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Old Jan 13, 2010, 05:22 PM
IAD
UAV Driver
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New England, USA
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Build Log
FRX-99 UCAV (Yukikaze)

After spending the last year or so building highly aerodynamic (but highly 'blah') UAVs, I decided to work on something crazier.

I picked the FRX-99 RAFE UCAV from the anime Sento Yosei Yukikaze. My intent is to build a "exact scale" version, with as few changes to the design as possible. (i.e. no wing area enlargement, vertical stabilizers, etc.) This should make things interesting, since it's definitely not optimized for aerodynamic stability. The most non-scale thing I'm planning is a non-canon paint scheme; the top runners are Russian splinter camo or Israeli tri-color desert camo, either of which should be more interesting than the two-tone scheme from the series.

Construction is primarily FFF, which will be covered in phone-book and/or Japanese tissue paper, with some fiberglass reinforcements. I'm aiming for a >1:1 thrust-weight ratio, so a fully fiberglassed airframe is out.

Because of the delicate nose structure, retracts are planned; all units will be custom-built, with canted-axis 90-deg. retracts on the main gear, and a dual-swing-arm design on the nose unit, to replicate the unusual retract geometry on the "real thing". Modified 5-gram servos will be used for actuators, driving the gear via leadscrews.

So, that's the plan. No idea if it will work, so nothing to do but to try!

~Luke

Current specs are as follows:
Length: 64"
Span: 48"
Power: 2x SPJ motors, on a 4S 2540 mAH 30C Lipoly pack.
Projected AUW: Under 40 oz.
Controls: Thrust vector (2D), gyro-augmented differential throttle, full-flying tailerons/canard-erons, retracts.
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Last edited by IAD; Jan 13, 2010 at 05:44 PM. Reason: Notes that acroynms don't work in thread titles. Oops.
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Old Jan 13, 2010, 05:30 PM
IAD
UAV Driver
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New England, USA
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So far, I've cut and assembled the internal structure of the airframe, and started sheeting the frame. ~9 oz., as shown. I'll finish the top sheeting before I start the equipment installation.

Very strong, to say the least... The wings are double-layer FFF, with 0.25" dia. carbon tube spars. Keeping on eye on the torsional rigidity of the wings, as the swept-forward wings will obviously induce pretty significant twisting loads.

~Luke
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Old Jan 13, 2010, 05:37 PM
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I always wondered if someone will make the plane from scratch. Looking Good!!
You can tell I like this plane.
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Old Jan 13, 2010, 05:43 PM
IAD
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Yep, somebody had to be the crazy one and take a shot at it... And I figured, why not me?

~Luke
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Old Jan 13, 2010, 06:01 PM
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Are you going to use the gyro on the throttles to control the yaw? Because I always thought in my mind if I were going to make this jet that I would make verticle stabs (that resemble much like the horizontal stabs) for straters for stable yaw control but possibly work my way in designing something that would ween the jet away from the vert stabs somehow like Davepowers done with his X-36.
WORLD'S FIRST RC X-36! (MUST SEE!!!) (7 min 17 sec)

Anthony
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Old Jan 13, 2010, 06:29 PM
IAD
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Again, "exact scale"... No cheating. Based on my chuck-glider, it looks like the aircraft will be marginally stable in yaw... The wings are mostly behind the center of gravity, so the dihedral contributes some vertical stabilizing surface. Combined with the deep nacelles, it should fly in the direction it's pointing. Differential throttle is the only "scale" means to control yaw, since the wings have no tip-brakes... Plus the forward-swept hinge-line would reduce yaw stability. Plus differential throttle works at zero airspeed, which should help with high-alpha maneuvering.

Forgot: I will be putting the missile pylons (and missiles) on the inner hardpoints. This will add some vertical area aft of the CG. Combined with the small strakes along the nacelles, I expect it will be flyable without any stability augmentation.

~Luke
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Old Jan 13, 2010, 06:34 PM
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looking sweet Luke but I am a little confused about you going to all the effort of making this as scale as possible and then going for a camo paint scheme.

I think I prefer the anime scheme with the dark and light grey and the wierd little red details etc, I thought it looked cool anyway

I'm sure it will look awsome which ever way you go with that one

anyhow keep up the good work and very interesting to see the X-36 in action, it seems to lend a good deal of credence to your design philosophy, tho he did use the old tip brakes emergency pop out rudder is a nice idea tho

glad to see that the missiles will be a feature
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Old Jan 13, 2010, 06:49 PM
IAD
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I know, I know... But I figure... After the JAM portal is blown up... Don't tell me the powers that be are just going to mothball a perfectly good hyper-maneuverable UCAV... It's going to end up in somebody's inventory. (And I'm just assuming that 'that somebody' uses awesome camo. )

It's a pity the Super Sylph was the one equipped with the TARPS pod with the giant folding antenna, and not the FRX. The stowable fin could have actually become a scale feature!

