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        Gnat or Tiny (next plane after the Litestik)

#1 tom_yellowblue May 07, 2001 03:05 PM

Gnat or Tiny (next plane after the Litestik)
After flying the litestick for awhile I'm ready to start flying another plane. I would like something a little more aerobatic, but still able to fly around at slow speeds. Right now I'm looking at the Gnat (280?) or perhaps the Tiny (I'm leaning more towards the Gnat for build-time reasons).

Are these planes able to fly slowly, around Lite(stick)-speed? I also need something that can handle a small breeze since it's very rarely completely calm where I fly. Are these planes within the skill level of someone who is competent with a Litestick?


#2 RCjack May 07, 2001 03:44 PM

Both the Gnat and Tiny are very aerobatic yet can fly slowly. Both can handle a small breeze. I prefer the conventional tail Tiny over the v-tail Gnat. The Tiny loops and rolls better. A Lite-stick geared moter is a great power source for flying the Tiny outside. Both planes are fun-fly, go where you point, keep on the sticks, flying machines.

#3 Doodely May 07, 2001 08:06 PM

Are you using the litestick motor setup
straight or are there some mods there that
I did not get. I've got a Tiny just about
finished and was thinking about what to power it with. Comments, suggeston, open for any ideas.....

#4 Bleriot May 07, 2001 08:30 PM

Hi Tom I had owned and flown the 280 Gnat and before I totalled it, I had a lot of fun with it as it was my first aileron plane and could slow right down on a light 350 Mah 8 cell nicad or 8 cell 700 AAA nimh. and fly in my backyard after some practice in a larger field.It was at home in the air as much upside down as level. This is the 280 Gnat, which is much larger than the 260 gnat with a wing span of 35 in and a chord of 10 for 350 sq in. I also was able to fly a 600ae 8 cell pack with ease and eventually put a bb race 280 and a MP jet gearbox bb, which proved too fast for this old coot and lost orientation on it and came thru an oak tree.It survived many dorked landings, tree landings, and was very straight and well covered.The smaller 260 Gnat has that fragile mylar which will split easily.Best Regards

#5 E6 May 08, 2001 12:44 AM


I've flown the Tiny with both the DC1717 and the GWS motor. Both work great. The DC1717 is much lighter so it'll go slower, better for indoors but the GWS will give it a lot more power better for outdoors. Also the GWS is a lot more affordable. If you're flying outdoors only I would get the GWS motor, Braun prop and use the larger Tadiran lithium rechargables. This should give you around 30min. of aerobatics. To get the GWS shaft to mate with the Braun prop I cut the shaft down to about 1/2" and pressed a dremel sander thingy to the side of the shaft with the motor running on high. I checked the shaft frequently until it just barely slipped into the Braun prop. I attached the motor by building balsa with thin ply sides around the carbon tube and sanded it until the motor just slipped over it so I can easily slip it on and off.

#6 CoClimber May 08, 2001 02:02 PM

One thing I don't like about the Tiny is that, due to its small wing area, you need to build it light to get it to fly well. This means you need to use contest grade balsa, which is fragile. On my first landing of my Tiny, I hit a wingtip which broke every rib in that side of the wing. Ouch.

Perhaps you could build it with an extra wing bay and use 8# balsa instead. I was going to try that but I got sidetracked getting the DuskStik ready to kit.

The Tiny was quite easy to scratch build but I wouldn't recommend the V Tail. A conventional tail seems to be easier to set up.

Bleriot, do you think the Gnat would be tougher and does it use heavier balsa?

Good luck,
Doug www.geocities.com/duskstik

#7 greg morrison May 08, 2001 04:33 PM

Another airplane to consider is the Lil Hornet - this airplane is easy to build, inexpensive, slows down nicely and is very aerobatic. You can fly inverted all day long and it is so overpowered you can actually do square loops with the airplane. With an all up weight in the 9-11 oz range it also handles wind much better than the Tiny or Gnat 260. Since the wings are foam the airplane is a quick build as well. There will be a period of adjustment as you transition from the rudder/elevator Lite Stik to flying airplanes with ailerons - finding someone to help you out at first would be ideal.


#8 Bleriot May 08, 2001 09:12 PM

Hi CoClimber I think the Gnat used very light balsa and as stated, the mylar was unable to deal with lawn stubble and torsional stress. I flew the much larger Gnat 280 with glee till I totalled it. Best Regards

#9 tom_yellowblue May 09, 2001 12:59 AM

RCjack, Doodley, E6: About how long did it take to put together the Tiny? I built several electric sailplanes many years ago so I do have some experience. The Tiny would cost less even though I need to buy a motor, but I'm willing to spend a little more if it means significantly less time building and more time flying.

I'm also curious about which GWS motor and prop combo you use.

Bleriot: Thanks for the info! It's good to know the Gnat can stand up to some abuse. Not that I would ever need that feature http://www.ezonemag.com/disc/smile.gif

#10 Doodely May 09, 2001 02:23 AM

E6, thanks for the information. I'll have to give that a try with your recomendations. Most of my flying is outdoors. The Tiny kit came to me pretty cheap from a friend that said he did not have time to build it, so I
got the darn thing and framed it up with the conventional tail, not knowing what to power
it with. The GWS system sounds good since I have a couple of the laying around from banged up litesticks. Thanks again...

TOM_yellowblue The frame up is really quick.
If you have an evening to spend. I've spent a week worth of evenings, you know, hour here, hour there,to frame, cover, motor and radio install. Don't have time right now. I'm
going to install the motor setup that E6 was talking about and fly it this weekend. Let you know how it goes.

#11 CoClimber May 09, 2001 02:12 PM

Regarding covering a plane with Reynolds Plastic Wrap: that's all I use. It's light, very cheap, and comes in different colors. I've covered three of my DuskStiks with it, a Kestral, and my short lived Tiny. You can use Balsarite but it has MEK in it and smells nasty. I just got some Balsaloc in and would highly recommend it, judging by my initial tests. I'll cover a plane with it tonight and see how it goes.

Reynolds Plastic Wrap is at the grocery store. Use only Reynolds, the other brands don't have the same thermal characteristics.

Doug www.geocities.com/duskstik

#12 Red Baron 47 May 09, 2001 06:41 PM

CoClimber, thanks for the info. I'll use the wrap and the low odor glue.


#13 CoClimber May 09, 2001 06:56 PM

A couple little notes about covering with Reynolds Wrap: Start by replacing your xacto blade - you want it sharp. If you don't have one, get a hobby iron and get a cloth sock for it. The Reynolds has a lot of shrink. I can cover the entire top of the polydihedral DuskStik wing with a single sheet. It's a bit tricky but it can be done.

The first time I used Reynolds, I covered an AMA Racer. It's a great <$3 practice that you can give to a kid when you're done.


#14 CoClimber May 09, 2001 10:08 PM

One more note. I just finished covering an extended wing DuskStik and used Balsaloc for my adhesive. I only applied one coat vs two coats for Balsarite and I really liked the way it performed. I don't know how well it will stick in th elong run but it seemed to hang on well for me when I was putting it on.


#15 KeithK May 10, 2001 12:00 AM

Have you considered an IFO? They are easy to build, durable, fly at a wide speed range and are aerobatic.

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