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Kitfox 3 Bushplane Project.

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Posted (edited)

Hi fellas. Going to be starting a new project here and would love the advice and guidance of those aboard that know a whole lot more about these planes than I. I was lucky enough to acquire a nice older kitfox Model 3 that has been sitting for years since the 912 in it dropped a valve and mangled a piston. My idea for this plane is to build a very capable STOL craft with good bush capabilities. I am lucky enough to have DHolly as a relative neighbor and he came over the other day to help me formulate a plan for the build (and convince me to do many things I wasn't really thinking of. Anyhow here is the rundown of what I would like to do to the machine. Please advise as to any additions you would suggest, or things you wouldn't bother with, or if my estimated prices in your experience are way off.

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Keep in mind, trying not to exceed a 15k budget here, the less the better

1.) Motor needs a lot of attention. Im thinking it would be easiest to just pull the 912ul and buy a functional 912uls and throw it in. Doug suggested a 104hp zipper kit but we also looked up the serial number on the engine, and it is pretty old with a TON of AD's to perform. Thinking I have enough work ahead of me without having to rebuild a questionable bottom end and try to update everything on the motor.       

Budget 5-6k motor replacement with core

2.) Doug convinced me the entire plane needs a recover :). So going to redo it all in Stewart systems. Ordered 2 new ethanol resistant tanks from kit fox to put in the wings as well

Budget 1k for tanks, 1,500 for covering supplys. 

3.) Repaint. Trying to decide what the best paint to use is. Love the idea of easy repairs on polytone but do love the look of aerothane. Any ideas about approximate costs for a kitfox paintjob if I bring the plane in ready to spray? I will post a picture of a yellow and red plane below, thats the scheme I would like but in lime green and black. 

Budget ??

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4.) New prop, Im thinking Koolprop, to match whatever engine I end up putting in

Budget 1,300

5.) T3 suspension tailwheel. Just because I want one

Budget 700

6.) Bush gear? I loved the Wide gear on my avid, what would a good bush gear be on the model 3 and approximate cost? Planning to powdercoat the wheels and redo the brakes with 21 inch Nancos for now, 26" airstreaks later. 

Budget- ??

7.) Misc improvements, Wide body kit, fuselage strengthening, powdercoating, Maybe GPS to replace the LORAN in the panel

Budget 3k?

 

Edited by Neloner

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Posted

:bday:...I love spending OPM. ;)

 

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If you are going with the T3 then you gotta get the Shockmonster shocks on the main gear. Lowell likely build you a set of legs. Budget $3200. Yours is a good example of why just because it has a 912 doesn't make it worth 10k more. I'd extend and balance the tail feathers if you are going down to bare metal. Take a close look at the mangy fox build on here. I think Larry's fuse is how they need to be coming from the factory. If you have the 8" factory rims you can save a bunch of money on tires by running the 27" dessers. You also need to modify your brakes. Lots of discussions on here regarding that as well. Does it have electric trim? Be a good time to do it. I love my old Garmin 396 but lately I've been playing on an IPad with Foreflight and Stratux which is a $300 system that gives moving map, Wx, traffic, ads-b in. 

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You mention stewarts systems covering, and then mention polytone or aerothane.  Maybe that's not what you are saying, but I don't believe you should mix the two systems.  I will say this, polytone is very simple to apply, as well as the rest of the poly fiber system.  And the painting is the fun part.  The tedious and time consuming work it getting to the point where you can spray chemicals on it.  JImChuk

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Ill second what Jim say's, takes forever to get to the fun painting part, I would not mind using the orex system sometime, I think its more money up front but in the end I would guess its about the same, and for me would probably be 3 months less work,

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I really like the green and black!!!! Mine being black it really loves the sun in winter, thaws out quick!!!!

KF1 #0021

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$5-6k for a 912 replacement is not realistic.  Sorry.  

For that budget you can do a 105 Big Bore and rebuild or replace the damaged head.  Honestly, in an experimental the service recommendations are not mandatory, there is no such thing as a mandator AD in the experimental world.  Some are realistically not necessary either.

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Posted (edited)

:bday:...I love spending OPM. ;)

 

You are an expensive person to know...

You mention stewarts systems covering, and then mention polytone or aerothane.  Maybe that's not what you are saying, but I don't believe you should mix the two systems.  I will say this, polytone is very simple to apply, as well as the rest of the poly fiber system.  And the painting is the fun part.  The tedious and time consuming work it getting to the point where you can spray chemicals on it.  JImChuk

I used stewarts on my avid for a couple small things and liked it a lot, simple and no fumes. Your recommending sticking with their line of paints is what Im gathering, which I would do as long as they have my colors

$5-6k for a 912 replacement is not realistic.  Sorry.  

For that budget you can do a 105 Big Bore and rebuild or replace the damaged head.  Honestly, in an experimental the service recommendations are not mandatory, there is no such thing as a mandator AD in the experimental world.  Some are realistically not necessary either.

Perhaps I wasn't too clear, definitely not talking about a new 912ULS, definitely not in my budget. Im currently discussing a timed out 3 year old 912uls from a flight schools SLSA. 1930 hours but only a few years old and all ADs complied with and all logs, asking 5500? Does this sound like a viable option? Was kind of leaning towards just buying something like that and throwing it in. (After I beef up the engine mount Doug ;)) Then sell my 25 year old one for whatever on barnstormers. 

