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Old Apr 03, 2013, 04:43 AM
Young Poor and Fun
United States, TX, Austin
Joined Sep 2012
101 Posts
Build Log
96" Lazy Bee

After declaring the 88" Tiger Moth complete I spent some time thinking of a good FPV platform to build using the same power system. I stumbled upon some pretty stable FPV footage from a large lazy bee. I've always thought the Clancy lazy bee looked cool so I decided to forgo my logic of having a pusher FPV glider and build a lazy bee. I figure logic has to be put in it's place with SPADS in general as it's a little crazy anyway. Maybe I can mount the camera to the side of the prop for a clear shot? I've printed out plans on a one sheet 8x11" paper so I'm set.

It's going to be as rough and ugly as I know how to make it and I plan to build it in a week or two. This means it'll probably be finished in 2-3 months.

As this is my second SPAD build I'm coming at it with the lessons I learned from my first build: #1 glue is too slow; use tape, #2 Hurry up already!

I expect it to be much easier than the biplane and simpler. I will need to strengthen the wing a lot more though.

Here is my idea:

Wingspan: 96"
Chord: 28"
Length: ~52"
Weight: 14lbs
Power: 2000W NTM 50-50, 100A YEP ESC w/ switching BEC.
Battery: Zippy 5,000mw 40C 6cell lipo
Servos: 4 Standard Hitec servos
Control: Futaba 72mhz or the $28 HK controller.
Material: Coro, blue foam from an abandoned building, corroded aluminum from an old Taylorcraft wreckage in the forest, Scotch extreme packing tape, break cleaner w/ paper towels, pool noodle wheels, paint sticks, sharpie, carbon arrow shafts(?), zipties.
Max speed: Mosey
Stall speed: TBT (to be tested)
Cost: $10 Extra tape
$5 Extra break cleaner
$7 Servo extensions
$0 Everything else was free or is already a sunk cost

I'm about to move in the next few days so hopefully I'll get a lot accomplished on it tomorrow evening. The pictures is what I have from last night and tonight.
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Old Apr 04, 2013, 03:18 AM
Young Poor and Fun
United States, TX, Austin
Joined Sep 2012
101 Posts
Slower than planned, faster than expected.

I don't have much progress to speak of. I just tested and discovered that the tape doesn't stick to depron foam very well.
The pictures show what I got done tonight. I ended up going with a longer fuse than planned to match the plans I had verses specs I saw on another blog, hopefully the thing will balance.

I'm wondering if the wing will be stiff enough. When I push down with ~20lbs of pressure while holding the top coroplast on it bends down ~1-2 inches (with the wings spanning couch arms) I'm not sure if I can get away with it as it is or if I need to add a leading edge spar. I'm sure it will be stiffer when I have the top sealed up.

This design is so tail heavy; I think I might have to attach the wings a few inches back from the plans to even things out.

I think I'll make the tail different than the typical Lazy bee. Traditionally the Lazy Bee has a full rudder without a static vertical stabilizer. I'm going to break it up so I can re-enforce it and the horizontal stabilizer more easily.

TTFN.
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Old Apr 04, 2013, 05:53 PM
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JohnsPop's Avatar
LaGrange, GA
Joined Jun 2009
1,818 Posts
OH H*%% YEAH! I love the Lazy Bee, but never built one. It's on my list to build one from foam, one from coro and a "regular" balsa one so I'll be watching this with great interest!
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Old Apr 05, 2013, 05:08 AM
Young Poor and Fun
United States, TX, Austin
Joined Sep 2012
101 Posts
Quote:
Originally Posted by JohnsPop View Post
OH H*%% YEAH! I love the Lazy Bee, but never built one. It's on my list to build one from foam, one from coro and a "regular" balsa one so I'll be watching this with great interest!
Thanks for the enthusiastic support! I used to think it was a plane I'd end up building when I'm in my 80's, but here I am. I think the other two building methods might be lighter than my 4mm coro option. I think this thing is going to end up being a tank.
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Old Apr 05, 2013, 05:19 AM
Young Poor and Fun
United States, TX, Austin
Joined Sep 2012
101 Posts
Tape

I'm using brake cleaner before applying tape. I've never flashed coro with flame before but I don't think I'll need to because brake cleaner seems to enable things to stick pretty well. Cleaning the printed color off the coro takes a bit of time though. Much of tonight i spend scrubbing and folding paper towels.

