Best stakes to tie down on grass?

Discussion in 'Flight Following' started by NoHeat, Jul 4, 2015.

  1. NoHeat

    NoHeat En-Route

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    I will park a couple of nights on a turf field that has no tiedown facilities. I must bring my own. So I need stakes and some kind of rope.

    Suggestions?
     
  2. EdFred

    EdFred Touchdown! Greaser!

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    I've found that heavy duty screw in dog tiedowns have worked best for me. Cheaper than anything you'd find in aviation catalogs
     
  3. Hank S

    Hank S En-Route

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    I bought a set of EAA screw-in tie downs, and they held my plane firmly in place in GAC camping at the approach end of 9 when a lot of planes broke loose and rolled around (2010, the Year of the Tornado ). The metal is thicker than in my dog tie outs, they're a little longer, and the spiral is different.

    The key is to use a piece of pipe or a stick and screw them all the way into the ground, until the triangle at the top is touching. I didn't move at all, the two planes on my right wingtip rolled forward,and more than I could count in GAC were pointing in any direction other than forward.
     
  4. Vaflier

    Vaflier Pre-takeoff checklist

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    EAA has directions on the airventure site for making a set of tie downs that are light and really hold well. Cheap , easy to make, and they work well.
     
  5. ytodd

    ytodd Pre-takeoff checklist

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    Could not get the screw in type into the ground at OSH last year, so I bought these. http://www.flyties.com They work very well.
     
  6. petrolero

    petrolero Pattern Altitude

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    The Claw is pretty good.
     
  7. N801BH

    N801BH Touchdown! Greaser! Gone West

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    Yup...

    I built a set several years ago.. Cheap, light and holds my plane down every time...

    http://eaavintage.org/aircraft-tiedowns/
     
  8. weirdjim

    weirdjim En-Route

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    For the stakes ... 4 links of proof chain that will accommodate 3 each 10-12" bridge spikes (heavy nails), one nail through each link. Drive the spikes into the ground on a 45° angle to the surface of the grass in 120 degree horizontal angles (i.e. one north, one southeast, and one southwest) to each other.

    Polypropylene (sp?) rope through the fourth link to both wing and the tail tiedown. (A rubber stress link works real well to keep wind gusts from excessively jerking on the wing tiedown.)

    Cheap claw hammer, the hammer to put the nails in, the claw to take them out. I did a Kitplanes article on how they are made. I'll post the article here if you wish.

    Ten bucks for the whole mechanism. Proved at Oshkosh in the worst weather they can throw at me.

    Jim
     
    Last edited: Jul 5, 2015
  9. murphey

    murphey Final Approach

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    I built these about 10 yrs ago but used marine line from WestMarine. Total cost was $35. Also have 3 pieces of 1/2 in plywood, foot square to out under each wheel. Gets soggy at OSH.
     
  10. frfly172

    frfly172 Touchdown! Greaser!

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    The claw seems to hold the best at Osh and sun n fun. ,I carry the heavy duty screw in type ,due to cheaper cost.
     
  11. flyingron

    flyingron Touchdown! Greaser!

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    I can tell you from 23 years of Oshkosh (some of which was spent on tiedown patrol looking for untied aircraft) and parking at everything from the beach to 70 MPH windstorms at Oshkosh and Cody Wyoming:

    The first one's I started with were swingset anchor (essentially a metal rod with an eye and a welded on disk twisted into an auger). Cheap, work fine, but can be a real pain to install if the ground is hard or rockey.

    I disagree with the above. I would never use the corkscrew doggy anchors. I've seen far too many of those snap at Oshkosh.

    Then there are the "nail" kind. The first of these I saw were essentially a hockeypuck with three nails going at different angles. My friend had a great set made in Australia out of carbon fiber (even the nails). These worked fine until a Basler truck ran over them at Oshkosh one year and snapped them.

