Return to Tips & Tricks    Cozy Wing Jigs by:   Michael Skorija

Mike is a Cozy builder out of Troy Michigan. I was fortunate enough to meet Mike while building this web site. I ran across his Canard Forum. Mike was the moderator. I could tell by talking with him on the phone that he looked at building aircraft from an entirely different perspective than most. He believes in thinking things out way in advance and then planning each step of the operation. This was evident in his engine/power-plant choice for his cozy and his views on cooling and safety.  I wanted to meet Mike so I invited him over to use my Mill and lathe for some custom intake manifold tube flanges he needed to fabricate. We had a lengthy conversation about drag and engine cooling. It was nice to speak with someone who understood the principals of Air inlet expansion and the basic concepts of cooling these aircraft engines in a pusher configuration. Its funny I'd had this same conversation with over a dozen builders and flyers through the years and only one other pilot understood the basic principles (my friend Gary Ernest). I'll publish a story about it on the Tips and Tricks page (page 10). Mike calls this concept his "Cone of silence" for engine cooling.

Your looking at wing jigs he built from scratch to ensure his Cozy's wings were true and symmetrical to one another. I think one of the biggest mistakes builders make is not taking the time to build the necessary tooling/fixtures required to guarantee correct results. I realize that most of us don't have the skills or tools that would allow us to make a fixture like this. However, that is what forums and EAA chapters are for. To provide the required experience and or tools to support fellow builders. These tools are used one time in most cases and then set and collect dust. Eventually being busted up and burnt for fire wood. If you have parts like this setting around, let others know, share the tools and knowledge. Why let something sit when someone could benefit from it.

If you look closely at the construction you'll see that the entire fixture uses T-ed plywood joints to stiffen everything up so the jig remains straight and true.

The lower picture is a bit fuzzy but you can see the wing taper and cord line changes through the jig.

I'm told that after Mike built his wings on this fixture it ended up in another cozy builders garage and has sat their for 5 or 6 years without being used. Makes you wonder how many people could have borrowed this very nice fixture to assist with wing building. In addition it says something about the builder who has the fixture setting in his garage. If you have tools that can help others reach their dreams of finishing an aircraft please step up and join a forum. Let others know you have the tools to help. I know Mike has helped dozens if not hundreds of people build their airplane just by providing a forum to share ideas and safety. Hey, its a small community of builders and flyers, lets do what we can for each other to keep the sport alive and safe.

A better view of what they look like and how to build your own set. Just remember to keep the fixture ridged by using the same techniques as Mike. T-Slotted plywood stringers.

That's Mike on your right. Should you have any questions regarding how to build something like this you can contact him at the following or just go to the link I have for his Canard Forum listed on page 10.

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