching. The stars and roundells are also cut out of 21st Centry Coverite fabric.
Later dude.
bird.
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Old 09-11-2010, 07:07 AM
  #12
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Default RE: Craft Air Rearwin Speedster resurrection

Bigbird, I didn't stiffen the struts on the cub because they aren't functional.
I love the stitching detail on the Stearman. I have to try that one of these days
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Old 09-11-2010, 07:16 AM
  #13
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Default RE: Craft Air Rearwin Speedster resurrection

I got a good start on the Rearwin wing this week. Another week of puttering and I should have it ready to cover.
I did make a boo boo on the wing half because I have no plans. I used spruce for the upper and lower spars. Oh well, If the original had it, maybe it wouldn't have broke.
I have the fuse stripped and notice a lot more work. The windshield is all wrong. Another prob is I can't find a windshield to fit. It resembles a Cub window but it's only 4" wide. I may try my hand at vacuum forming.
I've been trying to get someone to pour me a plaster of there window so I can use the plug to form more of them. Otherwise I'll have to carve my own.
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Old 09-13-2010, 07:17 AM
  #14
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Default RE: Craft Air Rearwin Speedster resurrection

Very nice work. As far as the struts, my comment was in reference to the tenderness of K&S's poor quality of aluminum in them. If you flatten and bend them, they will break there from vibration. One could JB weld a brass tab in each end to prevent that if they didn't want to put a dowel down through. Here are a few photos of a Rearwind Speedster ARF I fixed up for my buddy Mike. It was built but I trimmed out the windshield and put the U.S. Commander Floats on it. Quite a job to cut all the struts and stuff. The real subject here is the wind screen. It is much like a cub as you said. Just make a card board template and then wrap it around. You can pre bend it by wrapping it around a cylinder of some sort and use your hot air gun very gently to just get it to give. I'm sure I'm not telling you anything you don't already know but thought I'd throw it in anyway. The dash is home made too. The bezels are bright solder wire wrapped around a brass tube or a drill bit. Just wrap several wraps till you have as many as you need and cut them with a #11. Set them in place and drop some thin CA on them. When it is all done, spray with your favorite clear polyurethane and its done. The dash plate is a sandwitch. Two piece of wood with instruments on the back plate and holes in the front plate over the instruments. put acetate over the instruments, front plate and then the bezels and clear. Find a cabinate shop that does veneering and get some scraps. there is no end to the finishes you can do. It's pretty quick and for as little time as you put into it, it gets a lot of complements.
Time to go to work.
later dude.
bird.
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Old 09-14-2010, 04:22 AM
  #15
phatbob02
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Default RE: Craft Air Rearwin Speedster resurrection

The floats look awesome on the Rearwin. You are a craftsman.
I don't want to get to detailed on this rebuild, but we'll see.

Ordered a cowl from Fiberglass Specialties yesterday. They're even throwing in a piece of their scrap plastic for my windshield.
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Old 09-14-2010, 08:58 AM
  #16
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Default RE: Craft Air Rearwin Speedster resurrection

Thanks Phat for the complement. I understand about getting carried away on the detail. It is easy to do too much but then again, when you have it torn down, that is the best time to do it. Besides, next summer is just around the corner! I finally have my 'buddy' projects done and now it is time to get some building done for myself. I have a new in the box Sig Yak 18-P that I have been slobbering over for about two years now. I had one around 73' and started building it. Marrage problems and moving away put an end to it. I gave it away along with many others just to lighten the load! Found this one in Canada for a hundred bucks and snagged it.
It is a .60 size 72 incher. I saw a .60 size P-47 this weekend with a Turnigy 26 gasser, which I happen to have, and it flew great and fit great in the cowl. I'm thinking heavily in that direction. This thing also has a huge spun aluminum cowl and something like 21 ribs per wing panel! Way over built! Well, enough of me for now.
Later dude.
bird.
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Old 09-17-2010, 12:04 PM
  #17
phatbob02
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Default RE: Craft Air Rearwin Speedster resurrection

I have the wing almost completed. I'm not closing the top until I have it positioned on the plane and fixed into the saddle. The saddle is a mess. Notice in the pic the trapezoid that's formed were the leading and trailing edges sit in the wing saddle. No wonder this thing never flew. [:-] I'm going to fix this before any dowels and the center wing plywood formers are set into place. I'm also going to triple the ply thickness of the cabin sides along the saddle. They're only 1/8" ply as constructed.
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Old 09-19-2010, 10:27 AM
  #18
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Default RE: Craft Air Rearwin Speedster resurrection

Boy! She's a crooked little puppy! You're right about why it probably didn't fly. Lagging that right wing panel probably caused it to drop and stall very soon on take off and from the previous pictures, that is where it hit. By the way, if you look closely at the rearwind I posted, you will see that the center section is open with a window there. This would be a good time to make that happen if it is your desire. I don't think it would affect the structure with the spars at the front and back of the opening. What you might do is cover it with a transparent green or blue or even yellow covering. That area is actually an access and there is one on the bottom covering the gear and float mounts. It came that way.
Anyway, look forward to hearing from you further down the road. Looks great so far. you my friend are quite the craftsman!
bird.
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Old 09-19-2010, 10:34 AM
  #19
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Default RE: Craft Air Rearwin Speedster resurrection

Just wanted to ask, is the plane you are copying a full size or a large model? It is hard to tell! I have a third scale Balsa USA that I have been working on since 97. I have an OS 320 for it and it is 85 percent built. I had grandios plans to really scale it out for competition. I am thinking about taking it down out of the loft and finishing it this winter. First project though is to completely clear out the shop, two car model airplane shop, and finish weatherizing it. I have been heating it with a 'salamander' or shop style kerosene heater and it does poorly. I picked up a kerosene fired furnace at work when they put in a boiler. So, the idea is to install it and re-arrange the shop. I have ruined a lot of paint in the past years too. I'll take some pics along the way too.
Anyway, the cub is a really neat scale subject. Here are a few of mine. The cockpit and door were all done from a scale photo pack. The door works like the full size.
bird.
Quote:
ORIGINAL: phatbob02

