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Old Dec 19, 2012, 06:59 PM
20+ years of RC flying
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United States, FL
Joined Aug 2012
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Build Log
Ultra micro Dickís Dream

BACKGROUND

I learned to fly RC some 40 years ago with an Ace Dickís Dream kit (constant chord foam wings) powered by a Pee Wee .020 and guided by an Ace Pulse Commander single channel radio with the wig-wag tail. The plane was designed by Owen Kampen as a trainer with lightweight, affordable equipment. I found the video below online of the plane and radio; not my plane but mine did work the same. Iíve always liked the plane because it flew so well, no matter the configuration


Dick's Dream with Ace Pulse Commander (0 min 38 sec)



After I became proficient with the single channel version, I built a 2nd DD with the same 35 inch foam wings but with elevator & ailerons and a Cox Tee Dee .020.

Still later, I built a 3rd DD with elevator/ailerons (pictured below) with tapered chord wings but with 7 inches chopped out of the center of the wing, yielding a 28 inch span and cutting the cabin down as low as it could go and still accomodate the "micro" equipment available back in the day. Then I stuck a Cox Tee Dee .051 up front with 70% nitro. It was quick! All up weight was about 15 ounces. Unlimited vertical? You bet! I kept and flew that plane for 10 years before my dog finally ate it. True story.



CURRENT PROJECT

The plans that I'm using for this build are from Dave Fritzkeís website. Dave's a great guy who has helped a lot of us by producing these old plans into CAD .pdf documents. I emailed Dave about another project and he was really helpful.

I took the .pdf file up to Office Depot and had them printed out at Ĺ size. This produced a version with a 17 inch wingspan and about 48 inches of wing area. The airfoil is a NACA 2415 straight from the plans.

So far, the uncompleted airframe weight is an astounding 11.5 grams! Iím not used to such light weights. Iíll be covering the plane with Hangar 9 Ultracote Parklite, which weighs just about an ounce per square yard. The completed plane will probably need less than a square foot of covering, so about another 9 grams.

Iíd hoped to add ailerons and flaps just for fun, but discovered that my tired old eyes donít see as well and my hands arenít as steady as they were 40+ years ago! So, this will likely be my only micro build. Iíll have to save the fun stuff for larger planes.

Fortunately, my wife has tiny hands and much patience, so has been doing a lot of the work with me. This is where we are so far:

The fuselage is partially assembled but Iíve left the 1/8 inch basswood firewall off and the bottom uncovered until I figure out what radio, motor, ESC and battery to use.

At this time, I do NOT own a general purpose radio that has a micro receiver which will work with this tiny plane. I honestly donít know if I should go with Spektrum for a micro receiver like the AR6400 or a different companyís modulation scheme. Iíve seen inexpensive micro receivers on the HobbyKing website which work with DSM2 and also receivers compatible with FHSS. Recommendations?

And can anyone give me Ĺ a clue on what size motor and ESC to use? Iíve looked on webcalc and it really doesnít help me much.

Any recommendations on which wheels would be light enough for the tricycle landing gear?

Hereís the current status:
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Old Dec 21, 2012, 04:22 AM
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how cheap are you?
best bet is a new spektrum ar6400. can not beat the weight for servo. you get a 2A brushed ESC, 2 servos and a 6ch rx all in one.

horizonhobby.com has one, its a ar6410 (dsmX)
http://www.horizonhobby.com/products...-esc-SPMAR6410

the dx5e from the same site is a good basic radio, tho if you want more fancy stuff (most every one does ) the dx6i is a great computer radio. same site, or used here on rcgroups.com in the for sale section.

a motor from a ultra micro P51 would do okay.

get a prop from www.gwsprops.com, you want a 5043.

you need an adaptor to go from 1.5mm on the UM p51 motor to the 4mm on the prop. www.bsdmicrorc.com should have some.

if you want a cheaper and better motor and can wait, an order from hobbyking.com in china can get you a nice brushless motor. this is the best idea, as the motor i gave you above is simple, but dies around 50 flights later.

keep in mind the brushless is a lot of soldering and hacking. there is a guy here that sells a conversion kit to 2S (2 cell lipo, 8.4v max) for the 30-40 region. its very nice and easy to use. you will have to program the ar6400 to use it.

brushless 1S is not that great, in fact, the p51 motor does better for cheaper. (its a gear box)

personally, i would get a brushless setup from .. . scarlach? is it?
i belive he makes his own ESC's.


of couse there are cheaper options. a, ahem, 'compatable' version of the ar6400 is avaliable from targethobby.com, works, but is not as good as the real thing. (noisy, slow to center) but goes for 25 shipped.

hobbyking has many rx are DSM2, but these end up heaver, tho cheaper. i like them, as the noise of the ar6400 drives me crazy! (linear servos on the brick/ar6400)

must post more pics!
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Old Dec 21, 2012, 07:09 PM
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Here are more pix! Am making progress.
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Old Dec 21, 2012, 07:51 PM
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United States, FL
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Quote:
Originally Posted by nemoskull View Post
how cheap are you?
best bet is a new spektrum ar6400. can not beat the weight for servo. you get a 2A brushed ESC, 2 servos and a 6ch rx all in one.

