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Old Oct 29, 2014, 12:15 AM
Rockdoctor
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Laos, Vientiane Prefecture, Vientiane
Joined Jul 2011
92 Posts
New Product
Micro Pelican DLG

Originally scratch built this as a free flight catapult glider, then added a wing peg for DLG.
Never very successful at those tasks, but now I have added some micro 2 channel radio gear and it flies quite well.

I named it the Micro Pelican because the pod holding the radio gear looks like a pelican's beak.

Some videos of build and flight are here:

Micro Pelican Scratch built DLG Maiden Flight (1 min 10 sec)


Micro Pelican DLG v2 (1 min 52 sec)


Plans are attached. They will just fit on an A3 sheet if you print at 100%
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Old Oct 29, 2014, 08:43 PM
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plankaujr's Avatar
United States, SC, Mt Pleasant
Joined Jan 2013
142 Posts
Very cool project. Congrats on a successful maiden! Thanks for sharing.
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Old Oct 29, 2014, 09:11 PM
skumgummi dave
Gresham, OR.
Joined Mar 2004
1,965 Posts
rockdoctor:

Excellent!
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Old Oct 29, 2014, 10:31 PM
Rockdoctor
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Laos, Vientiane Prefecture, Vientiane
Joined Jul 2011
92 Posts
v3

In the latest revision, I shortened the servo wires. It did not save much weight, but it is much neater and less drag. Be prepared for some microsurgery for that job. The copper in those wires is thinner than a human hair!

I also put an extra dab of solder on the bend in the connectors that I added to the receiver power pins. One broke off at the bend during a launch, resulting in a nasty crash. Fortunately it went into grass so not much damage done.
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Old Oct 30, 2014, 09:48 PM
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Trisquire's Avatar
Columbus, OH
Joined Mar 2005
3,340 Posts
Quote:
Originally Posted by rockdoctor View Post
Originally scratch built this as a free flight catapult glider, then added a wing peg for DLG.
Never very successful at those tasks, but now I have added some micro 2 channel radio gear and it flies quite well.

I named it the Micro Pelican because the pod holding the radio gear looks like a pelican's beak.

Some videos of build and flight are here:

Micro Pelican Scratch built DLG Maiden Flight (1 min 10 sec)


Micro Pelican DLG v2 (1 min 52 sec)


Plans are attached. They will just fit on an A3 sheet if you print at 100%
Apparently in Laos, kids still come running when they see a model plane. That hasn't happened in the States since the 60s.
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Old Oct 31, 2014, 06:10 AM
Rockdoctor
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Laos, Vientiane Prefecture, Vientiane
Joined Jul 2011
92 Posts
Yep, It is a daily occurrence here, and quite a problem because Lao people (and kids in particular) have a very poor perception of the way situations will develop ahead of the immediate present. That can make landings pretty difficult, particularly when flying DLG where every landing is effectively dead stick!
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Old Oct 31, 2014, 12:24 PM
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jrs_123's Avatar
irvine, ca
Joined Apr 2002
268 Posts
Free flighter Jim Buxton of Ohio had a hlg design several years ago called pilicatoo

http://www.amaglider.com/?p=view&a=pelicatoo-jim-buxton
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Old Nov 01, 2014, 09:23 AM
GDSHS
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United States, MI, Oxford Charter Township
Joined Jan 2014
43 Posts
Nice, I like how simplistic it looks. It looks now like I will soon be starting a build.
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Last edited by MikeDobies; Nov 01, 2014 at 09:30 AM.
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Old Nov 01, 2014, 10:00 AM
Rockdoctor
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Laos, Vientiane Prefecture, Vientiane
Joined Jul 2011
92 Posts
Quote:
Originally Posted by jrs_123 View Post
Free flighter Jim Buxton of Ohio had a hlg design several years ago called pilicatoo

http://www.amaglider.com/?p=view&a=pelicatoo-jim-buxton
Remarkable how designs converge when similar materials are used. Never the less, the similar name is a bit surprising.

