Monday, March 26, 2012

Getting the word out – let there be Bar-B-Q !!

Oh boy, this is going to be fun! A couple of us were just thinking one day that it might be a lot of fun to have some barbecue and some friends in for a day of R&R Cub-style. Then the idea began to grow

Fly-In Barbecue

We have no idea if this thing will go over or not. If nobody shows up at least we won’t go hungry.

C’mon y’all. Let’s go flying!


Wednesday, March 14, 2012

Flying video and Cub pilots’ Barbecue May 12, 2012

I’d been looking for a way to record my flying adventures without breaking the bank and ran across a pair of sunglasses with a built-in DVR at a trade show. I paid too much – that’s what happens when you find something new and cool that you’ve never seen before. On the upside, when my costly pair had an intermittent audio problem the U.S. seller handled a replacement quickly and without any hassle at all.

I’ve since found that these things can be bought on eBay … just search for “DVR sunglasses” and a lot will pop up. At this early stage in the product cycle I found a few auctions that were just about ready to close without reserve and with no bids! I ordered a couple of pairs and a couple of keychain DVRs for essentially the cost of shipping. Hope they work.

Cub Fly-In Barbecue at the Western North Carolina Air Museum field (Hendersonville NC) on May 12. Be there or be square. No Cubs will be barbecued and hopefully none will be harmed in this production. Other types welcome, of course.


Friday, March 02, 2012

Them’s the brakes – and thanks for friends

One of the really nifty things I enjoy as a Cub owner is other Cub owners, particularly Cub owners who know how to do stuff and don’t mind teaching me how to do the little maintenance things that keep my airplane in the air. I’ve been doofus-ing around for over a month about how my brakes were going kerflooey (note the pilot talk here) and inherited a set of master cylinder diaphragms from Grizzly Stan across the mountains to fix them, but hadn’t mustered up the courage to tackle the job on my own. I looked, talked to several Cub guys about it, thought I’d have to fabricate some inspection/maintenance ports on the underside of the fuselage, when Stan offered to fly over and help me (by doing the work) get back in the air.

Stan trying to finish up the brakesStan - Disassembled J3 Master Cylinder

Stan Dove right in. One of the telephone advisors suggested just taking the master cylinder apart in situ but I thought that would entail a lot of bending that I just don’t do anymore. I wanted to take the master cylinder out of the airplane (therefore the idea about cutting new inspection/maintenance panels in the belly) but Stan took one look and said we could pull them out without having to go to too much trouble so that’s what we did. I have to write this about Stan: He’s an optimist. And it proved true; the master cylinders were easy to remove. I think I could do it again provided I had someone there to roll under the belly of the airplane and hold my nuts … wait a minute – did that come out right?

Stan - Bad Diaphragm Stan - All back together

The master cylinder is really simple. The assembly is divided by a diaphragm – on the dry side, the brake pedal pushes on a plunger that pushes against the diaphragm – on the other (wet) side is the brake fluid that squirts through tubing into the old-fashioned expansion brakes and causes the Piper Cub to careen somewhat less dramatically down the runway (or almost holds the airplane in place while doing a magneto check before takeoff). I exaggerate – the old brakes work pretty well as long as the diaphragm is in one piece. When they split, diaphragms don’t keep the wet and dry sides separate and you know what happens then … unintended consequences. Above, the split in the diaphragm and the reinstalled product, ready to fly.

Stan - The smell of 5606 makes me silly

This is Stan – happy that the job is over and ready for a taco salad.

The next thing is for me to fly over to his side of the mountains and from there to who knows where?