How to repair a damaged control surface


Well, as you guys know I have been trying hard to improve my 3D skills as of late and so I have been putting my 3D planes through the paces.  Lately I have been flying my Dynam Sbach quite a bit.  One of the things I have been experimenting with is my setup from my radio to the receiver with rates, expos, and throws.  On my last flight with the Sbach, I made the mistake of looking down at my controller to see if I was on position 1 or 2 on my aileron rates and in that split second I tip stalled the Sbach on taking my eyes off of it.  By the way the is definitely why the new voice alerts on the DX9 and new Spektrum radios are worth their weight in gold.  By the time I got my eyes in sync with the plane again, it was too late.  I tried to power out of the stall but I didn't catch it in time.

The plane slammed hard into the ground.  The right wing took the brunt of the force.  The end of the right wing and control surface took the force of the impact.  When the tip of the wing broke off the end, the control surface was ripped clean all the way down the wing.  Of course the perforated and thin nature of the control surface allowed it to just rip the surface completely off the wing.  Also my motor mount and prop adapter were both severely bent.  Fortunately, I had another prop adapter and the motor mount being aluminum was easily straightened back out in the vice.

I wanted to detail a method using extreme packing tape where you can reattach the control surface back to the wing and effectively make the control surface perform like new.  Extreme packing tape is very sturdy tape and can be used for many rc repairs including the one we are detailing here.  I picked mine up at a local Staples, but you should be able to find it in most stores that carry any variety of packing and shipping supplies.



The Repair

Repairing your control surface using this tape is rather simple.  Starting at one end of your control surface or if only part is broken away start at one end of the part of the surface that is torn away, apply the extreme packing tape length wise down both sides of the control surface including the indented hinged area.  The way to accomplish this is to apply the tape to one side, then take an instrument that you can push the tape down into the crevice of the hinge, then work the tape back up the side of the hinged area and apply it to the other side.

The reason for doing this is that you want the control surface to be able to move normally.  If you are not careful and don't apply the tape correctly, you can affect the movement of the control surface which would not be good.  Also, I apply the extreme packing tape to both to the top AND the bottom of the wing control surface using this method.  This makes for a very effective repair and you are not left with any slop in the controls if done correctly.

I highly recommend using this method before you spring for a new set of wings as you can save yourself $30-50 for most planes on a replacement wing set.  I would say however, if you have severely damaged BOTH wings in a crash and it doesn't really make sense to spend the time to repair the surfaces using this method or if you have tons of other damage to the wings of the plane, it would probably be better to go ahead and buy the replacement wings.

Check out my Youtube video on this process: