"Dorothy" - Choppergirl's $38 Volmer Jensen VJ-24W antique ultralight motor glider

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  1. Feb 22, 2016 #101

    Victor Bravo

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    Re: "Dorothy" - Choppergirl's $38 Volmer Jensen VJ-24W antique ultralight motor glide

    I like this girl! In a very short time she has shown me that that old-school youthful determination is not dead, some of the younger generation can still write coherently and passionately, and that there may be a future for aviation after all.

    Thank you CG. I'm in your debt.

    One thing that I'd like to suggest is that as you start rebuilding the airframe, you make a list of the parts that you know you need. eight feet worth of X aluminum tubing, Y square inches of steel strips or steel sheet, Z number of airplane pop rivets, this size tire and tube, this much aircraft control or flying wire cable, etc. Post this list on this thread, I think you might be pleasantly surprised at how many people have some of this stuff laying around that they'd donate.
     
  2. Feb 22, 2016 #102

    bmcj

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    Re: "Dorothy" - Choppergirl's $38 Volmer Jensen VJ-24W antique ultralight motor glide

    Thanks CG. Anyone who can work the title of a Clint Eastwood spaghetti western into their detailed post is alright in my book!

    I strongly second VB's observation above!
     
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  3. Feb 22, 2016 #103

    Dana

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    Re: "Dorothy" - Choppergirl's $38 Volmer Jensen VJ-24W antique ultralight motor glide

    Don't freak out yet. Cuyuna is long gone, but parts are plentiful and cheap (at least compared to the price of Rotax parts). Cuyunas were used on thousands of snowmobiles, and any snowmobile shop can work on it if you don't want to do it yourself.

    Don't waste money on a Cuyuna CD, it will just be copies of the owner's and service manuals you can find online for free. Do join the Cuyunamotor yahoo group; lots of knowledgeable people there and the files section contains the manuals and lots of other information.

    For parts, Roger Zerkle (Cuyuna & 2si Engine Parts and Diversified Power Equipment Retailer in Illinois) is the man. Just be warned, he can be grumpy, and don't use the word "aircraft" even though he knows full well what people are using the engines on. I believe Mark Smith at Tri-State Kites (a former Quicksilver dealer from the early days) also has some Cuyuna parts (KT100 parts, too, as I learned during my brief madness resurrecting an early weightshift Quick).

    Your engine was probably on a Kolb Ultrastar like mine, not a Firefly... it was the standard engine on the Ultrastar, it looks like a Kolb redrive on yours, and the 2:1 ratio is right. Standard installation on the US is as yours is set up, cylinders down, redrive up (not only the sticker on the engine but the carburetor is oriented that way). The standard prop for the Ultrastar was a Culver 50x30.

    Dana
     
    Last edited: Feb 23, 2016
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  4. Feb 23, 2016 #104

    choppergirl

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    Re: "Dorothy" - Choppergirl's $38 Volmer Jensen VJ-24W antique ultralight motor glide

    Actually, I already knew those financial rules, and learned them the hard way. But, what you going to do, when its your best friend? She'll pay me back, but it puts me in !@#$% bind at the moment, maxed to the hilt. As far as learning to fly in advance, well, for what its worth, I'm the world's most dangerous futuristic VTOL helicopter pilot inside a video game. That has to count for something. I think I got a shot of an inroad at flying a butterfly of a motor glider in real life. After all, I just drove a motorcycle 360 miles with a 85lbs Cuyuna engine strapped to the back through suicide Atlanta metro traffic. Even fishtailed it on the brakes when some truck pulled out in front of me out of a gas station with him failing to look first. I think I'll be alright.

    The reality is I'll probably be driving a cash register in a dead end Dollar Store for a while, and hating life... if anybody asks me how I'm doing, I'm gonna growl... "I'd rather be flying..."

