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Funtana S90 Wing Repairs

Joker 53150

Mmmmmmm, balsa.
Mentor
#41
Moving right along, here's the mostly-finished wing. It still needs the servo mounted, color accents added on top & bottom, and a few other little tweaks. Overall, it's now looking MUCH better than before I started!

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The top is very bare looking without the trim colors. I'm debating adding the swoopy diamond pattern the original covering had - it'll be a pain to do and I'm not sure the effort is worth the result.

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I was asked about the rest of the plane's condition. The other wing is in good shape, although the covering is pretty beat. That'll be an easy task, getting it fixed up. The rest of the fuselage, however.... not so much.

Here's the worse stabilizer & elevator. The hinges don't allow free movement and the structure has at least two known breaks. The elevator is salvageable (although I'll know for sure once covering is removed) but the stabilizer is toast and will get re-built completely. Both surfaces are flat so that task should be easy enough. I'm not sure what to expect when I try to remove it from the fuselage, however. But that'll be a task for a later date.

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The rudder is also in OK-ish shape, although it was installed with no gap between it and the top edge of the vertical stabilizer, so it rubs heavily. The bottom edge above the tail wheel is also a bit boogered up, and as long as the edge with the hinges isn't too terrible I can just fix up the original piece and re-cover it. For those playing along at home, to the right of the picture is a 1/4 scale Clipped Wing Taylorcraft project, to the left is a 1/3 scale Sopwith Pup project, and below is a 1/3 scale L-19 Bird Dog project. I've got my work cut out for me! :)

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Joker 53150

Mmmmmmm, balsa.
Mentor
#42
The colors of the Italian flag will spice up the look of the plane. I looked at the pieces removed from the original covering and am going to add mine in the same way - red, white, then green. The red and white are slightly wider than needed as the red and white are overlapped by about 1/8". Green is cut to the final size and goes on last.

I sprayed the pieces with Windex which allows me to slide them around a bit to get the placement finalized. Tape helps guide me to make sure they're lined up properly.

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All (as many as possible) air bubbles were squeezed out with paper towel, trying hard not to disturb the placement of the colors. The covering iron is then used to heat the pieces up to activate the glue, but not hot enough to start shrinking the pieces. :)

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Joker 53150

Mmmmmmm, balsa.
Mentor
#43
The visibility stripes are now added to the bottom of the wing, just as they were from the factory. 1-3/4" wide, and like the originals they don't extend down to the hinge line. The stripes were applied by bridging the aileron gap so they would align properly, and once stuck down the gap was cut and the excess material stuck down as well. I may go back and add a little extra yellow to "finish" the stripes off tomorrow.

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Here's a nice little item that's well worth buying in bulk. Anybody who's operated on planes like this has come across multiple ways to hold servo plugs together - electrical tape, glue, heat shrink, or even string. This simple keeper goes over the plug and clips in place to keep the wires from unplugging. It can be removed and reused as needed.

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Previously I mentioned the covering cutter I often use, and how it gives a nice straight cut. Here's the inside edge of the wing showing how the covering is very neat and factory-looking. To be honest, I'm cherry-picking what I show here, as all of the edges aren't this neat. I get a little lazy at times on spots that won't show when the plane is assembled (and sometimes on spots that WILL show...).

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TooJung2Die

Well-known member
#46
I'm pretty sure I've figured out how the trimming tool works but it would help if you could show a picture. Blue and yellow go good together because they are complementary primary colors. They are exact opposites on a RGB color wheel and will stand out when used together.
 

Joker 53150

Mmmmmmm, balsa.
Mentor
#48
Well, I think I'm going to call this wing "done" so I can move back on to other lingering projects. My apologies for not showing how I pin the hinges, but I got lazy. :sneaky: The wing will now be set aside to wait for the eventual re-build of the rest of the airframe. To wrap it up, here are some before & after pics:

Overall top pic, which makes the wing look usable.

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Rebuilt, without the extra graphic design, and my green is a bit darker. It's the only green film I had and I didn't want to buy a full roll for a 2" x 20" strip! :) You may remember the aileron was rubbing on the wing previously, now there is a sizeable gap. A bit too much gap, unfortunately, but that's better than rubbing! I've also got a few air bubbles under the flag colors. Oops...

