MONTY THE ANSWER MAN ARCHIVE...

TOP HATCH / CANOPY


MODIFIED HATCH QUESTION...
From: Bill Doty (wdoty@seidata.com)
Jim,
Question: There is a "u" shape channel between the gull-wing top doors that looks very ugly, on the inside of the plane....Was there a cover/filler etc. that covered this area??? Also, was there a pad/etc. inside of the individual doors above your head??? I have several irregular spaced holes thru the door where something must have been attached, any ideas ??? THANKS , Bill

Bill: It sounds like you have a modified setup, so who knows what is there. It sounds like you might have the Corben/Fette gull wing hatch. I suggest you advertise for an original tip-up hatch. There have been dozens of them removed for canopy conversions. I sure hope they didn't throw them away!  --  Jim

ORIGINAL STYLE CANOPY HATCH HINGES...(5199)
Subject: Hatch
From: Bob Runge <ejectr@javanet.com>
Jim,
What should I use in the hinges for the tip up hatch for pivot devices? Would something that uses a cotter pin be in order, or would screws with stop nuts be sufficient?

Bob:
Originally, they had clevis bolts and castle nuts with cotter keys. I install regular AN3 bolts with stop nuts. (or Phillips head screws) I do inspect them carefully at every annual and replace them when they develop a wear groove. (which they will every 100 hrs or so) -- Jim

LET THE SUN SHINE IN. BUT DO IT CAREFULLY... (7499)
From: Ed Robertson <SWIFTR1@aol.com>
Subject: Plexiglass Hatches
Denis,
Just saw your comment in the latest GTS Newsletter about this (my Snail Mail is slow, so I haven't read Charlie's Newsletter yet). The glider owners have learned NOT to leave the forward hinged (much like a stock Swift hatch) glider canopies open because if the sun hits it just right, it is focused inside the ship -- usually on an expensive part such as a parachute, or brand new GPS receiver! This was discovered the hard (expensive) way. Guess I'll have to be careful not to leave the hatch on '42B open when it's outside. Great job on the Newsletter and web site. Thanks. Best Regards, Ed

HOLD THE "PHENOLIC"... (3400)
From: Steve Roth <stevenroth@aol.com> (via the Yahoo! Globe Temco Swift "Club")
The phenolic wear block/latch block at the rear of my Temco hatch has worn and it would not let the latch be tight. It is a phenolic block which mounts with two bolts at top/rear of cockpit. I ordered a replacement from Joe but the replacement part is not exactly like the original (smaller, slightly different dimensions). There is no way this will replace the old one. Here is what I did -- a friend made me a duplicate block out of Delrin (plastic). I put new weather stripping along the back and drilled the Delrin block to insert the two vertical bolts. Then, I kept filing the slanted (latching) surface until I got the fit (weather strip compression) I wanted. Works great. I could have done what you did but the edge of my old one was really chewed up and I would have had to remove a lot of phenolic. I found that an excellent weather strip for the top hatch is a "P" shaped or "D" shaped tubular foam weather strip. It is an exotic kind of material, more like car weatherstrip. It comes as two strips (two "P" shapes side/side) that you can tear apart (one P). I use the two together. It has a tough outer "hide", compresses nicely, comes in white, gray and brown, has good adhesive and is durable. It can he found at Home Depot or Wal-Mart. Aircraft Spruce sells it too, white only.

RV SUN SHADE FOR BUBBLE CANOPY SWIFTS??? (040200)
Georgia Swifter Rolly Clark sent in the following email:
From: RollyC@aol.com
Subject: Sunscreen
Denis - Do you know if anyone has tried the "Koger" retractable sun shade that is for the RV-6? There is a photo of it at Van's web site. $149. Looks like it would work for us bubble canopy types. Thanks. Rolly Clark. N1TG

Based on Rolly's heads-up I went to the RV web site and found the info on the sunscreen. In case you are interested go to the Van's Aircraft site <http://www.vansaircraft.com/> and type "Koger" in their search engine.

