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  #1  
Old 03-20-2011, 01:57 PM
Wayne Gillispie Wayne Gillispie is offline
 
Join Date: Apr 2009
Location: USA
Posts: 1,494
Default Doors and Sean Strasburg's kit

Still working on doors. Yes, adding the windows and latch assy. does change the door fit. I'm sure the McMaster Carr seal will too. The doors seemed pretty stiff until adding more weight, then there is really alot of flexing at the door hinge attachments. Sean makes a good kit, definitely worth the money. I just wish I had one set of instructions to go by instead of going back and forth. The only thing I noticed so far that does not seem right is cutting the latch pins 1 1/4" past the "closed/extended position mark". This does not allow enough of the untapered pin to extend into jambs properly. I think I will leave 1 1/2" on the second door today. Then it is on to cutting/building up the cabin cover flange for the seal. How much compression do I really need on that door seal?? I was thinking maybe about 3/16" or half the bulb diameter to keep from putting so much tension on the door. I think I have about 1/16" clearance between flange and door at the top so that will really need some grinding and building up on the bottom side. Any advice is much appreciated!
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Last edited by Wayne Gillispie : 03-20-2011 at 06:07 PM.
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  #2  
Old 03-20-2011, 09:23 PM
Strasnuts Strasnuts is offline
 
Join Date: Jan 2009
Location: Salt Lake City, Utah
Posts: 529
Default Pin Extension and seals

Hey Wayne,

Pin extension is totally up to the builder. I recommend 1-1/4+. The way Vans' plans have it you get just over an inch. The reason I suggest 1-3/4 on the 180 kit is to take advantage of the cam and to allow it to pull the door in before the pins come out of the door. Anything over an inch is better than the original design.
When I initially built my doors I had my seal squeezed way too much and finally relieved it by making my door reveal 1/4 instead of 3/16. This is still really tight and the door shuts with minimal effort.
McMaster seals come in both 3/16 and 1/4 edges so if you are too tight with a 1/4 inch lip you can do what I did and take off a 1/16 and make it 3/16 edge. This makes the reveal bigger, which in my case 1/4. Hope that made sense and I hope this helps.

Anyone should call if you have any questions. 801-580-3737
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  #3  
Old 03-20-2011, 09:26 PM
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Bill.Peyton Bill.Peyton is offline
 
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Location: St. Louis, MO
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Wayne,
What effect did adding the windows have on the door fit? I am at the same stage, just installed Sean's kit this evening and cut the total length to 1.25. It sure looks like that length should be sufficient. I have not drilled the holes in the frame yet, I will get to that tomorrow. I have not installed the window, I was going to wait to install it along with all the other windows, when I permanently attach the cabin cover after the electrical is complete.
Bill
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  #4  
Old 03-21-2011, 07:54 AM
Wayne Gillispie Wayne Gillispie is offline
 
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Location: USA
Posts: 1,494
Default door fit after...

...Adding hinges to Left side with .064" spacer on front hinge/.040" on rear hinge Right side no spacers= altered fits by approx 1/16". The hinges have about 3/32" play fore-aft so if both hinges are centered when drilled that allows you to move it a little one way or the other. Of course mine were not centered.

...Adding window= did not check fit.

...Adding window and Van's/Strasburg's latch assembly= both now off by less than 1/16". Possibly caused by window/door interface not matching perfectly and the extra weight added. There is alot of flex at the hinges. One could always add a layer of glass on top to stiffen that up but I would have preferred to do that before bonding shells together, so probably won't mess with it now.

Working on holes for pins/door struts today. Before starting, more sanding to get doors fitting flush AGAIN. Then I am sure that the struts will probably change the fit as it takes approx 110 lbs to start compression of the that strut. Leaving the doors open on the struts will twist them over time. Leaving them closed will keep tension on the rear, so I can imagine that they will never fit perfect. I have already accepted that and will not sweat it. May just put a temporary support under front while building to keep it from getting a twist set into it.

Overall the doors will do their intended job, but I think they could have used a little more carbon fiber throughout, added carbon fiber across hinge areas, changed to two smaller struts vs one large one, and installed hinges on corner post on cabin cover. Of course corner post would have to be built much stronger like Cirrus, blocking some of our view of the horizon. By the time I have added a safety latch kit and safety light kit I doubt reinforcing cabin cover post would have weighed much more.

For those that are not installing fwd fuse top skin, cabin cover/brace and aft fuse top skin per plans before doors, wondering if that will also change door fit once installed? Especially if you add 500+ lbs of engine, prop, fwf kit without any top structure to the airframe.

The main thing for me is that they stay closed in flight. So back to work.
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  #5  
Old 03-21-2011, 08:33 AM
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Bill.Peyton Bill.Peyton is offline
 
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Wayne,
I centered my door hinges, and the door seems to fit perfect at this point without any shims. It seems like Vans gave up on the design when they produced the doors. They really should have been hinged at the front for a lot of good reasons. I only have my right door together, and I am going to reinforce the hinges today when I glue the left door together. I am also looking at a way to attach 2 struts further down on the cabin frame to support the door in wind when it is open.