Bird,
Really nice job on the Astro Hog! It looked like a Goldberg Cub someone had left in our club shed. The sad part is I don't have ''before'' pics.
I've posted it before but while we're at it, here it is again.
I built the entire tail, soldered new landing gear, repaired the wing and entire nose section, made struts using K&S airfoil aluminum, and I had Callie Graphics make the decals. I found the windshield at fiberglass specialties and used a GreatPlanes cowl. It's covered in Solartex and is powered with an OS 61 FS.
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Old 09-19-2010, 11:01 AM
  #20
bigbird3
 
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Default RE: Craft Air Rearwin Speedster resurrection

Just a few more of the detail.
bird.
Quote:
ORIGINAL: phatbob02

Bird,
Really nice job on the Astro Hog! It looked like a Goldberg Cub someone had left in our club shed. The sad part is I don't have ''before'' pics.
I've posted it before but while we're at it, here it is again.
I built the entire tail, soldered new landing gear, repaired the wing and entire nose section, made struts using K&S airfoil aluminum, and I had Callie Graphics make the decals. I found the windshield at fiberglass specialties and used a GreatPlanes cowl. It's covered in Solartex and is powered with an OS 61 FS.
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Old 09-19-2010, 02:00 PM
  #21
phatbob02
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Default RE: Craft Air Rearwin Speedster resurrection

That Cub is something! [X(] You're the craftsman my friend!!

This Speedster is a CraftAir kit plane from the late 70's. Is only a 40 size, 60" wing. I'm just going to try to make it look like a Speedster, and fly. Here's a pic of the Craft Air kit finished, and a real, Late 30's Rearwin that I want it to look like.

I received the cowl from Fiberglass Special' and the front of this model has a ton of sanding to do. It looks like the builder glued the balsa blocks on to the nose and rounded the edges. Then made a massive wood cowl. I have 1/4" to 3/8" per side around nose to remove to match the cowl.

I'm going to weigh the fuse before and after sanding just to see how much weight I lose.
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Old 09-19-2010, 08:36 PM
  #22
bigbird3
 
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Default RE: Craft Air Rearwin Speedster resurrection

Thanks again buddy but I think we both do pretty well on our stuff! About the kits from the seventies, they had the sport and pattern planes down pretty much but as for scale, they lacked quite a bit. Again, you might look at the tail feathers and see what they are compared to the full size. if they are remotely close to the same, change them. Add at least ten percent. If you can get away with it, do fifteen. This will improve the flight tendencies very much, otherwise it will try to swap ends!
By the by, here is the astro hog in it's final stage. It is almost ready to deliver. I am so glad to get this thing out of my shop. I am so ready to empty my shop and revamp it before the winter sets in. You know about that my friend. Don't know why it went on so big but I like it better that way. The pilot will be painted. The pilot had fuel soaked enamel paint on it. I scrapped all the paint off with an exacto knife and then wiped it down with MEK, that is why it is so shinny. Took the paint pretty well so far. The string on the tail is because I broke my H-Stab from V-Stab Oscillation due to very little bracing.
Catch ya later dude.
bird.
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Old 09-20-2010, 03:58 AM
  #23
phatbob02
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Default RE: Craft Air Rearwin Speedster resurrection

The Hog turned out very nice. A little tip for you the next time you have to clean enamel Paint off plastic pilots. Put the pilot in a ziplock sandwhich bag, spray in some foaming oven cleaner, and let it set over night. The paint will come off with a tooth brush and it doesn't hurt the plastic. It's a little trick I learned restoring the old Aurora Monster models from the 60's.

I've been on hold with the Rearwin this weekend. I have four Saito's that aren't running up to par that I've had waiting. I want to get them in shape and put them away before I do anything else.

Here's a few pics of my shop. I have two rooms. The first is my dust free clean room. My buddies call it the shop foyer.Then you go into the shop.
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Old 09-20-2010, 08:19 AM
  #24
bigbird3
 
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Default RE: Craft Air Rearwin Speedster resurrection

Thanks for the tip. I am aware of that one. I heard about it when I worked at the hobby shop in 93. I didn't know how long it would take and didn't know how long was too long. Now I know over night isn't too long. Thanks.
Nice shop. Is it a basement? Looks like you have the same problem I do, not enough room for all our junk! I'm looking forward to getting mine some what more organized. I have always kept a neat shop but over the years you always seem to get more stuff and just add it in with out planning it out. I have a lot of wood working tools like you do and I hate to store them away where they have to be dug out to use. I've got a nice Rioby contractors table saw that needs a special place in the shop but it is in the way right now. My building table is 4X8 and takes up a lot of room. It seems to collect a lot of stuff on each end so I usually end up with the space you have on your table with the sopwith on it.
By the way, did you know that Sir Thomas Sopwith designed the Pup in 1915 when he was 27? He died in the 80's around 105 years old! Isn't that amazing? To see aviation from the Wright brothers to the moon landing!
Here is my shop on July 4th 2009. It is a bit more organized now than it was then. I'm a few pics short so I will just post them on the next page. I effectionately call it my five pound sack with ten pounds of junk in it!
I'll catchya later.
bird.
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Old 09-20-2010, 08:22 AM
  #25
bigbird3
 
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Default RE: Craft Air Rearwin Speedster resurrection

More of my shop.
bird.
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