-Any consensus on if I should do that or put a 104 low compression zipper on the old mill currently in the plane. I just worry about the fact of what happened squishing a bearing in the lower end or something. This is the most difficult question Im trying to decide on. Im personally leaning towards the used ULS but could be convinced to go either way

 

Edit: I read up on Oratex and it is intriguing but their color selection is minimal, and if I had to paint it would kind of defeat the purpose. 

Edited by Neloner

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Posted (edited)

Stewarts should have your yellow and red - I have seen both used.  The only downfall I have seen is that the Stewarts UV coating crinkles up if you get any mogas leaks or spills inside the fabric - seems like outside final coat is not bothered by it.  I really like the ease of the glue, and water cleanup, but proper protection is a must when spraying the finish coats. 

If someone could prove that the Stewarts glue would hold after applying Poly Products, it would be a good thing.   EDMO

Edited by EDMO

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Posted (edited)

I used Stewarts system and then finished in Aerothane.  Basically Stewarts glue,... then Polyfiber (pink, silver, white then red aerothane).  Stewart's confirmed it was o.k. to mix the systems (twice, once verbal and once written) before I started.  Nice end result.

Obviously dont hesitate to give Stewarts a call if you have any concerns.  Great folks out there.

 

Edited by LSaupe
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Posted (edited)

You definetly want the bigger tails surfaces.  I went with a Model 4 rudder and increased the elevator cord.  Wide body kit and model IV doors are also worth the effort.

Keep an eye on the GW when you start adding mods.  Not a whole lot of room to spare with a 912 if you plan on taking a passenger.

Edited by LSaupe

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You know the skins are bad because why? I thought mine were done as the surface was crazed and tried to rejuvenate them... Fortunately I only applied the rejuvenater to the elevator. The cracks in the "paint" curled up like crazy, so I decided to reskin. I tested it by trying to compromise the surface. It felt like I broke my thumb trying to poke a hole in it. So the skin was fine. Well I have new skin and mismatch paint now...

Leaning curve ya know!

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Better keep that $5500 ULS under your hat or it will be gone.  That is a very rare and good deal.  1900 well maintained and oft flown hours is nothing for a 912.

I'm not a real fan of the ULS, but that's a smoking deal.

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Ranthane or Arothane are the same kind of paint, polyurethain, flex addatives in it. My resent paint over poly cost about 575.00, from Raldolf is was Ranthain, youll need a 1 gal.  Nice to do with the wings are off!!

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I used Stewarts system and then finished in Aerothane.  Basically Stewarts glue,... then Polyfiber (pink, silver, white then red aerothane).  Stewart's confirmed it was o.k. to mix the systems (twice, once verbal and once written) before I started.  Nice end result.

Obviously dont hesitate to give Stewarts a call if you have any concerns.  Great folks out there.

 

Thanks for verifying Larry.  I think that is the best way to go.  EDMo

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Posted (edited)

Well felt bad making several mice homeless but spent a bit peeling the wings today, insides look pretty good minus the mouse nests, hysol bond on the leading edge of the inboard rib  broke on both wings. Gotta clean them up and re epoxy the ribs but going to wait until the new tanks get here. Going to peel the fuselage tomorrow

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Edited by Neloner

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Posted

If there is ANY mousepiss corrosion on the spars, it will have to be cleaned and neutralized, and decide if replacement is necessary.  EDMO

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Posted

Now would be a good time to reinforce the rib tails.

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If there is ANY mousepiss corrosion on the spars, it will have to be cleaned and neutralized, and decide if replacement is necessary.  EDMO

best method for this? 

Now would be a good time to reinforce the rib tails.

does anyone have pictures of this, Dholly suggested this as well

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Posted (edited)

Here is the best I got.

 

100_0799.JPG

100_0779.JPG

Edited by TJay

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Posted (edited)

I have the KF spec bracket info and diagram. 

Heres a link to the Service Bulletin: http://www.kitfoxaircraft.com/images/servicebulletins/SB-9.pdf

Clean the aluminum spar GOOD in and out, rinse copiously with fresh water then neutralize urea acid with an alkaline solution. I've heard Alumiprep and then Alodine works well. 

Edited by dholly
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Tjay- what material did you use for strengthening the landing gear area? I'd like to do that and the seat truss. 

Dholly- just washed the wings, I don't see much corrosion at all except for the trailing edge angled aluminum has a bit where a nest was. Rinsed everything out repeatedly. Pulled the tanks as well. These are going into the rafters until the tanks come, if you want to come give your professional opinion you'd be welcome ;)

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Posted (edited)

These are going into the rafters until the tanks come.
 Shove some tennis balls in the spar ends to keep the critters out!

@ hospital till 2:00 today, maybe tomorrow. I'll text you.

Edited by dholly

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Posted

Ok cool, just put an order in with Murle Williams :)

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Here is the best I got.

 

 

What is the reason to do this? As long as the wood is good? The only fatality I have read about was when the wood rotted out causing a control surface failure.

 

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