Living history has a shelf life, and the expiration date cannot be extended. I’ve been interviewing WW II veterans since the early 1970s when I got serious about writing history, and it’s been a bittersweet experience. Anyone who’s made a career documenting aviation (or anything else) will tell you the same thing: you make older friends who become almost like family, and you know that you’re going to lose them.
That knowledge does not make the inevitable losses much easier. The rate of attrition among WW II veterans has accelerated immensely of late. Four of my books provided a fairly reliable “howgozit” on the mortality scale.
When Clash of the Carriers was published in 2005, 25% of the contributors were already deceased. In other words, one in four of the Marianas Turkey Shoot participants who survived the war had died in 60 years. It was a typical demographic for that generation.
Raider crew for Plane Ten. As a teenager, Flight Journal’s Editor-in-Chief knew pilot Richard Joyce (front, left) but had no idea he was a Raider, so never interviewed him.
Five years later came Whirlwind, the first one-volume history of all air operations over Japan. It made Amazon.com’s overall top 40 list, but 40% of the veterans I consulted never saw the book. The rate of attrition had increased by nearly two-thirds between 2005 and 2010.
Then in 2012 I published Enterprise, the story of “America’s fightingest ship.” At least 53% of the “Big E” men I had known were deceased by then. For the first time, fewer than half the contributors to one of my books never lived to see the work.
Last year—2014—U.S. Marine Corps Fighter Squadrons of World War II was released by Osprey, my UK publisher. It occurred to me during writing that I no longer knew any WW II flying leathernecks. The last one was Col. Jim Swett, a Medal of Honor ace who died in 2009.
From 25% to 100% losses in nine years.
None of those books could be written today, at least not with the first-person contributions from men who lived the events.
The most recent loss was intensely personal. Cdr. Alexander Vraciu, who became the Navy’s top ace during the Turkey Shoot, was the ranking U.S. ace at the time of his death in January, age 96. Al and Kay practically became a second set of parents from the 1970s on, and I was fortunate to inherit five “Romanian cousins” as well. When Al departed the pattern he left about 82 living American aces of whom only 31 wore Wings of Gold, including four Marines.
When I attended the American Fighter Aces Association reunion three years ago, the median age was 90. In 2013-14 we lost 47 aces; two a month.
Other attrition is no better. We’ve seen the Doolittle Raiders reduced from the 63 who survived the war to three this year.
Of the 133 RAF “Dambusters” who flew the classic 1943 mission, 53 died attacking the Ruhr dams. Three were living last year.
Some units sustained 25% or more casualties throughout a combat tour. But attrition extends far beyond war zones. The Army Air Forces lost some 13,000 personnel just in Stateside training accidents. Postwar attrition continued, and not only from flying. Cols. David Schilling and James Jabara of WW II and Korean fame, respectively, died in automobile accidents. Two 8th Air Force standouts, Duane Beeson and John Godfrey, succumbed to disease at ages 25 and 36. Maj. Gen. Marion Carl, The first Marine ace and a record-setting test pilot, was murdered in his home by a piece of human trash who remains on Oregon’s “death” row 17 years later.
Veterans of later wars also are thinning out. America produced 40 jet aces in Korea; seven remain today.
Unfortunately, because we’re aviation oriented, we sometimes forget that vets of all persuasions are leaving us at similar rates. For every ace who passes, we lose tens of thousands of other fliers, GIs and swabbies who helped write the history we have inherited. The shelf life of history is so evident today because the shelves are rapidly emptying as our once-young men reach their expiration date or survive a war to meet another tragic end. The most public of those in recent years was America’s all-time top sniper, SEAL Chris Kyle. He survived four combat tours in Iraq only to be killed by a fellow veteran reportedly suffering from post-traumatic stress.
There’s a philosophical difference among historians regarding the value of long-after interviews. Rick Atkinson, whose impressive works include his landmark trilogy of the U.S. Army in WW II, seldom conducts interviews. He has more confidence in contemporary accounts because they were fresh in the participants’ memories. However, researchers and oral historians who interview veterans believe there’s room for both. So there’s always room for new information, new perspectives. There is, however, no room for procrastination.
Whatever your conclusions, whatever your preferred method of research—even if it’s just sitting with a veteran uncle, one thing becomes absolutely clear with the passage of time: Do it now.
Tomorrow may not come.
By Barrett Tillman
The post A Tribute to Our Veterans appeared first on Model Airplane News.
View the full article
Ignore the Wind with this Golden Age Racer
When it comes the air racers from the Golden Age of Aviation, nothing even comes close to the Gee Bee aircraft the Granville Brothers built. And, of all the Gee Bee racers, the awesome R-2 was by far the most famous. Years ahead of the competition, the very powerful and fast R-2 had a reputation for being very difficult to fly. Though some pilots crashed in the R-2, it wasn’t the aircraft’s design that was at fault. Rather, there simply weren’t any pilots available that had the skills to safely fly the aircraft.
This was proven decades later when, in the late 1990s when Delmar Benjamin and Steve Wolf built and successfully flew an exact replica R-2 as a fully aerobatic airshow plane.
(Above) Delmar spent a lot of time proving the R-2 was an amazing aircraft and flew the Bee Bee inverted at many airshows.
New and Improved UMX Gee Bee R-2
Priced at $129.99, the new re-released UMX Gee Bee R-2 from E-flite captures all of the excitement and performance of the full size aircraft. With a wingspan of only 20 inches, the R-2 comes equipped with a more powerful motor, AS3X and optional use SAFE Select technology making it even easier to fly than the original UMX Gee Bee.
What we liked
Recently reviewed in the January 2019 issue of Model Airplane News, we put the mini Gee Bee racer through its paces and there was a lot to be impressed with. As with all UMX models, the R-2 comes out of the box fully assembled and ready to fly. All you need to add is your own DSMX- or DSM2-compatible transmitter and a 2S 200 to 280mAh LiPo flight battery. Molded from rugged and lightweight foam, the R-2 comes factory painted and has loads of molded in details. The big wheel pants and the flying wires even come installed, so there is nothing to do but charge you battery and go to the flying field.
In the Air
The E-flite Gee Bee was always a great flying backyard flyer, but the newest version is a step above. As soon as you launch the R-2 you can feel the added flight stability making it feel like a larger airplane. It can be flown wind conditions that would otherwise ground other lightweight airplanes, and it feels completely unaffected by wind gusts.
When it comes to aerobatics, the Gee Bee holds a straight line easily with amazing tracking and stability, while also having excellent control response. It will do any aerobatic maneuver you’d care to perform. The added power gives the model a noticeable increase in speed which adds to the fun in a big way.
Flown from a smooth surface, you can take off and land easily but it’s small size requires hand launches when operating from a turf flying field. Landings in the taller grass are not an issue at all since the model is so lightweight and ruggedly designed.
