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Old Mar 07, 2015, 11:04 AM
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Snowy Owl: Forward-swept Flying Wing Glider for Park and Backyard Flying

Snowy Owl is a forward swept flying wing glider.

I wanted to make a model that I can take with me to the park, toss it in the air and get ten or more seconds of flight. I selected a non powered flying wing to minimize the wing loading and reduce the risk of injuring my little daughter who enjoys airplanes and likes playing with chuck gliders. The overall design of the airplane was made with her in mind.

Controls are simplified to use a single stick on the transmitter - I hope this will make it a bit easier for her to practice flying a RC model. Considering the short attention span of kids at her age, anything in the order of 10s flight time should work fine although for older kids and grownups this sounds like a very short flight duration.

Here is a summary of the goals of this project:
  • Make a small, lightweight and sturdy glider that can stay in the air for about 10-15 seconds.
  • Aim for low stall speed and high survivability by minimizing mass and wing loading. Less kinetic energy to dissipate at impact (avoid serious injuries to pilot and bystanders).
  • Stable model with simple controls.
  • Serve as a prototype for a (mini) sloper.
  • Provide plans in format that will allow others to modify, adapt and improve the model design.

Materials and Electronics:
  • DTF (laminated)
  • 1mm carbon rod
  • Music wire
  • Old credit card or other thick plastic material
  • Single cell (1S) 150mAh battery
  • Two 2 gram HK servos
  • OrangeRx R415X

Specs:
  • Wingspan: 70cm
  • AUW: 50 - 60g
  • Wing aspect ratio: 4
  • Wing loading: 4.1 - 5.0 g/dm2
  • CG location: 9-10cm measured from the front.


The short test flights went well. The model is surprisingly stable with no apparent bad tendencies. Nothing is perfect though, so here is a list of improvements that will probably make the model even better:
  • Mount a DLG throwing peg
  • Install detachable cover (blended with the front section of the airframe to reduce drag) for Rx, battery and wires.
  • Smaller and lighter vertical stabilizer
  • KFm-2 or KFm-4 airfoil (should help with moving forward the mass distribution but will probably increase drag)
  • Full span elevons

Compilation of flights in the park and in our not so big backyard:
Snowy Owl Mk.I flights compilation (5 min 49 sec)


Very short videos of CG testing and pre-maiden flights:
Testing CG of Snowy Owl Mk.I (0 min 9 sec)

Pre-Maiden flight of Snowy Owl Mk.I (0 min 10 sec)
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Last edited by ant0; Oct 30, 2015 at 07:10 PM. Reason: changed title
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Old Mar 07, 2015, 05:17 PM
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Build straight - Fly twisty
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Nice work and it will be even nicer with the proposed changes.
I think you have mislabeled the V-Stabs as H-Stabs on the plans.
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Old Mar 07, 2015, 05:35 PM
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ant0:

Good looking glider. I hope you and your daughter have a lot of fun with it!

Dave-
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Old Mar 07, 2015, 10:23 PM
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Nice name for this good looking glider.

Ken
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Old Mar 07, 2015, 11:27 PM
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We need a "like" button--but since we don't have one--
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Old Mar 08, 2015, 01:22 PM
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Nice design Ant ....
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Old Mar 08, 2015, 02:43 PM
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Corrected V-stab labels in the plans.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Whiskers View Post
Nice work and it will be even nicer with the proposed changes.
I think you have mislabeled the V-Stabs as H-Stabs on the plans.
Whiskers, thank you for point this out to me! The plans were corrected and uploaded after removing the ones with the mislabeled V-stabs.
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Old Mar 08, 2015, 02:47 PM
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Gents, thank you for the kind words!
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Old Mar 08, 2015, 06:32 PM
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Preview of the color schemes included in the SVG file.

I noticed that people shy away from the SVG version of the plans. Here is a preview of the included in it color schemes.
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Old Mar 23, 2015, 04:29 PM
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The female (on the pre-maiden videoclip) is very right :-).
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Old Apr 03, 2015, 06:59 PM
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Nice bird! Now we'd love to see it on a slope with lift!!!
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Old Apr 04, 2015, 12:15 AM
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My plans are in my blog
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An idea... you can add bird-looking tail feathers and put a motor up front. Maybe. Cool name for a cool plane.

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Old Sep 22, 2015, 07:23 PM
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I added a video compilation of flights in the park and in our not so big backyard. These flights took place about half a year ago. The bird is still in a flying condition after a hundred or so flights. Being so light makes it indestructible.
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Last edited by ant0; Sep 22, 2015 at 08:01 PM.
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Old Sep 22, 2015, 07:38 PM
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ant0:

Thanks for the new video. Snowy Owl looks good in the air. Love to see it on a slope.

Dave-
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Old Sep 27, 2015, 06:02 PM
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I'm a new to rc and have been flying a 40cm KFerret lately. I enjoy hand launch gliders and I was looking for more simple yet effective designs like yours. I have a question: for DLG purpose, isn't it important to have a tail that also extends itself below the wing to increase stability when throwing?
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