Varga / Shinn VG-21 Squadron




By Lee Beery


Planning on a paint job soon?  If so, you can benefit from our experiences. Selection of the facility is the most important task.  We found that most paint shops do not remove panels (other than fiberglass ones), nor do they check control surfaces for proper balance after painting.  Also, be leery of any shop that says they can do the job in less»than 30 days.  Be sure to examine more than one of their recent repaints and talk to the aircraft owners.  Ask each facility what materials they use and why they selected that particular brand.  The finishing details are very important, such as the use of new stainless steel fasteners, color matching wing walk material, engine cowl chafe material and the like.  Also, how clean is the facility and how secure will your aircraft be in their care? Based on the above, we chose Aero Detail located in Grants Pass, Oregon, and couldn't be happier.  Their work is truly professional and painstaking.  The owner, Gene Lattimer, refuses to compromise on quality.  You can't rush quality, but to ease the strain on your pocketbook. Gene will allow owner assistance in aircraft disassembly and reassembly.  Our Varga did cause Gene some real problems. Under the military paint scheme was the original factory EPOXY paint that refused to come off.  Also, contrary to the Varga maintenance Manual information, the strips securing the front and rear windshields are fiberglass, not metal, and were damaged during the paint stripping process.  We feel that considering the problems Gene encountered plus the fact he had to deal with 35 pieces of aircraft plus an airframe, and then had to apply 7 colors of paint, we ended up with an exceptional paint job at a very reasonable price.


Chances are you will never get a better opportunity to inspect your Varga. With all of the panels and control surfaces removed, a complete, close, visual inspection is a must.  Also, this is the time to replace control surface hinge hardware and to really lubricate those control rod end bearings. And why do we go to all this expense?  One reason is to get rid of the corrosion that is now becoming visible here and there.  Also, after twenty years, that old paint job looks a little shabby.  With a slick, high gloss paint job, it goes faster (preliminary check shows about 3-4 knots) and that means you will use less fuel.




Previous Maintenance Items Available Upon Request

#l - Engine Mount Corrosion Alert

#2 - High Engine Oil Temperature

#3 - Fuel Quantity System

#4 - Fuel Vent System & Fuel Shut-Off Valves

#5 - Flight Control Rigging

#6 - Repetitive Maintenance & Elevator Toraue Tube