As I had mentioned before, I need a rudder/pedal lock for my
Debonair which is parked outside at a tie-down (can't quite afford the
$500/month for the hangar locally). I made my CSOBeech gust lock, but wanted the
safety of the accompanying rudder lock... and I found a solution for less than
$5 worth of hardware available at Lowe's:
6" piece of 3/8"-16 Threaded Rod (Hillman #881001) = $0.92
Spring - 11/16"x3"x.062" (Hillman #543025) = $1.87 ($3.75 for two-pack)
3/8"-16 nylock nut $0.17
3 feet of chain @ 0.50/ft = $1.50
All you need to do is...
1) Thread the nut onto the threaded rod and leave about 1-3/8"
of rod on the FLAT end of the nut.
2) Attach the spring to the nut.
3) Attach one end of the chain to the spring
4) Attach the other end of the chain to the gust lock's REMOVE
BEFORE FLIGHT flag
After installation, I went back to the rudder and gave it a
test. While looking down at the tailcone and deflecting the rudder I could only
get 2-to-3 fingers deflection (about 2") each way!! This will help a lot, as the
local flight school students NEVER yell "clear" before starting so I never get a
warning that the blast is coming. And they NEVER pull the plane out; they just
fire it up while sitting in the space and firewall it to get moving (!!??!!).
The distance between my pedals is right at 3", so I figured
I'd center the spring on the rod and have 1-1/2" rod inside each pedal. What I
didn't do was figure the amount of rod the nut would occupy. The spring gets
kind of tight at that set-up so I adjusted it about 1/8" so that there is around
1-3/8" rod on one end.
Because it's a nylock nut and I'm also a lazy SOB, I didn't
want to thread it all the way down. I started the nut until the nylon was
engaged in the threads for a couple of turns, then took it off, turned it around
while the nylon was still holding the thread impression and brought it to the
correct length. I held the center of the rod with pliers and used a box-end
wrench to spin the nut into place.
As luck would have it, the spring nests very nicely on the
raised portion of the nylock nut. The spring was a little loose on the nut, so I
took a pair of pliers and gave the end of the spring a little "squeeze" to
narrow the opening a bit until it would grab the nut tightly Now they are like a
single unit. You may be able to find a 5/8" spring that will grab the nut
without the adjustment.
The chain just loops onto the spring, like putting a key on a
Thanks for helping me find my inner CSOBeech!
-Eric I., CA