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  • LETOV SLUKA

    Hello all...Are any of you Letov Sluka owners? Granted there are only 19 on the register, but maybe there is a fellow owner on this forum. Would like to exchange thoughts/tips/problems etc about this very enjoyable (albeit lonely!) microlight.

    G-MZBF

  • #2
    LETOV SLUKA

    Yup, I have one albeit all in bits. Its awaiting a rebuild either by me or I am willing to sell it if anyone is interested.

    Its not been crashed or bent. Just needed a new boom, it has a new fuse boom from Letov, pilot drilled waiting to be fitted.

    Bit of TLC here and there, nothing major and a new set of skins will be need, has a new Ivo Prop and an ally arced exhaust.

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    • #3
      LETOV SLUKA

      Hi Mark. Well glad to hear of another owner, albeit its not flying.....was it the dreaded cracks around the front wing support bracket that is the reason for its under usage? I have had mine since last april, and throughly enjoy flying it. It had its last inspection last Feb, so its nearly due its next and I'm dreading finding the cracks, as there seems no repair. What part is the fuse boom? Is the plane still on the register? I take it from your user name you now are flying an Escapade, I thought i'd use a single seater for my first year or so and not risk anybody elses' life while I gain experience. Got my licence last June. Anyway sorry to ramble....

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      • #4
        LETOV SLUKA

        Just enjoy, I'm told that they are a delight to fly. A guy at Rayne has just bought one and I'm hoping to scrounge a flight come summer. I know of two ex owners and they both rate they as brilliant little aircraft.
        I guess that your one Mark is the one that Sean had. If so it did suffer the dreaded cracked tube, I think that it spent some time tied down outside which may well have contributed to the crack.
        Ginge

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        • #5
          LETOV SLUKA

          Hi Ginge, Good to hear what may contribute to the cracking....mine fortuneatly is in a hangar when not flying, but I was told it was 'hard' landings which did it....now I've a few landings a bit 'harder' than i would have liked, so am practising that part ! hi...

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          • #6
            LETOV SLUKA

            WOA!! How long has this bulletin board been up and running? Shows you how often I check the website.
            I am a Sluka owner and have had it now for about four years and can confirm that it is indeed a delight to fly.
            I carry out a dye penetrant check of the forward support bracket for the permit renewal and have had no indications of any defects.
            I am in the process of having a 3mm aluminium sleeve insert made up to reinforce the area. It means having to remove the engine, engine mounting brackets, recoil starter cord wheel and airframe identity tally. Then remove the boom bore preservative coating from the forward end up to and including where the sleeve will be "epoxied" in. Ream out in situ the new sleeve/boom assembly to take a 10mm through bolt.

            Note: The new sleeve is being machined from a solid billet with a solid section left in the centre where the through hole is.
            The only delay I foresee is getting prompt agreement for the mod through the PFA which administers this A/C.

            Although I fly off a tarred runway I reckon that this problem may be caused, not by hard landings, but by heavy loading in the affected zone by "G" force oscillations when flying off grass strips.

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            • #7
              LETOV SLUKA

              Hi guys, I have bought the Sluka that Mark Jones referred to in an earlier post. My plan is to restore it over the next year or so. I have a new fuse tube from Letov, so should be good as new once put back together. What's the opinions here on strengthening the tube where cracking occurs?, I have the original tube, so could use a portion of it, cut it longitudinaly to reduce the diameter slightly so that it would fit snugly, epoxied inside the new boom?. Anybody know if Letov still support this microlight? I need some new wing covers & have emailed Letov but had no response. (From their website they now make bits for Airbus) There is a guy in South Wales who makes covers, but if still supported, then factory ones are the legal way to go?

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              • #8
                LETOV SLUKA

                I asked Guy Gratton some time ago as to why microlights use round tubing for the main fuselage boom and his response was that it was purely habit. I should think that there is a good case to replace the existing round tube with radiused corner square section tubing (long term) - subject to PFA approval. Letov no longer support this design and there is no reason why you should not use the sail maker in Wales - is he the chap that had an advert in AFORS for Sluka skins.
                The only worry with this particular microlight would be if the "cabin" was damaged in any way. It would be very tricky to replace.

                It's a pity that the forward wing suport is not as robust as the rear outfit. Perhaps you could get approval for that type of assembly.

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                • #9
                  LETOV SLUKA

                  As I have a share in an X' Air in addition to the Sluka, I notice that Mylar "skins" are now being fitted to the latest X'Airs - over on that forum. Are there any producers in the UK that could sew up a set of skins for the Sluka - if you gave them the old ones as a pattern.
                  By the way I have modified my profile to include my full name.