ADVICE SOUGHT ON MAKING THE SWIFT BAILOUT FRIENDLY... (050400)
From:Marvin Homsley <marvin@accesstoledo.com>
Subject: Emergency Exit
I have been doing some acro in my Swift and I am concerned about one thing. That is how in the world would be the best way to bail out of a Swift if it were necessary. I have purchased a pair of good parachutes but it looks like it would be very hard to physically get out of the airplane. My side windows do not move down very well at all when you are flying. That leaves my stock top hatch. It pivots forward and would probably be very hard to open against a 100 - 150 knot wind. I have sketched out a way to put pins in the top hatch hinges. These pins could be pulled by a handle from the inside of the cockpit. Then the front of the hatch could be pushed up into the breeze where it should depart the aircraft. Have any other swifters made any quick release system for this purpose. I do not need to re-invent the wheel if someone already has a good system out there. I have heard that a couple of people have bailed out of Swifts before. How did they do it. Am I being overly cautious for even thinking of it. N80740 Marvin Homsley

Marvin,
Never having tried it, I can speculate! I would say the quick release should be on all 3 forward attach points, the hinges and the linkage. I talked to Dave D'Arcy after his first bail out. He went out the window and maybe the parachute bumped the hatch up a little on the way out. The second time it was just luck he survived. He was physically ejected from the airplane during its gyrations after he had undone his belt.I'll let Denis answer that last point! -- Jim

(Swifters... shoot us an email to <arbeau@napanet.net> if you've got any advice to share with Marv and the rest of us...)

CANOPY QUESTION...(020401)
Subj: Canopy question.
From: Ron Best <bestjr@cadvision.com>
Hi Jim: I was wondering if you know what the original type of canopy might have been on S/N 205. I just got a standard top hatch off of a GC-1B but it is about an inch and a half too narrow for the cut out on the forward and aft frames. It appears that my airplane was built with a top that would slide left or right like some Ercoupes had, and at sometime it was modified with a gull wing type hatch. I have a picture of NC80760 that looks like it has the slide top of plexiglass. Was there a S/N range that had this or was it an option? I have a new eyebrow piece so it could be changed back to the slide if I can find or make the aft piece. Just wanted to know before we do any cutting. Thanks, Ron

Ron
The GC-1A's had a slide over canopy similar to the Ercoupe. Also many early GC-1B's had the same setup. Almost all the airplanes were changed over in the field. I too, have noticed the lack of interchangeability between the top hatches. How they can vary by up to an inch and a half is amazing, but they do. There are 3 things possible to do: 1) You can recreate the original slide over canopy. 2) You can attempt to make the hatch longer by splicing on some sheet metal 3) You can measure the window sliders for parallel and after removing the screws that hold in the forward edge of the rear windows, you can attempt to draw the rear canopy frame foreword. Use a double loop of . 040 safety wire and a screwdriver to create a turnbuckle effect. This will only work if you are drawing the window sliders into being parallel. Say the measurement at the bottom of the window opening is 24". If it is 25" at the top, you can draw the rear frame forward 1 inch. If you do this, you may have to buy new rear windows after you are done because the holes for the attach screws may now be exposed. If the measurement is 24" all the way around before you start this won't work. For the current project I'm working on we also had two hatches that were about an inch different in length. Good luck! Write back if I can clarify anything. -- Jim

SEALING THE HATCH, ETC...(070402)
Subj: FW: weather stripping
From: Mark Fischer <mark@aviationresearch.com>
Dear Monty:
I am in the process of polishing 80787 sn 190 and I removed all the old felt weather stripping from the canopy and windows etc. It rattles like a tin lizzie now until I get something back in the gaps. What do you recommend I use for sealing the hatch and windows. I think rubber J channel would be too bulky, and Frost King door seal just does not seem appropriate. Called Swift parts but they did not have any ideas. Any suggestions? Mark R. Fischer

Mark
Off hand I can't make any specific recommendation. I have painted the window channels with Teflon paint. I had heard of glueing some thin Teflon strips in there, but never did locate anything that would stick to the Teflon. On the top fore and aft canopy/hatch areas, a rubber or foam weatherstrip can be applied. You might find something in auto body parts catalogues. -- Jim
(Editor says: Anyone else with some ideas on this deal please feel free to email the editor and we'll share it with the rest of the gang.)

