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Old 02-02-2015, 07:23 PM
HeliCooper HeliCooper is offline
Join Date: Jun 2013
Location: Des Moines, IA
Posts: 255
Default Dinged leading edge skin

Hey guys,

While shoveling out the snow in a blizzard the wind blew over my leading edge that is all riveted and the edge hit my tool box...grr

Before I screw it up any more I thought I would see what you guys recommend for straightening this out. I was thinking of just grabbing the seaming pliers and seeing if that would straight it out.
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Old 02-02-2015, 09:23 PM
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bhester bhester is offline
Join Date: Jan 2005
Location: Hopkinsville, KY
Posts: 866
Smile Easy Fix

Seaming Pliers
Straighten it out carefully and keep on trucking!
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Old 02-03-2015, 04:41 AM
Ron B. Ron B. is offline
Join Date: Nov 2007
Location: Yarmouth, Nova Scotia
Posts: 2,276

You should bring it inside out of the weather.
Thanks Ron
RV-14 Flying
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Old 02-03-2015, 05:23 AM
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Larry DeCamp Larry DeCamp is offline
Join Date: Apr 2010
Location: Clinton, Indiana
Posts: 806
Default Don't strech it !

You only get one chance with treated aluminum. If you bring it back to far, it won't reverse well. Back up the area with a heavy bucking bar like object and bring the dent back slowly and patiently working from the edges to the middle.
Larry DeCamp
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Old 02-03-2015, 06:35 AM
Tom Martin Tom Martin is offline
Join Date: Jan 2005
Location: Ontario, Canada
Posts: 1,463

I would make a male and female shape, from plywood, based on the shape of the undamaged wing. The two pieces would not have to be large but if shaped right they could then be squeezed together with C clamps on the damaged skin to bring it back close to the original shape.
As the other poster mentioned you only have one shot at this, as the more you work it the more the metal stretches.
Get it as close as you can to the correct shape and then fill and sand.
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Old 02-03-2015, 06:55 AM
BillL BillL is offline
Join Date: Sep 2007
Location: Central IL
Posts: 4,948
Default Learn on SCRAP . . .

Good results, like many things, come from practicing. Remember what Scott says, never every try something new, for the first time, on your airplane.

I suggest, if you are concerned about this, to take a piece of "scrap" bang it up a little then perfect your techniques to straighten it. Don't use a hard faced hammer and hard faced back up tool as a dolly, that WILL stretch the metal. Try it.

Try a smooth face cutting board backed up with metal for mass, and a low crown body hammer. Do a trial piece that is flat and see how hard you can hit it before it stretches, cups. You may have to remove that rib to get full access. A seaming plier is a good start, but just to clamp smooth , don't bend.

If you use wood as a backer, use a fine, even grained hard wood like oak, cherry, hard maple, or ironwood. Make the working face smooth, not a sawn face. A soft wood will give more and more likely to have to hit it harder, not recommended. Look here for inspiration. Kent is a true master.

Good luck!, I know you will get it.

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Old 02-03-2015, 07:13 AM
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MarkW MarkW is offline
Join Date: Sep 2011
Location: Edgewater, FL. KSFB
Posts: 1,074

I have had very good luck with using the pneumatic squeezer with the flat dies to flatten out the creased areas.
RV9 - N14MW - Flying
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