Kitfox Aircraft Stick and Rudder Stein Air Grove Aircraft TCW Technologies Dynon Avionics AeroLED MGL Avionics Leading Edge Airfoils Desser CPS Parts EarthX Batteries Kitplane Parts
Page 1 of 4 1234 LastLast
Results 1 to 10 of 36

Thread: Fitting Cowling

  1. #1
    Senior Member jrevens's Avatar
    Join Date
    Aug 2009
    Location
    Arvada, CO
    Posts
    1,574

    Default Fitting Cowling

    I'm sure others have had this issue too, Jim. Maybe someone else has a good idea. I bonded (Hysol 9460) and riveted ("soft" aluminum AN rivets) thin strips of aluminum to the lower cowl along the inside of the flanges just to give them a little more stiffness when engaging and disengaging the Camlocs. If you were able to bend a small flange on an aluminum strip, or even just use a flat strip, you could bond something like that to the upper cowl also, on the inside surfaces of both sides just above the actual mating surfaces, and that might help keep them flat and from "scalloping". Ideally, those mating surfaces could probably be a little thicker. That is kind of a common problem with fiberglass cowls in general. I really like the cowls being made by (for?) Van's & others that are fabricated as a double wall honeycomb structure. Still very light but much more stable and stiffer.
    John Evens
    Arvada, CO
    Kitfox SS7 N27JE

  2. #2
    Senior Member Flybyjim's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jul 2013
    Location
    Marysville, Pa.
    Posts
    480

    Default Re: Fitting Cowling

    I have had several local folks ask me how I like the Kitfox kit and I tell them for most of the build it is good. It is the small details like the cowl that I have to tell them there could be improvements. Same with the manual, there have been updates since I started my build or even before my build and there have not been any updates sent out to previous customers. It is very frustrating when one calls the factory to find out, we changed that or we do not do that like that anymore. I know this also happens with other companies, I have a buddy who built a Challenger, same problems. I don't understand why a company is not keeping customers up to date with changes, mods and such, all it takes is a click of a mouse these days to keep your customers informed. In any case, I like the Kitfox kit and the way the plane handled when I flew with John a couple of years back I will support them when I'm asked about the kit. Their staff has always been helpful when I see them at airshows or call them on the phone. As for support for builders of Kitfox planes, this group is a great resource for both builders and the Kitfox company, most times I can find the answers I'm needing before calling the factory.

    I can see why Vans customers are so satisfied, every one of them I have talked to say the parts fit perfectly with very little adjustments. For me fit and finish is important.

    Thanks once again John, hope to see you at Oshkosh

  3. #3
    Senior Member jiott's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jun 2010
    Location
    Portland, OR
    Posts
    2,360

    Default Re: Fitting Cowling

    A few folks have ditched the camlocs and used a long piano hinge to attach upper and lower cowl, probably for the reasons you are experiencing.
    Jim Ott
    Portland, OR
    Kitfox SS7 flying
    Rotax 912ULS

  4. #4
    Senior Member efwd's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jun 2015
    Location
    Yorba Linda, CA
    Posts
    2,187

    Default Re: Fitting Cowling

    I whish I had done that. Mine worked out along the sides but I lost the close fit between two camlocks along the aft, top edge along the top of the boot cowl. Piano hinge is the way to go. (IMHO)
    Eddie Forward
    Building
    SS7, 912iS, Garmin G3X

  5. #5
    Senior Member jiott's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jun 2010
    Location
    Portland, OR
    Posts
    2,360

    Default Re: Fitting Cowling

    Its interesting about some folks getting bulging between camlocks when attaching upper, lower and boot cowls. Others, including myself, have none of this problem. I don't know if its luck, careful craftsmanship, or what. I do know that fitting the 3 cowl pieces together is probably the most challenging part of the build. I would encourage new builders to take your time, don't do too much at once, try to end up not having to push anything into position; it should all lay together smoothly with a minimum number of clecos to hold it together before camlock installation. It is also possible that there are enough inconsistencies in the fiberglass moldings that no matter how hard you try, some may end up with less than ideal results.
    Jim Ott
    Portland, OR
    Kitfox SS7 flying
    Rotax 912ULS

  6. #6
    Senior Member efwd's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jun 2015
    Location
    Yorba Linda, CA
    Posts
    2,187

    Default Re: Fitting Cowling

    I believe I know how my top cowl ended up with a warped spot. I had my cowl looking perfect while fitting however, I believe when I drilled holes into the firewall flange, my firewall flexed a bit aft. The flange then sits a tad deeper in the boot cowl which is tapered. It only needed a 1/4 inch maybe and now my top cowl, which was fitted while the firewall was sitting a bit more forward, has to attach to a slightly smaller profile. If that makes sense.
    Eddie Forward
    Building
    SS7, 912iS, Garmin G3X

  7. #7
    Senior Member Flybyjim's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jul 2013
    Location
    Marysville, Pa.
    Posts
    480

    Default Re: Fitting Cowling

    Thank you for all the replies on the cowl issues. This is how I am going to work this out, I did this same thing on a project back in 2011 and it worked out very well. The aluminum channel is 3/4 by 1/4 from aircraft Lowes and was bent using fluting pliers. I'll post again when it is finished. Working all week so it may not be finished for a couple of weeks.
    Attached Images Attached Images

  8. #8
    Senior Member Flybyjim's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jul 2013
    Location
    Marysville, Pa.
    Posts
    480

    Default Re: Fitting Cowling

    I changed the spacing of the cam-locks from the listed 5.5 inch to 4 inch spacing.

  9. #9
    Senior Member jrevens's Avatar
    Join Date
    Aug 2009
    Location
    Arvada, CO
    Posts
    1,574

    Default Re: muffler exhaust pipe length

    That looks very nice, Jim... similar to what I did, only better!
    John Evens
    Arvada, CO
    Kitfox SS7 N27JE

  10. #10

    Join Date
    Jan 2017
    Location
    Twin Falls
    Posts
    14

    Default Re: Fitting Cowling

    That is great work, but i would like to hear more about the piano hinge idea. Or even see some photos of such.

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •