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Old Oct 02, 2012, 11:53 AM
Little-Acorn is offline
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San Diego, CA
Joined Dec 2006
1,280 Posts
Measured the CG of my SSS today, found it was exactly 4-1/8" behind the leading edge of the wing. That's 104.8mm. The manual says it should be 100 mm. And sure enough, the plane flies like it's tailheavy. It's hypersensitive in pitch, stalls frequently, and when I crank in enough down-elevator trim to make it fly level, it won't pull out of dives unless you give it definite up-elevator. Basically it ambles around the sky, bobbing its nose up and down, and doesn't seem to want to fly level for long. A good pilot could probably compensate for that, but I'm not one. The Wright brothers' plane was like that, though for slightly different reasons, and was a beast to control.

Having the CG less than 5mm back of where the manual says, doesn't strike me as a terrible offense, especially on a plane this big. I get the feeling that if I add enough weight to the nose, to move it up to the 100mm mark, that won't be enough. I'm guessing it will still fly like it's somewhat tailheavy. But I won't know till I try, I guess. Some other owners here have said they don't like the 100mm specified in the manual.

A slightly noseheavy plane is a LOT better than a slightly tailheavy one (like mine is now). Slightly-noseheavy flies very smoothly, and when you put in a little up-trim, it tends to pull out of dives and correct other errors... as long as it isn't TOO noseheavy.

Mine's definitely tailheavy, and flies like it. I had put some extra parts in the tail, which probably aren't helping the balance any. Adjustment time!
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Last edited by Little-Acorn; Oct 02, 2012 at 12:40 PM.
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