Tailwheel replacement (5 inch)


37 posts in this topic

Posted (edited)

I am looking for a replacement tailwheel for the one in the picture and potentially a new tailwheel assembly.  I just got this plane and when I got it home I noticed that the tailwheel assembly was not sitting straight, but leaning to one side.  I am guess that someone previously strapped this to the trailer pulled to one side.  Additionally there are some chunks of rubber missing from the wheel itself.  I have read that the Maule tailwheel is either 6 or 6.5 inches, but this one is 5 inches.  I have read about others replacing their tailwheel with a Matco 8" with positive results, but going from 5" to 8" seems like would be asking to land tail first.

I welcome everyone's ideas and suggestions.

20170405_094827.jpg

Edited by TSoftware

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Posted

Don't think the spring has the right bend on it to put a Matco or Maule tailwheel on.  Springs can be changed of course as well.  Friend of mine has an Avid A.  It has the same type of tailwheel as you have.  I know of another A model with the same tailwheel.  B models and later came with a 6" Maule.  Are the bolts all snugged up where the spring meets the fuselage, and also where the tailwheel meets the spring?   You could also make another tailwheel fork that would take a larger wheel. 

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Posted

Know any source for the 5" tailwheel?  I would like to get everything flying right before I start changing things.

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Posted

I think it's just a caster wheel.  Lots of different kinds on ebay.  Maybe a good idea to put in good bearings though.  JImChuk

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Posted

Perhaps I should just knock over a shopping cart ;)

Heading to Wal-Mart to find one that doesn't wobble.

lol

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Posted

one of the very best upgrades you can do to the ground handling is get rid of the solid tail wheel and put a pneumatic one on.  I had the maule solid tailwheel on and it sucked balls taxing over cracks in the pavement and on gravel etc.  I went to the matco 6" pneumatic and it was much better but sucked in soft sand.  I went to the 8" wide and its much better in the sand and gravel and so much smoother on the pavement as well. 

:BC:

 

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Posted

I definitely like the idea of an 8" tailwheel, was just concerned about raising the tail that much.  New to Avid and have no idea about what I can get away with yet.  I would like to get it flying and then start nudging it.

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Posted

Wheelbarrow mains are also early on the chopping block.

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Posted

I definitely like the idea of an 8" tailwheel, was just concerned about raising the tail that much.  New to Avid and have no idea about what I can get away with yet.  I would like to get it flying and then start nudging it.

if you are new to avid / kitfox flying, the very top of the list should be wider gear, real brakes, dual leaf tail spring and a real tailwheel.  This will go a very long ways in keeping your plane from being prone to ground loops.. I know I know, it by no means makes it ground loop proof, but it is a whole lot less prone to do so.

 

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Posted

Match works on my kit foxes,make sure you do a weight a balance before flying, also backing into the hanger space is easier with the full swivel,landing slightly tail first isnt necessarily a bad thing!

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Posted

This plane is probably still at least 6-8 weeks from flying.  I just got it with no logs, so doing an engine and prop replacement.  Engine replacement because I need to and prop replacement more because I want to.  I am still trying to figure out what kind of weight I have to work with.  When you say wider gear, I presume that you are referring to something like the tundra gear, which I have considered, but have to see where I am on weight first.  What gear would you suggest?

Right now it has the wheelbarrow gear on it...and I have some aluminum wheels with hydraulic brakes that I can install that should fit on the current gear.

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Posted

Like Leni said, put the wide gear and the double spring 6" or 7" Matco tail wheel. Stay away from the maule.

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Posted (edited)

Like Leni said, put the wide gear and the double spring 6" or 7" Matco tail wheel. Stay away from the maule.

Some guys swear by the Maule tailwheels - Other guys swear at them!  The biggest problem with tailwheels is getting the angle set correctly.  Of course, "Bigger is better" for the Off-roaders.  EDMO

Edited by EDMO

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Posted

Ok, so looking at the Matco 6" pneumatic tailwheel assembly: http://www.matcomfg.com/TAILWHEEL6PNEUMATIC-idv-3373-69.html

Which is $210, which I presume includes the wheel (I hope).  This is a single fork and my current one is a dual fork.  I am relatively new to the tailwheel world, so do I care that it is a single fork.  Will the single fork make any difference in my application?

As for the wide gear, I understand the need, but each implementation seems to add stresses in other places that you have to try and fix, or minimize the effects or the company no longer exists or no longer manufacturers them.  In short, I have been unable to identify the most appropriate solution.

So, to wider gear, I ask which one and why?

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Posted

Don't know if you ever got an answer on how high a 8" tailwheel would raise the back of your plane.  I measured my project Avid today with the 8" matco, and had 13 1/2" from rear/bottom of the tail wheel spring channel.  With a 8" Maule, I measured 14"  JImChuk

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Posted

Here is a picture of the measurement that I wanted, because it is the measurement that I can't change.  I decided to go ahead and get the 8" from Barnstormers; I offered $100 plus shipping and he agreed.  Just waiting for the PayPal invoice now.

MissingSize.png

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Posted

You may need to change springs.  I don't know what your spring configuration is with the SC wheel, but with most Aircraft tailwheels the top of the pivot bolt needs to be about 5 or 6 degrees forward of the bottom of the bolt.  EDMO

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Posted

I had already figured some work was going to need to be done on the spring to get the tailwheel back level.  Additionally the Matco has the 45 degree upslope for additional support that I don't have.  Once it gets here I will see what I can do with it.  And yes, I have considered a spring replacement, if necessary, just not sure where I am going to get it.  The current spring is a single that is 1.25" wide, which is supposed to match up with this tailwheel.

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Posted (edited)

One or Two of our Northern Midwest guys have a place that will make springs for you - I didn't save the company name - should have.   Someone should have the profile of the "normal" Avid spring.   You might post a request or search on the site for the info.   EDMO

Edited by EDMO

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Posted (edited)

Yes Ed he will need to change springs.  As the his picture shows, the tailspring is entering the tail wheel at a 45 degree angel to the ground.  His spring is parallel to the ground.  TSoftware (do you have a first name?)  Here are some pictures I just took of my Avid project with the Matco 8" single arm tailwheel on it.  If you measure to the same place I did on your plane you will see the difference in height from using one tail wheel or the other.  JImChuk

PS  the Matco will work on either 1 1/4" or 1 1/2" springs

Photo0177.jpg

Photo0178.jpg

Photo0179.jpg

Edited by 1avidflyer
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Posted

Interesting to note, that the Avid spring sits in a channel, and the Kitfox springs are sandwiched between two plates under the vertical tube for the VS.   EDMO

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Posted

My name is actually Leslie R. Thomas.  TSoftware stands for Thomas Software, which is my company name.  I must say that this mount differently than what I thought it would.  In my head, the ideal spring would have come down on a 45 like yours does and then would flatten out and the main bolt would go through the flat part of the spring.  Apparently, I was wrong and need to rethink the approach or see if a small re-design would work.

Is your spring a stock 1.25" wide spring off of something or did you have to custom make it?

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Posted

The MK IV used a 1 1/2" spring that is necked down to 1 1/4" where the tail wheel goes.  Earlier models used a 1 1/4" wide spring.   My spring is 1 1/2" factory supplied spring.  Might be somewhat flattened out at the bend from some of my less than smooth landings.  If you click on the parts display image, it will expand.  You can then see how the Matco tailwheel is built.  Think this one is showing the double fork model, but the rest of both tailwheels is the same.  JImChuk

http://www.matcomfg.com/T8LDAssemblyDrawing-idv-3757-28.html

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Posted

Just went out and measured it...that would raise my tail by 5".

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