I agree on mounting the engine without the cabin cover attached, I don't think it's smart to do unless the weight is supported right under the firewall. I can see how it would distort re-attaching the front support
Bill
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  #6  
Old 03-21-2011, 09:21 AM
Wayne Gillispie Wayne Gillispie is offline
 
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Location: USA
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Default Right door drilled for pins then reamed to 7/16"

Drill bits work but they will give you a triangular shaped hole that may get loose sooner. I just happen to have the right size reamer, but would have used drill bits stepping up 1/16" at a time if I didn't have reamer. Also before drilling clamp on each side of proposed hole so that you won't pull fiberglass/aluminum into the gap as much. If your cabin top is going to come off it doesn't matter much. I did not clamp first hole thinking that screws on either side were enough- nope. Did better on second one.

If your door is a little forward too far at the bottom, try using layers of 1" x 2" masking tape at the curvature of the opposite end of door/cabin mating surface. It will actually pull the door back in place then you know where to fill later. Much quicker to test fit this way. Of course it can throw it out of whack somewhere else.

Boy these doors really are fun aren't they? Now I know what all you guys were talking about. Come on engine mount and landing gear...hopefully a little shorter section.
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  #7  
Old 03-21-2011, 10:49 AM
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Mike S Mike S is offline
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While you are at it, be sure to check for proper hinge alignment/position.

The parts have a definite location for each one. Front and rear hinges are different.

http://www.vansairforce.com/communit...hlight=gottcha
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Old 03-21-2011, 11:24 AM
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Phil Phil is offline
 
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A little bit of feedback on this thread for others.

I'm in the middle of installing Sean's kit on my doors. So far it's been fairly straight forward. The biggest frustration so far has been the fiberglass blocks that support the inner and outer door halves where the cam is located.

When the door halves are initially glued together, there is a bunch of epoxy/cab-o-sil mix that squeezes out into the interior cavity. I removed as much as I could with a file, but there is only so much you can access. This epoxy creates some interference with positioning the blocks low enough in the door so they don't interfere with the door pins. I ended up putting a radius on the blocks so they cleared the cured epoxy and then tried to snug them into the lower edge of the door with a flox/epoxy mixture. It was a mixed bag of results at best.

On my next door I'm going to skip the blocks completely. Instead I will mix a sticky batch of flox/epoxy in a cup. Then I'll scoop it up with my finger (nitrile glove of course) and shove it into the door cavity along both sides cam opening. I'll let the mixture cure in lieu of the blocks for the reinforcement. It's easy to control, fills all of the openings completely, and is easy to press out of the way so the door pins have plenty of room to operate.

I'm hoping the blocks in my current door are not too high. We'll see in the the next few weeks.

Last edited by Phil : 03-21-2011 at 03:14 PM.
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  #9  
Old 03-21-2011, 03:00 PM
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Bill.Peyton Bill.Peyton is offline
 
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I just finished prepping my left door for assembly. I pre-installed Sean's kit by drilling the hole and epoxying the two blocks to the inside surface. I am not going to cut the slot nor the access hole for the rack mechanism, I am going to go ahead and attach it and then assemble the doors for good. The first door I installed the kit on I had the same issue as you were with the flox getting in the way of the blocks. I will post some photos tonight after the epoxy cures and prior to assembly. I also pre-drilled the Vans latch assembly holes in the skins and am going to use the #12 holes to cleco the attachment together for more strength when I assemble to the door halves.
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  #10  
Old 03-21-2011, 03:08 PM
Wayne Gillispie Wayne Gillispie is offline
 
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Location: USA
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Default Holes drilled/delrin blocks installed on cabin cover

Mike- thanks for the heads up a few weeks back and today...I marked them once installed correctly and only removed one set at a time before final install to apply self etch primer to hinges. Also sanded cabin cover pockets with 80 grit then applied high build primer for some protection from water. I will fill around hinges with proseal once finished with this section and fiberglassing everything. I want to be able to remove hinges if I need to replace a worn AN bolt down the road.

Phil- Yep, I ran into the same problem on one 7/16" pin hitting a blob of epoxy/fiber/cabosil. A bear to sand down back in there. I used a rat tail file and a pair of needle nose pliers. If the blocks come in a slightly smaller size that would probably be better or just do as you said and no worries. The blocks definitely stiffened that area back up. I was a little worried once cut because there was alot of flex. Once the gearbox is back in it is really stiff now.

One thing to mention to any "new, very patient door builders" besides having plenty of nitrile gloves and respirator is to not over do it on the 3D fiberglass/resin application to the elbow pockets if you are going with Sean's kit. If you get too much resin (like one of mine) it will run down into area where the delrin gearbox goes. Even with the chamfer on that corner mine still hit. Another bear to get to. Dremel with 1/2" sander on the extension cable did the trick.

Also another tip: grind away a flat surface on bottom side of cabin cover door hinge pockets just beneath some of the washer/nuts otherwise they will not stay torqued when tightened on that angle.
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