~Luke
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Old Jan 13, 2010, 07:00 PM
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I am not familiar enough with the show to know the differences you speak of.
I've been trying to find an episode on youtube dubbed in English just so I can get a bit more of an understanding, can't find one as yet

But it is a fantasy plane so I guess any scheme you like is good
why not go for the tiger meet or some snazzy airshow military demonstration colours ?
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Old Jan 13, 2010, 07:07 PM
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This is fantastic!

It's been a while since we've seen something this crazy

Subscribed.

Bob.

{added} IAD's SV-51 Gamma Build.
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Old Jan 13, 2010, 07:13 PM
IAD
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If you go back a page or two in the Fantasy Scale model thread, I posted a Youtube link to the whole thing, with subtitles. The FFR-31 is the SIGINT plane at the beginning of the first episode.

Bright schemes: That's actually what I don't like about the official colors... They're high-visibility/high contrast, and therefore the aircraft looks like it's in non-combat flight testing, as was the case. (The FRX-99 was undergoing flight tests for most of the series.) I've got a sneaking suspicion that the red circle-and-dot markings are some sort of orientation references for chase aircraft, sort of like the CG symbols that show up on X-planes, experimental missiles/bombs, crash dummies, etc.

My plan is to go for the "combat-operational aircraft, with dirt and grime from hundreds of sorties over enemy territory" look... Personally, I think it will look more "realistic", and less like a pristine 'cartoon' plane. It will also give me an excuse to play with my airbrush.

~Luke
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Old Jan 13, 2010, 08:24 PM
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I'm liking the FFR-31-MR/D !! yeah i saw that clip but its not enough for me, I want more

Airbrushes are fun, and I love to dirty up my scale models they just don't look real without it

I think my favourite combat schemes are the overall grey one's like carrier deck aircraft and the vietnam colours of drab green all over with a flash of colour here and there, yellow tail bands, red and white teeth etc.

I also quite like the snow camo too 3 shades of grey painted on in angular patches.
But for model purposes I like to stay away schemes that are to cluttered or break the lines of the model up to much, perhaps its an eye sight thing for me

anyhow, got on that there airbrush and have some fun
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Old Jan 13, 2010, 08:53 PM
IAD
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Youtube: The whole thing is posted, you just queue up the whole playlist. Granted, 10-minute subdivisions isn't ideal, but it's all there.

Camo: Yeah, disappearing planes can be an issue, but I tend to fly close in (my glasses are so thick the polycarbonate could probably stop a rifle round!) so it hasn't been problematic so far. In any case, neither Russian splinter (http://www.freewebs.com/baron_soontir_fel/Su-27UK_3.jpg) nor Israeli desert (http://hyperscale.com/features/2002/...5iraamam_3.jpg) really blend well with Connecticut in summer.

Now, if seeing it were to become a problem, I'd be very tempted to put an autopilot it in, and make it an autonomous UAV. The ultimate in scale fidelity, no?

~Luke
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Old Jan 13, 2010, 09:14 PM
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I found some bits and pieces of the show but dubbed in spanish or with Hong Kong subtitles

I'm familiar with youtubes playlists & 10 min slottery etc. I think its a case of I don't really know what I'm looking for
if you find episode 1 part 1 in English dubs or subtitles please post a link, cheers

haha yes to UAV !!

whats the smallest module you can get your hands on ??
I take it you work on military UAV's
I saw a vid on youtube months ago where some tech students stuck a "brain" inside a 3D heli and taught it how to do moves is was quite awsome, they could refine the moves afterwards and could get it to fly very precise routines, I was impressed anyhow
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Old Jan 13, 2010, 09:28 PM
IAD
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Here: http://www.youtube.com/view_play_lis...DD53F86D0998A&
Same link I posted in Fantasy Scale..?

Nope, non-mil UAVs (so far)... I use the Paparazzi open-source platform, so all I need is ~2 oz. of weight-carrying capability. The basic autopilot board would fit easily, and would have enough capability to allow me to perform a takeoff, loiter, drop flour-bombs on specific GPS coordinates, and then RTB/land, all without me touching the sticks. Could even uplink new target coordinates, etc. in real time.

It would be sort of boring, though... Nothing to do but slew waypoints around a laptop screen, and monitor the telemetry coming down from the aircraft.

~Luke
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