    I guess if I had a million bucks I could buy a Leer Jet and pay $$$ for fancy white glove pilot school instructions in a glass cockpit. I'd probably become a better pilot. Dunno, it doesn't appeal to me. Does that appeal to you?

    I'm more of a buy an airplane engine with a blown piston with my last crumpled bunch of bucks, and kiss my lucky rabbits foot before getting my wing and a prayer off the ground while I still got grease on my face and wearing a dirty old mechanics jump suit with sockets in the pocket. If I had my druthers I'd be back in the 80's flying some shot out DC-3 for cocaine runners into Florida. Or maybe a bush pilot in Alaska or Papua New Guinea. Or maybe a fighter pilot for the Luftwaffe in the final days of the war when the odds were a million to one against. I like those kind of odds.

    ~

    If I can pick up a 50x30 prop on the cheap, I will, after I get some replacement pistons and rings and this thing running. Will check the cylinder barrels while I'm at it. Rebuilt my motorcycle engine before, though as my dad says, even though two strokes are simpler, there's a lot more you got to get exactly right. While I have it on the bench, I guess the bearings too, though I wish I could just do a top end rebuild. But like one of my friends and my dad keeps telling me, with a small prop you're just cutting a noisy hole in the sky. Necessary on an Ultrastar, but on my VJ its got da clearance for more!

    BTW, my plane's name is Dorothy, not mine. As in Judy Garland, aka Dorothy, from the Wizard of Oz... I told myself if I ever got a plane, I'd name her Dorothy...

    ~

    Actually, I'm more of Fist Full of Dollars kinda girl. Get three coffins ready...

    Read my comments on that Youtube video a year ago ;-)

    ~

    Thusly ends me talking out my ass...




    Randomness: did you know Charles Lindbergh bought his first Jenny at Souther Field in Georgia for $500, had to fly it home, and had never soloed before? He later taught P-38 pilots how to lean their engines for extended range.
     
    Last edited: Feb 23, 2016
  5. Feb 23, 2016 #105

    Dana

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    Re: "Dorothy" - Choppergirl's $38 Volmer Jensen VJ-24W antique ultralight motor glide

    But he had had some flying instruction. That was common in those days; pilots would give flying lessons, but wouldn't let students go solo for fear of banging up their only means of livelihood.

    Dana

    P.S. To go with a bigger prop than 50", you'll have to increase the redrive ratio from the current 2:1. 50" may not be that efficient, but you have more than double the horsepower the plane was designed for, so you can afford the loss.

    P.P.S. If you search here you'll find some discussion on propeller making with links to "how to" articles.
     
  6. Feb 23, 2016 #106

    plncraze

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    Re: "Dorothy" - Choppergirl's $38 Volmer Jensen VJ-24W antique ultralight motor glide

    If you search there is an e-book of how to carve a wooden prop with an electric chainsaw and a sander.
     
  7. Feb 23, 2016 #107

    blane.c

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    Re: "Dorothy" - Choppergirl's $38 Volmer Jensen VJ-24W antique ultralight motor glide

    There is nothing sacred about were you mount the fuel tank. It can go on or in an inboard section of wing instead of over your head. Thirty odd pounds that close to center won't matter that much. Many (if not most) planes have one wing washed in a little and one wing washed out a little to fly level because of aerodynamic reasons and or weight differences.

    Check that, that redrive is ok for tractor configuration as it probably came off a pusher (thrust bearings).
     
  8. Feb 23, 2016 #108

    StarJar

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    Re: "Dorothy" - Choppergirl's $38 Volmer Jensen VJ-24W antique ultralight motor glide

    Your first flight might go fine. But the same is true with Russian roullete, after all the odds are 6 to 1.

    You might have 10, safe flights without instruction, consisting of A,B and C. Then W,G,F, or Q happens, you're not trained properly for them, and now you're dead or seriously injured.

    I thought we were past this issue.

    It''s not anything personal, because I would say the same thing if it was Travis Pastrana or Dale Earnhardt Jr. with 100 or even 1,000 hrs. of simulator experience.
     