HATCH STUFF...(080202)
From: Steve Roth <Swift97B@aol.com>
Weather Strip question by Mark Fischer. You mail recall our discussion about this a few years ago and I sent you pictures of the appropriate stuff. The weather-strip I found is perfect for these applications. The weather-strip is shaped like "P" and comes in the form of two "P's" which can be separated. It installs with the long side of the "P" against the surface and the bulge of the "P" as the cushion. The stuff is tough and I use it for my hatch (front/back) and for the back edge of my cowl. Seems to come in gray and white.Aircraft Spruce sells it but there is no reason to pay their high price when you can get it at K-Mart and Wal-Mart.

YET EVEN MORE HATCH STUFF...(080202)
From: Steve Whittenberger <jssjwhitt@earthlink.net>
Subj: WX stripping
Go to Home Depot and get some 3/8th or 1/2 inch wide window seal. It is about 1/8 to 3/16 thick. It is pliable, easy to install, just pull off the back. I t works well here in the south. It does tend to come off after about a year but it is cheap and easy to reinstall. If you want to keep it on a bit longer put additional adhesive on the airplane before installing.......Worth a try. The stripping is gray in color...You don't even know it is there. Makes a good seal.......

CANOPY GLASS... (NOV 03)
Subj: Clear Glass in Tip up canopy
From: Mark Sorenson <MarkSorensons@aol.com>
Monty,
I have seen a tip up canopy with glass in it for viewing. How does one modify that to an original tip up canopy? Mark

Mark
Just remove the plexiglas and reskin the whole hatch, if you don't mind the slightly thicker hatch that will result, just rivet a sheet of .016 or .020 over the whole thing. Originally, they used a few rivets and some spot welds. If you want to go to a lot more work, remove all the factory rivets and spot welds and replace the whole piece with a skin identical to the original. -- Jim

OOPS... LETíS TRY THAT CANOPY CLASS QUESTION AGAIN... (NOV 03)
Subj: Clear Glass in Tip up canopy
From: Mark Sorenson <MarkSorensons@aol.com>
Jim,
Sorry I asked that question wrong. I was wondering how you take a stock tip up and make it a see through. :o) Thanks. Best Regards, Mark- 678-GO-FLY-HI

Mark
Yes, that is different! I wouldn't say there are any "rules" since adding plexiglas windows in the hatch are "unofficial." It could be called a minor alteration since it is non-structural and does not change the external contour. Just determine where and how big you want the windows and cut out openings leaving enough edge distance from any stiffening part of the hatch. The plexiglas can be retained by 6/32 screws or fabricated frames similar to what Cessna uses for windows. -- Jim

HATCH WEATHER STRIP... (NOV 03)
Subj: Original Cockpit Hatch Weatherstripping Tips
From: James Cummiskey <jccummis@yahoo.com>
Hi, Jim! I am having problems sealing my original cockpit hatch. I stripped away all the old, cracked and deteriorated weatherstripping. What was installed was some sort of grey foam stripping on the horizontal axis, and black rubber stripping on the vertical axis of the airplane. I then tried installing some "Frost King" Vinyl foam weatherseal (3/4" * 3/16") on both axes. The adhesive provided with this weatherstripping isn't strong enough to hold it in place, and some of the stripping peeled away during the test flight (seemingly around the areas in the hatch that have looser tolerances than others). Next I'm going to try augmenting the adhesive with some contact cement. Several questions:
(1) What weatherstripping is best for the job? Do I need different types for the horizontal and vertical axes?
(2) Does "Swift Parts" sell weatherstripping that is made for this job?
(3) What is the best way to attach this weatherstripping so it won't slip under aerodynamic pressure? Any special cement that is recommended so this won't come off in flight (windows open or closed)?
(4) I have the toggles at the bottom of each sliding window. These toggles are a little loose and don't provide sufficient upwards pressure to provide a tight seal around the tops of the windows with the weatherstripped hatch. Any ideas on how to tighten these toggles (or otherwise provide more sealing pressure)?
Now that winter is upon us (and I'm planning Dec/Jan trips to Seattle/Vancouver), any other tips on sealing the hatch would be most welcome! Thanks! Regards, Jim N3800K

