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Old Nov 21, 2012, 02:07 PM
Hatman is offline
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Joined Nov 2012
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Okay, I find myself with some clear thoughts and preferences, so I guess it's time for me to chime in. Here goes.

MicroAces have focused on aircraft of historical significance. It's part of their sales pitch, and honestly, I like it. What constitutes historical significance? Well, that's a judgment call, and pretty flexible. The super popular subjects tend to be historically significant, but there are a number of historically significant aircraft on this list, which are not commonly modeled. On the other hand, I would argue (and I expect some disagreement here) that the P-6E Hawk, the BV141 and the Bulldog are not very significant in historical terms. That's my opinion, and I'll leave it at that. Interesting airplanes, and cool-looking, but no long-term effect on many people's lives.

Model Performance:
In general, a model of a monoplane will perform better than a model of a biplane, other things being equal. In a MicroAces model, the other things will be pretty much equal, I expect.

Also, a model without landing gear will perform better than a model with wheels hanging down. Honestly, the landing gear on a plane this size doesn't do me much good. I can't land precisely and consistently enough to use it properly. I just glide it into the grass as slowly as possible. Landing gear just guarantees me a nose-over.

Model Fidelity:
I'm still building my first MicroAces model (started last night), so I can't report yet what the finished product looks like in 3D. But I'm very impressed by how good they look in pictures, given that it's basically a profile model. That said, a model with a narrow fuselage will probably look better in 3D than a model with a big radial engine. I've built profile models in the past, and some subjects just seem to translate better into a profile model.

Charisma (for lack of a better word):
Will the model get people's attention, when you bring it out and fly it? As much as I like the P-40, everyone's seen lots of them. Likewise the Zero, to a lesser extent. And a number of candidates are a variation on the theme of low-wing, V-engine, with retractable conventional gear. They would tend to look very similar at a distance in flight.

So which plane would I most like to see? On balance, I think I like the Stuka. First, it's just dripping with historical significance. It was an important and effective weapon during Germany's blitzkrieg in the early days of WWII.

In design terms, it's a monoplane, with a fairly long wing for good performance. It has a longish, narrowish fuselage, which should translate well into a profile model. On the down side, it has fixed landing gear, so you can't realistically fly it without wheels. That makes for a performance hit, and I guess I'll have to learn to land better. Alternatively, Jon at MicroAces could model the specific aircraft of some poor hapless pilot who never made a good landing. Then my skill level would be authentic. :-)

The inverted gull wing may be a design challenge, but Jon sounds like he's okay with that. Based on the clever designs I've seen from him so far, I'm confident he could come up with a good working design.

And finally, it looks very distinctive, and I don't believe it's been done to death. Not beautiful but functional. To me, it's an airplane that just looks like it means business. It looks different. People will notice it.

So there's my input. We have about 10 more days to vote. Get in there, and let's get a Stuka model in our hands.

PS-- It's a dive bomber, so we'll all need to practice our diving attack maneuvers.
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