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PoudreDerf's blog
Posted by PoudreDerf | Dec 13, 2007 @ 08:02 AM | 3,086 Views
November and December of this year have been quite tough on me. On November 10, 2007, the Birthday of the Marines, my Mother passed away peacefully in her sleep at the age of 87. Shortly thereafter, I was taken by two ambulances to health centers, ending up in the Medical Center of the Rockies with a life-threatening problem. My aorta had leaked, and the stuff that leaked out got infected, and, in general, I wasn't feeling very well.
Twenty five days later, I emerged from the hospital. I had missed my Mother's funeral. I had missed Thanksgiving. I lost 15 pounds and looked like a Billy Goat. I'm as weak as a noodle, able to chug out only five hours of non-sleep. And, to make things worse, I can't climb stairs (computer's set up in the upstairs spare bedroom), can't drive until after Christmas, and have to go to the hospital every day for the next 32 days to get an intravenous antibiotic injection. At least I get to sleep in my own bed at night. Most of that five hours is spent going to and from the hospital.
I was able to get out a few messages to Beaverdom, and you guys really gave me the wherewithal to conquer my problems. You cheered me on to get out of there.
I will take credit for being the first to fly a remote controlled helicopter inside the new hospital. And, I also brought along the famous NOCART Beaver to hang in front of me to give me reason to heal quickly
To gain access to the Internet, I picked up a cheap laptop which I keep downstairs. Still hobbled...Continue Reading
Posted by PoudreDerf | Jul 16, 2007 @ 11:55 PM | 3,552 Views
I think I'm done with the Beaver that was sent as a gift to me by you, Beaverdom. I really gave it my best shot at model building.
It all started out with a thin wall on my aorta. I had to get it fixed, and tried to keep a happy face while doing so. But, it was much more than my mind could handle. That's where Beaverdom stepped in. I received a complete Beaver in the mail from you guys. And gals. I'll just refer to you as "guys" to keep things simple.
I couldn't build for months. Even today, getting a decent line of glue down is a challenge. I tried a FlatOut plane, and couldn't build it. I felt ashamed. Here was this fancy Beaver, from Canada no less, and I didn't have what it took to build it.
I managed to get a few flights in, and Beverly (what a guy!) made the TIME Magazine cover (I think - everything's still in a blur) for me. I knew I was going to be okay, but I didn't realize that healing would take over a year.
Work periods seldom exceeded fifteen minutes. I had trouble remembering timely things, like having my hot glue gun plugged in. Eating was, and still is, a problem. I have to eat new things and found out that, in addition to not being able to name colors, found out I didn't know a cabbage from a beet. I don't know vegetables! I never even thought of that. So now I have to eat things like tofu (artificial plastic in flavors) and drink bottled water (I live on a free-flowing river!). This is gonna be tough, but I can do it.
I learned how to use an...Continue Reading
Posted by PoudreDerf | Jul 11, 2007 @ 04:48 PM | 3,399 Views
It looks as if I've got a working water rudder here, folks. Here's pictures of it going right, left, and in the middle position. Wonder what it will do on the water?
Need a tinny? Not me. I've got two float Beavers now. But, they're on the same frequency. I'll have to get another crystal for the Beaver with flaps. I can use it as a tinny, to tow in Beaver VIII should it ever get stranded.
Here's your names, Beaverdom. Right under the pilot's window. You go up with me on every flight. And, I got the cowl fitted at last. I used Velcro. I'm gonna add some hearts to the cowl. I'm still trying to figure out where to put that stupid aorta. Use it as a wiring harness cover? Hmm...
I used the motor mount from Beaver VI to get the motor onto the stick. It really stuck out there, so I had to use my motor stick shortener.
Posted by PoudreDerf | Jul 09, 2007 @ 10:59 PM | 3,385 Views
I just couldn't leave the plane merely painted. I decided to print the name of the Flight Crew and put that on the forward fuselage somewhere. I went to the original documents, and found names and monikers. I just hope I didn't leave anybody out. I changed the type to 4 point (5.7 CAN) and printed it out. For a scale reference, here's a picture of it with a 50 year Anniversary V Nickel from the country of Canada. This plane has taken on a personality.
