Mounting Wheel Brake Assembly

February 1, 2011

One of the first things I'll do is temporarily mount the landing gear and wheels on the fuselage, to make moving it around the shop easier.

I started by preparing the landing gear to accept the wheel brake assembly.  Not necessary for just temporarily mounting the wheels and landing gear, but I figured since I had it on the bench anyway, why not go ahead and get it done.  I have a new set of Grove wheels and double puck brakes.  

I started by sliding the Grove mounting bracket over the axle and sliding the brake assembly in place.  Then I rotated the assembly to a point where it clears the landing gear tubes by about 1/4" and clamped it in place with two small "C" clamps:

Mine will face forward - this is the left landing gear. The wheel brake should be able to slide off of the mounting bracket without hitting the landing gear tubes.

Now the mounting flange on the landing gear must be match drilled to the wheel brake mount. The Grove brake assemblies came with 3/8" mounting holes.  These bolts are too large and the heads will interfere with the axel so a smaller bolt must be used. Grove supplied two bushings with each brake mount, that would reduce the bolt size down to 7/16. However, I have decided to reduce mine down to 1/4" bolts.  To do this I must make some bushings out of 4130 tubing. Here's how to do that:

Start off with some 3/8" x .058" 4130 steel tube.  Put it in a vise or lathe and drill the center out to 1/4".  Debur the ends:

To accurately drill the holes in the mounting flange, slip the 3" bushing in each hole and drill with a 12" long, 1/4" drill bit.  

I drilled only 3 mounting holes, choosing the ones that gave me the most clearance for a nut on the back side (clear of the landing gear tubes).

Now, with the holes drilled, you can make the individual bushings.  I measured the thicknessess of the Grove mounting flanges and found them to be a little over 1/8" thick. So the bushings were cut to be a little under 1/8" thick.  You can use a bandsaw to cut the bushings or use a cutoff wheel:

The bushings should then be smoothed and deburred:

Here is one of the bushings fitted to the brake mount flange:

Here is the assembly bolted together:

Of course, the hardware store bolts are only temporary for "mock-up" purposes.  These will be replaced with the proper "AN" bolts upon final assembly.

Once the brakes were done, I went ahead and mounted some old  6.00 x 6 tires and tubes I had laying around the shop (the original ones from my Bearhawk) onto the grove wheels and then mounted the landing gear to the fuselage.  I haven't assembled the landing gear shock struts yet, so for now I just used some conduit to support the gear.

This allows me to move the fuselage around the shop easily.  If I need to work on the bottom, I can set it up on saw horses and pull the gear off.

Of course you MUST pose for a picture the first time your baby takes it's first steps.

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