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        Discussion T&J Models Waco YMF Prototype build (45" span version)

#1 Mark Wolf Dec 26, 2008 05:24 PM

T&J Models Waco YMF Prototype build (45" span version)
5 Attachment(s)
The following is my build thread for the T&J Models 45" span Waco YMF biplane. Some time back, Jim Young designed and kitted a cute little 30" Waco. I've seen it fly a few times and really like the design, especially the pull out battery tray. The only thing that stopped me from grabbing one of the kits was the size, I wanted something just a bit bigger. A few weeks ago I decided that it was too cool a model not to build and sent Jim an order for one. To my surprise he replied that he had enlarged the design to 45" inch span! That was exactly what I had wanted and so I asked Jim to let me build one of the prototypes.

UPDATE 06/2010: The Waco had been completed and flown! Read the thread for full info, but here are a few finished pics and videos:

All the build photos for this project can also be viewed HERE




T&J Models 1/8 Waco YMF Battery Access (0 min 45 sec)

T&J Models 1/8 Waco YMF (3 min 58 sec)

Kit contents: all laser cut parts and neatly printed plans. Very nice wood, none of that junk lite-ply stuff. This is a short kit, the builder supplies the standard stock.


I planned to really jump into this project today, but it didn't turn out that way. I spent most of the day driving around town looking for an acceptable piece of steel for my new magnetic building board (Santa gave me a few hundred magnets), and a straight piece of metal was harder to find than I thought.

I did get the patterns cut for the laminated wing tips and tail feathers. The wing tip patterns where copied and printed from the plans, the tail surfaces copied by hand with tracing paper. The patterns were then stuck to some foamboard and cut out. I've made up a shopping list and after a trip to the hobby shop tomorrow I'll start cutting wood!


Standard disclaimer: I'm not an expert builder. I present the following only as a description of what I've done and make no claims as to this being the best way to build a model. ;)

#2 E-Challenged Dec 26, 2008 09:53 PM

Good luck finding supplies and accessories, building it should be the easy part. I'll be watching this build, may want to build the same enlarged version myself. Is the ring cowl built up from balsa ring sections?

#3 Mark Wolf Dec 27, 2008 12:16 AM


Originally Posted by E-Challenged
Good luck finding supplies and accessories, building it should be the easy part. I'll be watching this build, may want to build the same enlarged version myself. Is the ring cowl built up from balsa ring sections?

The cowl is built up from balsa and ply much the same as Jim's smaller Waco. It also pulls out the nose with the power system tray for battery swaps as does the smaller kit, but the release mechanism will be a bit different. :D

#4 Jim Young Dec 27, 2008 01:58 PM

Hi Mark,

I'm glad you are on your way. Like Mark said, this is a prototype of a new T&J Models kit. Another friend has been bugging me for years now to enlarge my little Waco, and I got around to it last Summer. A lot of things needed to be re-engineered for the larger size, but it is basically the same overall design. I've got so many projects going right now, and I can draw faster than I can build, so I'm glad that Mark could help me out with building this one.


T&J Models

#5 Mark Wolf Dec 27, 2008 02:27 PM

Made a trip to the hobby shop. They had most of what I needed. There are a few bits I'll have to source elsewhere, but I've got more than enough to get started.

I did have a memorable exchange with the guy behind the counter. Talk about changes in the hobby! I stepped up to the counter and set down a stack of wood. Here's the ensuing conversation:

Cashier: "What are you building?"

Me: "A little Waco biplane"

Cashier: <confused look>

Me: "An airplane"

Cashier: "Out of balsa wood? Isn't that a bit flimsy?"

Me: "A balsa model airplane, weird huh?" (good natured sarcasm on my part)

Cashier: "Well...I guess it's light, but too fragile and it won't survive a crash. You'll have to build another plane if you mess up."

Me: "Foam planes can break too. If I crash this one and any part survives, I'll know to make that part lighter next time"

Cashier: <confused look> "I guess? Better if they don't break though."

He then tightly bundled up my newly purchased wood with some rubber bands...

Cashier: "There you go, some complimentary rubber bands"

Me: "Which are now crushing the edges of my sheet balsa... "

Cashier: "Um...have a nice day!"

:rolleyes: :rolleyes: :rolleyes:

#6 sj3cub Dec 27, 2008 05:08 PM

Very nice looking Waco. When will the 45" version be available? I would like to purchase one.

#7 E-Challenged Dec 27, 2008 07:59 PM

Most of my fellow club members seem to think that I'm kind of quaint for spending all that time building built-up scale models that can't do 3D maneuvers or that don't go scale supersonic speeds. So far I haven't influenced anybody to build any of the new breed of smallish laser cut models designed for electric power.

#8 supercubman Dec 27, 2008 08:56 PM

Mark, looking forward to your build. :D When you get to the battery tray construction please shoot lots of pics, this looks like a real cool design. :D


#9 Mark Wolf Dec 28, 2008 10:42 AM


Originally Posted by supercubman
Mark, looking forward to your build. :D When you get to the battery tray construction please shoot lots of pics, this looks like a real cool design. :D


Will do. :)

#10 scratchnhover Dec 28, 2008 10:48 AM

Enjoyed your exchange with the LHS cashier. :) Thankfully our shops are a bit more professional around here. I think that kind of discussion might take place at a craft shop selling hobby supplies here though.

Looking forward to seeing this larger Waco.

#11 Mark Wolf Dec 28, 2008 06:54 PM

2 Attachment(s)
First batch of laminated parts drying. This is my first attempt at making bowed outlines. Luckily, Jim made a great "How-to" video of the process for the Ezone some time back. I'll do the second set tomorrow.


First dry fitting of the forward fuselage structure , nothing in the pic is glued together at this point. Everything interlocks together:


#12 ClipperBill Dec 28, 2008 07:13 PM

WooHoo!!! I love classic WACO biplanes and this one is exactly the right size. Will be watching this thread with great interest (I subscribed) with an eye towards possibly buying one of these little beauties when they come out.

#13 Jim Young Dec 29, 2008 08:27 AM

I had to laugh at the LHS guy. Where do they get these people?!?!?

I like how you put the length of the strips you needed on the templates. Nice touch.

It looks like I'm getting better at interlocking structures! :D This is like building by remote control!


#14 Yak18 Dec 29, 2008 08:55 AM

I'm really looking forward to a "buy" button for this one. Please let us know when this is available!

#15 Mark Wolf Dec 29, 2008 01:26 PM

1 Attachment(s)
First set of laminates are dry, second set laid up on the forms now. :)


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