    Last edited: Feb 23, 2016
  9. Feb 23, 2016 #109

    choppergirl

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    Re: "Dorothy" - Choppergirl's $38 Volmer Jensen VJ-24W antique ultralight motor glide

    My dad volunteered to make me a propeller, as he's a cabinetmaker, but I didn't want him creating something unbalanced that if I bolted it on it would sling my engine all to pieces. Also, I think he was intending to make some slab without any helical twist at all, that would be the correct pitch in a whole whopping 1 inch spot along the propeller. I declined his offer.

    I told him instead why don't I just buy the size and pitch I want and the redrive to match between the engine and that prop, from some combination someone has posted that has worked gangbangers for them in real world static thrust tests, and then he can use the bought prop as a template to copy from... and he frowned at me. Maybe I hurt his feelings. Dunno, I figured, if I ever broke my prop, that way I'd have a backup copy... or template. Props get broke.

    He has after all made some gorgeous sandwiched wood boat paddles... long ago... if I find one I'll take a pic and post it somewhere. We have this insane huge lathe from like... 1950... that never ever gets used... I think he used that.

    Making propellers in itself is kind of an artform... I didn't want to get too much into that, I have enough work ahead of me as is. Wish I had the propeller that was with this engine though, just cause...a propeller on anything screams "this is an airplane" to the passing lay person. Up until there's a propeller on my plane project, people are going ask me "what the frack is that" about this orange steel thing I have in my kitchen...
     
  10. Feb 23, 2016 #110

    rbrochey

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    Re: "Dorothy" - Choppergirl's $38 Volmer Jensen VJ-24W antique ultralight motor glide

    You could do your first flight at the state fair in Kansas... never can tell where that may lead the nose of your plane... ;)
     
  11. Feb 23, 2016 #111

    Little Scrapper

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    Re: "Dorothy" - Choppergirl's $38 Volmer Jensen VJ-24W antique ultralight motor glide

    What prop do you need? I might be able to help you.
     
  12. Feb 23, 2016 #112

    jedi

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    Re: "Dorothy" - Choppergirl's $38 Volmer Jensen VJ-24W antique ultralight motor glide

    Dorthy,

    My bad, but I like talking to airplanes.

    There is a reason why ships and planes are named after women. (Too long of story for here and now but I share with many of my students).

    It appears you have read Charley's "We". That is good. You then realize that the plane and pilot are a team. Much like the cowbird that sits on the cow's back and feeds on flies an ticks. (I am not a cowboy but you get the message.) The Pilot is just the friend of the plane and works for the good of the team. The aircraft is an aircraft without the pilot, but the pilot is not a pilot without the aircraft.

    Great project, hoping CG does you well. Way back in the 50's, a flying rag ran an article on how someone bought/built a $1,000 Cub. I can see a good story in your restoration that would pay CG for the whole shebang and put her in the pilot seat.
     
  13. Feb 23, 2016 #113

    choppergirl

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    Re: "Dorothy" - Choppergirl's $38 Volmer Jensen VJ-24W antique ultralight motor glide

    UPS delivery today, what supposedly was with the engine:

    [​IMG]

    Lots of cut wires coming off the engine, will have to figure out the pinouts... I'm hoping some of them go to the sensors that connect to the this EGT/RPM gauge.

    [​IMG]

    I don't like multiple needle gauges like that, it confuses my brain, but it was free for the shipping. The hour gauge just runs stop/go off 12volts.

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]
    ~

    Dana opinioned an inverted ULII-02 with 2:1 reduction drive and 50/30 prop was a typical setup on an Ultrastar, and he would be in the know about that, as he use to have one. The carb was inverted so it defo wasn't from a Firefly like the guy said (nor was it running when stored like the guy said, either, so... just a made up story me thinks).

