‘59 7EC Champion rebuild project

MA Cantin

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Joined
Jul 17, 2018
Messages
59
#1
My Dad and I have been working on rebuilding his Champ. I’ve posted pics in the “New Members” section if anyone is interested.

Wondering if anyone has had problems with wing tank baffles? We are at the point of installing Milman spars and when removing the wing tang, there was rattling inside. After closer inspection, we found that the baffle inside had broken off. Is this common?

After inspecting the other wing tank, we found that it’s baffle was broken as well.
We were lucky enough to get a referral of a welder in southern Ontario that would repair/rebuild the tanks. We brought the tank to him and once he opened it up, he found that the broken baffle had rubbed against the drag wire tube. Good thing that it hadn’t worn through. Who know’s what the other tank looks like.

I’m throwing this experience out there. My Dad and I are new at this kind of project. We are learnig a lot and enjoying the process.

Cheers!

MA
 

Bartman

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Mar 27, 2018
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618
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New Jersey, USA
#2
Looking forward to following your Champ rebuild. I'm not well versed on Champ wing tanks but broken baffles in both tanks tells me maybe it was a good idea to swap out the spars! Broken baffles were a problem for a period of time in newer Decathlons that were being snap rolled with partially filled fuel tanks, if I remember correctly.

Never enough pictures so please keep them coming. The server we're using has more than enough room! :)
 

MA Cantin

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Jul 17, 2018
Messages
59
#3
Thanks for the info! It’s a hight time Champ and I think it was moved around alot (wings off). I’m kicking myself in the but for not taking pics when we were there and the open tank was sitting there. I’ll try and ask the welder to take some and send them.
 

MA Cantin

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Jul 17, 2018
Messages
59
#6
Here’s another update on the right wing. Yesterday we worked on the wing tip bow and removed the left wing tank for repairs. The bow was bent from some dammage to the wing tip. Dad made a tool with the old wood spar bushings to bend it back. We got the worst out of it. Dad wants to wait to trammel before the final fit. We had to replace the outbord aileron bay rib and tip rib aswell. Dad installed a new stiffner on the aileron bay rib that he made from the wood of the old spar. Still need to drill the flanges on the last rib and the spars.
We need some hardware and a new fuel gauge. We made a list today so we can order. Here is a photo of the wing with all the ribs and the bow in place. Starting to look like a wing again!


4A2AAD5D-4FAD-4C62-A1B3-5805010DF753.jpeg
 

Bartman

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Mar 27, 2018
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#7
@Bartman
I had a video to share of my Dad working on the wing tip bow. Doesn’t want to upload. Should I go to video section then?
easiest thing to do with videos is to load them into Youtube and then post the link here. if you're not familiar I can make a tutorial video explaining how it's done.
 

MA Cantin

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Joined
Jul 17, 2018
Messages
59
#10
Hi all!
I just finished a little side project. I was wondering what to do with the old wooden spars. I had kept the pieces of old fabric that the registration was on along with the old Aeronca logo when we first started the project. I deceided to make a decoration for my garage and use the spars as a picture frame. 3A52D11F-97A6-475F-B5E0-7F5537876EDF.png
 

MA Cantin

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Jul 17, 2018
Messages
59
#14
That’s a great idea too!! We still have our front spars left. That’s something we could to do with them!😁
 

MA Cantin

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Jul 17, 2018
Messages
59
#15
It’s been a while since I updated the progress on the project.

We finaly got the fuel tanks repaired complete with new baffles, top skins and fresh filler necks with caps. We had finished the right wing, short of the tank, in October. We got the left wing done this past week! We’re finishing up the tank in the right wing. We need to install the pitot and static tubes before the tank goes in. Should have it installed by the end of the weekend. I hope! Lol! Then it will be another milestone done! Here are a few pics.

First one is of the trailing edge that I was cleaning the old glue off of.
The others are of the installed left tank and completed left wing!
 

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MA Cantin

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Joined
Jul 17, 2018
Messages
59
#16
Finished installing tank in right wing and now both wings are now completed and re-hung! Yay!!!
Now we’ve started working on the door. It is made of fiberglass! Seems to me when I flew the old Champs back in the day the door was out of aluminium sheething!? (I could be wrong) Do any of you have experience with the fiberglass doors? We have cracks here and there. Especialy around the hinges. What type of fiberglass and resin would be best? The nose bowl is out of fiberglass too so probs prep it at the same time. Any advice would be good.
Thanks!
 

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MA Cantin

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Jul 17, 2018
Messages
59
#17
Here’s another up date on the project. We’ve done some work on the door and the nose bowl. They were all sanded and some fiberglass work was done on the door. We are considering converting to seaplane door and decided to wait until the fuselage is back to go any further with it. Lately we’ve been working on cleaning up the engine. Dad removed all the baffles, stripped them and repainted, ready for new seals, which we have the parts for. We removed and cleaned the carb. That was an intimidating job at first but it worked out alright. Dad also stripped and repainted the airbox. The carb is back on the airbox and will be back on the engine once we get the new gasket. We’re still at it and enjoying the process! It’s pretty cool to learn about all the things that makes this old bird fly!
 
Joined
May 11, 2019
Messages
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#18
I am new to this group . I am getting ready to start the same kind of project on a 7ECA . I would say it is time for a progress report LOL.
Donny
 

MA Cantin

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Jul 17, 2018
Messages
59
#19
Yes it’s been too long! Things are progressing well. Lately, Dad has been paint stripping parts like the cowls, wing fairings, inspection covers, etc. Since the last post we’ve brought the fuselage back in the garage. We finished installing new baffles c/w new seals, stripped and painted the rocker covers cleaned and installed the engine. We also installed a new light weight starter. That was quite the job! We were converting the old style cable starter. I had to cut off the pinion shaft for the old starter in the accessory case of the engine (C-90). What a fun job that was! Lol! We got the starter installed along with the wiring finalized. A few weekends ago, we did some pre-rigging. We wanted to familiarize ourselves with the process, check and finalize things before the fabric goes on. We checked and adjusted the control deflections and got a parts list going for some hardware to replace as well. We also wanted to put fuel in the tanks, check for leaks and do a run up but when we hung the prop, we noticed some interference with the baffles and the prop. We tried the nose bowl but the new seals needed some attention. Then mother nature had her say so we disassembled it and put it back in garage. We learned a lot by doing the pre-rigging. We are now working on the cowls and baffles to make everything fit right. Here are pics and a video.

 

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