Going old school

Technical Discussion Forum for Radio Controled Vehicles & Aircraft

Moderator: Sitewide Forum Moderators

Post Reply
User avatar
jhitesma
7th Gear "No Brakes" Member
7th Gear "No Brakes" Member
Posts: 7791
Joined: Thu Nov 09, 2000 9:57 pm
Please enter the middle number: 5
Location: USA
Contact:

Going old school

Post by jhitesma » Mon Apr 13, 2009 10:11 am

So as many of you probably know I love this magazine "Make" I always look forward to it arriving and pray that it comes on a day when I'm not busy so I can immediately devour it and start planning which nifty new projects I'm going to try building :D

Well, the latest issue (which came our around the end of February) picked "Forgotten Knowledge" as the topic and had some interesting projects. Like the Wimshurst generator (Something I've been wanting to build for quite some time, well before this issue came out!) Or a homemade siphon coffee brewer using chem lab glassware (something I attempted to build a few months ago, well before this was published, but didn't have enough glass tubing to make work.)

But one project in particular caught my eye. An old fashioned stick built R/C glider. I had built a number of balsa and tissue models as a kid and always enjoyed this method of building. Never had the cash to buy R/C gear as a kid so mine were only free flight. But I enjoyed the building as much or more as the flying so that never really bothered me much. Well, I just happens that I have a spare 4 channel R/C setup laying around (Bought it for a kite mounted camera rig I've yet to finish since I keep changing my mind on what camera to fly and what kind of kite to fly it from.) So this was just screaming out to me to build it.

But there were issues with the way the plans were posted (since corrected here) and I couldn't get them to print at the proper scale. Additionally my on-hand collection of balsa was pretty limited and there are not good local hobby shops here. So I gave in and spent the $27 on the kit version.

That arrived on March 5th. Since then I've been sneaking any time I can in the evenings to work on it...and last night finally got it almost finished. I still have to set the washout on the wings and mount the control horns....but that won't take very long.


My work area consisted of a cork board on our coffee table. To keep it from sagging I cut some fiber ceiling panels and fit them underneath it. Made for a nice solid stable work surface that I could still easily stick pins into:
Image


I found rather quickly that the plans were somewhat disappointing. The writing was almost impossible to read...and not everything was sized quite right. These two pieces in particular were too small on the printwood so I had to shim them up a little:
Image


I also had a problem in that my box arrived with a BIG hole in the side. Thankfully nothing had fallen out. But two pieces of wood were damaged. So before I even got to fly it I was repairing the elevator control surface which was one of only two parts that were damaged in shipping:
Image


But after just a few nights of work I had parts that were starting to look "plane like":
Image


After a brief break in construction while my parents visited I was back at it and soon had a fuselage:
Image

The plans called for using little tabs to hold this access door on. But that would require flexing the piece of wood quite a bit to get it on and off. I knew once the final covering was on it would give the piece more strength but I still didn't like the idea. So instead I cut this angle into it making it into it's own tab. If I had thought to do it before cutting the first side then I would have had a door that could slide off to the side without any flexing...oh well, live and learn. I did soak the angled parts in CA glue so they'll hold up long term:
Image

This part of the airframe sees the highest stresses during launch. The little blocks at the base are where the tow hook mounts:
Image

The wings went together without much fuss, but the only photos of them are on my cell phone and not handy so I can't post them right now.

I did run into a few issues trying to get my existing battery pack and receiver to fit but eventually worked them out. So yesterday I got to bust out the iron and start applying the covering, I went with translucent blue monokote:
Image

Image

Image

Image

Image

Image


So - like I said at the start it's almost done. I just have to mount the control horns for the linkages and set the washout on the wing. Which I should be able to find time for this evening.

Not sure when I'll get to give it a maiden flight though. Trying to finish up my taxes before deadline still and Wednesday night is my brew night so weather permitting Thursday might be the day....just got to keep my fingers crossed now!

User avatar
Glamisbound
7th Gear "No Brakes" Member
7th Gear "No Brakes" Member
Posts: 3090
Joined: Fri Jan 05, 2001 12:00 pm
Please enter the middle number: 5
Location: Ramona, Ca.

Re: Going old school

Post by Glamisbound » Mon Apr 13, 2009 3:35 pm

Nice job J. how many hours you got into it?
GLAMISBOUND
Walking the gap...All give some, some give all!!

Image

36' HR Endeavor Diesel Pusher, 330 Caterpillar
2007 Potter Productions Dual Sport with a Redline LS1 and Mendi 2D
'02 yz 426
'04 crf 50
50 cc quads for the little groms

User avatar
jhitesma
7th Gear "No Brakes" Member
7th Gear "No Brakes" Member
Posts: 7791
Joined: Thu Nov 09, 2000 9:57 pm
Please enter the middle number: 5
Location: USA
Contact:

Re: Going old school

Post by jhitesma » Mon Apr 13, 2009 3:42 pm

Glamisbound wrote:Nice job J. how many hours you got into it?
I don't want to know :D

If I had to guess...I'd say probably around 50 or 60. I wasn't really tracking it and wasn't in a hurry. Gave me something to do better than watch TV to relax in the evening for a month and didn't cost much - so to me it was worth it ;)

User avatar
jhitesma
7th Gear "No Brakes" Member
7th Gear "No Brakes" Member
Posts: 7791
Joined: Thu Nov 09, 2000 9:57 pm
Please enter the middle number: 5
Location: USA
Contact:

Re: Going old school

Post by jhitesma » Thu Apr 16, 2009 7:24 pm

Well first hand launched test flights well rather well today.