    The commercially available ones are pretty much the Claw and the Stormforce tiedown kits. I have them both. I've had things break on the claw (usually the nail heads) though in Cody my plane pulled hard enough in the storm to BEND one of the claw legs (and the nail) but didn't pull out. The Claw folks at Oshkosh have always just told me to take what I need off their table to refresh mine.

    I have to say I like the Stormforce tiedowns. They're easier than the claw and seem to hold as well. I've used them in the sand when tieing down at a beach front airport and they held well against my attempting to rip them up by pulling hard on the tiedown ropes.

    I've got a few large pound in stakes as well that I've used at times (not tent stakes but the large ones they use to tiedown bigger things).

    At Fond du Lac they were selling to arrivals who didn't have them, a Z shaped piece of metal. Seemed to work pretty good.

    At Oshkosh, the registration (and security guys) have a bunch of tiedowns that are essentially a T-shaped piece of rebar. You can borrow our hammer if you leave your drivers license.
     
    Last edited: Jul 5, 2015
  12. midlifeflyer

    midlifeflyer Final Approach

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    I've used basic 16" tent stakes like those available for about $4 apiece at Home Depot. I guess if they can handle 50 KT winds in Kansas overnight, they do their job pretty well.
     
  13. Hank S

    Hank S En-Route

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    The Claw holds well in most conditions, BUT it depends on soil type (not so good in sandy soil) and installation technique. I saw several pulled loose at the SnF Tornado. That was the mother of all tie down tests, and the EAA screw ins held wonderfully!
     
  14. painless

    painless Pre-takeoff checklist

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    Only trouble I've had with the claw is the stakes. After pounding them in a couple times, the head of them feature off, making removal interesting.
     
  15. JC150

    JC150 Pre-takeoff checklist

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    I followed the directions on the EAA Airventure website. Caution: They worked too well and I couldn't get them out for an hour. I slipped a disc in the process! They worked very...very well. That airplane wasn't going anywhere.
     
  16. Silvaire

    Silvaire En-Route

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    Started with screws but found that most times they were useless so went with the Claw. The OP did specify "grass" so in many cases the screw would probably work but grass covers many different types of turf and they aren't gonna let you tie down on that nicely manicured and watered grass strip where you landed.
     
  17. rwellner98

    rwellner98 Line Up and Wait

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    +1 for Flyties
     
  18. Henning

    Henning Ejection Handle Pulled

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    The Claw at SnF I found pretty much useless. When it was time to leave I just pulled them straight up out of the sand, which is all there is beneath the grass.
     
  19. rwellner98

    rwellner98 Line Up and Wait

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    Yeah, sand is your enemy with any system.
     
  20. Stewartb

    Stewartb Final Approach

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    Duckbills. You can't get them out but that's kind of the point.
     
  21. jhausch

    jhausch Cleared for Takeoff

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    Some rigid fiam spoilers strapped on top of the wing seem like a good bit of extra insurance....
     
  22. flyingron

    flyingron Touchdown! Greaser!

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    If they were made out of carbon fiber that describes the ones my buddy had. Never could find one's similar (the original guy in Oz who was making them went out of business).

    One more thing...NO ROPES/STRAPS with S-HOOKS. We were given these slick slack adjusting ropes by the flying club when we went to Oshkosh the first time. During the storm I heard a pop and realized that the plane was rocking and rolling enough (and the ground soft) that the S-hook had jumped the tiedown ring. Fortunately I had 50' of rope with me and ran out and retied it (though not having a knife handy it was a little daunting trying to tie the knot with 40' of free rope end).
     
    Last edited: Jul 5, 2015
  23. Hank S

    Hank S En-Route

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    That won't keep strong wind from pushing your plane around. Have you seen any pictures of SnF after the tornado? Sure, tornadoes are frequent, but even away for. The direct path, planes were blown around a lot by the wind. Where I was parked, it was pretty much a direct tailwind, planes were pointed every which direction afterwards.

    With the EAA screw ins, my plane was still pointed in the same direction that I parked it in. The plane to my immediate right was not.
     
