Repairing a broken wing         HOME         Parts and Planes For Sale


        FLY, STALL...oops!  CRASH!          



If you fly your Hawk, undoubtedly you will need to REPAIR your Hawk... it just seems to be that way!

Since most of the Hawks out there have been built, I will focus on repairs first. Probably the most common repair needed is to the wings. Because of the design and construction of the wings many times when you snap a wing it makes a nice clean break. This is good, the cleaner the break, the easier to fix.

My first snapped wing repair photos were lost with a computer hard drive crash and the ones photo'd here only has the front D box area snapped. The trailing edge was still intact. It should still give you a good idea of how to go about the process. Click on the thumbnails to biggy size the photos.

CLICK ON THE THUMBNAILS TO ENLARGE:

This wing is snapped in the front section only so I will repair just the leading edge, but the repair to a trailing edge is the same idea.

First I peel off the covering material and it's best to do it 3 bays wide so you can clamp the area together while glueing later on.

On this particular break, since the trailing edge is intact, I will only be inserting a layer of 1/32" ply and .016" carbon fiber on either sides of the break. This is inserted between the blue foam and the ply outer covering. I use a dremel tool with a thin blade to get a slot started just behind the plywood skin.

Here is the first trial fit of the ply and CF layers. Make it a tight fit! I make the CF go all the way to the leading edge if I can. I like to leave the ply and CF a bit long so I have something to grab on to, I trim it off later.

I've dripped slow set epoxy into the cavity and flexed the wing open several times to ensure that epoxy has permiated all the way through and starts to drip out the bottom. I then wipe it clean and tape over the leading edge to minimize epoxy leaking through. I've also scuff sanded the CF and coated both the ply and CF with epoxy and inserted them into the first side.

Here the wing is clamped together, both top and bottom patches are in place and the remainder of the cavity is filled with microballons/epoxy and a wedge of blue foam. MAKE SURE EVERTHING IS STRAIGHT! I use the other wing to check for proper curve and alignment.

 

 

After the epoxy cures, trim the excess off of the ply and CF patches, I use a dremel tool.

 

Here are a couple good views showing the finished patch. You can see the ply and CF layers with microballons/epoxy and blue foam chunks for filler in the center. Sand any areas that need it, prepare the area to be covered.

 Replace the covering on the wing.

 

 Here is the finished wing. Before flying check the washout and straightness - see the "Setup" page.