# Thoughts on folding or removable wings for keeping a plane at home

Discussion in 'Hangar Flying' started by cluttonfred, Nov 2, 2017.

1. Nov 2, 2017

### Victor Bravo

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There's that large grass/dirt area East of the tie-downs near the restaurant at AJO, and I suspect that you could make a case for that representing MORE revenue for the airport than less. The big point would be that you would never be a customer of the "regular" tiedowns because your airplane can be folded into a trailer and taken home. But if you can give then $50 a month to park a container out in the back dirt area, then you would leave the airplane at the airport and they have more revenue than they would have had. Topaz mentioning Corona brings up another REALLY important point. SOME of the shipping containers are water-tight. Corona airport gets flooded completely every 5-8 years. If he had his little motorglider parked in a proper seaworthy container out there and the airport flooded, he would have some reasonable chance that his airplane would not get soaked. Topaz likes this. 2. Nov 2, 2017 ### Topaz ### Topaz #### Moderator Joined: Jul 30, 2005 Messages: 13,436 Likes Received: 5,132 Location: Orange County, California Floats! :gig: MadRocketScientist likes this. 3. Nov 2, 2017 ### cluttonfred ### cluttonfred #### Well-Known Member Joined: Feb 13, 2010 Messages: 6,351 Likes Received: 2,208 Location: World traveler Huh, I though I was arguing against trailering and for on-airport storage in a container or a shared hangar? Now I'm confused. Are you the one that mentioned airport rules that specified one aircraft per hangar (which is just rude)? And would a place like Corona allow through-the-fence access for a trailered aircraft in any case? Sounds to me like the issue is airport management more than anything else and no design can fix that. :-( One approach that might work is to get them to agree to a price per square foot (a typical T-hangar is over 1,000 square feet but a 20' container is just 160 sq ft) especially if you could put a neat container or two in small, otherwise wasted, non-revenue-generating space. Something like that wood-clad container I posted would address any aesthetic concerns. 4. Nov 2, 2017 ### Topaz ### Topaz #### Moderator Joined: Jul 30, 2005 Messages: 13,436 Likes Received: 5,132 Location: Orange County, California I meant in terms of the utility of folding/removable wings, regardless of whether it's on-site or off. Wasn't me, but I've heard of such nonsense. Not around here, though. Publicly-owned airport, so I think they have to. I don't know how difficult the TSA, DHS, or the airport management makes it, however. I haven't tried, nor looked into it. I believe erecting even a T-hangar on public land requires a raft of permits, etc. This is California. We're the land of endless opportunity - for paperwork and fees. Something "temporary" such as a ISO container might slip through the cracks if the airport manager is a stand-up guy. Making it "look permanent" would probably just make things worse. I know, I know. It doesn't have to make sense here. cowlove likes this. 5. Nov 2, 2017 ### Victor Bravo ### Victor Bravo #### Well-Known Member Joined: Jul 30, 2014 Messages: 5,748 Likes Received: 4,620 Location: KWHP, Los Angeles CA, USA The whole "through the fence" thing was about residential developments next to airports, and having a public airport paying for an area of the airport that is essentially a private airport. "Through the fence" was never meant to address people bringing their glider trailers on the airport, so there should not be any problem with a glider-like airplane trailer. I believe it was always about public airport trust funds being used to re-pave runways at private airparks. That is the only legitimate complaint that someone could make, regarding public funds. 6. Nov 2, 2017 ### skier ### skier #### Well-Known Member Joined: Mar 5, 2008 Messages: 1,075 Likes Received: 327 Location: CT Interesting, but Alaska is a very different place than the east coast. Humidity is essentially 0 and rainfall is significantly less than the east coast. I see your listed location is Port Townsend, WA which is a lot more humid than Alaska tends to be. Does your opinion hold for that environment as well? Perhaps I'm wrong and there is nothing wrong with wooden aircraft tied-down outside in humid, snowy, rainy environments? I would have thought the glue joints and the wood itself would tend to deteriorate much faster in those conditions than a sheet metal aircraft. I could, however, be completely wrong? 7. Nov 2, 2017 ### cluttonfred ### cluttonfred #### Well-Known Member Joined: Feb 13, 2010 Messages: 6,351 Likes Received: 2,208 Location: World traveler OK, Topaz, so we are on the same page. Did the the city or the airport authority build the hangars already there? I wonder if a group of people could get permission to build, say, a 40' x 40' building of separate 8' x 20' (10) or 8' x 40' (5) bays? If you raise the door and ceiling height to 12' or so then gyros will fit. The city could get the same or even a little higher cost per square foot and the cost for each individual would still be quite reasonable. Even with the straight container route, I'd try to get a group of people together. One guy asking to put up one container is just an annoyance, but a half-dozen people looking to put up a row of six containers on otherwise unused land is a significant revenue stream. skier, I suspect that we are all a little more afraid for the wooden structures than we need to be. Wooden aircraft were regularly stored outdoors even in rainy Britain in the 1920s-1950s and we have better glues, varnishes, paints, and fabrics than they had then. Yes, you need to be careful about drain holes and inspections and all the rest, but the same holds true for metal aircraft. I still would prefer not to keep a wood-and-fabric aircraft outdoors indefinitely, but it certainly has been done before. 