    I would like to run a 70 inch (or thereabouts?) wooden blade prop, haven't computated what pitch and redrive to match the ULII-02 35hp yet... or looked around for what others used. I printed a table someone made for some Rotax engines and props they tried, and results they got, but nothing for Cuyunas. His same table mentions not to use 2:1 reduction drives, as they set up dangerous harmonics... hmm, well, maybe I can find the biggest lower pully I can squeeze in there without having to make a new base plate from scratch (?)

    Always a new problem... whereever you look... ain't that life. I'm skeptical if these are the right range spark plugs as well... Autolight 4054. Will have to look that up too. One side ran lean or otherwise something caused catastrophic detonation in that cyldinder. A good testament perhaps to spend the extra money and spring for the Super Unleaded always for your aircraft engine.


    Things that will ruin your day, looking through a spark plug hole, at TDC. I never saw a failed piston from detonation before, but that's what it is:

    [​IMG]

    That thar is a hole straight through the center of the piston... straight through to China. And not from interference with the spark plug... :-/

    ~

    I just applied to Home Depot online. :-/ Dunno how well I did, answering their "retail scenario" ambiguous questions. The Lowes seasonal positions seem to have disappeared from Monster.com in the last few days... after that, hmm... will try Pizza Hut. Only because I like Pizza. Then the Dollar Tree.
     
    Last edited: Feb 23, 2016
  14. Feb 23, 2016 #114

    Victor Bravo

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    Re: "Dorothy" - Choppergirl's $38 Volmer Jensen VJ-24W antique ultralight motor glide

    Methinks the instruments and wires and solder flux are the very very very furthest down items on your list right now.

    You will hate me for this, but in between job applications you probably need to become Betty Bestie BFF in a committed relationship with your new friends from the Emerald Isle... Mr. Scotch Brite and Mrs. Rust O'leum.
     
  15. Feb 23, 2016 #115

    choppergirl

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    Re: "Dorothy" - Choppergirl's $38 Volmer Jensen VJ-24W antique ultralight motor glide

    Agreed on the rust and flakey paint removal job... and repainting... need to tear into that like a whirlwind bat out of hell. You would think I would have that all done by now. Things have come up. January got eaten alive by fighting off traffic tickets which I won.

    Want to do all the paint and rust removal outside under the shade tree on my picnic table and relax doing it. usually I sit on the steps of my porch where there is an outlet for power tools. Spring is just around the corner. I can hear the birds twerping, and our ornamental cherry tree is blossoming, my bellwether that spring is just about here. The 22 caliber sized hole in the piston really depresses and annoys me though, I didn't bargain for that extra headache. Like someone just put a bullet hole through my project. So I post silly pictures of gauges to try and keep my mind off of... *that*. Not impossible to fix, just... more sourcing parts, more work, more PITA.
     
  16. Feb 23, 2016 #116

    Dana

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    Re: "Dorothy" - Choppergirl's $38 Volmer Jensen VJ-24W antique ultralight motor glide

    Ask Mark Smith about the prop... as I said the early Quicks had Cuyuna. 2:1 is bad with a great drive but ok with a belt drive as the inevitable slip means it's not exactly 2:1.

    The EGT gauge will connect to a probe on the exhaust "Y" pipe, th tach connections go to the engine's lighting coil.. the wire color codes are in the manual. The Hobbs meter will need 12VDC power, which means a regulator... but you really don't need an hour meter.

    Dana
     
  17. Feb 23, 2016 #117

    harrisonaero

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    Re: "Dorothy" - Choppergirl's $38 Volmer Jensen VJ-24W antique ultralight motor glide

    As an aerospace business owner maybe I can offer some advice here...

    Rather than getting an entry level job at a chain store, why not figure out what you need to make, say $10/hr, and then go visit every aviation related business you can possibly find within a 30 minute drive from your house? And at each place you stop, if they say they aren't hiring just simply ask them if they know of any other aviation related places in the area. Don't forget, it doesn't have to be directly aviation related but can be a spinoff of something that still applies to the manufacturing of airplanes.