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Before the rebuild the sheet material on the leading edge was broken underneath the covering.

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After repairs you can just see the outline I made in ink where the patch was installed. I probably should have cut all the ink away and made the patch bigger, but this isn't that noticeable.

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This was the aileron gap before work, along with a little crushed/damaged wood at the trailing edge of the aileron.

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Here is my biggest mistake on the project, making the aileron gap too big. I screwed up on the hinge placement and by the time I noticed it the glue had cured. The gap should be about 1/2 that size, and the only issue with it is that the aileron sticks out beyond the wing by about 1/16". Not a big issue and nobody will probably ever notice it unless I point it out.

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Flipping the wing over before work shows plenty of damage.

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Damage which is now repaired.

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The wingtip was crushed and the pieces held together by packing tape.

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Now it's nice and clean. Looking through the transparent coloring you can still see where the repairs were made. The next step in this kind of work would be to completely remove and replace anything that was broken, but for this project that wasn't the goal.

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I'm not sure how the aileron pocket material got damaged without also damaging the aileron...?

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All fixed. The wood I replaced it with was a lighter color which stands out a bit.

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I'm still not sure what the previous owner was thinking with this kind of repair to the rib...

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The rib was repaired, the servo mounting screw holes were filled with hardwood dowel, and a new Futaba servo has a home. The control horn and linkage are original to the model.

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Last, here's how I did the hinge wire. A single wire is fed through all of the hinges instead of using individual pins. To remove the aileron I just have to straighten a slight bend in one end of the wire and then pull it out. Quick and easy removal of the control surface.

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TooJung2Die

Well-known member
#49
Not a big issue and nobody will probably ever notice it unless I point it out.
Heck yeah. I understand how you look at it but no one else will see those as mistakes. Show them photos of the airplane before you got into it. All those little things you pointed out are what gives the airplane character. That wing looks hella nice. (y)
 

Joker 53150

Mmmmmmm, balsa.
Mentor
#51
Did you ever have "Buyer's Remorse" when it came to buying a plane? I was teetering on the edge with the Funtana as I looked at the beat up fuselage sitting on the shelf while I re-built the first wing. I was really wondering what I saw in it when I purchased it years ago. This weekend I was moving a lot of planes around while I built a new storage rack, and I pulled the Funtana down and took a good look at it, and remembered WHY I bought it - it's better than it looks. (I say that now, before removing the covering from the fuselage so no guarantees!).

It's rough, but I've fixed worse. The tail needs work, especially the right side stabilizer and elevator, which will probably be completely re-built - both elevators need to be re-hinged. The rudder may be salvageable with minimal work and new hinges.

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Moving forward on the fuselage there is a WTF power switch mounted to the side of the plane. You also get a glimpse of the Cub Yellow covering on the bottom covering a LOT of area. Normally this means repairs or hidden damage, especially when the repair color doesn't match. :)

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Flipping her over you can see the patch runs almost the entire length of the fuselage. Plus, the patch is heavily damaged where the landing gear was located! So clearly, the landing gear mount needs major repairs, plus I need to source new landing gear as this didn't come with the originals. It'll also need a new cowl as the original is trashed. But hidden underneath the cowl it appears that the original firewall is in good shape. Dirty, but usable.

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Yuck. How bad is it inside??

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Surprisingly, the inside is fairly decent. Yes, the landing gear mount needs some major fabrication, but the surrounding structure is all relatively damage-free. THIS is why I bought the plane - it looked far worse than it really is. Well, if you ignore the major damage to the wing which was already fixed, and the missing landing gear, and ugly cowl, and messed up tail surfaces. Other than that, plus a bunch of other stuff I haven't found yet, it's in great shape! :)

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Looking down the fuselage the rest of the structure looks pretty good as well other than the one broken former and a couple stringers. I'm guessing the last "landing" was just hard enough to rip the landing gear loose, but not do further structural damage than was done on previous flights (the stuff patched with packing tape).

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In a sick way, I guess I'm looking forward to working on this plane in the future. It'll be a major make-over with moderate work. Hopefully. :)