If you long for the excitement of the Golden Age of Aviation and want to pilot the most famous Gee Bee racer of them all, then the UMX Gee Bee R-2 is just what the doctor ordered!
The post E-flite/Horizon Hobby Gee Bee R-2 appeared first on Model Airplane News.
View the full article
Erik van den Hoogen’s scratch-built, all-wood Gotha P.60A flies quite well, especially considering that the full-size interceptor it is modeled after was never completed! With a wingspan of 10 feet, 10 inches, this 1/4-scale, 77-pound model Is powered by two AMT Mercury turbine engines, each with 9.5kg of thrust. Our thanks to RCScaleAirplanes for taking this great video at the Model Airshow of MFC-Hurlach in Germany earlier this month.
The post RC WW II Luftwaffe Flying Wing Takes Flight appeared first on Model Airplane News.
View the full article
When it comes to setting up airplanes, one of the most important things to get right is Aileron Differential. Being able to fly proper coordinated turns all depends on the type of airplane you are flying. The difference between 3D aerobatic airplanes and vintage WW I biplanes can be very big. This article highlights how to setup and then test fly your airplane to make sure you get the settings dialed in correctly. Excellent information for beginner pilots wondering why the nose of their plane skids out of turns, world class aerobatic champion John Glezellis explains it all.
If you want to read more of this article as well as other exclusive online content Click Here to subscribe to the Model Airplane News Premium Website.
The post New for Premium Members — Aileron Differential –The secret to coordinated turns appeared first on Model Airplane News.
View the full article
When it comes to flying your new model airplane, get into the habit of checking everything out before cranking up your engine. Finding problems before you take off is a lot better than dealing with them in the air. This video highlights some of the basics.
The post Basic RC Plane Setup Video appeared first on Model Airplane News.
View the full article
Erik van den Hoogen’s scratch-built, all-wood Gotha P.60A flies quite well, especially considering that the full-size interceptor it is modeled after was never completed! With a wingspan of 10 feet, 10 inches, this ...
Continue reading ... Join our premium membership!
The post RC WW II Luftwaffe Flying Wing Takes Flight appeared first on Model Airplane News.
View the full article
When you find that you can not purchase a molded part for your scale project, it really isn’t all that difficult to make that parts yourself. Here is a great way to make homemade fiberglass engine cowlings with readily available supplies. To make the engine cowling for my 1/4-scale Sopwith Camel, I used 1-inch-thick blue insulation foam, a 1/2–inch diameter dowl, some plastic food wrap, 3M Super 77 spray adhesive, a heat gun, 6 oz. fiberglass cloth, some old pantyhose and Zap’s Z-Poxy Finishing Resin.
First cut four 12×12 inch squares from the blue foam sheet, and glued them together with the 3M Super 77. The adhesive does not interfere with the sanding of the foam plug. I used my drill press to drill a ½ inch hole in the center of the foam block and then glued the dowel in the center of the block leaving 3/4 –inch sticking out of the bottom and about 3 inches protruding at the top of the block. The dowel will act like a spindle so it must be plumb to the top of the block.
I drilled a 1/2-inch hole into a piece of pine board to accept the dowel so that I could mount the assembly on the board and rotate it on my band saw: this made a perfect circle cut in the foam slightly larger than the final size I wanted the foam plug. I next clamped the board to my drill press table and with the drill press set at a low speed, I spun the foam plug so I could sand it to shape. Course sandpaper works best for the rough shaping, but make sure to use a shape template to check the profile of the plug as you get close to the final shape and size. The switch to a fine sandpaper grit to sand it smooth.
Once you are satisfied with your plug, hold the dowel in a vice and cover the foam with plastic wrap. I secure it in place with clear tape and then with a heat gun, shrink the plastic wrap to get rid of any wrinkles. The wrap acts as a release agent for the fiberglass part.
Next cut 6 oz. fiberglass cloth into strips and wrap them around the plug and secure with clear tape. Cut some circular pieces for the top of the plug and continue adding until you have three layers overall.
Pull an old pair of nylon pantyhose over the plug to press the fiberglass tightly around the foam plug. If necessary, reach under the nylon and smooth out the glass cloth so it lays flat. Pull the pantyhose down really tight and then secure it to the bottom end of the dowel with more take or some cable ties. Now stat brushing on the Z-Poxy Finishing Resin and let it soak through the nylon hose and into the fiberglass cloth. It “wets” the glass cloth very quickly. Keep applying the resin until there are no white areas left. Once cured overnight, the resin will be nice and hard, and it sands easily.
After the resin has cured, trim, cut and sand the cowl while it is still on the plug. The layer of plastic wrap will should allow you to remove the cowling from the plug fairly easily. You can then prime and spot putty the surface of the cowling before you paint it. If you like, you can add a finish layer of .75 oz. cloth and resin over the cowl to provide a nice finish.
Give this oldie but goodie technique a try. You will be pleased with how easy it is to make a glass cowl by yourself in your workshop.
Text & Photos by John Tanzer
The post DIY Fiberglass Engine Cowlings appeared first on Model Airplane News.
View the full article
When it comes to making scale models look realistic, there’s one thing that really does the trick–Weathering! You can even take foam ARFs and with a little work really bring them to life! We just posted a How To article showing the technique of working with powdered pastel chalk and working it into the model’s molded panel lines. The same thing can be done around raised rivets. The technique is easy and almost fool-proof.
If you want to read the entire article as well as other exclusive online content, Click Here to subscribe to the Model Airplane News Premium Member’s Only website.
The post New for Premium Members — Pro Weathering Tips appeared first on Model Airplane News.
View the full article
This amazing giant scale Boeing 747-400 in Virgin Atlantic markings, is the work of Adi Pitz. The monster Jumbo Jet has a wingspan of 16.24 feet and it is 17.81 feet long. The all composite airliner weighs in at just under 150 pounds and is powered by four IQ Hammer 140 turbine engines.
This video was shot at the Airliner Meet in Oppingen, Germany while being flown by Rainer Kamitz.
The post Gigantic RC Boeing 747-400 Airliner appeared first on Model Airplane News.
View the full article
One of the best tools I ever discovered while being involved in RC scale modeling, is Computer Aided Design (CAD) programs. It opened an entirely new segment of modeling to me, while also greatly increasing the precision in which I designed and developed scratch build scale airplanes. I have been using CAD programs now for more than 20 years and this post is an online version of my PowerPoint presentation for drawing 3-views and developing plans to build RC airplanes.
Let’s get started:
Be careful! CAD can become an entirely new hobby in itself!
There are several reasonably priced CAD programs intended specifically for modelers looking to start playing with the design and drawing program. Also, there are “Lite” programs you can download from the web to get started.
I have been using Ashlar’s Graphite CAD program ever since it was first introduced. The program is in my opinion, the easiest and quickest CAD program to learn. I have designed many RC airplanes using Graphite and I am now using version 9.
