*****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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Sunday, June 26, 2016

SC Aviation Association Gives Skyote #88 "Peoples Choice" Award.

Skyote # 88 attended the Sunday breakfast fl-in event which was part of the 2016 South Eastern Aviation Expo held at KGRD.. Skyote #88 won the top prize, "Peoples Choice Award" !

We arrived early and got a good parking spot.
It was overcast or broken all day which helped with the heat.
A nice smooth 70 nm cruise at 1500' both ways.

Wednesday, June 15, 2016

First Fly-In for Skyote#88

This past Saturday Skyote #88 went to the Fabric and Tail Wheel event held at the fantastic Triple Tree Aerodrome. Between 75 and 100 beautiful fabric and/or tail dragger airplanes showed up on a nice but hot day.

Triple Tree Aerodrome is a unique "Country Club for Airplanes". It features a 7000' x 400' wide grass strip that looks like a golf course.  You can learn all about it @  www.tripletreeaerodrome.com .

All in all it was a very nice day. Skyote #88 was well received.
There were some very nice airplanes there:

Friday, June 10, 2016

Don't Be Shocked

The party is over for the gas-filled oil-damped shocks. Earlier this week one one suffered a significant oil leak. I always realized that this was a real possibility but I had hoped that the "mean time between failures" would be high enough to make the risk low. This failure occurred at about 30 hours total time which is totally unacceptable.  \

Luckily the failure occurred at my home base and the "Skyote Pit Crew" replaced them  them with my design urethane compression style shocks.

Tom's son, Nathan, handles the grunt work. From discovery of the leak to back to flying status took about one hour max.

The Skyote now rides on urethane compression bushings. Compared to the original bungee struts and the gas filled shocks, these struts are almost bullet proof.  If these struts fail then likely a few other things will be bent as well! In addition, these struts are adjustable for spring rate, ride height, and pre-load. makes me wonder why I was so fired up about the gas filled shocks?

These struts have performed well for about ten hours. They are just a little more "active" than the gas filled, oil damped shocks which is to be expected. I think the average pilot would not really notice any difference from the cockpit.

Some kind of covers may be in order.

Skyote #88 Is Out of Jail

As of June 9, 2016, Skyote #88 has completed its required  40 hours of flight test time! When we completed the reinstall of the O-200 and brought #88 home on May 27 she had 9.1 hours on the meter. So Tom and I got in 31 hours in 12 days.. She hardly ever cooled off! 

#88 is free to roam now.  I plan to take her to the Fabric and Tailwheel fly-in at Triple Tree Aerodrome tomorrow (SC00).  I hope she behaves herself.

Not so good cockpit photo showing 40.3 hrs. on the EIS.