The water rudders rud. A CF rod of .020 diameter (DHC-2 AUS?) goes through a Bowden sleeve of nylon, and is hot glued where needed. It hooks up to one rudder only. They say you only need one, so that's how I went.
The LED's light. I want to put in an "insurance policy" on the TE of the wing, just in case. This will be some kind of mechanical lock to keep the rear of the wing on. It will also locate the TE, so it can't shift from side to side.
I need to add letters to the sides of the fuselage. I want people to have no doubt as to where this Beaver came from.
A lot of my friends here in Colorado have seen the heart on the tail of the plane and like it. I was looking for a red maple leaf to thank my firends in Canada, and saw the heart stickers. It seemed more appropriate to put them on instead. I think the heart of the matter is the plane you got me when I had my aorta replaced, right? So, that's why there's a heart on my air rudder. And joy in my heart.
More to follow...
Posted by PoudreDerf | Jun 28, 2007 @ 10:27 PM | 3,569 Views
Here's views of the plane from the starboard side and from the front.. That little thin tube coming out of the bottom contains the .020 CF control rod for the water rudder. It's connected to the rudder servo. The same rudder servo operates the air rudder, too, so the linkage has to be smooth. If you look at the nose, you can see an additional hole below the motor mounting stick. Another hole is in the front float strut wooden middle part. This hole will allow air to go past the battery and vent out though gaps in the wing saddle. The motor needs no additional vents, as the warm air exits from the sides of the cowling.
You can also see a bit o' gold on the bottom. That's Golddigger!
Remember, I'm just the guy trusted to put together this fine Beaver you sent me. I'm not gonna screw it up. I'm about done, and just need the details to get put on. That and a motor mount.
If I haven't said it enough, Thank You Very, Very Much!
Posted by PoudreDerf | Jun 28, 2007 @ 10:21 PM | 3,587 Views
This is the plane you sent me. Let's look at the wings:
The wing has been sanded and filled with spackle. Then I found out that alcohol removes the spackle. So, I spacked again, and this time didn't clean it off with alcohol when done. The can says "Chevy Blue" and it's high temperature paint. Many misting coats later, it looked pretty good.
Then came wiring time. I wired, soldered and heat shrunk everything. I did everything twice, as I had major polarity problems. I used a GWS battery plug as an ON/OFF switch. I finally got the LED's to work. The LED's and resistors came from TeamTEOR. Thanx, Thomas!
I've got solid floats now, thanks to a couple of triangles added to the rigging. I have to put the linkage out to the water rudder, but that shouldn't be all that hard.
Posted by PoudreDerf | May 15, 2007 @ 01:48 PM | 4,101 Views
I've seen blue hair, purple hair, day-glow orange hair. I thought I had seen it all. Even men were getting into it. Look at what "The Donald" sports on top of his head. How could I let this happen without some personal involvement.
It was in this spirit that I have come up with a new hair-do for men. Real Men. It's called, "The Derf". All you gotta do is just have one sideburn.
So far, nobody's noticed it. That's one solid month of face to face conversations, and nobody's noticed. Not even my barber.
Go figure.
I'm using a product called "Just for Boys". It's a white dye you put on your sideburn(s). Makes me look old enough to buy cigarettes without showing my ID. But, you need ID to buy it. I invented it using white shoe polish.
And, as long as I'm in this mood, will somebody PLEASE tell me why they're called re-fried beans. They're not fried at all. I want my money back!
Ever buy a can of yams? Contents: Sweet potatoes.
Ever buy a can of sweet potatoes? Contents: Yams.
Is there no justice in this world?
Anyway, just wanted to rant about something while my epoxy is drying.
Posted by PoudreDerf | Apr 04, 2007 @ 08:28 PM | 4,636 Views
Got the wing built. I have a fiberglass joint in the middle. I have decided to put a .020 CF rod on the LE for protection, not strength. It's so thin I can bend it around the wingtip, and its position is ahead of the CG, which is good thing on a GWS Beaver. I have to spackle and sand the wing. Then put the four tabs in it. Then I can start painting.