Graphite is now available as a “Cloud” download program which you can pay for monthly from: http://ashlar.com/2d-3d-drafting/2d-3d-cad-graphite.html.
This CAD Kaos was the first design that I traced into CAD. I then simplifed and added modern hardware to the design. It was a great flying airplane just like the original Kaos 60.
When it comes to scale airplanes, CAD allows you to duplicate any airplane there is. Just start with simple designs and work your way up to more complicated ones.
Depending on the program you use, you can import, Bitmap, Tiff, JPG or other type of image file.
The other way to produce drawings, is to take direct measurements of the things you want to draw.
For the development of plans where you trace an existing airplane drawing, there are some rules I made that make the job a lot easier.
Learning what your program has to offer is also a first step to using it efficently.
The tools are found in the on-screen tool bar and the pull-down menu windows.
After developing your front, side and top views of your model, you have to make sure they are all to scale with each other. This is important before you start developing the plans’ details and add the spars, formers, ribs etc.
This is a section of a Wylam drawing of a P-40 Warhawk that I scanned and imported into my program. See below to see the steps in developing the model’s wing.
Instead of using a freehand “spline Line tool” try to use the tool bar tools to develop the various shapes of the wing’s outline and basic details.
Starting to look like something!
Now make a mirror image, flip it around and add it to this one and you have a complete wing plan.
Don’t try to draw the ribs freehand. Just download the airfoils you need and add to your CAD File.
Just like everything else, you develop the ribs starting from the outside of the basic airfoil shape and working inward in steps.
You can also loft ribs if you want to develop your wing with a progressive airfoil shape that changes from the root to the tip. Start with the wing planform, and the rib placement. Make sure the ribs are spaced evenly. The stack the airfoils and divide into a number of stations.
Connect the station lines from the tip to the root rib. Then divide these lines by the number of the ribs you want. If you want 10 ribs, then divide the lines into to 10 equal sections.
Using the spline tool, connect the dots and you develop the individual ribs. Start from the rear end point and work forward on the rib to the leading edge. Remove the station and projection lines and you have the ribs above.
Here’s the wing planform and the ribs. Now you would work inward and add the notches for the spars and the other details like the wing skin and dihedral braces, trailing edges leading edges, etc.
The same basic technique is used to develop fuselage formers.
It’s a lot of work but in the end, you have perfectly fitting parts.
Print the parts out, paste them to your wood and start cutting!
Lofting formers is exactly like lofting ribs. The same techniques apply.
So you don’t want to cut the parts out yourself? that’s fine, send the CAD file out and have someone laser cut the parts out for you.
These parts were designed specifically for producing laser cut parts that interlock and form simplified model structures that are strong and lightweight. Often they are self aligning.
Break out the CA glue and kicker!
After designing and building your model, you can still use your CAD program to do other things like figureing out where the CG should go.
It’s all easy if you know what to do. The CAD program helps a lot.
Also, the side view technique for developing the placement of your CG is easy.
Got the weight of your finished model? Great, with the CAD program you can quickly find the wing area so you can figure out what the wing loading will be.
The post CAD Design for RC Airplanes appeared first on Model Airplane News.
View the full article
Our intrepid MAN reporter Rich Uravitch was on hand to capture a few images from the 12 O’clock High fly in this past weekend. Held at the Paradise Field in Lakeland, FL, the event was host by Frank Tiano and drew some impressive aircraft.
Awards Winner Aircraft Sponsor
Best WWI Don Janssen Fokker D7 Balsa USA
Best Golden Age Sal Becherano Waco House of Balsa
Best WWII Greg Foushi LA-7 Ziroli Giant Scale Plans
Best Military Scott Prossen Wildcat Warbird Pilots
Best Civilian Mike Zellars J-3/L4 Metal Building Supplies
Best Craftsmanship Bob Curry Sopwith Pup ZAP Glue
Best Jet Chris Jackson Mirage F-1 Horizon Hobby
Best Multi-Engine Arnold Marcus P-38 Your Pal Sal
Jet Aircraft Tom Telesca Viper EZ Balancer
Propeller Aircraft Kenny Hurtodo Piper J3 Tower Hobbies
Steel Balls Award Rob Lynch L-39 FTE
Runner-up Don Janssen Fokker D7 Model Airplane News
Winner Scott Prossen P-47 ZAP Glue & FTE
The post Sneak Peek 12 O’clock High appeared first on Model Airplane News.
View the full article
Is it OK to use packs with different capacities? This is a common question, yet the answer is complex. I normally break it down into two categories: sport and commercial. For most first-person view planes, drones and other sport models, you do have some flexibility regarding different-capacity packs without worrying about damaging your model.
Also, some high performance aerobatic planes actually can handle batteries of not only different capacity but also different voltages. If your power system can handle it, you can learn to fly your plane using a 3S pack, for example, then as you get better at flying, you may be able to push it up to a 4S pack to increase your model’s power.
All things come at a price, however, so the bigger the capacity, the heavier the battery; at some point, you hit the “law of diminishing returns,” which means the battery may have more capacity yet the weight of the battery limits the performance and flight time so much that you really would have been better off with a smaller battery. It’ll take some time to find that balance.
In general, most sport and commercial unmanned systems are designed to operate with a specific battery voltage, capacity, and footprint. So you want to make sure that you’re using a battery that is at least compatible with your specific unit. If you fly a system that uses multiple batteries—for example, two 22.2V 6S 16000mAh batteries—you will always want to keep those packs are as closely matched as possible.
This would mean the same battery brand, the same capacity, and as close to the amount of cycle use as possible. Using a battery in a dual-battery system that does not match can cause the weaker of the two batteries to experience fatigue under heavy load, which ultimately leads to premature failure of that pack.—Keith Wallace, CEO, Venom Power.
The post LiPo Q&A: Pack Capacity appeared first on Model Airplane News.
View the full article
PowerBox-Systems is well-known for its high-quality power supply equipment, and after a year in development, their new radio system looks incredible! Here are all the details on this new on this new $2,800 pro radio system:
Radio transmission and power supply
The radio link employs the thoroughly tested frequency-hopping process developed by the Weatronic company. This process is already renowned for its outstanding interference rejection and long range. The CORE’s radio link features integral redundancy, which is monitored by the receiver. For example, if a fault should develop in a transmitting circuit, then the receiver immediately warns the user of this via telemetry. PowerBox is famous for its redundant power supplies, and the CORE’s power system naturally incorporates this: two separate Li-Ion battery units are used, each rated at 3400 mAh / 7.2 V, and the entire power regulation circuit is also duplicated – a feature currently available only in the CORE. The transmitter’s operating time is around ten hours, measured with the screen set to maximum brightness and the system at maximum load.
