Welcome to a work in progress

This blog is dedicated to the restoration and modification of a Glasfl├╝gel Standard Libelle H201B, and a tribute to those who have dared to do the same, and to those who are helping with seeing this dream take flight.

Thursday, April 25, 2013

The Air Brake Caps! YUCK!

Here is something fellow Libelle owners should check out, if they haven't already done so!

Michael Reid, a fellow Libelle owner, and Blogger ( The Soaring Laboratory ), dropped by my home to see this project, last year. Aside from pointing out the issues he had encountered with the replacement of the wing alignment pins on his Libelle, he advised that I need to replace the springs that hold the air brake caps down against the wings when the air brakes are closed.

Once the glider was ready to be delivered to the airport, Robert ordered the replacement parts for my Libelle, the same time he ordered them for Eagle II.

Last weekend, I was able to to take the time to remove the air brake.

Here is what I found!

The canter lever arms were gooey with grease. And there was just a hint of surface rust.

.... the springs and washers were a rusty mess.

Notice anything odd about the springs and washers?!

On all four air caps, the size of the springs and the number of the washers used, were inconstantly installed.

So, with the replacement parts in hand, I set up a table and began removing the old springs and washers.

It's a tricky endeavor, due to the C-clips and springs.

Care must be taken when removing them, or you will be chasing them around the room as the fly out!
Here is a sample of the springs that were originally used on my air brakes.

WHAT is going on here!?!?!?

The washers were also a mix of small and medium sizes. Most were made of aluminum, but as you can see due to corrosion, some were made of steel.

The replacement parts were 32 of the large long springs (like the ones on the left side of the springs photo) and 32 small aluminum washers.

The washers were a problem. I needed 3X the quantity to do it right.

The amount of washers supplied would only act as a stop for the C-clip, but the bottom of the spring would eventually wear through the glass and fail to hold the cap down. 

I found enough of the old aluminum washers to fill the required numbers to finish the installation.

I used two washers between the spring and the C-clip to create the amount of force to hold the cap down on the wing when the air brake is closed.

Here is what the replacement spring install looks like.

The air brake push rods will require a final adjustment when the glider is reassembled.
This weekend, I will clean up the canter lever arms and remount the air brakes on the wings.

The work continues.

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