Raceair Skylite Build and sub-kit developments

Discussion in 'Member Project Logs' started by addicted2climbing, Mar 22, 2019.

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  1. Mar 22, 2019 #1

    addicted2climbing

    addicted2climbing

    addicted2climbing

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    Hello All,

    As some of you know I bought the rights to the Raceiar Skylite and Lil Bitts. This thread will be where I post my progress on working toward Sub-Kit components as well as an eventual build. I will also start a thread in another location for members to post, ask questions and offer up advice.

    OK first post then: Rib Jig Sub Kit and Rib Development

    The Skylite rib is made from a piece of sheetmetal that is bent into an L shape with a 45 degree bend on the edge to help with allowing the fabric to roll over without sharp edges. The 45 also adds a bit of rigidity. Since I don't have access to a 48" bending brake, I decided to find a sheet metal shop to bend me up some test pieces. The pieces came out much better than expected and I decided to work on a Rib Jig Sub kit that could be purchased by the builder and it comes with a full size plan as well as a bunch of 3D printed pieces to build the jig. I designed a simple spring loaded swing out clamp to hold the pieces in place for assembly and drilling. I also designed a drill assembly to build the vertical rib supports.


    The Rib Jig kit will include everything but the board. The board is just a melamine shelf that can be purchased at any Home Depot or Lowes. The plan is attached with 3M 77 and then covered with clear packing tape to protect it. All of the required holes to attach the rib guides, 3D printed Clamps and such are drilled in advance. Also the drill assembly for the Vertical supports can be attached to the Rig Jig as well. In my pics I show it on a vice, but its because I have not built the jig yet. I am still working on the drawing.

    When making the Vertical Rib supports, the drill assembly allows the builder to slide the material into the assembly and depending on which is needed decides on which guides to use. Also the outer edge of the guides are used to mark the length as well. The drill is undersized as these will just be pilot holes to set the locations in the main portions of the rib and they will be drilled to size as a match drill on the rib jig.

    So far everything worked as planned and as soon as the drawing is done will order and 3D print everything to build one up for testing. I am really trying to incorporate 3D printed parts through this build and development as alignment aids, jigs and sometimes actual parts. I need to get my feet wet printing Glass reinforced nylon to see if I can make my own printed rib widgets. The widgets are the grey pieces in the CAD file that attach the rib to the spar tubes. I am also considering (unsure as of yet) for builders with 3D printers of their own I may release the files to print the jig components as a lower cost option where builders just purchase the Rib Jig Plan and STL Print files and make everything themselves. Its all up in the air right now..

    OK enough for now. Feel free to comment on the separate discussion forum.

    Best regards,

    Marc
     
    Last edited: Mar 22, 2019
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  2. Mar 23, 2019 #2

    Viper22

    Viper22

    Viper22

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    I like the direction this is going.
     
  3. Apr 6, 2019 #3

    addicted2climbing

    addicted2climbing

    addicted2climbing

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    I had a bit of trouble with being locked out of my build log due to the update, but now its fixed. Thank you moderator.

    Anyhow, I have the jig done in CAD and have begun 3D printing parts. I plan to get a full size print of the rib jig 2D layout and build one up. The 2D print has items like the clamps omitted and show just the tee nuts. The plan will be 3M 77 glued down to the board which will be a home depot shelf replacement. Once the plan is down, it will be covered with clear packing tape. Once that is done, all of the holes to mount rib jig items will be drilled and all items installed. Here is what the 2D plan looks like. Its big so you will need to click on it to expand.
    The 2D plan also has cut line markings and pertinent info and reminders.

    Here is what the rib jig will look like on the board.

    Please feel free to comment in the discussion thread. In fact add both to your watch list to know when I add content.
     

    Attached Files:

    Last edited: Apr 6, 2019
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  4. May 7, 2019 #4

    addicted2climbing

    addicted2climbing

    addicted2climbing

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    Sorry for the late update but I have been tied up with work. I ended up building the Jig with all the 3D printed parts and it came out even better than expected. Sadly I forgot to take pics of it when I brought it to my EAA meeting but will do it this weekend and give an update.

    I am also mired up with a consulting gig that will keep me from working on airplanes for a few months so updates will be a bit sparse. One plus though the consulting will give me the capital to move forward with this venture a bit faster than I had anticipated.
     
  5. May 30, 2019 #5

    addicted2climbing

    addicted2climbing

    addicted2climbing

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    Hello All,

    Little Scrapper reached out to ask for an update on my progress. First off I have been a bit preoccupied with a side design job I am working on so the aviation stuff has taken a bit of a back seat for the past 6 weeks or so. I actually finished the rib jig prior to the side job but never had a chance to upload the files.

    Anyhow, I was able to finish the rib jig and built up a test example. I 3D printed all the parts and built everything on top of the plan itself. I had the plan printed on both 32# weight paper and Tyvek. For the paper version my plan was to glue it down with 3M 77 and then cover it to protect it in strips of clear packing tape. For the Tyvek version the plan was to not require the packing tape since the print was essentially waterproof and tear proof. I started with the tyvek, but within the first 20 min noticed it get really dirty quickly and I felt that over time the lines would be obscured by the shop dirt so I abandoned that quickly. However if I did want a set of working plans for the build I would still consider tyvek as its somewhat indestructible. however cost is too high for a full set of plans. So in the end I chose 32# paper and Packing tape.

    The plan is glued down to a piece of shelf that can be bought at home depot. I also bought a piece of MDF as well and had Home Depot cut it for me for free. Price was about the same with either option. The shelf was ever so slightly warped so I decided to stick it down to the MDF with some 3M 77 to act as a piece of composite to hold everything flat. Its been 6 weeks in my storage closet and its still perfectly flat so this may be a good way to do this.

    The pics below show a center rib support drill jig that will make both the front and rear support. I show a pic with the part I made in for the rear. The drill jig also sets the cut to length as well by using a blue sharpie to trace the size off the drill jig. It worked perfectly and I am very happy with this.

    The rest is pretty self explanatory, the swing out clamps are spring loaded with a rubber bumper on the tips and they hold the parts quite well. I have a good sized 3D printer (Formbot Trex 2+) and was able to print everything in one print overnight while I slept. Well it was still going when I arrived at work, but only had a few hours left. All the hardware was sourced at McMaster Carr. I don't have a rib Jig kit price just yet and want to build a few ribs before I offer them up as builders kits, but the kit will come with the plan and all the 3D printed parts and hardware. All total one 2 hour evening to assemble it all.

    Also I have yet to try and print a nylon widget as to do so I need to enclose my printer to keep the ambient heat up and my printer is so large it will be a pain in the butt. I may buy a smaller Ender 5 and enclose it in an Ikea shelf unit with a door and it will be dedicated to printing nylon. The nylon will need to be kept in a humidifier or inside the enclosed build chamber to keep the water out of the material.

    Open to any thoughts on this on my other discussion thread.

     
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