We believe that telemetry will increase very greatly in importance over the next few years, and the demands made upon it will intensify. For this reason we have invested tremendous effort in developing this aspect of the system. At present there are a few manufacturers of telemetry sensors, and the devices are already in use by many modellers. However, current transmitters’ telemetry systems are either unable to handle a large number of sensor values, or transmission speed is reduced markedly as the number of connected sensors rises. This is the aspect where the strength of the COREsystem is most evident:
Telemetry handling and transmission has been the subject of a comprehensive redesign process, with the result that up to 240 sensors can be connected to the P²-BUS, each generating 32 data values, and the system is capable of transmitting up to 800 x 16-bit values per second. For the future this level of performance opens up entirely new possibilities, such as real-time servo monitoring in the model. Our P²-BUS telemetry interface is accessible to third-party manufacturers, which means that customers are not obliged to switch to new sensors for their models; a software update of the sensor system would be sufficient. The configuration and parameter setting procedure for the telemetry system as a whole is conveniently carried out from the transmitter using the radio link. The transmitter screen is manufactured to the specification of PowerBox-Systems, and is very clearly legible even in bright sunshine. A light touch on the surface of the capacitive touchpad is all that is required. The smartkeys (quick-select buttons) located at the bottom edge of the screen provide instant access to important functions such as Servo Monitor and Screen Lock.
Internal data communication is implemented via the CAN-BUS. This proven bus system is absolutely ideal for our use, and has already been employed successfully in the car and aviation industries for several decades.
Clear evidence of our system’s high-speed processing is found in the Servo Monitor: when the transmitter controls are moved, the screen responds totally in real time! As standard the Linux computer features OpenGL support, which provides almost unlimited scope for graphics, even in the future.
Linux with smartphone features
The basis of the CORE transmitter is a modern, high-performance Linux PC, which is controlled entirely using the integral touch-screen. The software’s basic look and feel are identical to the typical smartphone. An intuitive user interface provides fast access to all associated settings, with the result that models can be programmed with the minimum of input effort.
Every feature of the user interface has been programmed using Toolkit Qt. Nowadays this development environment is virtually the standard in the sphere of Embedded GUIs, and is employed by many renowned manufacturers.
In terms of physical controls the transmitter is fully expanded as standard – with the exception of the stick-switches. If these are required, they can be retro-fitted by the customer himself or by our Service Department; the transmitter’s hardware provides the appropriate sockets. The standard controls are two primary stick units machined from the solid, exploiting Hall sensors with 16-bit resolution and a further four linear controls. These are also based on totally wear-free Hall sensor technology, and each features twin ballraces.
The transmitter is equipped with eight toggle switches, of which the bottom pair are two-position types; all the others are three-position switches. However, this arrangement can be altered at any time by the user; for example, it would be possible to fit latching switches, or switches with different-length toggles. If the customer so desires, potentiometers could even be fitted. The inputs for the transmitter controls are designed to offer maximum flexibility. Another new feature in the overall design is the pair of momentary switches to left and right of the primary sticks: these are the perfect choice for controlling wheel brakes, electric starters or smoke pumps.
Look and feel
When you pick up and hold the CORE transmitter, you immediately feel at home with it: all the switches are laid out in the pattern familiar from other High-End systems. Our aim has always been to give pilots a professional “tool” which they can immediately use to the full. The Alcantara leather hand-hold facings are immediate evidence that this is a very high-grade device. And just as important: the transmitter simply fits perfectly in the hands.
High-speed signal transmission
The CORE provides 26 channels, each with 4096-bit resolution. Despite this, the control data are transmitted using a 10 ms frame rate with zero delay. All channels have full resolution, and there are no limitations to the frame rate.
Special features of the transmitter include integral GPS, a 9-axis motion sensor, USB and a WLAN socket. Amongst other uses, the latter is employed for updating the software for the entire system. Receivers can be updated very conveniently via the radio link, i.e. it is not even necessary to remove them from the model.
The post PowerBox Core Pro Radio System appeared first on Model Airplane News.
View the full article
There’s an old saying in the hobby that goes: “Once you’re finished “building” your scale RC airplane, you’re only half done!” That’s because all our efforts of gluing and bolting parts together leads up to one final goal—producing a smooth and even surface to apply the covering to.
With any fabric covering job, the end results are only as good as the surfaces being covering. An average covering job applied over a good, even and well-sanded structure will look much better than an excellent covering job done over a poorly built, rough structure. So before going any further, go over your plane with a fine-tooth comb. Sand and fill and sand again, any imperfections or uneven edges and joints. Use a tack cloth to clean the surfaces and use your fingertips (with your eyes closed), to feel the surfaces. Once everything is nice and smooth and clean, we can start covering!
You need to remove all the hardware and things like control horns, pushrods, hinges, servos, engines, etc. Then go over everything and make sure the airframe is smooth and has no broken glue joints.
All your edges need to be rounded and sanded smooth. Save all your hardware in a handy container so you can easily find everything after covering is complete.
For my Balsa USA 1/3-scale Fokker Triplane, I’m using the Stits Lite cloth and the Poly Tone finishing system. available from F&M Enterprises. I have been using this material since 1995 and have covered a dozen scale models all with great success. The fabric, adhesive, sealer and paint are all formulated to work together and F&M Enterprises doesn’t recommend or guarantee the results if you use any other fabric or substitute other materials. With that said, I have finished models with Stits Lite applied over SuperShrink fabric from Coverite, but the finished model did require some reshrinking after a season or two of flying. All my Stits Lite fabric covered models, have never required reshrinking to remove sags or wrinkles, even after years of flying.
Stits Lite supplies needed:
Poly-Tak heat-activated fabric glue
Poly-Brush fabric sealer
Poly-Spray silver undercoat
You’ll also need: a sharp hobby knife and replacement blades, a covering iron, ½ inch and 1 inch sable hair brushes, paper towels, and MEK (methyl-ethyl-ketone) solvent for thinning the glue and cleaning up your brushes and spray equipment.
Keep your fabric covering material in its bag until you are ready to cover your plane. Then keep the unused material safe and away from the area where you are gluing the material to the model.
MEK is universal solvent and is very good for cleaning up and thinning Poly Tak glue. Don’t use it to thin the Poly Tone paint however. Reducer is used for that.
Now clean off your workbench really good and then gather the covering materials.
1. Place the control surface over the fabric and cut it to size leaving about an inch of material all around. It is very important to use sharp knife blades and replace them often. The fabric dulls the blades quickly. Get a 100-count pack of #11 X-Acto or Hobbico blades. Once you cut the first piece of fabric, go ahead and cut a second piece for the other side. The fabric has no inner or outer surface.
2. Pour some Poy-Tak adhesive into a glass container that has a twist-on lid and use your ½ inch brush to apply some adhesive all around the outer edges of the rudder. The glue dries quickly so apply it quickly a few inches at a time as you go. By the time you apply glue to a second control surface, the first will be dry and ready to go.
