Originally Posted by scaflock
That's one thing about aero-towing that I really like. That being that you don't subject the wings to nearly the same forces that you would with a winch or high start. You could built a much lighter spar system and not have to worry about it folding on you during a launch. Granted, that plane would be pretty much be stuck being used for aero-tow launching only, but think of how light of lift it could soar on!
I'm thinking that something like a Hobby Lobby 12ft Telemaster would make a great tow plane for just about any size model sailplane. Of course it's just about big enough to use for flying in the hooter girls as well so it could serve dual duty.
Jeff, you'd be surprised what a ST can pull. MY Ask-13 is a little under 20' span and weighs around 30# and an 8 footer ST pulled it up without too much sweat. Don't remember the motor size but it was a single lung gas.
I have no problem with building a dedicated aerotow bird. Something I've had on the drawing board in my mind for a few years is a cheap, easy to build full house aerotow model of around 20' span for fun towing. Wouldn't have a lot of build time to it, no details (cockpit, pretty paint), just a big majestic cheap to acquire glider that's big enough to see way off with a tow release. Balsa sheeted foam wings, simple fuse layout, maybe flaps and spoilers both. Knock out a few sets of wings, tail feathers and fuses. Pile one in, slap the next one together and keep on soarin'.