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Old 12-04-2017, 12:16 PM
goatflieg's Avatar
goatflieg goatflieg is offline
Join Date: Jul 2013
Location: Clarkston, MI
Posts: 385
Default Tip: Bending Windscreen Support Weldment

Most builders have had fit issues with weldments at some point. I had a fairly major one with my WD-814 windscreen support/roll bar. When I test fit it initially, it had the usual problems; the forward part of the triangular gussets were raised up a bit, and it didn't fit very well between the vertical tabs and the fuselage cockpit rails. If I snugged up one side, it left me with a 5/16" gap between the tab and the rail on the other side. That's quite a gap:

I checked for possible solutions here, but didn't find much info on the side-to-side issue, so I called Van's builder support. They said it was a common problem and that I should definitely spread the hoop slightly so that the tabs will fit the fuselage. We discussed various ways to do this. I had tried the "armstrong" method of holding one end down on a padded surface with my foot and pulling upward... but I knew right away my back wouldn't care much for that. So I did some thinking... and came up with this solution. I used my cherry picker; securing a chain around the base, wrapping tie-down straps around either side of the hoop and securing them to the base chain and lifting hook, and carefully extending the boom to stretch the hoop:

I would stretch it a bit, let it spring back, and check measurements:

Eventually, after a couple bending sessions and a couple test-fits, I got it to fit just right:

I was so happy with the result, I wanted to share it right away. Van's said that the triangulated braces would probably pull together with the canopy rails with the bolts tightened; if I do any tweaking to those, I'll also share it here.
Martin J Filiatrault
Clarkston, MI
RV-8 #83507 - empennage complete (except fiberglass)
QB wings & fuselage work continues
N657AR reserved
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Old 12-04-2017, 06:48 PM
greghughespdx greghughespdx is offline
Join Date: Nov 2011
Location: Aurora, OR
Posts: 442

Yep, I did something similar and found that the bolts snugged everything up to the rails quite well once tightened down properly.
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Old 12-04-2017, 07:05 PM
Stoo Stoo is offline
Join Date: May 2006
Location: LL10, Naperville, IL.
Posts: 49

Good tip, Martin! The roll bar on my 6 slider needed to be tweaked the other way. Used my floor mount drill press as a big arbor press to make it fit!
Stewart Willoughby, 6 panel/wiring
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Old 12-04-2017, 07:06 PM
Neal Trombley Neal Trombley is offline
Join Date: Aug 2016
Location: North Fort Myers
Posts: 240

pure genius
Neal Trombley
SW Florida
EAA 66
N517NC ( reserved)
Dues Paid
NOV 2016
July 2017
Dec 2017
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Old 02-14-2018, 09:18 PM
WingRock WingRock is offline
Join Date: Aug 2015
Location: Davenport, IA
Posts: 5
Default New Guy Trying to Stretch WD-814

Martin, I have exactly the same gap between the rails and the WD-814. I also spoke with Vans Support and they told me the exact same thing. I attempted to use a hydraulic jack to stretch it and even with an inch and a half of movement it sprung back to it's original size. I got hesitant to push beyond that. Do you have any idea how far you had to go to actually have it retain some of the stretch?
Mark Howell
Davenport, IA
RV8 Tail and QB Wings done, deep into QB Fuse
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Old 02-14-2018, 09:33 PM
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fl-mike fl-mike is offline
Join Date: Jul 2005
Posts: 933

Boy, I wouldn’t do that operation anywhere near that nice undented skin...
Mike W
Venice, FL
RV-6A. Mattituck TMX O-360, FP, GRT Sport EFIS
N184WM reserved (RV-8)....tail kit done, slow-build wing done, slow-build fuselage started.
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Old 02-14-2018, 10:15 PM
Larco Larco is offline
Join Date: Mar 2005
Location: DVT Phoenix
Posts: 1,027

YUP, That top block is just screaming to dislodge under extreme pressure and turn your life into pure H***.
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Old 02-15-2018, 06:23 AM
Allan Stern Allan Stern is offline
Join Date: Jan 2006
Location: Cape Coral, Florida
Posts: 188
Default Yep

But that is the joy of learning what not to do during your build. 😫
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Old 02-15-2018, 02:59 PM
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Scott Chastain Scott Chastain is offline
Join Date: Jan 2005
Location: KMCE
Posts: 683
Default Back Yard Method

This works, too, if you don't mind putting local vegetation to the test with ratchet straps:

Scott Chastain
RV-8 N898W Descending Dove
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Old 02-15-2018, 03:18 PM
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BuckWynd BuckWynd is offline
Join Date: Nov 2006
Location: Rockford, IL
Posts: 488

I used a set of heavy-duty ratchet straps to widen the support. They allowed me to spread the bar to about 26-1/4", which resulted in the desired final width of 24-3/8".

Don't pull on anything important, like the support beams in your hangar.
Buck Wyndham
Northern Illinois
RV-8 N18XL
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