8. Nov 2, 2017 ### BJC ### BJC #### Well-Known Member Joined: Oct 7, 2013 Messages: 8,877 Likes Received: 5,729 Location: 97FL, Florida, USA The Panther seems to have solved the folding wing / trailer it home / keep in a box challenge. Has anyone here examined one in detail? BJC 9. Nov 2, 2017 ### BBerson ### BBerson #### Well-Known MemberHBA Supporter Joined: Dec 16, 2007 Messages: 11,407 Likes Received: 2,092 Location: Port Townsend WA skier, Alaska is dry for a few cold months. In the summer it rains much more than Port Townsend. Port Townsend is dry from May to October. Wood is ok if ventilated. Houses are made out of wood sticks with no varnish. Unless a hangar is heated, the humidity is same or worse than outside. The occasional humidity doesn't hurt wood at all, if drained. Humidity does condense on cold steel and corrode bare steel whether stored inside or outside, no difference from my experience 10. Nov 2, 2017 ### Hot Wings ### Hot Wings #### Well-Known MemberHBA Supporter Joined: Nov 14, 2009 Messages: 5,981 Likes Received: 1,996 Location: Rocky Mountains Note 4:50. [video=youtube;HTb8uiacKsk]https://www.youtube.com/watch?time_continue=227&v=HTb8uiacKsk[/video] Last edited by a moderator: Mar 20, 2019 BJC likes this. 11. Nov 2, 2017 ### Topaz ### Topaz #### Moderator Joined: Jul 30, 2005 Messages: 13,436 Likes Received: 5,132 Location: Orange County, California Airports in SoCal tend to be either city- or county-owned. Fullerton Municipal and Santa Monica are examples of the former, while Brackett (POC) is a good example of the latter. Getting permission to build a permanent structure on public land in California is a significant endeavour, requiring full building permits, safety reviews, and possibly an environmental impact report created by an independent third-party contractor if the development is extensive enough, or impacts local watershed, etc. Not at all simple, or a matter for the airport manager alone to decide and approve. A group of people putting down storage containers as impromptu "hangars" might work with a sympathetic airport manager, right until someone (a disgruntled 'traditional' hangar-renter, homeowner near that end of the airport, etc.) complains, in which case the city/county would have to look into it and you can bet your buttons that they'll decide they need to "regulate" the installation in some way, probably involving either removing the containers or replacing them with conventional hangars. Dropping a group of containers would be infinitely simple out at a privately-owned little airport like Skylark. On a publicly-owned one like Corona, I have extreme doubts that the solution would work for very long, if at all. 12. Nov 2, 2017 ### Dana ### Dana #### Moderator Joined: Apr 4, 2007 Messages: 8,456 Likes Received: 2,855 Location: CT, USA Sounds like you need a PPG. The problem with trailers big enough to hold an airplane is that they're, well, big. The trailer for my Kolb was a huge cumbersome thing that required a full size truck to haul it and was a PITA to manuever in and out of my driveway. Fine at the beginning and end of the flying season, or if the plane needed work I could better do at home, but if I had to do it every time I flew, I wouldn't have flown it much. Also trailering tends to beat on planes in ways that flying doesn't. PPG, OTOH, I often flew several nights a week after work before going home for dinner. Regarding containers and such, I don't know what California allows but around here fabric structures aren't considered permanent and thus need no permits. Richmond airport in Rhode Island has a bunch of fabric hangars, some with dirt floors, some on concrete pads. I believe the occupants of the hangars buy them and put them up, I don't know what the arrangement with the [privately owned] airport is. Dana 13. Nov 2, 2017 ### BBerson ### BBerson #### Well-Known MemberHBA Supporter Joined: Dec 16, 2007 Messages: 11,407 Likes Received: 2,092 Location: Port Townsend WA The Avid/Kitfox may not fit folded in an 8 foot container (my Avid doesn't fit).It was designed to tow on wheels. The Kitfox guy that does the trailer talk at Oshkosh bought a custom 9 foot wide trailer. Details matter. 14. Nov 3, 2017 ### Daleandee ### Daleandee #### Well-Known Member Joined: Sep 11, 2015 Messages: 824 Likes Received: 496 Location: SC Dan Weseman has brought his Panther to the Corvair colleges I've attended in Barnwell SC. Nice aircraft with some neat features. Here's some info on the wing fold design he uses. Yep, folds quick and he puts it in a trailer that he pulls behind his motor home. https://flywithspa.com/more-on-panther-wing-fold/ https://flywithspa.com/corvair-college-barnwell-sc/ Dunno if this helps, Dale Williams N319WF @ 6J2 Myunn - "daughter of Cleanex" 120 HP - 3.0 Corvair Tail Wheel - Center Stick Signature Finish 2200 Paint Job 160.6 hours / Status - Flying PS: Oops! I now see the Panther wing fold video was already posted ... BJC likes this. 15. Nov 3, 2017 ### Tiger Tim ### Tiger Tim #### Well-Known Member Joined: Apr 26, 2013 Messages: 2,772 Likes Received: 1,534 Location: Thunder Bay Just sayin'... MadRocketScientist and Topaz like this. 16. Nov 3, 2017 ### Topaz ### Topaz #### Moderator Joined: Jul 30, 2005 Messages: 13,436 Likes Received: 5,132 Location: Orange County, California You know, PPG's actually look like a lot of fun. I've done enough soaring around para-gliders that the whole thing looks like a complete hoot. But they're not really great for any travel, and even though I believe there are two-seat examples, the wife wouldn't go up in anything like that if the ground was on fire. All good and valid points. And yet I really don't have much of another option. I can't afford a hangar at any nearby airport, a tie-down anywhere except Skylark is basically highway robbery and almost as problematic, and I'm extremely skeptical of being allowed to put up even a fabric structure on a city- or county-owned public airport around here, which is all there is in less than a 1.5h drive. John Wayne (SNA) is actually the closest "field" and I'll guarantee that, at Orange County land prices, putting up even a pup-tent is going to cost more per-month than most hangars. Next-closest Corona (AJO) would be "cheaper", but the same problem: City- or county-owned. Here in CA, there's just about nothing you can do on public land without paying fees and paperwork to some department or official. Look at the problems our friend in Tehachapi went through just wanting to scrape out a runway on his own land. The "big trailer" problem I will certainly have to work through, and yet my V6 Tacoma has already towed well over the weight of a small airplane inside a 6' x 12' U-haul trailer (fill it half-way up with books and it's quite at or above its 2,480lb rated load!). That's smaller than you mean, of course, but there's a guy up the street with a sailplane trailer parked in his driveway, and that seems to disappear many weekends. "What one man can do, another can do." Especially if he's motivated by the lack of reasonable alternative options. At least I don't have to try and store the airplane in my garage with the car anymore. Where I'm living now, I can park a trailer without it getting towed by the homeowner's association at the drop of a hat. 17. Nov 3, 2017 ### choppergirl ### choppergirl #### Well-Known Member Joined: Jan 31, 2015 Messages: 1,504 Likes Received: 512 Location: AIR-WAR.ORG ★★☠★★ I might pull my trailer into a Walmart, Home Depot, Kroger, or School Parking lot, and pull it out and unfold those 38 foot wings just for fun. That might draw some attention. And then have my friends run up to it and say, "OHMG, I can't believe it, Choppergirl is in our town!!! OHMG Everybody!!! Where is she?" Like, they have to be totally stoked though, in full Beetlemania mode... bouncing up and down and pulling their hair, etc. Nothing draws a crowd, like a crowd. And maybe a very out of place, pink and purple plane. Who the hell is Choppergirl? I don't know. Never heard of her. Let's go check it out... You just can't do that with a$200/mo hanger rental...

I can buy a lot of free pink bubble gum with a Food Stamp card. Here you go, nice meeting you, enjoy! It's Bubbalicious...!
Come see me fly Dorothy at the airport on Saturday and pick up a hoola hoop with my wingtip...!

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18. Nov 3, 2017

### rtfm

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Enter the Pou du Ciel. Thoroughly seal the airframe with ultra low viscosity epoxy, fold the wings into a neat little package, and then leave it outside permanently.

Duncan

19. Nov 3, 2017

### Victor Bravo

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An Alodined or Chromated Zenair 701 with a decent cover on it will withstand many years of outside storage in Southern California. We actually do have less rain and snow here than most of the USA.

Topaz can keep it outside cheaply at Corona, and if it starts to rain bad enough to cause a problem he can scud-un it to another close by airport, or fly it over and land on top of Prado dam until it stops raining

Building the airplane with all of the COM, TXP and ADS-B antennae on the bottom will make it so the cover takes 10 minutes to get on or off. He may have to give up the VG's on the top of the wing, or build it with the OEM slats on.

This particular airplane is ideal for his flying mission anyway, short fun flights, \$25 burgers, and some Southwest desert camping. Topaz is not a 6 foot tall guy, I assume his wife is not a 6 footer either, so the 701 will be a very usable option.

20. Nov 3, 2017

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