Tonight I cut two bulkheads from the 1 & 1/2" blue depron foam. The tape doesn't stick too well as it just takes off a thin layer of foam when pulled at. To get a grip on the bulkheads I made a few wraps around them with tape so the tape will hold onto itself. I then just taped them in place. I'm going to need to finish attaching the bottom via a hatch so i can apply tape to the back. I think i'll end up attaching servos through the hatches too. I ran out of tape so I quit for the night.

It's as ugly as expected. I think I'll have to scrub off all the color and draw on some round windows after it's finished.
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Old Apr 06, 2013, 02:51 AM
Young Poor and Fun
United States, TX, Austin
Joined Sep 2012
101 Posts
Shake your tail feathers

I got the fuselage mostly finished and the tail started today. I should be able to finish the tail and seal up the fuse tomorrow without a problem. I think I'll cut out a bunch of foam from the rear bulkhead and install the tail servos directly on it.

These easy parts are coming together fairly quickly, if I can sustain this pace I might finish this before the end of the month!

I haven't found many SPAD how to videos on YouTube so I made my top 10 SPAD tips of things it took me a bit of research to find out. I'm under qualified but I guess I do know what was important to learn as a beginner.

Top 10 SPAD beginner tips (7 min 30 sec)


Also,
I just discovered Zip ties!
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Old Apr 06, 2013, 12:02 PM
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JohnsPop's Avatar
LaGrange, GA
Joined Jun 2009
1,818 Posts
Draftman3 has some pretty good how to videos on YouTube,
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Old Apr 06, 2013, 03:24 PM
Young Poor and Fun
United States, TX, Austin
Joined Sep 2012
101 Posts
Quote:
Originally Posted by JohnsPop View Post
Draftman3 has some pretty good how to videos on YouTube,
Oh, cool. Thanks for the info.
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Old Apr 06, 2013, 03:42 PM
Young Poor and Fun
United States, TX, Austin
Joined Sep 2012
101 Posts
Ailerons vs Elevons?

I don't know how to put ailerons on this thing. It has such a thick wing that I'd need pretty thick ailerons. Does anyone think using Elevons with the 50" elevator would work instead of ailerons? Being lazy in making the lazy bee seems fitting but I still want to have decent control over it.

I know many smaller lazy bees are only 3 channel and elevons would be more control than that.

Elevons would move the center of force for roll control towards the fuse by 6 or 8 inches but it would also be in the prop wash. The CG will be a bit harder to get right with servos on the tail. I tried twisting the fuselage and it didn't give at all so I'm not worried about that, however I should probably add extra reinforcement to the horizontal stab.

I'm leaning towards going with elevons; adding more carbon on the tail and mounting the servos directly on the horizontal stab.

I'd appreciate any input on the idea. I'll put off dealing with Ailerons / Elevons for a day or two until I hear from you all.

Thanks in advance.
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Old Apr 20, 2013, 11:51 AM
Registered User
Blacksburg, VA 24060 USA
Joined Feb 2000
3,230 Posts
Ailerons don't seem to work well on Lazy Bees, according to those who've built and flown Andy Clancy's aileroned Bee. The consensus is that lack of ailerons is no draw-back to good Bee flying. I hope that elevons on the horizontal tail will work well.

Jim R.
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Old Apr 22, 2013, 02:35 AM
Young Poor and Fun
United States, TX, Austin
Joined Sep 2012
101 Posts
Quote:
Originally Posted by JRuggiero View Post
Ailerons don't seem to work well on Lazy Bees, according to those who've built and flown Andy Clancy's aileroned Bee. The consensus is that lack of ailerons is no draw-back to good Bee flying. I hope that elevons on the horizontal tail will work well.

Jim R.
Thanks JRuggiero,

I didn't know that about Ailerons on Lazy Bees. I just installed the elevator servo twenty minutes before reading this. I can still more easily install elevons than ailersons so I'll do that.

As for a build update I don't have much to speak of. I re-did the wing zip ties because I screwed it up the first time and the wing ribs aren't all the same size. I've installed the motor and put struts on the tail.

More to come.
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Old Apr 26, 2013, 07:55 PM
Young Poor and Fun
United States, TX, Austin
Joined Sep 2012
101 Posts
Slow going

I've moved into a different cabin and am basically camping there. My building stuff in in an outdoor shop space but It's still cold out. When the ice melts I'll be able to finish building up the area and get some work done.

I’ll get around to pictures but thus far I've realized that the top of the wing is sloppy so I’m using zip ties to cinch it down around the wing ribs. I’m mostly done with the top of the wing. After I finish the top I’ll zip tie and tape the trailing edge together. It's going to be a really basic flat wing with tapered wingtips on the bottom. It's big and heavy; It feels heavier than the fuselage with the motor installed. I'm guessing it's 6 lbs and almost 18 square feet.

