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theluckyone17's blog
Posted by theluckyone17 | Dec 16, 2008 @ 06:18 PM | 1,711 Views
So I'm a bit... frustrated, disappointed, and feeling like I bit off a bit more than I can chew. It's my own fault, too... I wanted a project, and I got one. Doesn't make it any easier to swallow, though.

Simply put, the left wing on this hand-me-down Cessna is pretty damaged. I knew the sheeting had been broken in one spot, so I thought I'd pull the covering off, only to discover that it'd been broken in several spots. Furthermore, the trailing edge spar has been cracked in one spot, creating a fairly obvious warp in the TE at that spot.

My major concern? The main spar has been split... looks like the whole length of the wing. In most of the "bays" between the ribs, I can see a faint crack. The "height" of the crack in each bay appears to differ, so it's pretty jagged as I look down the spar. Some of the ribs are cracked, too.

Obviously, there's more structural damage than I expected. I'm really concerned about the damage to the spar, for obvious reasons. I'll make a post later, trying to get a more experienced eye to give me an idea on whether a repair is feasible.
Posted by theluckyone17 | Dec 15, 2008 @ 10:40 PM | 1,676 Views
So this blog bit has turned out like most of my online projects... few updates... few and far between. *shrug* But when I've got something to crow about, the blog gets updated .

As the title suggests, I picked up my second model - a used Hanger 9 Cessna 182, 40 sized. H9 makes a larger Cessna 182, that looks absolutely beautiful, and most of the web research I did relates to it. The boss (my wife) won't allow something with a >90" wingspan into the house, though. She makes enough of a fuss at 66".

Christmas coincided with that second plane itch, so I posted a wanted thread on here. Turns out a guy about an hour away had this ARF sitting in his workshop, gathering dust. He never got around to setting it up, so he sold it to me. I love history, and this plane's got it.

I believe I'm the third owner, so far. The original owner was in NJ. According to the story, he had decided to recover it for whatever reason, and redid the entire exterior in white. The cockpit and cabin are black, the firewall & engine mount in red. One wingtip has been trimmed blue. Quite frankly, the covering job isn't what I'd prefer... it's lifted up in spots, wrinkled in others, and obvious patches are numerous. There's only one spot where the underlying balsa is suspect, however, so I've got good hopes.

The second owner picked it up with planes on slapping some floats on it, but never got around to it... he was tossed a warbird or two after picking up this Cessna, and he...Continue Reading
Posted by theluckyone17 | Aug 13, 2008 @ 06:53 PM | 2,046 Views
It's been a while since I posted before... let's see what's new:

I joined the Thundervolts a month or so ago. Unfortunately, I've only flown once at the field, for a number of reasons. First, I/we don't have a Spektrum buddy box, so I've got to show up at the same time as someone else with a Spektrum, who's willing to sit on the sidelines while we borrow their radio. I'm not the type to impose (though I'll usually give the shirt off my back if ya ask), so it's awkward. I'll be a lot happier when I get a buddy box, then donate it to the club.

Second, the field runway is kinda tiny... well, it's bloody huge if you're walking it, but when you're landing, it's tiny. It's walled off by these huge bushes, too (ok, they're weeds... but they're big weeds). When there's a huge, mowed, empty park nearby that's glow friendly... well... the field just doesn't compare. At least when I'm flying a trainer. Once I pick up something bigger/faster, the park ain't gonna cut it. By then, however, I should have the confidence to land in that runway.

I've had that goal in mind, while I'm flying at the park. I've been concentrating on my approaches and landings. If I can't grease 'er in right in front of me, I go around. I've gone around a lot . That Tailwind is beautiful on a go around, though... engine rev'ing up, five feet off the ground, roaring past, then clawing for altitude. She's pretty.

So obviously the O.S. 46AX I'm using is broken in, by now. I was having a hard time after...Continue Reading
Posted by theluckyone17 | Jun 23, 2008 @ 09:01 PM | 2,049 Views
Boy, that title sounds bad. No, nobody tried to steal my airplane. I've been hiding it from the neighbors, so I don't get the "Gee, does that really fly?" questions. As a side note, I'm tempted to answer "Nope. That's what the wheels are for."

Anyway, I finally finished up the assembly. There's still an issue or two left unresolved... I'm having problems with one servo twitching whenever the transmitter is brought near it, and I'm worried about the same servo being weak. It's currently slaved up to the throttle control, and has been doing a decent job there. Once Horizon Hobby's Customer Service gets back to me, I'll figure out what I'm going to do with it. Knowing me, I'll order a $10 servo come Friday and replace it.

Meanwhile, I took the Tailwind over to the park to break in the engine. That was the plan, at least. Sure didn't happen that way. I managed to get the engine to spin over, and actually fire. Then it promptly died. Now I know enough about engines to say that they need three things to run: fuel, air, and spark. Air & spark we had plenty of... fuel, not so much. A little bit would sputter in when I primed the engine, but it wouldn't flow once the engine started. I figured air was leaking in somewhere.

I had originally extended the fuel lines and moved the tank towards the empty CoG, in hopes of decreasing the fuel load's effect on the CoG as the fuel burned off. While doing that, I picked up some "standard" fuel line that seemed to seat on the connections fine. Well, either the lines were too long, or the connections failed to seat tight enough.

Instead, I pulled the tank back out, reran the original fuel tubing that came with the Tailwind, and reseated the tank to its original location per the instructions. After connecting up the lines, she sucked fuel perfectly fine. Empty the tank, drop some after run oil in there, and I'm ready to try to break her in tomorrow or Wednesday. We'll see.
Posted by theluckyone17 | Jun 15, 2008 @ 04:53 PM | 2,272 Views
First post! Errr... sorry, wrong forum .

I just discovered the blogs up on Since I'm new to the RC hobby, the general RCGroups populace probably won't find anything interesting here. On the other hand, it seems like it'll serve as a pretty decent journal to document my exploits.

History? Up to this point, I've been flying the Firebird Freedom. Not a bad way to start in this hobby, I figured... $100 on a special sale at one of my local hobby shops. If I turned it into foam dust, I wouldn't be crying over it. And it served its purpose well. I could go into detail here, but those lessons I learned from it are not lessons I'd like to have documented .

I've got a Cox .40 Tailwind with an OS .46AX and the Spektrum DX7. Currently, it's mostly assembled... had to fix a few issues with it out of the box, but nothing I'm too concerned about. I'm waiting until my LHS opens up tomorrow before I pick up the few extras I need to complete it. The rest of the ground support stuff will probably wait until next paycheck... along with the membership fee to a local club. My AMA membership was picked up months ago, after realizing that the insurance would come in handy if the FBF decide to go rogue on me and fly into someone's house near the local park.

Speaking of the local club, I managed to get up to the field today for first impressions... and they were good. There were just a couple guys flying, and seemed kinda standoffish at first. Once I introduced myself and...Continue Reading