Author Topic: Door Hinges  (Read 2757 times)

Doug Johnson

Door Hinges
« on: August 20, 2011, 05:16:00 PM »
Poor Fitting Doors.

After I ferried my Helio to Alaska , I noticed my doors fit poorly and that oversized door seals had been put in to keep the air from blowing in. My investigation showed that the door hinges and striker plate for the latch were worn out.

I removed all the door sealing material and used duct tape to hold the door in place and two or three ratchet straps to pull the door into place from the other side. Then I used a reamer to realign the holes from 3/16'' to ¼'' holes and put in larger bolts.

The striker plates I remade out of stainless steel it took a couple tries and some filing  because I couldn’t see them to measure and just made new ones without the worn area.
I reinstalled the door seals and the doors wouldn't close. Had to buy smaller door seal material so I could get the doors to seal.

I bought some sintered aluminum/bronze bushing that I impregnated with graphite/Teflon penetrating oil so I could re-ream the door hinges and get a better fit and go back to 3/16'' bolts. I intended to heat up the aluminum hinge and put them in as a press fit. I cant remember if I ever finished that project but I definitely remember buying them.

I understand that they make sintered bronze bushing that have that same silver material that they put in the bottom of frying pans and a plastic bushing called Iglied Z that give better lubricating properties, these bushings might work better.

Please tell me about your door experiences.


Gordon Cragg

Re: Door Hinges
« Reply #1 on: August 20, 2011, 05:43:06 PM »
Doug is correct in that several Helios that I have flown had door fit issues. Ken Noe told me that, unlike a Cessna door that is built in a jig, the Helio doors were basically built with the airframe and custom fitted. Therefore, I would assume that if a door has needed to be changed out due to damage...that door probably wouldn't fit very well.
My doors fit OK, however, utilizing Doug's ideas maybe I can make them fit better.