The fuselage is getting attention. I haven't glued it together yet, as I'm considering where everything's gonna go. I think that antenna can go inside the plane. I have to get the slots ready for the floats I haven't put together yet. I put a thin coat of epoxy on the windscreen for added strength. I have decided to put that battery behind the windscreen, so providing airflow for it is going to be the problem. Do I go with a black painted screen for the glass in front? How about opening the side windows. Duct air up from behind the motor inside the cowl (which is full of high pressure air)? And, I gotta have strength in there somewhere so I can do a pin mount for the front of the wing unless I use magnets.
If I use magnets, I'll make a form and glue it to the bottom of the wing so it plugs into the fuselage top. This means the wing is located, and the magnets only have to hold it down.
Posted by PoudreDerf | Mar 07, 2007 @ 08:48 AM | 4,540 Views
Okay, guys, it's back to business. The tail end is pretty well done by now. I've sanded down those crunch marks on the edges of the rudder, fin, stab and elevator. Hinges are glued into one half of the control surfaces. Yup, one half. I'm not gonna de-cone Beaverdom's Beaver.
I found out the angles needed for the control rod holes in the rear of the tail. I ate my shish ka bob, and sharpened the end of the stick. Using the correct angles, I twisted the stick and got it right. I'm the type of guy who likes to support his piano wire rods with a soda straw, so I'll put those in today, also.
Been in the 60's this week, but I haven't had it together enough to fly. I have two Beavers ready for the air, and one of them hasn't maidened yet. Sure hope flying season (for Derf) starts soon.
Posted by PoudreDerf | Mar 06, 2007 @ 08:44 AM | 4,212 Views
I got the hinges on the fin. I used Tyvek, as it's white.
Posted by PoudreDerf | Mar 03, 2007 @ 08:11 PM | 4,300 Views
I got the hinges marked and used my *NEW* #11 blade to make hinges for the horizontal stabilizer. I glued them into the stab with GWS glue. I put a pinhole in through the foam and each place where a hinge went. Then I put a dab of GWS glue on each hole, mashed it into the holes, and wiped the surface down with alcohol.
I decided to use 6 hinges, as this would make the joint line stronger. I usually run a CF rod in there somewhere, but I want this Beaver to be light.
I took the fin and rudder out of the package today. Gotta hinge that, too. I'm working slowly, but I'm working. This is one plane I don't want to mess up. I can slot my rudder while lying down in bed.
And yes, I did enjoy a cigar. I worked hard for it (3 generations), and I deserved it. Of course, I need to buy new shirts to accommodate my inflated chest (not stomach!) that is exceeded only by my glee of being a Great Grandfather.
Posted by PoudreDerf | Mar 03, 2007 @ 04:34 PM | 4,338 Views
My glue dried nicely last night. I put some epoxy on the inside of the elevator sides to hold the piece of wire more securely. Found a new use for Playboy magazine. I mix my epoxy on it. When done, tear off the page and have a new mixing surface. If you're discovered, merely explain to the wife that you don't want to use her Waterford Crystal, which is what your Beaver deserves, eh?
I looked at the edges of my tail and noticed a die mark in the middle of the thickness of the foam all the way around. I removed it with sandpaper. Later today, I'll start on the hinges. Sam said to use one of those old obsolete recording disks, but I can't seem to get "Rock Around The Clock", a 45 record, to bend properly. And, it's tough to cut. I might go to Tyvek, as I just got something in the mail. Hey, a hinge is a hinge. Tyvek is aboot as good as Mylar.
MountainBikeGeek and I are trying to learn the language of Canadian. I think I'm better at it, eh?
Posted by PoudreDerf | Mar 02, 2007 @ 06:16 PM | 4,559 Views
BEAVERDOM'S BEAVER
March 2, 2007
Today it starts. I cleaned off a space, put a sheet of Beaverboard down as a building surface, and started off. What did you think I would use? A-10 Warthogwood?
