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Ron Alexander

Ron Alexander
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Ron Alexander (1942-2016) founded Alexander Aeroplane Company, which was later sold to Aircraft Spruce. He had restored a Stearman in addition to the Jenny. He also established the Candler Field Museum at Peach Tree Airport. Ron was an ex-military pilot who retired a captain with Delta after 33 years in 2002.

Build Your Skills: Fabric

Everyone could use a little sunscreen, and the fabric on a fabric-covered aircraft is no exception. This months installment, the last in the series, discusses pre-paint protection to minimize sun damage. By Ron Alexander.

Build Your Skills: Fabric

Most of the hard work is done, and its time for dope. First, pick the right spray outfit, next find a clean, well-ventilated work area and finish your surface preparation, and then you're ready to spray. By Ron Alexander.

Build Your Skills: Fabric

Taping curved areas is essential if you want to keep them smooth, and the same goes for inspection rings or gussets. This month, we walk you through the process and help you iron out any problems; by Ron Alexander.

Build Your Skills: Fabric

Finishing tapes not only strengthen areas that need reinforcement, but they also cover unsightly screws, rivets and rib-lacing cord. This month we cover the types of tapes available, where they should be applied and how to apply them; by Ron Alexander.

Build Your Skills: Fabric

This month we look at installing the fabric on the wing and how to use rib-lacing, reinforcement tapes, pre-punched holes, and methods of mechanical attachment including pop rivets, PK screws and fabric clips; by Ron Alexander.

Build Your Skills: Fabric

The fabric has been applied to the airplane structure, its been tightened properly, and now its time to apply the first chemical coat to seal it. Ron Alexander takes you through the process and also introduces the various ways of attaching the fabric.

Build Your Skills: Fabric

If you want sound and long-lasting fabric covering, proper shrinkage is essential. And an accurately calibrated iron is a means to that end. Ron Alexander details the process and offers tips on how to avoid damage to the underlying structure during tautening.

Build Your Skills: Fabric

This month, fabric expert Ron Alexander discusses attaching the fabric to the aircraft parts using either a pre-sewn envelope or individually cut pieces of fabric. The process is optimized for strength in flight as well as aesthetic appeal.

Build Your Skills: Fabric

Who knew there was so much to consider when selecting a fabric for your aircraft project? Cotton or polyester? Light weight or heavy? STCs, TSOs, PMAs, FAA requirements. Poly-Fiber or Ceconite systems? Ron Alexander unravels the alphabet soup and explains how and why each fabric may be the way to go for a specific project.

Build Your Skills: Fabric

Fabric has been used to cover a wide variety of aircraft since the Wright brothers first started tinkering with flying machines. But fabric-covering processes have changed a lot in the last century, becoming more systematic in addition to being more reliable. Part 1 of this new series by Ron Alexander details the evolution of fabric covering and discusses some of the basics of getting started.

In Case You Missed it

Family Legend

Starting as a Texas Sport kit, a little Cub with the unlikely name of Scrappy grew, with a host of custom touches and multigenerational effort, into a cherished family heirloom.

Learning How to Drag Your Tail

Making the transition from trigear to tailwheels.

Arion Lightning

Test pilot Chuck Berthe flew the Arion Lightning not once but twice, in two different factory demonstrators. The first flight raised concerns about the trim system and longitudinal stability, while the second flight (months later) impressed with improvements to the trim system and the consequent betterment of the airplane’s handling characteristics.

2013 Engine Buyer’s Guide

The outlook for the alternative engine market for Experimental/Amateur-Built aircraft is positive, and there are new additions since last year—even more reason to join the auto-conversion club. By Patrick Panzera.