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tking2097's blog
Archive for February, 2011
Posted by tking2097 | Feb 19, 2011 @ 01:05 AM | 4,008 Views
I have always had a weakness for the U-2 Dragon Lady, and once I saw Phase 3 U-2 flight video, I knew I had to have one in my hangar! There was just one problem, the Phase 3 version is a belly-lander. After doing a bit of homework, I developed a Strut kit with double axles to mount in an E-Flite 10 - 15 nose retract, or the NitroPlanes retract for the Phase 3 U-2 kit.

My completed U-2 with the Strut mod and added tailwheel (3/4" Sullivan from LHS) can be seen in the first picture.

In the second picture, you can see the kit parts, the assembled strut assembly, and finally the completed strut with wheels. The strut is made from T-6061 aluminum, and all hardware is stainless steel. As you can see, the kit is simple and easy to assemble!

Wheels - The kit provides for the use of 1.5" or 1.75" sized thin wheels. Due to the rough surface of the field where I typically fly, I chose to install two 1.75" wheels (Dave Brown Products Lite Flite Wheels). Wheels too large to fit the axles appear too large for the U-2 and will not fit in the space inside the fuselage.

Note that the 2 screws used to form the double wheel axles were test fitted with the intended wheels, then assembled using Blue Thread-lock compound. The use of Blue thread-lock provides for a secure capture of the screws, yet allows the screws to be removed at a later time if required.
Since space inside the Phase 3 U-2 is limited, a bit of ingenuity to get everything to fit. For example, I chose to mount the ESC on the bottom of the fuselage, just ahead of the fan, in order to free up space for the retract, retract servo, and an optional rudder servo.

I made up a couple of extra retract kits while I was at it. Feel free to contact me about obtaining one for your U-2 project if you like.

The U-2 with added flaps, rudder and retractable nose gear is ready! All that is needed now is some good weather for a maiden flight plan!!