horizonhobby.com has one, its a ar6410 (dsmX)
http://www.horizonhobby.com/products...-esc-SPMAR6410

the dx5e from the same site is a good basic radio, tho if you want more fancy stuff (most every one does ) the dx6i is a great computer radio. same site, or used here on rcgroups.com in the for sale section.

a motor from a ultra micro P51 would do okay.

get a prop from www.gwsprops.com, you want a 5043.

you need an adaptor to go from 1.5mm on the UM p51 motor to the 4mm on the prop. www.bsdmicrorc.com should have some.

if you want a cheaper and better motor and can wait, an order from hobbyking.com in china can get you a nice brushless motor. this is the best idea, as the motor i gave you above is simple, but dies around 50 flights later.

keep in mind the brushless is a lot of soldering and hacking. there is a guy here that sells a conversion kit to 2S (2 cell lipo, 8.4v max) for the 30-40 region. its very nice and easy to use. you will have to program the ar6400 to use it.

brushless 1S is not that great, in fact, the p51 motor does better for cheaper. (its a gear box)

personally, i would get a brushless setup from .. . scarlach? is it?
i belive he makes his own ESC's.


of couse there are cheaper options. a, ahem, 'compatable' version of the ar6400 is avaliable from targethobby.com, works, but is not as good as the real thing. (noisy, slow to center) but goes for 25 shipped.

hobbyking has many rx are DSM2, but these end up heaver, tho cheaper. i like them, as the noise of the ar6400 drives me crazy! (linear servos on the brick/ar6400)

must post more pics!
Being retired and on a fixed income, I'd say that I'm pretty cheap!

At the moment, I'm awaiting release of the Turnigy 9XR transmitter which will become my primary unit. I'd been looking at the Spektrum AR6400, but in order to use that receiver I'd have to mount it sideways inside the fuselage on this plane. It's too wide to lay horizontally on the floor.

Meanwhile, I found this super micro receiver from HK and it definitely will fit inside the fuse of my DD much better and it's already brushless. I just don't know if I should go with that modulation scheme once I purchase the 9XR. http://www.hobbyking.com/hobbyking/s..._one_5ch_.html

And yes, I'd prefer to go brushless for all the usual reasons. Interesting to hear that 1S isn't so hot. I'd thought to use that for this project.

As for motor... I'm perplexed. When I ran the webocalc computations for this plane using a 3 oz. all up weight, it said that the plane would fly like a heavy warbird even with just a 9 oz. wing loading. Say what?

I'd really like to use an inexpensive HK motor if I can. I've had several orders from HK and am a happy customer overall.

Am hoping to get more done on the plane tomorrow. Dunno if I should bother with doing much more on the fuselage before deciding on a radio.

So far, all up weight is now 16.5 grams with the wing and tail surfaces covered.
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Old Dec 22, 2012, 01:57 AM
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Yes 3 oz is too much. You should shoot for 1oz and settle for as much as 40 grams. I like to fly them at 20-40g/50in2. For example the um Parkzone Citabria RTF is about 50in2 and weighs about 21g and is one of the sweetest slowest flying RTF around. The um Parkzone Cessna is about the same weight but only 39 in2 (? from memory) and is really not very relaxing to fly. So if you really are cheap (thrifty!) I recommend using the guts from a recycled Parkzone (Mustang) or what have you turn the receiver/servo module sideways and use the geared brushed motor drive. Then you should be able to come in about 40g and you can use the RTF transmitter until you get the Turnagy. When you do get it also get a "orange" DSM2 module from HK that will snap in the Turnagy. You can always make a hatch in the side of the radio area of the fuselage to allow connecting the pushrods...
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Old Dec 22, 2012, 09:14 AM
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this is the setup i use:
module:, 30.00
http://www.hobbyking.com/hobbyking/s...Firmware_.html

and a turnigy 9x, 60.00
http://www.hobbyking.com/hobbyking/s...Firmware_.html

i reflashed the computer chip with open9x, much better. more options than you can shake a stick at.

heres a brushed motor simular to the p51 motor:
http://www.hobbyking.com/hobbyking/s...dproduct=19278

prop to get you in the 50 gram thrust area:
http://www.hobbyking.com/hobbyking/s...6pcs_set_.html

with the above., you should be able to fly a 2oz plane. (probly not fast, probly close the WOT.)

ar6400 clone:
http://www.targethobby.com/ar6400-ds...p-4162189.html
works fine for me. you will find a lot of hate for this, but very few actual failures. slower than the spektrum and noiser, but should get the job done. the site takes 4 week to get to my house, vs the 2.5 weeks from hobbyking.

to be honest, if your looking for the cheapest, try a dx5e. its a basic tx, but works and has 6 ch. (5 is on/off, and 6 is mometary)
heres one new, free shipping:
http://www.stlouisrc.com/SPMR5510-Sp...-Only-MD2.html

tho you might get one used. a RTF transmitter has a range of 300 feet or so (move the antenna to the side, instead of pointing straight out!) and runs you about 15-25 shipped. i got a few.

you can usualy find the 'guts' from a plane cheap, spektrum ar6400, servo, motor, prop for about 45 shipped.

by the way, the plane is a piece of art!

edit: btw, 117 orders from hobbyking, only 2 parts bad out of several hundred. once they sent me a bad tx module, gave me a refund, then sent me a brand new module!
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Old Dec 23, 2012, 10:22 PM
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Okay, a little more eye candy before I hit the sack for the night. More info tomorrow.
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Old Dec 23, 2012, 11:16 PM
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Another DD fan!