3. To begin attaching the fabric to the control surface apply more adhesive working in short 2 to 3 inch sections and press the fabric down onto the wet glue. Rub it down smooth with your fingers and let dry. This takes only a minute or two. I apply glue in one spot (see top of rudder,) and then pull the material a little to remove any sags and wrinkles and apply glue on the opposite edge. Apply more glue and pull the material again as until all the edges are glued down and the material is wrinkle free.
4. Now turn the control surface over and repeat the process. Apply a little glue, smooth the fabric down and pull the material working a few inches at a time. The fabric should overlap the first side about 3/8 inch around edges. Lift the material up slightly and use a small brush to apply glue where the material overlaps and rub it down smooth. I find it helpful to wait a just few seconds to let the adhesive start to setup then press it down with your fingers.
Shop Tip: If you find a stubborn area where the fabric is stuck down uneven, brush a little MEK solvent to the outside of the fabric to reactivate the glue under it. Also, if you drip some adhesive on the outside of the fabric, you can use MEK and a paper towel to remove it before painting.
5. After the adhesive has completely dried, apply heat, (with your iron set at about 250 degrees,) and go over any edges where fabric isn’t completely sealed down. Once the edges have cooled off, apply heat to the center of the control surface and work the iron outward. You’ll be amazed how easily and quickly the fabric shrinks and the wrinkles disappear.
The process is the same for all control surfaces like the rudder, horizontal stabilizer, elevators and ailerons. When covering a model, I like to cover all the control surfaces first to get into the swing of things before moving onto larger structures.
Position your parts on the fabric to minimize your waste material
Completed Elevators. Notice that hinge blocks are not touching the covering material
Here’s the stailizer and rudder are completely covered and positioned on the fuselage.
Here is a close up of the elevator. Notice the hole for the RObart HingePoints is clear and uncovered. The fabric is glued down neatly around the hinge opening.
6. For the fuselage, apply the first coat of glue to where the covering will come in contact with, let dry and cover to the bottom surfaces. Trim the edges neatly, apply more glue and seal the edges down over the outer edges and onto the sides of the longerons. I also cut the material extra long and seal the edges to the inside of the wing saddles and the formers in this area.
Do this to any other openings in the fabric like around the tailskid.
Work all the wrinkles out before moving to the next surface. Only after all the surfaces are covered and most of the wrinkles have been removed should you apply heat.
7. Once the bottom is covered, treat the vertical sides in the same way. Neatly trim the edges so they wrap around the top and bottom longerons and seal them down with glue and smooth it down with your fingers.
8. Cover the tail saddle where the horizontal stabilizer sets, first so you can overlap the sides and top covering so they are hidden when the stabilizer is bolted into place. Just take your time and make all your seams neat, straight and smooth.
Now apply the covering to the top aft portion of the fuselage and work the material down and seal with glue at the outer edges. Tack it into place at the tail and work forward pulling slack and wrinkles out as your work forward and outward.
Trim the material to produce smooth, neat seams. After all the covering material is in place and major wrinkles and slack removed, you can then go over everything with the covering iron set at 300 degrees for a final shrink. Stay away from seams and edges.
9. When you have openings for control linkages, pushrods and control cables, make a small slit in the fabric and slip the hardware through before gluing the fabric in place. Then carefully glue the fabric in place around the area. After the model has been covered and painted you can add scale fairings and patches to support the fabric.
10. You should also apply plenty of glue to the supporting structures around the control exits so you have a strong fabric bond. This will prevent wrinkling at these areas.
Safety Tip: MEK solvent is a strong, dangerous chemical and should always be used with caution. It is also strongly recommended that you use chemical proof gloves, or use a barrier cream like “invisble gloves” (available from F&M Industries) to prevent the solvent from absorbing into your skin. This hand cream also makes it very easy to clean off dried glue from your fingers.
That’s it for now. Stay tuned and I’ll be back with tips and techniques for covering the wings.
Click Here to learn more.
The post Tips for a Great Fabric Finish — Using Scale Stits to cover your Airplane appeared first on Model Airplane News.
View the full article
When you’re flying a stable elevator, you can perform an inside “waterfall” (micro loop) by maintaining full up-elevator, and applying full power and a little right rudder to correct for increased propwash and P-factor. On the back side of the loop, quickly cut the power and neutralize the rudder. Then, at the instant the fuselage nears level at the bottom of the loop, simultaneously add a few clicks of power and a little right rudder to keep the fuselage level and correct for P-factor. You can then either descend in an elevator or increase the throttle and exit the maneuver. The plane will barrel roll out of this stunt if you fail to enter it with the wings level. Thus, only attempt an inside waterfall when the wings are level. With experience and altitude, you’ll be able to perform several inside waterfalls while dropping out of the sky in an elevator. Waterfalls can also be entered from slow flight or while hovering into the wind. The keys to this maneuver are getting settled into a stable elevator before attempting the waterfall and coordinating the correct amount of rudder with the throttle to maintain a constant heading.
Waterfalls can be enhanced with 60-degree elevator deflections and an aft CG. As a rule, however, it is a mistake to increase the elevator travel for the sake of one or two maneuvers if it ends up making everything else more difficult. This is a case where an advanced 3D pilot would use a more sophisticated radio that’s capable of a third flight mode with 60-degree elevator deflections for certain maneuvers.
The post Master the 3D Waterfall appeared first on Model Airplane News.
View the full article
Just posted on our Premium Site, world class scale model designer, builder and pilot, Brian Perkins has an award winner on his hands in the form of his new Royal Aircraft Factory BE2c. Winning multiple awards at national trade shows and RC events, Brian’s vintage RC biplane is shown here in detailed with a multi-photo gallery.
To learn more about Brian’s B.E.2c and read more exclusive online content, Click Here to subscribe to the Model Airplane New Premium website.
The post New for Premium Members — Award Winning RAF B.E.2c appeared first on Model Airplane News.
View the full article
Mixing out unwanted tendencies during knife-edge is widely practiced, but like most things in aviation, there are trade-offs to consider. Programmable mixes let you automatically mix another control with your primary input to reduce or eliminate some of the unwanted tendencies associated with certain inputs and maneuvers.
For example, when you apply a lot of rudder to sustain knife-edge flight, most planes tend to gently roll in the direction in which the rudder is being held. Therefore, pilots routinely mix opposite aileron with rudder to cancel out the rolling tendency during knife-edge. However, while a mix can help make the maneuver for which it is intended easier, it may prove contrary to what’s needed during another maneuver or end up causing a deviation samewhere else.
