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Topics - Bill Poynter

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Documentation / Drawing needed
« on: September 18, 2012, 09:48:05 PM »
I received the following email from Cristian Sanchez in Argentina.  He's looking for a drawing of the gear interlock plate that screws to the carburetor throttle arm on an LFA Cadet.  He's restoring one there and included some photos of the plane and the part that he wants to make.  Does anyone have the drawing he's looking for?

Dear Bill Poynter, in Argentina are working on the restoration of a Culver Cadet and we need de planes of throttle interconnection with landing gear control.Is a Culver Cadet Model LFA Serial 426, with Engine FRANK.4AC.176.F3.Attached photos. Tank you very much.Cristian E. Sanchez

Here's a link to a good article on the Vintage Aircraft Association website.  It's on removing the propeller hub from a taper-shaft Continental engine.  This can be a difficult job if the hub is starting to become seized-up on the shaft.  The hub should probably be removed and oiled on a regular basis.,%20No.%2003%20-%20Type%20Club%20Notes.pdf

Culver General Discussion / Cadet parking brake
« on: August 07, 2012, 07:38:05 PM »
Does anyone know if a parking brake was ever an option on the Cadet?  The reason I ask is my curiosity regarding the purpose of the disc welded near the center of the shaft of the master cylinder pushrods.  I've attached a photo to illustrate what I'm talking about.  This is the spot where the radio controlled brake actuator engages the pushrods on the PQ series.  I don't know of any reason for the Cadets to have this other than for a parking brake.  Any ideas?

Documentation / Sky Ranch Engineering Manual
« on: June 20, 2012, 09:29:50 PM »
I've found a lot of answers to aircraft maintenance-related questions by Googling key words related to my concern.  I also noticed that a really high percentage of answers to my questions have come from the Sacramento Sky Ranch website.  I recently discovered that they also publish a book called "Sky Ranch Engineering Manual" written by John Schwaner.  I ordered it and it arrived a couple of days ago.  I have to say that this is a terrific book that really covers the fine points of aircraft engines.  Whether you're working on engines/installations or just operating your aircraft,  you'll certainly find this book valuable. For $21.95 it's a bargain.  Here's a link to the book on their website:

Maintenance and Repair / Windshield channel
« on: June 19, 2012, 03:06:28 PM »
Does anyone know of a source for the aluminum channel extrusions that the bottom edges of the windshield fit into?   

Documentation / Culver PQ-8 and PQ-14 accident reports
« on: May 24, 2012, 09:33:32 PM »
Here's a link to a site with a number of accident reports on Culver PQ-8 and PQ-14 crashes.  Most of them evidently crashed while under radio control.

Documentation / Culver PQ-8A Erection and Maintenance Instructions
« on: April 21, 2012, 12:44:58 PM »
Phil Kite sent a scanned copy of the Culver PQ-8A Erection and Maintenance Instructions.  I just posted it on the website.  It's pretty interesting to see how they were crated for shipment.  Here's a link to the file:

Documentation / Franklin Service/Parts Manual
« on: April 19, 2012, 04:40:37 PM »
If anyone has a Franklin 4AC199 parts or service manual, I would like to post a scanned copy of it on the website. 

Maintenance and Repair / Landing gear oleo pistons
« on: April 15, 2012, 11:20:23 AM »
I'm interested in learning what others have done regarding repair/replacement of the oleo pistons.  Which is it more cost effective; to have them ground and re-chromed or just have new ones made?  If you've made new ones, what material did you use?  Did you have work done at a hydraulic shop or a hard chroming shop?

Maintenance and Repair / Worn landing gear scissors
« on: April 13, 2012, 12:58:33 PM »
While examining the scissors on some Cadet landing gear legs that I recently acquired, I noticed that the bolt holes in the scissors were worn to an oval shape.  The corresponding bushings in the gear legs showed almost no wear.  It appears that the bolts had been pivoting in the thin hole of the scissors instead of the wide, well supported bushings of the gear legs.  When you combine this apparent design shortcoming, with the fact that itís operating in a dirty, gritty environment, you get very rapid wear.  You never see high time Cadets, but there are sure a lot of them with badly worn landing gear.   