Of course they were made for different classes. (I am not sure there is a class for 500mm wingspan RC thermal soarers) and you could argue that it is so small that chasing thermals is going to be self defeating since it will get out of sight pretty soon after you catch one. Anyway it is still fun trying and you dont lose a model every time you succeed.
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Old Nov 01, 2014, 10:08 AM
Rockdoctor
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Laos, Vientiane Prefecture, Vientiane
Joined Jul 2011
92 Posts
I used the FrSky receiver because it is the smallest/lightest available for the Futaba transmitters that I have (all 6EX), but I think you could get away with less weight from other manufacturers. The 3.7v servos are great because you dont need a voltage regulator with a 1S lipo battery.
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Old Nov 01, 2014, 10:44 AM
Rockdoctor
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Laos, Vientiane Prefecture, Vientiane
Joined Jul 2011
92 Posts
Sanding and fitting the aerofoil

The highpoint of the aerofoil is at about 30% of the chord so I mark that line along the top of the balsa blank, then sand the upper surface down to a smooth curve front and back that leaves the 30% line intact and takes the edges down to about 25% of their thickness all round. Then a light sand on the underside leading edge to round it off back to about 10% of the chord. Finally sand the smooth under-camber curve on the back of wing from 10% chord to the trailing edge. This is the tricky bit because the balsa gets pretty thin and flexible.

I doubt my technique is too precise, but it flies ok and I figure the drag from all the radio gear is a bigger problem that need solving before perfecting the aerofoil

Of course this sanding is all done before cutting the polyhedral segments, except the outermost one which has a different grain direction to improve strength in the trailing tips.

I leave the last few mm of the wing root unsanded on the bottom so that the wing will sit exactly flat on the boom. Tack it in place with CA then a tiny fillet of epoxy and finally the fibreglass tapes over the boom and onto the wing with just enough finishing epoxy to grab the balsa. Their function is to spread the load away from the boom during a launch. The glue holds the wing to the boom.

The fibreglass tapes on the tail serve the same funtion. The balsa rudder is slotted and the boom fits in the slot with a little epoxy. The fibreglass tape goes over the join and spreads load during launch and ground landings.
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Old Nov 01, 2014, 11:01 AM
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Thermaln2's Avatar
Reno Nevada
Joined Oct 2007
2,648 Posts
Quote:
Originally Posted by rockdoctor View Post
Remarkable how designs converge when similar materials are used. Never the less, the similar name is a bit surprising.

Of course they were made for different classes. (I am not sure there is a class for 500mm wingspan RC thermal soarers) and you could argue that it is so small that chasing thermals is going to be self defeating since it will get out of sight pretty soon after you catch one. Anyway it is still fun trying and you dont lose a model every time you succeed.
You are right , there is no 500 mm class. However, there is a 750mm class called Mosquito class, that was set up a long time ago. Some of the first planes in this class Have shown on my website, http://spieltek.com/SunbirdSoaring/M...aring-MHLG.htm.

These planes were easily built in a small apt, room or basement. They only scratched the surface of small planes. There was one plane that was done, an Apogee Elite, that was marketed and was just like our normal DLGs. http://www.rcgroups.com/forums/showthread.php?t=725645. Stay tuned, more references in my new website.

I think some fo the small planes can be made that outperform even the current small planes out there, like the Elf. The reason that I see is that for completion the market favors the bigger planes. If we truly wanted to do a new class, then we need that class run as its own. I always thought it would be nice if one of those planes actually could do better than the bigger ships. It's all in how much effort we put in our plane designs as well as learning how to fly.

Chris
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Old Nov 01, 2014, 11:09 AM
Rockdoctor
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Laos, Vientiane Prefecture, Vientiane
Joined Jul 2011
92 Posts
Case in point:

Super Mini Topsky outflies Big Topsky in thermals (2 min 13 sec)
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Old Nov 01, 2014, 11:25 AM
Rockdoctor
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Laos, Vientiane Prefecture, Vientiane
Joined Jul 2011
92 Posts
In my experience, the legs (or perhaps tentacles) of a thermal close to the ground are small weak and complex by comparison to the main body higher up. A small light plane that can turn tight without losing too much height can outperform a full size DLG in this areana.

In the full size DLG competitions, designs are now focussing everything on launch height and unless you are a gorilla who can throw to 60m, you are out of the game.

I am all for a new class of smaller lighter aircraft that focus on finding and climbing the thermals close to the ground.

I have an ELF and it is a beautifully designed and constructed machine. It is a superb flyer in light air. Close to the ground, it can beat anything else I have flown. I think that size class has plenty of development left to run before it converges on launch height or some other singular characteristic.
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Old Nov 01, 2014, 11:32 AM
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elkski's Avatar
United States, UT, Sandy
Joined May 2013
3,175 Posts
I think these smaller planes have so many benifits.
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