Jim
People have been struggling with sealing the hatch for over 50 years! One of the most recent jobs I have seen was done by Dennis Hoffman on N2410B. I am cc'ing this to him, maybe he can tell what he did. I don't think Swift Parts has anything for sealing the original windows and hatch. 3M makes several cements which might work. EC 847 comes to mind or EC1099 for rubber parts. (from memory) Dennis duplicated the late Temco window locks, this is too complicated a task to relate here. Look at a later S/N and decide if it would be worth the effort. Many Swifts have a simple joggled metal part on the hatch which pulls the hatch in on closing and holds it there. Again, look at an airplane that might have it. I am sure if you use your imagination at an automotive store, Home Depot or even Wal-Mart you can find some weatherstrip that will work. Jim

DOC DOES HATCHES... (DEC 03)
Subj: Hatches
From: Doc Moore <darladoc@sport.rr.com>
I saw Jim & Mark's questions on hatches and thought I would respond with what has worked well for me. To seal the hatch on the horizontal buy some 3/16" industrial felt and cut it to fit where the hatch comes down against the windshield bow and the rear glass bow (don't know if you have a Globe or Temco but either will work) Use 3M trim adhesive that you purchase at the auto paint store in your area to put it on with. It will compress some and makes a good seal. For the side windows go to Walmart and buy some 3/4" Velcro with the adhesive backing. Pull the windows out and pull the bottom window guides out. Clean out all the goop that's accumulated in them over the years by using an Exacto knife and some 220 aluminum oxide wrapped on a piece of wood like a paint stirring stick. While you're at the auto paint shop pick up a can of 3M adhesive remover in the red can. Use this on a rag with your stick to continue cleaning the metal. This is great stuff and ought to be in every Swifter's workshop. I use it for everything. It won't attack Plexiglas and will cut most anything. Get all this good and clean. Take the soft side of the Velcro and cut it to length to fit in the bottom guides. Pull the protective tape back over on its self for about 1/4", put the Velcro in the channel, and then continue to pull the tape back over itself as you mash it down to stick. Once you start this you'll see how easy it is. You can only line one side of the bottom guides as the guide slot is not wide enough to do both sides. Now do the same thing on the upper guides but on these line BOTH sides (inside and outside) because the gap in the uppers is wider. One thing to watch for... you must run the Velcro far enough up so that when you put the window stop back in with the screw through it the tape is trapped under the stop. This must be done so the tape won't grab the window and roll up over itself causing you great frustration. Also, on the bottom of these same channels, where the lower guides fit into the upper... make sure you get the Velcro to extend past where this comes together so that when you lock in the lower guide it traps the Velcro... again keeping the tape from sticking to the window and balling up when you try to raise it. The Plexiglas to use for the side windows can be bought in cut sheet from LP Aero. You want to use .080. You can get it in clear, green, or gray tint. Just tell George what you need. Personally I prefer Plexiglas over Lexan as you get a better look. The upper and lower extrusions are still available from Swift parts if you need new ones. There's a secret on these, too, so if you get into the project email me and I'll share that with you.

