'68 Citabria 7ECA Milman Spar Conversion

Bob Turner

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Apr 4, 2018
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We just ordered a Wag Aero rotator for Cub wings. Not sure it would adapt to the slightly different strut attach points.

We needed it for the kinds of finish - two wings Stewart, and one Aerothane. I will use it for Poly Spray and white, then let the experts take over.

Question: Anybody know a good legal, sandable white to use under the Aerothane?
 

Bartman

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Good word, I’ve been trying to rig one for the wings but with fiberglass wing tip a little worried about damage with putting a pipe in the nave light hole. Any body have better cost efficient idea?
I think it's a 1" steel pipe that fits in the hole nearly perfect which helps to prevent damage to the hole. Mine was done that way and it handled it fine, the fiberglass is pretty thick there and it's good quality so that helps.
 

Bartman

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One word for you: Rotisserie.
My garage has about a ten foot ceiling height so with the rudder off and the top of the vertical stab against the ceiling I had just enough room to paint the belly. Did you know that if you remove the seats, the tailwheel, the cowl, the door, the prop, and the spinner that the plane just about balances on the axles? It's ever so slightly tail heavy but will lean forward and flop over onto the nose if you let it.

The trick to painting the belly without a rotisserie is to first spend three months building up your arm and shoulder strength then lay on your side perpendicular to the fuselage. Fill the paint cup about half full to it won't spill out of the breather hole and then reach your arm out and start painting. When you're done your shoulder will be throbbing but you'll have a nice coat of paint on your belly. As that light mist of paint gets in your eyes they'll start to water and burn like you're cutting onions. good times!
 

Bartman

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Been making progress without posting pics, I'll get caught up at some point but here's where it's at......fuselage base white is done and it'll get the red trim paint maybe middle of this week. we've got Sept 24 penciled in for the day the wings go back on so it's getting exciting again :)

pre fuselage trim.jpg
 

Bartman

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So, I think we can all agree I'm an amateur with the paint gun so I'm going to say my trim coat came out about as well as I'd be willing to hope it could come out. :)

There was a little bit of bleed through along the tape lines in some places and there's a small run near the top of the vertical stab but all in all I'm pretty happy with it!

Masking took forever this morning even thought most of it was already masked off
IMG_20190917_112816116.jpg IMG_20190917_112738741.jpg

and here are the results. the wings are going back on next Tuesday so maybe this will actually be done soon.
IMG_20190917_151654833.jpg IMG_20190917_154232844.jpg IMG_20190917_135623076.jpg IMG_20190917_153803081.jpg

I had been hoping the red would cover the old registration numbers better than it did so Plan C for the numbers will be to mask off the original locations and paint something over the top. Maybe white, maybe a medium to light blue with white trim, not sure yet.
 
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Bruce

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Dec 22, 2018
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Knoxville TN
You doing close to the colors I have picked different layout but I’m going to do the blue on leading edge and belly then highlight with the red, I ordered all the covering and haven’t ordered the paint since they said it only had one year shelf life and I’ve already had a 4 month delay and looking at some more. Overall the paint looks great love the gloss
 

Bartman

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Thanks Bruce.

Got up early and thought about this, the digits on my plane aren't consistent so covering them exactly with vinyl isn't going to happen. That leaves two options, making a white rectangle and then placing new red vinyl digits over that or I can mask the existing digits, sand them and then prime and paint them white.

The rectangle idea will have to be done with paint and then there's a chance the red vinyl characters won't match the red paint which might be fugly.

To mask and paint the existing digits will be time consuming but might look the best, and it's got to be done by next Tuesday when the fuselage will be back at my buddy's hangar getting the wings reattached.

I hate when I've only got bad and worse options to choose from? Anything I haven't considered here other than paying someone to photograph and model new vinyl graphics based on exact measurements of what's on there now? :(
 

Bartman

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The door was half open so the nose could be moved forward making room around the back along the inside wall. Plastic sheet was taped across the opening so the door was technically inside the painting area. The red paint settled onto it and here we are. :(

Be careful with the EkoFill, it's very electrically charged and wants to spread out into every little nook and cranny including inside cabinets, tool boxes, past dropcloths that aren't sealed very well, etc.