The rudder of a tailwheel airplane typically connects to the tailwheel with a combination of chains and springs. At each end, there is a teardrop clip. These clips will fail sooner or later – and usually at a very inconvenient tile. As was the case for me. One clip failed during a recent landing. Thankfully the landing was back at my home field.

Since others had experience with this situation I investigated their solution. Was there a better option? Yes!

A 3/16″ stainless steel D shackle fits nicely. A little safety wire insures the pun (oops, that should probably be ‘pin’) can not rotate and fall out.

retaining clip vs D-shackle
retaining clip vs D-shackle
In the picture, the top shows a standard retaining clip and then the D shaped shackle.

Now it’s back to flying!

2 thoughts on “Upgrading the tailwheel spring retaining clip with a D-shackle”

    1. Hah! Too funny. I missed that (or I’ll blame it on Apple’s AutoCorrupt).

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