Fixing Broken Flap Gap Seal (wiper)
By Mark Taylor
Okay, somehow I managed to hang a wiper when I was bringing the flaps back up. There was a crunch noise and little bits of the gap seal went flying. Here is my first attempt at fixing this in step-by-step detail. Note: I am just an average builder, so your results may turn out far better than mine. But this should give other rookies a hint at the steps that will fix it.
|Click on pictures below for larger picture.|
|I'm missing about a 3 inch segment near the flap control horn (which is driven from the top on this plane. I removed (unscrewed) the control horn from the flap.|
|I stretched a piece of thick tape across the wound on the outside of the flap.|
| Since the
tape doesn't appear to be strong enough to form a mold by itself, I'll need a
stronger former. |
I found a cardboard tube with a 1/2" inner diameter (aprox same as curve). I cut the so that I had about 1/3 of a circle. ps-this tube happened to come from the center of a roll of stick-on sandpaper.
|Here I am positioning the former against the flap checking for proper curvature. I taped the former in place here.|
|Now I have to get the wing in the proper orientation. Here I have it proped up with leading edge up, and flap bent back about 100 degrees. This will make it so when I pour resin it will pretty much stay put.|
|15 minute epoxy and microbaloons mixed up to about the consistency of applesauce.|
| I have put
some tape on the wing skin, so that I don't goop some resin on it. I've
put a very healthy amount of goop to fill the wound, actually probably too much,
oh well.. |
I let the resin kick in this position.
|After the resin has kicked, but while it is still green, I removed the cardboard and tape and tucked the seal under the top skin to make sure of proper fit. I taped the flap in place and let finish curing with flap down about 30 degrees (edge of gap seal just under top skin).|
| The resin
has now cured and I'm sanding flush with the rest of the gap seal. Other
than a slight color difference the repair job looks good. |