Many “tendencies” are held in check at higher speeds and only show up when the plane is flying slower. Some tendencies show up at high-throttle settings, but not when the throttle is low. This means a lot of mixes are, only appropriate at certain air speeds and throttle settings. This partly explains why those who look to mixing as a substitute for developing better flying skills often find it difficult to advance beyond the initial success they had when, the mix was first introduced. In fact, you can travel across the country and observe fliers involved in an endless cycle of trying to “dial” into their radios the corrections that they could easily be making, only to have to repeat the process each time conditions change, a new maneuver grabs their interest, or they fly a different airplane. You might think that programming the radio has become their hobby! Unless the only maneuver you intend to fly is knife-edge, the most efficient and effective use of programmable mixes is to limit your mixes to no more than 5 to 10 percent (15 percent max). If the tendency that you want to correct is slight, try a 5-percent mix. If it is more noticeable, try a 10-percent mix. Limiting each mix to 5 to 10 percent (15 percent max) will help make flying easier without having too much impact on other maneuvers or causing you to do a lot of backtracking as your repertoire expands. BY DAVID SCOTT
The post Radio Programming Secrets — Taming knife-edge flight appeared first on Model Airplane News.
View the full article
What maneuver does the “Father of 3D” Quique Samonzini most enjoy flying? Quique says, “I like them all, but if I had to choose one, it would be a well-done torque roll. It’s a really popular maneuver now. But when it is done show center, low to the ground with constant rotation that never stops and no gain or loss in altitude, it is a real crowd-pleaser. And especially if you have a smoke system on the plane, with the plane locked into one spot and smoke billowing all around, I don’t think you can do a more impressive maneuver.”
MAN: What tips do you have for anyone who wants to learn the torque roll?
QS: We all know how to do a basic torque roll, but to refine the maneuver, you have to use all four controls to keep the plane in a perfect position. Throttle needs to be adjusted so that the plane stays in one position; no climbing or going down. You have to play with the throttle and use a few clicks of up and down to make the plane stay there. The tail, elevator and rudder will keep the plane in a perfect vertical position. If there is any wind, you will need some left aileron to keep the plane rotating. When the plane is facing into the wind, it has a tendency to stop rotating; this is when you will have toinput some left aileron to maintain the plane’s rotation. Basically, you have to move all four channels to keep the plane precisely positioned. For dramatic effect, the smoke should be turned on once the plane is locked into its perfect position. That way, the smoke will almost cover the airplane.
MAN: Is there a particular plane that performs this maneuver really well?
QS: I like the Yak, but the Python does it pretty good, too. A plane with a round engine cowl would do this maneuver well. These types of planes tend not to have any bad habits. If you did a torque roll with a CAP, it would tend to pull toward the wheels really bad. With the motor centered in the round cowl, this does not happen.
The post The Master shares his secrets appeared first on Model Airplane News.
View the full article
Belgian giant-scale modeler Hervé Ferauche certainly believes that “bigger is better”: his Messerschmitt Me 109G “Rote Sieben” is a half-scale beauty with a 205 inch wingspan! A 520cc Hirth Boxer engine and 39×18 prop power this 264-pound fighter, sporting a color scheme from the European front. Built using traditional wood construction, we think Willy would be proud of Hervé with his 50% scale Luftwaffe legend!
The post Monster Messerschmitt appeared first on Model Airplane News.
View the full article
When you’re flying a stable elevator, you can perform an inside “waterfall” (micro loop) by maintaining full up-elevator, and applying full power and a little right rudder to correct ...
Continue reading ... Join our premium membership!
The post Master the Waterfall appeared first on Model Airplane News.
View the full article
The devil is in the details. After installing your servos according the manufacturer’s directions, you might find that when the servo arm is placed on the spline, it isn’t at a perfect right angle to the servo casing. Or, after you’ve hooked up the various linkages, you discover there is too much or not enough travel throw when a certain control surface is deflected. How about adjusting those throttle linkages to get that carburetor barrel either wide open or fully closed when the throttle trim is lowered? If you have experienced these scenarios and own a computer radio, the solutions are just a few minutes away. This article will help you to achieve basic radio- and servo-setup success.
1 First, check that your servos are properly installed. Unless you’re flying a foamie or small electric in which the servos are glued into place, use the rubber grommets and brass eyelets that come with your servos. Install them so the wide brim of the eyelets are under the grommets (between them and the servo tray). Tighten the screws until their heads meet the brass bushing’s top edge. The rubber grommet will be compressed a bit, but that’s OK. The object is to have a secure, shock-mounted servo installation that won’t move when the servo arm is deflected. If the eyelet is installed with the wide end up, the grommets will be compressed so much that they won’t isolate the servo from the source of vibration.
2 This is a crucial setup check and should be done before any linkages are hooked up. Does the control surface move in the correct direction relative to the transmitter’s stick input? Start with one servo and place the servo arm on the spline. Don’t concern yourself with whether it is exactly 90 degrees to the case. Turn on your transmitter and receiver and move the stick (top) that corresponds with that channel. If you see that the arm is moving in the wrong direction required for the correct control surface movement (middle), use the servo reversing menu and hit select “norm” to “rev” so the servo responds in the correct direction (bottom). Now go one by one through the remaining servos and correct their directions if necessary.
CENTERING THE ARM
3 First, all servos should be centered with the transmitter sticks and the control trim levers centered, then place the servo arm on the spline (mechanical portion). Move the arm’s position on the spline to get it as close to 90 degrees to the servo case as possible then, if necessary, use the sub-trim menu to adjust the arm’s position. Do the mechanical adjustments first; don’t rely on the subtrim function only. This can affect the servo’s overall control throws and end points.
For most elevator, rudder and aileron servos, the servo arm should be at a 90-degree angle to the case.
4 Because the servo placement is usually pre-determined in an ARF, you need to mechanically (i.e. no programming) set the control linkage at 90 degrees to the servo arm. Determining which hole to use in the servo arm is simple: if you want more throw on the control linkage, place it in the hole farthest from the servo’s center; closer if less throw is desired. Different size models will have various linkage setup requirements, so consult the instruction manual for the proper linkage setup. With the linkage disconnected to the servo’s arm, there shouldn’t be any binding when you move it by hand.
5 The control surface’s linkage connection depends on the type and size model you’re flying. If you want to achieve maximum surface deflection, connect the clevis to the control horn using the hole closest to the surface. For large-scale and 3D airplanes, connect the linkage to the outermost hole (farthest from the surface) for maximum leverage; this also helps to prevent flutter. This photo (below left) shows threaded rods for control horns with plastic connectors to which the clevises attach. Note that they are at the end of the rod rather than close to the surface. It is usually best to have a straight line from the pushrod linkage’s fuselage exit to the hole in the surface’s control arm/horn. Sometimes a slight bend in the rod (top right) after it exits the fuselage is needed to relieve servo and linkage binding.
6 Depending on your brand of transmitter, you’ll see EPA, ATV or Trav. Adj. in your radio’s menu. EPA means end-point adjustment; Trav. Adj. is travel adjustment, and ATV is adjustable travel volume. These programs adjust how far the servo arm will move in either direction. Their default settings are usually 100 percent but can often be increased or decreased using the increase/+ or decrease/-keys. Use this menu when you have either too much or not enough control-surface travel when you try to match the manufacturer’s recommended settings.