I've shoved the elevon servos into the horizontal stab and installed the control horns. I’ll just need to separate the elevator surfaces into halves.

I broke character and bought a dowel at home depot for $1.69 because I’m too lazy to glue and cut paint sticks together for the rubber band mounts and landing gear axle. I think I’m going to get a little crazy and just do a rubber band wing mounting system. I don’t know about any alignment systems yet.

I ran out of tape so my costs increased by 53% this last week (+$11.69) so now I'm $33.69 into this. I'm learning its hard to anticipate all expenses in these builds.

The lazy bee landing gear design seems really simple
I doubled up the coroplast where the landing gear will be, My fingers are crossed that the axle wont rip the coroplast on a hard landing. The wheels will involve pool noodles and a round dowel as an axle. Here's to hoping the fuse doesn't rip apart on a hard landing.
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Old May 01, 2013, 09:26 AM
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Freddie B's Avatar
Omaha Nebraska
Joined Feb 2006
5,999 Posts
Just found your thread. I worked at Hobby People for a few years and we sold Lazy Bees in several sizes. The poly-hedral wings do not need ailerons, and in fact ailerons make for a non-enjoyable flight.

Standard elevator and rudder will fly great. The wing is so stable that returning to level flight from a turn is quite snappy! If you did not seperate the elevators for tailerons I would leave it alone. The lazy bee climbs fast, turns super sharp, and floats nicely all as designed. R/E/T.

One thing I learned long ago, a classic design such as this is famous for flying well. Probably nothing you or I do to it will improve that. Plenty of people have found out you can spoil a design by over thinking on improvements.

Other than that great build so far. Big, big, big! Can't wait to see your power motivation intention, and the wheels!

Best of luck!

Fred
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Old May 12, 2013, 12:32 AM
Young Poor and Fun
United States, TX, Austin
Joined Sep 2012
101 Posts
Quote:
Originally Posted by Freddie B View Post
Just found your thread. I worked at Hobby People for a few years and we sold Lazy Bees in several sizes. The poly-hedral wings do not need ailerons, and in fact ailerons make for a non-enjoyable flight.

Standard elevator and rudder will fly great. The wing is so stable that returning to level flight from a turn is quite snappy! If you did not seperate the elevators for tailerons I would leave it alone. The lazy bee climbs fast, turns super sharp, and floats nicely all as designed. R/E/T.

One thing I learned long ago, a classic design such as this is famous for flying well. Probably nothing you or I do to it will improve that. Plenty of people have found out you can spoil a design by over thinking on improvements.

Other than that great build so far. Big, big, big! Can't wait to see your power motivation intention, and the wheels!

Best of luck!

Fred
Thanks Fred!

I was actually too lazy to make a real poly-hedral wing. I did make the bottoms of the wingtips curve upwards to match the level top of the wing. I think I'll stick with the elevons and just try to only use rudder for turns. We'll see how it turns out. I'm only using standard servos anyways so one per elevator half is probably a good thing.

Thanks again for the help Fred!

-Paul
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Old May 12, 2013, 12:52 AM
Young Poor and Fun
United States, TX, Austin
Joined Sep 2012
101 Posts
Progress

Building this in a small outdoor workshop has been a challenge. It just warmed up enough yesterday to use tape outside.

I've finally taken some pictures and it seems like there isn't that much more to go.

I finished the wing by finishing cutting the wingtips. I zip tied them together for rigidity and taped it as well. I also threw a couple of BBQ skewers into the wingtip flutes to add rigidity to the bottom layer for the heck of it.
I tested out the center of gravity as best as I could before putting in dowels to rubber band the wing on; no surprise there, it's very tail heavy. This thing is probably over 14 lbs already and I don't want to go crazy with nose weight. I moved the wing back a little bit to help it out. I think I might need to attach a weight at the end of an arrow shaft in front of the airplane to get some leverage with the weight. We'll see what happens when the time comes.

I gorilla taped prop halves under the dowels in the fuselage to spread out the force on the coroplast and packing taped the dowels in. I think I should probably make the rubber bands go through holes at the fore and aft ends of the wing because full length rubber bands on this thing seems too much.

No progress on the landing gear yet. I'll try to keep it simple and I'm not planning on this being able to taxi well at all.

All my airplanes are broken at the moment so finishing this is my closest option to flying again. Hopefully I finish it soon.

-Paul
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