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Old Apr 02, 2016, 02:08 PM
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Build Log
CAP - 2016: 1/4 scale Concept Fleet

Here is my entry for the 2016 Complete a Project - the 1/4 scale Concept Fleet biplane.

I bought the kit in August 2007 and started it in December 2008. Quite a bit of framing up was completed before setting it aside, picking it up every few years, then losing interest again. Power is to be a Zenoah G38.

Non-scale ailerons were added to the top wing after it had been framed up and after reading how slow the roll rate is when using bottom wing ailerons only. A dummy engine is in progress per the plans - lots of little pieces to go together and no decision yet how to mount the cylinders to the cowl.

Pictures of her as she sits. I need to remind myself where I was in the build. Hopefully, this little contest will be the boot that moves me forward.

Jim
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Old Apr 02, 2016, 02:48 PM
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I like real wooden aeroplanes!
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That's going to be lovely, following with interest. I've posted it to the CAP 2016 thread with the link.
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Old Apr 03, 2016, 03:41 PM
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I started building a .40 sized Concept Fleet Barnstormer for electric power a year ago and lost interest. I'll get back to it. I finished my Sig 1/6 scale J-3 Cub after a 30 year break and really enjoyed flying it with electric power.
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Old Apr 03, 2016, 04:12 PM
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My dad built the .40 Barnstormer when the kit was first released; it was a good flyer. I think his had an Enya 40. If I remember the kit was modified much later for electric and sold up until Romey died. Post some pictures of your progress, and join in on the Complete a Project 2016 fun.

I also built the 1/6 Sig Cub, Super Tigre 23 power. Flew like a Cub and needed a good bit of rudder.

I restarted my Fleet project today by looking through the the miscellaneous parts and hardware and figuring where I had left off. The wire landing gear was an easy place to begin. I added some balsa strips to the wire, front and rear, to make it a bit more scale. Then did those fairings above the axles, also in balsa.

Jim
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Old Apr 03, 2016, 07:57 PM
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Not sure what the world is coming to Jim. I bought this one for 100.00 at a swap meet. This was at the end of the day and no one even looked at it.
They are excellent flyers so I don't know what the problem was.
There is absolutely nothing wrong with this model.


Bill
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Old Apr 03, 2016, 08:37 PM
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Built mine off of the Model Builder plans not long after it was published, powered by a Fox .45BBRC. Plenty of power, nice flier. Never should have sold it. Didn't look as good as williame's.

Still have the plans, though...
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Old Apr 04, 2016, 08:30 AM
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Yes, Bill, that is nice! Has to be one of the best deals ever.

I almost became the owner of a full scale Fleet at one point. My father was big into aviation and did a lot of buying and selling airplanes. He'd buy something that needed a little work or could do with avionics upgrades, do the work, sell it off after making a bit of money, then move to something else.

I came back from Viet Nam with all my pay and combat pay in hand and needed to put the money somewhere. I bought and sold a couple of sports cars and also bought a J-3, N78404. We rebushed all the control surfaces, changed out the metal front fuselage piece, found come cream faced instruments, and put in a fresh Continental C-65. I owned it a couple of years and was looking for something new.

There was an ad, I think it was in the Sunday Chicago Tribune, an odd place to advertise an antique airplane, for a Fleet Model 7. I no longer remember what the asking price was, maybe the $1500-2000 range. The seller had it in the middle of Chicago behind his house in a garage, with access up the alley. It must have been a job to get it there. It was a complete, unmolested, unrestored Fleet. Sitting on its gear, wings off, jammed in this little garage. The fabric was shot, I guess the Kinner was too.

So, despite really wanting to buy that airplane, the immensity of the project and common sense intervened, and I walked away. In retrospect I could have restored it in less time than I've been working on a 1/4 scale model.

Jim
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Old Apr 04, 2016, 09:12 AM
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Dug up a picture of my father's Concept 40 Fleet Barnstormer. It's the red one in the foreground. The picture is rotated 90 degrees The planes are actually hanging nose down on his garage wall.

I remember this plane differently, so it's either a rebuild or a second built from plans. Great flyer, always wanted to build one. The bipe in background may be about a forty size Gere Sport. I don't recall anyone ever kitting one that size. Interesting mix of stuff shown - Sopwith Pup to F-5.

Jim

Edit That Fleet nose looks to be shorter than Concept's plans. Modified???
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Old Apr 15, 2016, 08:56 AM
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Trying to keep at it. Making some progress.

Jim
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Old Apr 15, 2016, 01:06 PM
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So I'M meant to be in control?
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Nice! What did you use for the discs that make up the finned cylinders?
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Old Apr 15, 2016, 04:28 PM
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Concept provides a drawing to scratch build the Kinner cylinders. The fins are cut from 1/16 ply and the inner cylinder discs are made from 1/8 balsa. I have a small lathe, so I cut the blanks and turned them to size - all stacked on a 1/4 threaded rod. There are 4 sizes of discs. Could also be done with a file in a drill press or even in a hand drill. It would just take a little longer.

The balance of the parts are made from basswood. I puzzled over how to mount the cylinders to the fiberglass cowl. No direction is given on the plans; the kit plane has a built up balsa cowl. The real plane has larger cutouts that extend back to the firewall.
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Old Apr 24, 2016, 01:06 PM
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Finished the dummy Kinner except for making some spark plugs. Mounting is far from scale.

Jim
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Old May 14, 2016, 10:50 AM
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Nothing too exciting. Worked on the various panels and hatches. The fuse bottom has multiple removable or hinged hatches - they're not fabric covered but painted. I made up the windshield frames and head rest. Aluminum cockpit cover attachment holes drilled. All in primer and ready to paint.

Spark plugs made from 4/40 lock nut and some plastic tubing. This is all to 1970s stand off scale levels. Good enough for me.

I can start covering now. I'll use Sig Koverall.

Jim
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Old Jun 09, 2016, 07:24 AM
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All the pieces are now covered with Koverall and adhered with Sig Stick-It. This is very forgiving material and is easy to apply. Before trimming the excess from each panel I hit the seam with clear dope; that prevents fraying. Parts have one coat of 50/50 nitrate dope so far.

The original plan when I started the build was to add a little surface detail. I bought a couple of rolls of Beauty Mark 1/2" pinked hair tape to use for rib tapes. Turns out it is no longer made and can be found only on ebay for ridiculous prices. I had enough to do the topside ribs on the wings and tail. Johnson & Johnson 1/2" waterproof medical tape was used for the wing leading edges and the fuselage. This is too thick and the pinks are way too small.

The Pink It tape is supposed to be great. I just can't justify the cost though. Plus, there are only 6 months left in 2016, and this thing needs to be finished by the deadline.
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Old Jun 29, 2016, 10:55 AM
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All components painted. Wings in off-white automotive acrylic enamel. Fuselage in Ace marine blue rust-stop enamel. The Ace paint went on with lots of little specks, as though it was a bad lot of paint. I sanded it out and cleared with gloss polyurethane varnish. Better, but not great.

Jim
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