First launch was nose heavy as I suspected it would be so I took out a bit of weight. Second launch was better, but trying to launch and hold the transmitter was tricky. So I handed the controls over to Tommy and gave it a good heft. Which started out well, but he bumped the stick and brought it right at himself managing to catch his own leg with the wing.

Bummer, the way the flight was looking until then I was almost ready to get out the kite string and give it a good launch.

Damage is minor and will be easy to fix though:

Image

I didn't trust this joint in the first place. Oh, the tape was there on purpose while I try to find thin enough CA to glue the hinges, that wasn't a repair. The weather was just too nice today not to give it a few quick test tosses.

The damage to the wing is rather minor as well:

Image

Didn't even break any ribs. Just the leading edge and a tear in the covering.

Better photos later when I have time to try and repair the damage ;) Somewhat excited about getting to give it some good flights this weekend since this should be easy to fix and we almost had it trimmed out. Hopefully will have found some good CA by then for the hinges as well!

User avatar
jhitesma
7th Gear "No Brakes" Member
7th Gear "No Brakes" Member
Posts: 7791
Joined: Thu Nov 09, 2000 9:57 pm
Please enter the middle number: 5
Location: USA
Contact:

Re: Going old school

Post by jhitesma » Thu Apr 16, 2009 7:29 pm

Oh yeah...just as we were packing up someone showed up with new electric expanded foam jet for it's first flight. So of course we had to wait around and watch.

Looked great at first. Plane was doing some very nice maneuvers. But then he thinks a control linkage came loose since it wasn't responding right. As he fought to get it to come back it suddenly dove and hit a chainlink fence. Body was a total loss. The electronics seemed ok even though they got tossed through the fence and within feet of a canal.

He had a lot less time into building his than I did, and admittedly he did get a few seconds more flight time that was hands down...far more impressive. But my repairs should be fairly easy and use left over wood and monokote from the construction. He's got to get a whole new plane, which admittedly is the cheapest part of his - but is still more than mine cost me total.

User avatar
jhitesma
7th Gear "No Brakes" Member
7th Gear "No Brakes" Member
Posts: 7791
Joined: Thu Nov 09, 2000 9:57 pm
Please enter the middle number: 5
Location: USA
Contact:

Re: Going old school

Post by jhitesma » Sun Apr 19, 2009 1:30 pm

Repairs were as easy as I expected. I wasn't quite as happy about how straight the vertical stabilizer was this time...but it was a much stronger joint. The wing repair was easy and should be strong, but the re-covering got a bit of a wrinkle in it I'm not super happy about. But it all looked better than before when I was done, and I even made some adjustments to the control rods to bring it into better static trim, so I took it out yesterday evening along with a couple of kites.

I figured if it was breezy I'd fly the kites, if it was calm I'd test the glider. Ha! I can finally master the winds! Yeah, right.

We get there and it's too calm for a kite, so I setup the plane. Of course then it gets breezy. But still not enough to get a kite up so I decide to give the plane a try. First toss pretty much nose dove. Still not sure why since everything seemed like it should be set - I figured it must have been my adjustments to the elevator even though it looked good before launch.

Upon retrieval I found a loose glue joint on one of the supports for the elevator servo. I knew I should have stopped there. But the servo still seemed stable enough for control so I gave in to giving it "just one more toss". That next toss looked great. Until the wind picked up when I was just a foot or two away from the ground. Big time cartwheel. Obvious damage was the vert stab stayed on, but that didn't matter because it was attached to the horiz which wasn't still attached.

Inside sure enough the servo was now completely broken loose. And upon closer examination the fuselage stringers were broken at the front of the horiz stab where it had twisted them. One side of the fuselage was also soft so I expected some breakage there, and a few supports in the fuselage were broken loose at their glue joints. Ouch. All repairable but still, ouch.

Back home I cut away bits of covering in suspect areas...and sure enough there was quite a bit of damage in some areas. At lest the wing is unscathed despite being a big part of the cartwheel.

At last it's looking pretty straight and stable when it's up. Just still need to work on landings - and getting a big enough launch that I can actually touch the control sticks before it's back on the ground :D

Photos of damage and repairs are uploading. Will post them later. With winds predicted most of this week should be no problems being repaired by the next calm evening. Most of the repairs are done other that re-attaching the tail and re-adjusting the control surfaces.

User avatar
jhitesma
7th Gear "No Brakes" Member
7th Gear "No Brakes" Member
Posts: 7791
Joined: Thu Nov 09, 2000 9:57 pm
Please enter the middle number: 5
Location: USA
Contact:

Re: Going old school

Post by jhitesma » Sun Apr 19, 2009 2:21 pm

Here's the damage on the wing from the first trip once I got the covering off:

Image

I cut out the damaged bits and put in some new wood:

Image

Image

However I neglected to get photos of the new wood going in or the new covering. Oops.

Amy did get one photo proving it flys:

Image

And one launch photo:

Image


As a result of those second flights here's the damage that happened:

Servo mount came loose:
Image

Control rod supports and cross piece came loose:
Image
Image

"Something" isn't right behind the wrinkle:
Image
(Something turned out to be a cracked longeron broken servo support and some squishing.)

That's not right. (Made better tape hinges this time too. Glad for them. If I had glued the hinges these repairs would be MUCH harder.)
Image

Nasty break where the tail mounted:
Image

Post Reply

Return to “Radio Control Toys, Monster Trucks & Model Rockets”