I sanded a 45 degree bevel on the top and bottom of the LE of the elevator. Later on, I'll do the same to the TE of the stabilizer. I cut my wire reinforcement and have glued the middle section on. Currently, I'm waiting for glue to dry. Note the clamp. I want this thing to stay with me for a while.
I'll be using mylar hinges. Got a new #11 blade for making slots. I'm NOT gonna remove the tailcone and "cheat" the horizontal rear lifting surfaces. And, I'm gonna build it as light as I can.
All I can say is, "Thanks, Beaverdom. I'll do my best to not you down.
Posted by PoudreDerf | Dec 17, 2006 @ 05:50 PM | 4,672 Views
I was thinking about Beaver VII today, the one with the floats. I have reinforced every edge on the rudder, fin, elevator and horizontal stabilizer. I used bamboo, balsa, carbon fiber rod, and tiny aluminum tubing. About as smart as making a bowling ball. There's no point to it. After careful perusal (I looked at it closely) of this thread, I realized I was a victim of overbuilding. But, this is a waterplane, I'm trying to tell myself, and it would benefit from the additional protection when I make those smooth landings and the wakes bubble up and hit the surfaces. I've been known to add a small amount of weight to the nose of my Beavers because the brushless motor is so light. But, Beaverdom's Beaver, Beaver VIII, will have a stock set of tail feathers, with the U wire and floppy disk mods. I would like to put floats on it in a permanent manner. I still can't get to work on it, but I can think about it.
I've got 8 magnets on order, and when they come, they will be what holds the wing of Beaver VII onto the fuselage. No rubber bands. Perfect, and I mean perfect and repeatable, alignment guarantied every time you mount the wing. I can mess around with a little weight there, because of it's proximity to the Center of Gravity.
I had a pull-pull rudder on one of my Beavers and I loved the smoothness and lack of slop in the system. That was last Spring, I believe, when I remembered the joys of flying Rudder Only. This was far better than 30 years ago, because I also had the user of a proportional power system. Go fast, the plane goes up. Go slow, the plane comes down. Perhaps that's why I remember the fineness of the rudder linkage. It would be nice in the elevator, also.
True, it's a pain in the fanny to do, but it sure is nice when done correctly. It would also lend itself to water rudders in a more scale-like manner.
Posted by PoudreDerf | Dec 09, 2006 @ 06:59 AM | 4,957 Views
My Dearest and Truest friends in Beaverdom.
I am at a loss for words. My vocabulary is bankrupt at your generosity, your kindness, your prayers, those flights when you fired up your motor and said, "This one's for Derf". I most humbly do not deserve such honors.
My story began 3 years ago when a doctor spotted a lump on my aorta. He told me he'd keep an eye on it for me. This year he told me it needed to be removed and a fake one put in. Heck, I was just startin' to be able to enjoy flying without the white knuckes, and the doctor hit me with news that hit me as an icepick between the eyes. I was born in 1947, and for the first time in my life, I felt the cold breath of the other side of Life. Scared the heck out of me. (It scared a lot more than that, but I will not dishonor this public forum with such. Use your imagination.)
I was able to obtain a "demonstration model" of an aorta, and used that to clown around. I smiled for every camera I could find, but I was scared twist-legged all the time. I joked with it. I flew it in Beaver VI. I made a miniature wind sock. I used it to cover the rotary switch knob on my lamp in my confuser room, but, it was all a charade. The numbers said that were I to survive the operation, the odds would be pretty good that I'd recover. My problem was platelets. I didn't have enough. They took care of that. I'll not go into details.
On October 26, 2006, I entered Poudre Valley Hospital in Fort Collins Colorado. It took me...Continue Reading
Posted by PoudreDerf | Oct 19, 2006 @ 02:05 PM | 4,388 Views
Sorry Gang, but I'm going to have to vacate this forum for a few months. I'm gonna get me a new aorta put in. I go in October 26. I will spend a week in the hospital, then 4-6 weeks at home in bed. By Springtime I'll be back on the flight line, with a ton of new planes to fly. I mean, what did you think I was gonna do while I healed up, knit socks or something? Nope, not this guy.