    Make sure to tell them you're building an airplane and making money towards that project (bring pics). Plus convince them you have mad computer skills and can help them that way too, but you just really want to be around airplanes. And if they seem reluctant to add another "employee" mention to them that you're willing to work as a 1099 contractor for a while so that they can see what you can offer them with no strings.

    * FBOs
    * maintenance facilities
    * manufacturing places (sheet metal, metal fab, welding, CNC, waterjet, laser, composite, etc)
    * call the state employment agency for a list of local businesses
    * look online at the Secretary of State site for a list of businesses
    * look on Craigslist for both jobs and services and start visiting these places (don't just call- you won't engage in the conversations needed to network to find other places).

    I can almost guarantee that you can find at least 20 places within a 30 minute drive of your home and out of these 20 two will probably offer you an entry level job if they see you are motivated and eager.

    To put it bluntly, Millennials have a reputation for being lazy and entitled and a lot of employers have been burned. If someone walks in that's motivated and appears to have her act together, there's a good chance she'll have the opportunity to show what she can do.

    Good luck and let us know how it goes :)
     
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  18. Feb 23, 2016 #118

    choppergirl

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    Re: "Dorothy" - Choppergirl's $38 Volmer Jensen VJ-24W antique ultralight motor glide

    Well, Home Depot, Lowes, and Dollar Tree all pay about $10. I'm not lazy, but diabetes does leave me fatiqued at times. Which is why I busted my butt trying something entrepreneurial on my own at first... because I also hate to commute. Didn't work out. I should though at least search the state job board for aviation related jobs. Who knows, I might stumble upon something maintenance related and luck out where I am at least around airplanes. Like me pushing a broom, where I won't get anyone killed right off the bat by me happening to fail use a torque wrench.

    Once I get all the old paint and rust off down to the bone, working on it every day out on my porch, and buy a box of rivets, and replace all the rivets, it will start looking like a credible airplane.... just waiting for a new dress... like this:

    VJ24+AZCULLY+3364b.jpg

    VJ24+AZCULLY+3364c.jpg

    VJ24+AZCULLY+3364d.jpg

    VJ24+AZCULLY+3364E.jpg

    VJ24+AZCULLY+3364F.jpg

    Anyway, I bought it to be my summer project.... was not in the mood to work on it indoors over the winter, not even in my dad's cold ass shop on a concrete floor or work table. Dark and depressing and cold in there.
     
  19. Feb 23, 2016 #119

    Victor Bravo

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    Re: "Dorothy" - Choppergirl's $38 Volmer Jensen VJ-24W antique ultralight motor glide

    ^^^^ What harrisonaero said !

    Sweeping the floor at an aircraft show will be a lot better than Dollar Tree for several reasons.

    If you do choose to go pounding pavement and find even a floor sweeper or airplane washer job in aviation, it's a door open to an entire life that you might want. I have an old friend who started out by washing airplanes and pumping airplane gas. He flies a Gulfstream V now for a living, and for fun he flies left seat in one of the B-17's that flies around the country giving warbird rides.

    For someone who likes airplanes and warbirds, worse things could happen :)
     
  20. Feb 23, 2016 #120

    TFF

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    Re: "Dorothy" - Choppergirl's $38 Volmer Jensen VJ-24W antique ultralight motor glide

    Yes Harrisonaero is right and it sets you up in the nest of what you have interest in. That is how all of us survive; make it so you can stand work, because everyone has to work. Billionaire work; just not like we do. Once you wiggle your way in, you have it made. Learning stuff who knows, they might put you up for an A&P license and some flights around here and there. Starting small is what we all do. Everyone here is on your side; I have seen this place dump want-a-bees fast, and there is only cheering going on. You have been blessed as legit. Keep moving forward toward the goal and don't aim low.
     
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