I built a Dick's Dream in 1971 with pretty much the same setup as yours. Now I, too, want to build another DD. I was planing to build "full-size", but maybe not. Your selection of equipment and the outcome is of interest to me, so keep the posts and pictures coming. There are a couple of other Owen Kampen designs that I want to build - Skampy, and Skyraker. The Skyraker was my favorite for the short time I was flying. It might make a good park flyer in a 'reduced' version.
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Old Dec 24, 2012, 04:13 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by nemoskull View Post
...by the way, the plane is a piece of art!...
Thanks! I always have liked the lines of the DD. It's nice to see that it still looks good even in a smaller scale. And my wife is the real work of art in this case. Each time I start working on the plane, she'd shoo me away and tell me that I was going to mess it up with my clumsy fingers! LOL!

Well, I was busy today and the Turnigy 9XR was released! All out of stock already. Dang it all. I blinked and they're all gone, but no biggie. Looks like no battery was included and so far only the Spektrum module is available. I'll wait until the next batch comes out and maybe they'll include a battery or at least some specs on what will fit inside the transmitter.

And waiting for the next 9XR batch gives me time to decide on whether I want to go with DSM2/DSMX or FHSS. The AR6400 is nice but that little HobbyKing FHSS 5 channel Rx will drop right into my DD without any issues.
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Old Dec 24, 2012, 05:17 PM
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Originally Posted by SteveJC View Post
I built a Dick's Dream in 1971 with pretty much the same setup as yours. Now I, too, want to build another DD. I was planing to build "full-size", but maybe not. Your selection of equipment and the outcome is of interest to me, so keep the posts and pictures coming. There are a couple of other Owen Kampen designs that I want to build - Skampy, and Skyraker. The Skyraker was my favorite for the short time I was flying. It might make a good park flyer in a 'reduced' version.
Cool!

I'm going to be building a "full sized" DD starting this week. And this one will have barn door ailerons, flaps and nav lights! I have the plans and materials set to go. I do have a radio with micro receiver and 9g servos which will work just fine with the larger model, so no delays while waiting for a radio.

With the wing and tailfeathers completed, the micro sized version is still only at 18.75 grams. So all up weight with motor and electronics is looking to be closer to 30 - 40 grams for the micro version. Call it an ounce and a half. Not bad at all!

I really, really wanted to put barn door ailerons & flaps on this little micro version. And even nav lights, which is why you can see the little holes in the leading portions of the wing ribs. But it just couldn't happen this time.

Now that it's nearly done and the weight isn't excessive, I may be motivated later to build a non-dihedral wing for it with at least strip ailerons. Got to figure out servo options for the tiny plane though.

Meanwhile, now that the wing and tailfeathers are completed, I'm going to put this little micro version on hold until I get the radio issue resolved and a suitable receiver actually in hand.
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Old Dec 24, 2012, 07:18 PM
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would it be wrong to build one of these out of foam...?

edit: i have succumbed and printed out a set of plans at 50%...
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Old Dec 24, 2012, 08:15 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by nemoskull View Post
would it be wrong to build one of these out of foam...?

edit: i have succumbed and printed out a set of plans at 50%...
Awesome! Are you gonna go foam or traditional?
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Old Dec 24, 2012, 09:02 PM
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balsa. i have a budget of 28 grams thrust. (i kinda hate foam...)
tho im going high tech, scaled down the pdf's to 50%, then copyed the ribs and important parts and will print them on tissue paper on a carrier them mount to balsa. works great for me, near kit level parts.
(im going 50% as well! i love old school)
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Old Dec 24, 2012, 09:38 PM
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Originally Posted by nemoskull View Post
balsa. i have a budget of 28 grams thrust. (i kinda hate foam...)
tho im going high tech, scaled down the pdf's to 50%, then copyed the ribs and important parts and will print them on tissue paper on a carrier them mount to balsa. works great for me, near kit level parts.
(im going 50% as well! i love old school)
Cool beans!

One thing I'd recommend is to go with 3/32" for the wing spars. I only had 1/8" on hand and it was just a bit too thick... made fitting the spars into rib R9 pretty tough. Everything else was pretty straight forward by using 1/32" balsa instead of 1/16", etc.

I'm going to be using 1/32" ply for the landing gear mounts and using thread just like in the old days to hold the gear wire in place.
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Old Dec 24, 2012, 09:50 PM
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all i have on hand is 1/16, tho i might sand some down.

what gear you looking at?
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