I was thinking about how to better lock the bolts to the scissor when I remembered seeing something unusual on the scissors on my project Cadet. 

That Cadet has a couple of gobs of weld adjacent to the bolt holes in the scissors.  The weld has been machined off at a 90 degree angle so that when a bolt is inserted, the weld prevents the bolt head from turning.  It doesnít look too pretty, but it works.

Does anyone have an idea how to improve on this?   

Maintenance and Repair / Lubrication Chart
« on: April 10, 2012, 11:13:11 PM »
I posted the Shell Oil lubrication chart for the Culver L series on the website.

Here's a link:

Parts For Sale / Cadet landing gear
« on: April 07, 2012, 09:18:54 AM »
There's a pair of Cadet landing gear for sale on eBay.  They look as though they have mounting brackets for gear doors.  They may have been used on a homebuilt as the bracket the mounts the trunion to the spar appears to be modified.  They also have disc brakes and 5" wheels.

Maintenance and Repair / Placing Cadet on stands
« on: April 06, 2012, 11:54:13 AM »
My original intent was to write a posting about landing gear inspection and maintenance.  Since almost all landing gear maintenance requires that the plane be raised enough to remove the weight from the gear, I thought that we should discuss that first.  The PQ-8 maintenance manual addresses using saw horses to support the aircraft, but doesnít really get into some of the issues you should consider when jacking a Cadet.  Hereís the way I do it:

1.   Use really strong, stable saw horses.  Some landing gear maintenance requires getting in and out of the plane numerous times.  Iíve attached a photo of mine.  I havenít seen any store-bought ones that I would trust.  Every joint on mine is glued as well as either bolted or screwed together with deck screws. 
2.   I use an aircraft jack stand to support the tail.  This makes it easy to level the plane on the horses.  Place about 50 lb weight on the horizontal stab to hold it down on the stand. 
3.   I use a Harbor Freight engine hoist, connected by a rope to the engine mount at the firewall, to lift the plane so that the saw horses can be placed under the wings.
4.   Be sure that the aircraft is sitting level when you lower it onto the saw horses.  Lower it very slowly so that you can be certain that all weight is centered on the bottom of the main spar.  You donít want to damage a rib or the plywood skin.
5.   The PQ-8 manual suggests placing a sandbag between the saw horses and the main spars.  Iíve tried that and found that it causes too much pressure on the adjoining skin/fabric/ribs.  I just covered the top of my horses with carpeting.  This prevents localized damage to the spar area and if youíve leveled the plane properly, doesnít spread any load to the areas in front of and behind the spar.

If anyone has another way of raising their plane, please give us some suggestions.

Modifications / Landing gear O-ring conversion
« on: March 28, 2012, 04:54:42 PM »
If anyone is considering converting the oil seals in their landing gear from the chevron type, to O-rings, you can refer to Burke Bell's drawing.  The thing to keep in mind is that the bore diameter of the bronze gland should be determined by the actual diameter of your individual oleo struts.  I've found quite a lot of difference in O.D. between some old struts and some newly produced ones which actually measure 1.125"  The old ones ranged from 1.119" to 1.123".  The fit of the new struts was too tight for a gland also measuring 1.125".   

Maintenance and Repair / Keeping oil off of your main spar
« on: March 25, 2012, 12:19:43 PM »
Most of us have experienced small engine oil leaks that invariably end up on the bottom of the plane.  The visible oil on the bottom of the Cadet is easy enough to clean up and does little harm.  Unfortunately, because of the design of the bottom panel immediately behind the firewall, a lot of the oil also runs inside the fuselage.  This is probably a lot of the reason for Service Memo #19 regarding oil soaking of the main spar.

Iíve found that if you seal the leading edge of the aluminum panel where it joins the firewall, almost no oil enters the area above the panel.  I used the same type of sealant that the Bellanca factory recommends.  Itís automotive panel sealer and it's available at automotive paint supply stores.  3M makes a large selection of panel sealers.  Be sure to pick one that says itís resistant to oil.  Hereís a link to an article on selecting a suitable seanant:


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