  24. ntbjounin

    ntbjounin Pre-takeoff checklist

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    that's what I use. work very well!
     
  25. mkosmo

    mkosmo Pattern Altitude

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    I just picked up a claw kit myself for osh.
     
  26. Henning

    Henning Ejection Handle Pulled

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    Nothing is going to hold your plane on a tornado, especially at SnF.
     
  27. kmacht

    kmacht Pre-takeoff checklist

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    Anybody have a link ro the eaa screw in tiedown mentioned above? I have a set of the triangle tiedowns that use three long nails but they require a hefty hammer to bring along to pound the nails into the ground. I'm already going to be pushing towards gross weight on my sonex with two on board, full fuel, and some minimal baggage and would prefer to not bring a heavy hammer just to use for five minutes one time all week.

    Keith
     
  28. murphey

    murphey Final Approach

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    There will be someone nearby with a hammer.
     
  29. rwellner98

    rwellner98 Line Up and Wait

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  30. Henning

    Henning Ejection Handle Pulled

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    For permanent T-posts work really well.
     
  31. weirdjim

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    I'd be surprised if your next door (on all four sides) wouldn't have a hammer on board, and I know that there are things like this that you can check out (leave your pilot certificate or drivers license) from some of the EAA sites around.

    If all else fails, I'll bet you can get one at the emergency repair hangar.

    Jim
     
  32. baboss

    baboss Pre-takeoff checklist

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    I've never seen "EAA" screw in tie downs. Just these:

    http://www.eaa.org/en/airventure/eaa-fly-in-flying-to-oshkosh/ground-operations/tying-down-aircraft
     
    Last edited: Jul 5, 2015
  33. Taiser

    Taiser Filing Flight Plan

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    I bought a set of those "portable shelter" screw downs. You get 6 for $50 and they are 36" long. They've held up so far really well until my hangar gets built.
     
  34. Lowflynjack

    Lowflynjack Pattern Altitude

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    +1 for Stormforce. I would NEVER use the screw-in type. They're way to easy to pull out and especially don't use the ones for dogs. Protect your plane! Watch the video on the Stormforce website. They do a good job of comparisons. Of course, it's their website, but I believe they do a fair job of comparing the brands. http://www.stormforcetiedowns.com/
     
  35. baboss

    baboss Pre-takeoff checklist

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  36. tmyers

    tmyers En-Route

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    I made these form the aviation department at Home Depot. Used them at 6Y9 in 2013 but weather behaved.
     

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  37. Mtns2Skies

    Mtns2Skies Super Moderator Management Council Member

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    I like the stormforce design so I built a set using 1.5" angle iron from Home depot and some stakes. Far cheaper than purchasing and just as effective.

    They double as chocks when not using them as tiedowns.
     
  38. cgrab

    cgrab Cleared for Takeoff

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    I bent some 10mm rebar into a 15 inch long "U" shape. I hammered them in at a 45 degree angle and the three were at 120 degrees to each other. Worked great last year at OSH and at a couple of other places. I loaned my hammer to several folks in the area. The "U" shape allows me to use the hammer to get them out as well as put them in. It also provided a good ground for me and the refueler.
     
  39. MyassisDragon

    MyassisDragon Line Up and Wait

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  40. flytime

    flytime Pre-takeoff checklist

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    I just made these tonight from about $20 of stuff from Lowe's: 1" aluminum angle (3' cut into 1' lengths), 5/16 x 1-3/8 x 2-1/2 u-bolts (3 ea), 5/16 nuts (6 ea), 12" galvanized spikes (9). A little quality time in the shop with a hack saw and drill press and this is what I got. Basically the same as the Storm Force only with 3 spikes instead of 4 (you could do 4 if you want). Place them so that tie down rope extends from the plane at a 45 degree angle to the ground, and drive in the spikes at a 45 degree angle so that the pulling force is 90 degrees against the spikes. I will test them out at Oshkosh next week :D
     

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