*****Skyote #88 gets Bronze Lindy for "Airventure-Oshkosh 2016 Plans Built Champion"******

October, 2007

Welcome to "Skyotelog", the build record of Skyote #88. I assume that you are familar with the Skyote biplane. If not, you should visit http://www.skyote.org/ for a complete introduction to this unique but elusive biplane.

The posts are presented in reverse chronological order (newest first). Or you can click on one of the "Labels" to see all of the posts concerning a specific topic. Click on any photo for a larger image.

All my building experience is limited to Van's RV's so I have no experience with building tube and fabric or "plans building". I have much to learn so take everything I write with a grain of salt and reasonable skepticisim.

I do not intend to follow a "traditional" path for the construction of #88. I intend to employ low level technology and $ to reduce the construction time and difficulty where possible and practical. By low level technology I am referring to CAD, laser, waterjet, CNC. For example:

  • I have purchased a complete wing spar kit from Jerry Kerr.
  • A rib kit from Mr. Bartoe.
  • Brunton Flying Wires and Drag wires from Harvey Swack.
  • CNC profiled tube kits for the fuselage, tail feathers and landing gear from VR3.

In addition I have converted all of the wing fittings, brackets, links, lugs etc. to CAD and had them cut by water jet. I have designed a laser cut wing spar drill template/jig which positions the five spar components so that all of the holes can be drilled in a complete spar as an assembly. I plan to continue converting as many parts as I can to CAD so that I can reduce the "hand-made" components to a minimum.

Note: As of June 2015 I have over 100 CAD files which provide 600+ water jet cut parts for the Skyote.

While it takes a little time, converting the design to CAD is a great way to truly understand the drawings. plus a huge amount of information has been extracted from the rather complex drawings. This can be a great help to others in understanding and interpreting the design.

The Skyote is uniquely suited for conversion to CAD in that a "computer" was used in it's original design. I have read that Mr. Bartoe used a HP calculator to "compute" the design and dimensions of the Skyote. The plans show all of the critical dimensions to three decimal places for X,Y and Z axes.

Amazingly, when I put the design into CAD the resulting 3D models agree with Mr. Bartoe's thee decimal place dimensions about 99.9% of the time. I have found one discrepancy but less than 0.030"!

If you want to build your Skyote as cheaply as possible, or if you enjoy handcrafting the same parts over and over again then my approach to building is not for you!

If you want to build your Skyote in the minimum possible time with highly accurate parts then this approach may be the answer. I personally get a lot of satisfaction out of organizing the project so that it can be produced accurately. Hopefully some of this work will prove useful to others in the future.

Comments are welcome. I will respond as time permits

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Tuesday, June 23, 2009

Nose Bowl--One More Try

The nose bowl is getting close. This shape seems to work better.

Sunday, June 21, 2009

Engine Cowling/Nose Bowl

Here's the first stab at the cowling/nose bowl. We are now trying to reshape things to let the cowling and nose bowl flow together with out the bump at the junction. Cowling a "first time" engine is lots of fun. Looks like it will take about four attempts to get it right.

I had originally intended to use the same nose bowl/spinner as Pete Bartoe did on his airplane. Unfortunately, it just did not work out well with the Jab engine. Also the spinner combined with the 6 cylinder engine was starting to make the nose look a little long. A rounded nose bowl with a "skull cap" spinner will help keep the nose in proportion

Thursday, June 4, 2009

Hanging the Engine

We hung the engine on the firewall Saturday afternoon. Now begins the process of finding a home for everything. Unfortunately, it looks like the Jabiru exhaust system is going to require significant modification.

The nose bowl ala Pete Bartoe also has some difficulties jiving with the Jab engine. We may revert to a round style nose bowl like Hawkeye/Dave Novak.

Sheet Metal Progress

Some progress has been made in finshing the boot cowl and cockpit surround. These pictures were made 5/30/09. Everything is pretty well fitted and fastened so it is time to move on to the challenge of the firewall forward.