- Sep 17, 2008
I wondered about the rigidity of the Dynel/epoxy skin as opposed to fiberglass and polyester. The skin of those wings is the thing that forms a torsion-resistant tube so that the wing can't twist in flight, which could be disastrous. The Taylor's wing used the skinned leading edge back to the spar, which formed the classic D-tube that kept the thing pointed the right direction.BTW, the KR1 and 2 did not have foam/glass wings. As originally designed they had a wood structure consisting of main and rear spars and widely spaced ribs. The volume between the ribs was filled with low density foam to give the wing shape. The foam was sanded to shape using the ribs and spars as templates. The wing was then skinned with Dynel fabric (a form of dacron) and polyester resin.
Later builders did switch to fiberglass for the skins because the Dynel/polyester method, while cheap, produced a poor quality structure. I cannot speak to later changes that may have been made. I have not paid much attention to this design for many years.
There were other guys that came up with some fixes for the KR's shortcomings. More ribs, for instance, to keep the spars in the right place relative to each other. I think Rand only had root and tip ribs. They might also have added drag bracing, but it's been a long time ago since I read anything about them. I also often wondered about such a fast little aircraft without mass-balanced control surfaces; rule of thumb used to be 150 MPH Vne or higher usually getting balanced surfaces. The Taylor was never that fast.
Such fixes often negate any weight savings due to the foam. Fiberglass cloth and poly resin are especially heavy.