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Thread: About to build Pietenpol - How do I first go about it?

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    Registered User AlistairL's Avatar
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    About to build Pietenpol - How do I first go about it?

    I am planning to start building a Pietenpol Air Camper within the summer starting the fuselage.It is basically an inexpensive aircraft to begin with.This will be my very first aircraft to build and want the cost to be as minimal as I can make it.I come to ask what should I do and where to find the materials for a good price.I get my spruce at Wicks Aircraft Supply and luckily they sell cap strips at exact sizes so that helps things (minimal cutting and such).I feel doing that would cut cost as well.What advice should I follow in getting materials as I go along and the construction?

    Greatly appreciate the help!

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    Re: About to build Pietenpol - How do I first go about it?

    Good choice with lots of builder support. Many Piet builders buy wood from McCormicks in madison,WI. You have to go there and pick it out.

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    Re: About to build Pietenpol - How do I first go about it?

    Immediately get involved with the community of Pietenpol builders and owners, and read everything in all the newsletters, discussion forums, etc. That represents tens of thousands of dollars worth of free education and a free guide to avoiding the mistakes of others.

    You are correct to start with the minimum equipment. Do not spend a large amount of money on radios, avionics, navigation equipment etc. Spend that money on aircraft quality hardware instead.
    Last edited by Victor Bravo; January 9th, 2017 at 06:13 PM. Reason: sp
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    Re: About to build Pietenpol - How do I first go about it?

    Lot of support on the interweb thingy.

    A friend of mine built a cockpit mockup as his first task complete with wing center section to see if he would get in/out. He make a few adjustments and all was well. He built ribs, fuselage, assembled wings, assembled/rigged whole plane, disassembled, covered, painted, final assembly, flew!
    “The only difference between reality and fiction is that fiction needs to be credible.” - Mark Twain

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    Re: About to build Pietenpol - How do I first go about it?

    Thanks all!On task to get involved with the community as much as possible.The community is very large and will surely come of fast help if I come into something.The fuselage is a simple start just need to make a work table and such.I think it be cheaper to get all the wood for one part all at once.I would like to have a Ford A engine installed in it as well.

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    Registered User Little Scrapper's Avatar
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    Re: About to build Pietenpol - How do I first go about it?

    A piet with a model A, man, that's a great airplane.

    You would be amazed at how many metal parts are on the Pietenpol. If I were you I'd wouldn't wait until summer. Get a jig saw or portaband bandsaw and start cutting out metal parts. You literally don't need any space to do this and the 4130 steel is pretty cheap. A $100 buys a lot of steel to start with.

    I'm 30 minutes from McCormick but the Wicks is pre cut and pretty cheap.

    You can build the tail first if you'd like. I built a Pietenpol tail as a gift for my youngest cousin to hang on his wall at college about 10 years ago. I used Doug Fir, the tail was absolutely a blast to build.

    Congratulations on your project, don't wait to have fun. Start right away.

    Mike

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    Re: About to build Pietenpol - How do I first go about it?

    Quote Originally Posted by Little Scrapper View Post
    A piet with a model A, man, that's a great airplane.

    You would be amazed at how many metal parts are on the Pietenpol. If I were you I'd wouldn't wait until summer. Get a jig saw or portaband bandsaw and start cutting out metal parts. You literally don't need any space to do this and the 4130 steel is pretty cheap. A $100 buys a lot of steel to start with.

    I'm 30 minutes from McCormick but the Wicks is pre cut and pretty cheap.

    You can build the tail first if you'd like. I built a Pietenpol tail as a gift for my youngest cousin to hang on his wall at college about 10 years ago. I used Doug Fir, the tail was absolutely a blast to build.

    Congratulations on your project, don't wait to have fun. Start right away.

    Mike
    Thank you for that advice.I will buy the plans as soon as possible and whatever after that start of whats suggested.Unfortunately going to McCormick is a logistical problem due to distance but Wicks is good to work with and buy from.

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    Re: About to build Pietenpol - How do I first go about it?

    McCormick isn't that great, I've been there dozens of times. You're not missing out on anything special, it's really hit or miss depending on the season. It's currently ice boat season of which they supply to.

    Wicks is awesome!

    When you get the plans you will love them. There's really something near about the Pietenpol plans.

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    Re: About to build Pietenpol - How do I first go about it?

    Depending on what part of Ohio you live in, the Brantford, Ontario outlet for Aircraft Spruce might be less than a 300 mile drive.

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    Re: About to build Pietenpol - How do I first go about it?

    I live in Southwest Ohio and it is 4 hrs driving to Public Lumber Detroit, Wicks St. Louis and Owl Hardwoods Greater Chicago area. Now Menards has Douglas Fir. You can probably get your steel local. Aerowerx from the Marion, Ohio area gets his wood from further north, Keim Lumber I believe. Shipping can get real expensive so read 43.13 about alternates and get the EAA book titled "Wood" so you can see how to choose your pieces if you are going to a general lumber yard. Also remember that Bernie did not order his lumber from an aircraft supplier. He bought it local I believe. The aircraft is overbuilt so the wood does not have to be perfect. His last Piet is in the hangar he built himself which was moved to Wittman Field when he died. Go check it out on a quiet day when you can really look it over.

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    Re: About to build Pietenpol - How do I first go about it?

    I live in Athens Ohio so pretty much on the other side from everyone.The shipping of wood is something of consideration so getting wood locally is an option.I'm hoping to find something close by if possible.

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    Re: About to build Pietenpol - How do I first go about it?

    If you are going to build a Piet you need to make a pilgrimage to Broadhead. Plan to spend a day or two. That's why I suggested McCormick. It's on the way and in spite of scrapper kicking me in the sack for suggesting the place I have two friends with flying Piets that every board in their airplanes came from there. They would stop on the way home and pick out a years worth of wood to work with.

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    Re: About to build Pietenpol - How do I first go about it?

    The wood at the lumber yard in Bernie P's day looked like airplane wood in the junk pile. Local wood just depends on what the standard is in your area.

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    Re: About to build Pietenpol - How do I first go about it?

    http://www.westcoastpiet.com/faq's.htm On the subject of where to get your wood.....

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    Re: About to build Pietenpol - How do I first go about it?

    Quote Originally Posted by Kevin N View Post
    If you are going to build a Piet you need to make a pilgrimage to Broadhead. Plan to spend a day or two. That's why I suggested McCormick. It's on the way and in spite of scrapper kicking me in the sack for suggesting the place I have two friends with flying Piets that every board in their airplanes came from there. They would stop on the way home and pick out a years worth of wood to work with.
    Hey hey hey now!!! I wasn't trying to kick ya bro. Lol.

    McCormick can be tricky. Sometimes you get lucky and sometimes you get skunked. Literally, I've showed up multiple times and it's basically empty. When they do have it it's nice stuff for sure.

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