I also used .080 in my top hatch. When you do the hatch cut the metal out up to the doubler lip with a Dremel tool with carbide cutter. It cuts quickly and is easy to do. Use a small drum sander in your dremel to clean up the corners. Then sand the edges with 400 to smooth the cuts up. Make a couple of templates out of poster paper, lay it out on the Plexiglas you bought from LP Aero, and cut it on your band saw with a metal blade (you want fine teeth on the saw for a good cut) Drill all of your holes in the glass with a Unibit. Make sure they're oversized to give the glass room to move. Sand the edges of the glass to smooth it up with 220. I sealed my glass with RTV that I bought from LP Aero but you can get the same stuff at Lowes. Sealing the glass is the hardest part if you clean and paint the inside of the hatch before proceeding. You then have to tape off the area outside of where the glass goes so you don't get sealer all over everything. Use 6/32 stainless screws and it makes a nice job. Don't tighten up the screws too much or your distort the glass and eventually it will crack. Also... plan where you drill your holes so that when you put your hatch over center mechanism that holds the hatch up back in everything will fit nicely. You may have to use some jetnuts in this area.

Hope that helps you guys some. I've attached a couple of pics of the hatch to give you a better idea of how it'll look. If you take your time and clean and polish everything good you can make the whole canopy area look about as nice as a sliding canopy. -- Doc Moore

NAGEL BUBBLE CANOPY... (JAN 04)
Subj: canopy
From: John R. Dahlstrand <jrdahlst@dakotacom.net>
Monty: I've only just recently become acquainted with the Swift. I was lunching at the Dear Valley airport restaurant in Phoenix when I noticed an attractive little tail dragger parked near by. After finishing my meal I went out and walked around the wine colored aircraft. It had a sliding, semi-bubble canopy, the empennage had that 40's era shape that I find so attractive, and the owner apparently was in the process doing some refinishing work on what looked to be a fiberglass cowl. As soon as I got home I did an internet search and found the Globe Temco Swift Home page. To my question: The Swift apparently wasn't manufactured with a sliding canopy and fiberglass cowl but I haven't been able to find much in the way of history of these developments. Can you enlighten me or point me to literature or websites that will? Thanks for your time, Happy holidays. -- John D.

John
Well, you have found the Home Page. If you spend enough time there you will answer most of your questions. The canopy was STCed by a guy named Jack Nagle. Over 100 Swifts have been modified with the canopy. The price was about $10,000 at the end of production. Jack retired a few years ago because he was up in his 70s (and sold the STC). The purchaser has never produced any canopies and apparently never will. Maybe someone someday might make canopies available, time will tell. There are only 300 - 400 Swifts flying so the market is not too great. There are fiberglass cowlings STCed for the 145 and 150 hp Swifts and several have been adapted to the 200 and 210 hp Swifts. The big engine STCs for the Swift are held by Merlyn in Spokane, WA. Their info is linked from the Swift site. -- Jim

TOP CANOPY WINDOW... (JUNE 04)
Subj: Quick question
From: DittmHC@LOUISVILLE.STORTEK.COM (Dittmer, Henry C)
Jim,
N3741K is going back together. This is taking more time than I like, but the result will be worth the time and effort. A quick question. I've seen pictures of Swifts where the top canopy has a window in the top. Is this a modification I might do? I like the idea of extra field of view. Thanks, Henry

Henry
Many hatches have been modified by the installation of plexiglas windows. Personally, I would not want to "butcher" another one. If you want more field of view I guess that is up to you. I personally don't like baking in the sun but the canopy owners seem pretty happy with them. -- Jim

REPLACEMENT GLASS FOR NAGEL BUBBLE CANOPIES... (AUG 04)
Subject: Jack Nagel windshields and Canopies
From: George Mesiarik of LP AERO <george@lpaero.com>
Gentlemen,
Please be advised that we now have FAA-PMA approval for the manufacture of the Nagel canopy windshield and canopy windows. These are windows that would be used as replacements for those aircraft that already have the STC installed. We manufacture the windows only, not the frames nor do we distribute the STC.
Part No.
1427 One Piece Windshield applicable to STC #SA2645NM
1428 Left Canopy Window applicable to STC #SA2645NM
1429 Right Canopy Window applicable to STC #SA2645NM
Please contact us with any questions or for current pricing.
Best Regards, George Mesiarik, Vice President & General Manager, LP Aero Plastics, Inc.
1086 Boquet Rd, Jeannette, PA 15644-4707 1-724-744-4448 1-800-9LP AERO fax 1-724-744-3116
http://www.lpaero.com