Here’s an example. Your model’s elevator travel should be only 1 inch up or down, but when you move the radio’s elevator stick to its most forward and aft positions, the elevator moves 2 inches each way. While in this menu and on the channel you need to limit (in this case, elevator), pull the stick all the way back, hold it there and keep pressing the decrease/- key (lower left) until the deflection matches the 1-inch mark. Push the stick forward and do the same to achieve the correct amount. Note: if you had to reverse your servo’s direction, you might have to hit the increase key (lower right) to decrease the throw. If you need to increase travel, hold the stick in the mentioned positions and hit the increase key. Repeat this for your aileron and rudder deflections using side-to-side stick movements.
7 With the flip of a switch, dual rate commands two different amounts of surface deflection when you move a transmitter stick. Generally limited to the elevator, rudder and ailerons, dual rate is great for test flights, takeoffs and landings. The first amount of high-rate deflection was set when you adjusted the control-surface travel to the manufacturer’s recommendations. On your transmitter, dual-rate switches correspond with the mentioned channels. When you set your travel volume/high rates, the switches were either up or down. How you set them is up to you; some folks like to flip the switches up for high rates and down for low. Others prefer the opposite. Go to the dual-rate menu in your transmitter and note the switch position; these are marked with either a 0 and 1 or a 1 and 2. These examples show 1 and 2. The factory-set percentages for each position is 100 (top left), so leave your preferred high-rate switch position at 100 and flip the switch to the low-rate position. Using the decrease/- key, lower the percentage rate until the surface deflection measurement matches the recommended low-rate amount (middle left). As you do this, hold the corresponding transmitter stick to its fullest forward or back, left or right position and watch the surface deflection decrease down the markings on the ruler held in your other hand (bottom left) to measure the deflection amount. Sometimes, a third hand helps with setting the low rate. Now hold the stick fully deflected and flip the corresponding channel dual-rate switch back and forth. You should see the control surface move to two different positions (top right).
8 Exponential (aka expo) decreases the sensitivity of the stick inputs around the center of its movement. Whether you’re flying 3D or just taking off or landing, this function is extremely helpful for the over-controlling pilot and I highly recommend that you use it until you perfect your technique. On some radios, this feature is found in the dual-rate menu. In others, you have to go to the non-basic menu to find it. It’s best to consult your radio’s manual if you can’t find it. Once found, the screen shows “expo” and a percentage amount, usually factory-set at 0 (top left). Select a specific channel on the screen and press the increase/+ key to dial in the amount of required expo (top right). Sometimes, manufacturers have it listed in the instructions (you see this especially in 3D airplanes), or the amount is left up to you. Before you decide, it is best to note the amount of stick movement with which you fly. For example, if you’re flying a trainer and move the sticks all over the place, you want to set those percentages on the high side-usually around 30 to 40. If you have a finite control of the sticks, 15 to 20 seems to work well. High-performance 3D aerobats can require 50 to 60 percent or higher.
Some surfaces may require a different percentage than others, which is fine. Note that expo is set for each dual-rate position, so you may need to adjust the expo percent for the low dual-rate setting as well (lower left and right).
9 What is aileron differential? Simply this: when you move the aileron stick, one aileron deflects at a higher amount of travel while the other one deflects at a lower amount. This helps to prevent adverse yaw, which is the airplane’s nose initially turning in the opposite direction of the turn input, thus resulting in a slip during the turn. Who should use it? Pilots whose left thumbs are not quite adapted to adding rudder input when initiating turns. It is particular useful when flying high-wing scale aircraft and trainers, as it visually smoothes out the turn. As with expo, aileron differential is either in the regular menu or the non-basic and is also based on a percentage amount. When you bring up the aileron differential screen, you see a 0 as the factory-set percentage. Use the increase/+ key to add the differential to your aileron’s deflection. A good starting amount is 25 percent. Try that for a flight or two; if you discover it needs to go higher, increase by increments of 5 until you achieve the desired results: a smooth, coordinated turn when you only use the ailerons to bank the model.
10 First and foremost, you want the throttle linkage to run in as close to a straight line as possible from where the linkage attaches to the throttle servo’s arm to its connection on the carburetor barrel’s control horn. Sometimes, a straight line is not possible and the linkage might need a Z-bend, usually within the fuselage’s radio compartment. There shouldn’t be any binding in the linkage’s movement. If there is, you need to mechanically fix it before you set your throttle travel on your radio. Now go to radio’s endpoint adjustment menu and dial up the throttle channel. You’ll note that it reads 100 percent in either the throttle-up or -down position (top right). Here’s one way to achieve the correct high- and low-throttle settings. When connecting the throttle linkage to the servo arm, usually with an EZ connector or Kwik Link, push the linkage in the direction that fully opens the carburetor barrel. Remove the servo arm from the throttle servo, slide the connector onto the wire and reattach the arm so it is in the full-throttle position when the transmitter stick and trim are set as such (above). Tighten the small hex-head bolt and your high-throttle travel position should be set. If you hear the servo binding, lower the percentage on this position using the decrease/- key until the buzzing disappears. You may only need to drop a few percentages to achieve this. Next, lower the throttle stick all the way to see how far the carburetor barrel closes (top right). If it closes all the way, decrease the travel throw until there is an opening that will allow air into the carburetor (above right). Lower the throttle trim and note the position where the barrel completely closes. If it doesn’t, adjust this by decreasing the travel throw (left). Your engine should completely shut off when you lower the stick and then the throttle trim. The throttle trim need not go to its max lower limit to stop the engine from running. Your engine’s travel limits are now set.
The post Stay in Control 10 Top Radio Programming Secrets appeared first on Model Airplane News.
View the full article
To properly operate and maintain models, you need support equipment that is up to the task. Two of the most important concerns we have with giant-scale models are safely starting the engine and handling the fuel (gasoline). When we switch from glow engines to gasoline burners, we need to change some of our equipment; we need to start thinking big!
Hand-starting gas engines is a common practice, but it is much safer to use an electric starter. The old 12V starters that easily crank a standard glow-powered 2-stroke just won’t work when you attempt to start a big gas burner. One solution is the doublehandled, 12/24V Megatron starter from Sullivan Products. The Megatron uses the same powerful Model 4 motor that powers Sullivan’s popular model-boat starter, and it is equipped with dual handles; it is specifically intended for starting large RC airplane engines. The Megatron can start most gasoline engines with up to 8ci in displacements. The power switch is incorporated in one of the rubber-padded handles, and the steel end plates prevent the motor from slipping under load. The Megatron comes equipped with a huge 3-inch aluminum cone and a sure-grip silicone rubber insert. The starter can operate on 12 or 24 volts and at a maximum of 100 amps. At 12 volts, its torque is 600 oz.-in.; at 24 volts, it’s a whopping 1,200 oz.-in. It has a no-load rpm of 2,800 at 12 volts and 5,600rpm at 24 volts. Two silicone rubber adapters are also available for the Megatron. The small adapter (item no. S636) is for 2V4- to 41/2-inch-diameter spinners, and the large one (no. S637) fits spinners from 3 1/2 to 6 inches in diameter. Give them a try!
