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Conduit for wiring in wings

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  • #16
    I used the automotive type corrugated tubing that is split down the side. The solid tubing seems like a nice, neat installation for wires that go from root to tip, but not so much for a harness that has wires branching off for things like pitot heat, landing lights, autopilot servos, etc. The split tubing makes that easy, just wrap some electrical tape around it on either side of where a wire branches off so it won't pull out, plus there are several sizes so where you have wires branching off you can go to a smaller size for those. And I second Jim's recommendation to run string or something to pull new wires later for expansion. I guess with a solid tube conduit you could put it in now and push a wire bundle through it later, can't do that with the split tubing that I used.
    Rollie VanDorn
    Zanesville, OH
    Patrol Quick Build

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  • #17
    Weight is a factor for me, as is the ability to add wires in the future. A solid tube will accommodate adding wires in the future. I have no experience, but using a vacuum or air pressure to blow/suck a thread tied to a cotton ball thru a tube is one way. I like adding an extra piece of nylon too forpulling future wires thru. I appreciate the PEX suggestions, but that seems heavy. Hummmmm. Vans corrugated tubing or no tubing. I dont know yet.
    Brooks Cone
    Southeast Michigan
    Patrol #303, Kit build

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    • #18
      Someone of VAF (I think and A&P) suggested running wires AFTER closing the wings. That way there is no way you could do it in such a manner that you couldn't get to it to fix it later.

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      • #19
        "I used the automotive type corrugated tubing that is split down the side. The solid tubing seems like a nice, neat installation for wires that go from root to tip, but not so much for a harness that has wires branching off for things like pitot heat, landing lights, autopilot servos, etc."

        For wiring that didn't go to the wingtip, I used a soldering iron to melt holes in the tubing. In my case that was wiring for the two fuel transfer pumps, roll servo and pitot heat.

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        • #20
          I'm not sure why everyone seems to want to enclose their wiring. What's wrong with using plastic bushings and tie wraps to make a loom? I just have an issue with hiding wiring for ever more so it can't be inspected.

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          • JimParker256
            JimParker256 commented
            Editing a comment
            Just my 2 cents worth, but aren't the most likely "wear points" going to be precisely where the bushings and tie-wraps hold the wiring in place? And it is very difficult to inspect those points without access from multiple directions. With a "free run" of wire through tubing, it's only the ends of the wire that are likely to wear from vibration, etc., and those are pretty easy to inspect when you remove a wingtip, pull the pitot tube mount, etc.

        • #21
          After a few years of deliberation, I ended up with the Vans corrugated tubing running through the jig pin holes of the nose ribs (enlarged) with plastic bushings. This way there is no metal hardware (weight). If you were installing this in a quick build wing without access to every nose ribs, you may need a more rigid tubing.

          If I'm unhappy with the completed weight of the airplane, it would be easy to remove the tubing. 1545483328908853604977.jpg ​​​​​​
          The total weight of the tubing (28 ft) is 0.75 lb and the total weight of the bushings minus the amount of aluminum I removed to install them is 0.13 lb for a total install weight of 0.88 lb.
          ​​​​

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          • #22
            Over the years I participated in about 20 company wide weight reduction contests for new aircraft. .88 lbs would have won many of them. That a lot of steak knifes.
            Gerry
            Patrol #30 Wings

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            • #23
              Originally posted by geraldmorrissey View Post
              Over the years I participated in about 20 company wide weight reduction contests for new aircraft. .88 lbs would have won many of them. That a lot of steak knifes.
              Gerry
              Patrol #30 Wings
              Ya theres a reason Bob's bearhawk is lighter than anyone else. Aside from the no electrical system.

              We took a small cutoff wheel to a friend's plane and cut every bolt we could find to 1 thread showing. Weighed the pieces afterwards and it was just over 6lbs.

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