I've posted a picture of my aorta. http//www.rcgroups.com/forums/showthread.php?t=560780&page=31&pp=15. It's in post # 452. Is where you'll find it. It's holding up my tailwheel. Most expensive tailwheel holder in the world.
I've also posted a picture of the Beaver I'm bringing into the hospital with me. It's small, and it's made of foam, but it will make me smile when I see it and bring back fine memories of Beaverdom and its members. You might not realize it, but you're all gonna be there with me every time I look at that plane. It's even got Tracon's name on the wing, backwards. Hah!
You wanna write? My name and address is Fred "Derf" Collier, 140 Poudre River RD, Bellvue CO 80512, USA. If anybody signs me up to test drive an Abrams Tank or go to Tattoo College, I'll track you down and paint ya! Grrrr! I won't be able to get my hands on a confuser for a few months, so cut me a little slack. I am, however, one of the Top Ten Letter Writers in Poudre Park (population 9),
You guys get out there and fly for me. Remember all the times I needled you about my being able to go...Continue Reading
Posted by PoudreDerf | Sep 03, 2006 @ 12:03 AM | 4,473 Views
Alrighty, I got seven minutes in this evening. Even got a shot of my Beaver with the moon. The famous ET shot. Tough to do when you're flying, but I took a million pictures and one shows the plane and the moon in the same shot.
I need a light on my plane. I can see why you guys can fly at night and I can't. It's the mountains. You gotta avoid them when you're flying at night, and, although the plane might have lights, the mountain sure doesn't.
Here in the flatlands, the sky at night is stained with "The Great Red Glow of Fort Collins". I don't think it ever could get dark around here. Within five miles or so, there's a giant Budweiser brewery, the Rawhide Power Plant, and, of course, the radio towers of WWV. I thought the RF from that station might affect my radio, but it doesn't at all. I did the most stringent radio range check before flying, so I had faith in my R4P. Seems to have plenty of range. More than enough for these eagle-like (squinting) eyes of mine.
I still can't decide whether I like flying in the mountains more than in the flatlands. They're very different, but I really can't say one is better than the other. Just different.
Posted by PoudreDerf | Sep 02, 2006 @ 06:13 PM | 4,455 Views
I'm enjoying the Labor Day Weekend just north of the Fort of Collins, Colorado, USA. Why not? Everybody else is up in the mountains where I live, so town's empty. Also, I'm making money dog and cat sitting for those who left.
The house in which I'm staying is an old farmhouse with HUGE fields around them. The highest thing around is two foot tall grass. I got a weekend to fly in the Flatlands.
The wind is different than flying in the mountains. There are no hills to supply a lee. The wind is steady, and it comes from just one direction.
I found a place where the air goes up, a genuine thermal, but it's pretty wimpy compared to the thermals I'm used to flying in when up in the hills.
It's, uh, "different". I could set the plane up to do a 1/4 mile circle and walk away for coffee. It's not as challenging as flying in the mountains, but it gives me time to practice.
I'll never get used to those flocks of starlings, but I can usually avoid them. There's a highway at the front of the house, so I have to avoid it. And, next door are some horses that just LOVE to see the airplane fly. I've flown around these horses before, and others also, and they all act the same: they croud the fence and watch.
I've got a couple of hours left until sunset. I'm gonna burn up the sky with my Beaver. Why? Because I
Enjoy Flying!
Posted by PoudreDerf | Mar 16, 2006 @ 08:16 AM | 4,159 Views
Got me a new Thunderbird 18, a Castle Link, and a spray paint system with my winnings. Woo Hoo!
Posted by PoudreDerf | Feb 09, 2006 @ 01:37 PM | 6,548 Views
Alright, so this is my area, huh? Guess I'd better tell you about myself.

Okay, now that's done, here's what I've got:
GWS Beavers, lots of them. Some still in the original, unopened boxes.
GWS A-10 Warthog with the big EDF's
RV-4 wooden airplane, still building.
FP pimped helicopter that's impossible to fly.