Another way to increase the safety factor is to install an onboard starter. The simplest is a spring starter that is attached to the aft end of the engine’s crankshaft. It consists of a heavy-gauge spring, attachment bolts and a coupler containing a one-way roller bearing. After you have installed it, start your engine by simply rotating your prop about 1/3 of the way backward (clockwise) and then release it. The spring flips the prop counterclockwise in the same way as a Cox 1/2 engine is started. Though very simple, these spring-starter systems work very well and almost never wear out. When it comes to all the “firewall forward” parts, it’s important to use the correct equipment for the job and to always be careful—especially with gasoline-powered engines.
An easy-to-install, but often-neglected, safety device is the engine kill switch. A safety requirement at any IMAA-sanctioned event, an engine kill switch grounds the ignition system (magneto) to the engine case and makes it impossible to accidentally start the engine. With electronic-ignition-equipped engines, the same thing can be achieved by adding a switch to the system’s battery lead. Several pre-made switch harnesses are available, but you can easily make your own out of parts from an electronics store. All you need are two lengths of wire and an on/off toggle switch.
One wire goes to the engine case (it’s usually attached under a bolt head with a wire lug), and the other one is connected to the magneto. Most magnetos have either a wire lead or a solder tab to which you connect the grounding wire. Keep the wires as short as possible.
To make removal of the engine cowl easier, attach the switch to the firewall with a plywood or aluminum bracket, and let the switch toggle pass through a slot that has been cut into the cowl. Get into the habit of using the switch to shut off the engine, and make sure that it remains in the off position when the model is not in use.
A typical gasoline fuel tank used in giant-scale models holds anywhere from 16 to 32 ounces of gasoline. It takes a long time to hand-pump this much fuel into our models, and a standard electric fuel pump is not an option. Gasoline is much more volatile than glow fuel, and electric pumps can cause sparks—not a good thing around gas fumes. What’s the answer? How about a fuel pump specially designed for gasoline that contains no electric motor, diaphragm, bearings, or any other part that could create a spark? That’s just what Sonic-Tronics has developed with its new
NIFTY GASOLINE PUMP
This totally sealed, solid-state unit is self priming and operates in only one direction, which is clearly labeled on its case. To empty your fuel tank, you must reverse the fuel lines. Reversing the battery leads with a switch will not operate the pumping mechanism; it won’t hurt the unit, but it won’t work. The pump produces a constant 6psi of flow pressure, and Sonic-Tronics recommends that you use a larger (1/8 to 5/32-inch i.d.) fuel lines and fittings in your model. The Nifty Gasoline Pump operates on 12 volts and requires about 1 amp of power. The unit comes completely tested and ready to use, but you have to supply your own power connectors. To identify the wiring polarity of the pump, the negative lead is marked with a black band. Used with gasoline-compatible fuel lines and an approved gasoline-storage container, the Nifty Gasoline Pump makes your pit area safer!
The post Starting Gasoline Engines—Safely! appeared first on Model Airplane News.
View the full article
When it comes to building RC aircraft, especially WWI biplanes, it pays big dividends to keep the tail surfaces as light as possible. One way to do this is to use thin materials and a technique called Core Sheeting. Basically, when you build this way, you cut out a core of thin balsa sheeting (1/32 inch to 1/16 inch) and then build your surface around it. Here’s how i did it for my newest project the 27.5% scale Nieuport 24.
First take the top views of your control surfaces (here the stabilizer and elevator), and use spray adhesive and bond them to poster board and carefully cut them out. These will be used as templates to cut your balsa sheeting to size.
The next step is to use a balsa stripper (this one from Master Airscrew) and make all your stick stock. Use medium density wood so they are stiff yet lightweight. Do not use lightweight stick stock from the hobby shop as most of the time they will be too light and not very strong.
Using the templates, edge glue your balsa core sheets together and cut them to size. Here the core sheet is being made from 1/16-inch balsa.
Use thin CA glue (I used Zap here) and glue the structure to the top of the core sheeting. Let it all dry, the remove the pins, lightly sand the structure flat, and turn it over so you can glue on the the structure to the other side.
Once the two side structures have been glued in place, sand the edges to shape and then using yellow carpenter’s glue, add the first side of the final sheeting. For this stabilizer I am using 1/32 inch balsa for the outer skins.
An added bonus, to using the core sheeting technique, is that you can cut out the pockets for the hinges first, and then after the surface has been built, the slots will all be done ready for hinging and they will all be centered and alighned.
Here’s the finished horizontal stabilizer is being fitted in place on the fuselage. I light sanding of the stabilizer and it is ready for covering.
The post Workshop Tips, Building Light appeared first on Model Airplane News.
View the full article
The H-King Swallow670 is a mini FPV flying wing that will get you around all those small areas. The plane is near indestructible and made of tough EPP foam. It has two carbon fiber rods in the wings to provide more stability and strength. The main body provides the plane with ample room for all the electronics to be fitted out of the way.
There is room up front for an FPV Camera (not supplied) and Video transmitter (not supplied) and if you want to use an Action Camera (not supplied) then there is a different cover to be used especially for this type of camera. There is a 3-axis flight stabilizer provided to keep the wing stable for better video quality. It can also be turned off for more dynamic flying.
Get your H-King Swallow670 now and get a bird’s eye view of the countryside.
• High quality, lightweight EPP foam
• Small size
• Aerodynamic design
• Comes with 3-Axis flight control to ensure a more stable flight
• Fun to fly
Weight: 160g (without electronic equipment)
1 x 3-axis fight controller
Required: 3~4CH Radio / Receiver (with Elevon Mixing)
1 x 20~30A BLHeli 2~4S Opto ESC
1 x 2204-2300KV or 2205-2300KV Brushless Motor
2 x 9g Servos
1 x 6045 Propeller
1 x 1500mAh 3S Lipo battery
1 x FPV Camera
1 x 5.8GHz Video Transmitter (for FPV)
1 x FPV Goggles or Screen (for FPV)
1 x Action Cam (if required)
The post Hobby King Swallow 670 FPV appeared first on Model Airplane News.
View the full article
One way to make scale RC airplanes look more realistic is to hide any and all of the switches and other RC-related hardware so that they aren’t visible from the outside. Hatches and flush fitting hatch covers are the answer. This how to article takes you step by step through the process of making a hinged, flush fitting and professional looking entryway for your model’s internal radio gear.
To read more of this article as well as other exclusive online content, Click Here to subscribe to the Model Airplane News Members’ Only website.
The post New for Premium Members — Flush Hatches appeared first on Model Airplane News.
View the full article