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                  • #10
                    LETOV SLUKA

                    Hi Bill & Nige. Its a pity the makers have 'forgotten' about the existing machines we are flying. Yes Bill I hope your repair design gets approval, as I would like to use it. It's going to be devastating if I find the cracks before I can get the mod done. My yearly inspection is due at the end of this month. I must discuss this with the inspector and see if I can go ahead with the mod...Do we have to get a higher approval ?....Could I ask what method do you use to fill the fuel tank?....I suppose you have a dedicated bowser for the job ..... I dont. The airfield where I keep mine uses its bowsers for the un-mixed petrol for its planes..they dont have any 2-stroke machines. I have use a watering can to transfer from the mixing container to the machine, but am not happy with this Heath Robinson method....I recently got a hand cranked oil/fuel pump on E-bay to transfer from the mixing container but storing this pump, so the dust dosent get at it, is the problem with method...any thoughts...I wish the tank was a little bigger too. I get about three and a half to four hours out of it, but at 45Knots theres not a lot of millage there..

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                    • #11
                      LETOV SLUKA

                      Hi Bill, the chap in S Wales is the one who advertised in the mag. He wants 1700 plus vat I think for a complete set of covers.
                      Unicorn, I have used 20ltr steel jerry cans for 2 stroke fuel (about a tenner each from a local 'farmers' shop) Put the oil in the can first & use a decent funnel with a filter to transfer to the machine, the ones that trap any water. Worked fine for 5 years flying a Pegasus Q weightshift. (I have a share in a 912 Quantum until I get the Sluka sorted) Must get the decorating finished & use the brownie points on the Sluka!

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                      • #12
                        LETOV SLUKA

                        I believe that if you contact the PFA you will find that there is already an aproved repair scheme involving a sleave if you should find a crack in your fuse tube. I had been told that this scheme originated from Letov who are still in existence, if not supporting the Sluka.
                        I have also always used a 20ltr jerry can the same as Nige. If I need to refuel away from base I carry a can of oil and an empty 5ltr plastic fuel can for mixing in. It has always worked well for me, maybe because I don't have a 4hr bladder range. You will be suprised how far 3hrs at 45kts will get you as long as you take care about excessive head winds. Anyway I never worry about how long things take, as long as I have fuel, the object of flying for me is to be in the air, low and slow will do fine.
                        Ginge

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                        • #13
                          LETOV SLUKA

                          OK Guys...about the fueling issue...I was getting at the fact that I cant hold the funnel in the neck of the tank (its also too steep an angle, not vertical )with one hand and lift the 20;tr plastic can (which I got from a local car wash) with the other...this is the bit I was wondering how you overcame. The filler cap on the tank is right under the wing and there is no room to get at it properly. Whats your methods. On the mod...by the way am I right is saying the fuse boom is what the main boom is called?......Should this be done now, BEFORE the dreaded cracks appear, as it seems certain they will, given time.. I take off from a compacted stone runway, what was the theory in the G forces from a grass strip, Bill? Yes I agree about the bladder range too, hi, its not the first time a good day was spoiled by having to cut the trip short....>>

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                          • #14
                            LETOV SLUKA

                            I heard of the sleave to the Fuse tube as a repair scheme, that is after the crack has appeared. Fuse tube is the common term used by by Thruster, the AX breed, MWs and X Airs for what you could describe as the main boom, other manufactuers may well use a different term for the same article. There is a similar repair scheme in place for Thruster fuse tubes and several of those have been flying for a long time with it in place.
                            I see what your point about refueling, I'd forgotten the shape of the Sluka tank and how low the wing is. So to keep your pump inlet and outlet clean how about cutting the thumb off one of those industrial rubber gloves that you can get from any builders mechant as I have not seen your pump I'm only guessing at the size. Failing that try the jerry can pump thread and ask Tony HS, knowing him I'l bet he has sorted something. Away from base you could get one off those syphon devices that Deepak at Microlight Sport Aviation sells. They are brilliant, I carry one with me in a "zip n seal " bag. I use it for refueling when there is no fuel available at a strip and I scrounge from the huge tank on my mates Blade 912, via my little 5ltr can so that I can mix in my oil.
                            Ginge

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                            • #15
                              LETOV SLUKA

                              OK Ginge, all noted re the main boom. Yes must look at the rubber glove option to seal my pump from dirt.....The syphon item...i had looked at these but I dismissed them because I thought the tank you were GOING to had to lower than the tank you were COMING from..is this the case? ...as the mixing tank is on the ground and the sluka's tank neck is a couple of feet above the gound I thought this wouldnt work.....but I must be wrong eh?

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