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Old Aug 17, 2012, 06:32 PM
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Build Log
New guy, Park Pilot Mag Mitsubishi Zero

Hi everyone! This is my first post here at RC Groups. I just recently got back into model airplanes (after a 40 year break) with the purchase of a Cox Sky Cruiser, and I'm having a lot of fun with it . I've been participating some over at the Watt Flyer forum (same user name) - thought I'd check RC Groups out as well.

I started building a 24" span J3 cub from $tree foam (ongoing build thread over there), and while waiting for some parts to arrive I started on another one this afternoon - the Mitsubishi Zero from the Park Pilot Magazine website. Here it is after about three very lackadaisical hours:



This one caught my eye because it suggests on the plans that you can leave out the rudder and only do ailerons, and also because it's got a 30" wing span, which is sort of my ideal size. I'm going to depart from the plans a bit and make it so a single servo operates both ailerons.

I'm just loving this foam core and hot glue building technique! The phrase "down & dirty" comes to mind. Finishing has always been my weak suit
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Old Aug 19, 2012, 03:31 PM
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Basic airframe pretty much done, on to servos & linkages and stuff:



It's at 3.5 oz at this point. I left the paper on the board and covered both sides of everything with packing tape, then sealed the edges with hot glue. I embedded a 3/16" wood dowel in the bottom of the wing and hot glued it in, then laid a strip of fiber tape over that (bottom only). It seems pretty darn sturdy to me

Ordered a motor, esc, and a couple batteries from Hobby King yesterday (already got the receiver and servos).

This is fun
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Old Aug 22, 2012, 08:56 PM
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Looking good! Sounds like you'd like the SEMFF combat foamies thread - check it out for some great planes along these lines.
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Old Sep 24, 2012, 05:11 PM
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Slowly but surely...



The motor & stuff took a month to arrive from China and I went on vacation, and there's work, plus this other plane: http://www.wattflyer.com/forums/showthread.php?t=67824

But the Zero is on the front burner now . I think I have everything required in house
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Old Sep 26, 2012, 05:58 PM
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Put in the RX & ESC this evening:



The battery is just sitting there - need to get the correct male plug to solder onto the esc., but testing with patch cables confirms that everything works. Last night I turned a prop adapter on the lathe. The prop is pressed against the adapter with the nut on the shaft, a steel washer, and an "O" ring to give some resistance. I dunno if that's standard practice or not, but it seems to me like it will work. The motor runs really smoothly and puts out plenty of thrust, as near as I can tell. The CG is coming out pretty much where the plans say it should - may need to add a bit of weight to the nose. I just need to make a horn and push rod for the elevator, and then we'll be pretty much ready for flight testing
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Old Sep 27, 2012, 05:48 PM
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OK, we're pretty much ready for the maiden flight:



Tomorrow, with any luck
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Old Sep 27, 2012, 05:48 PM
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Looks good! Good luck with your maiden flight!
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Old Sep 27, 2012, 08:56 PM
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Don't look at me like that....
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I built my son a zero that looks a lot like that. His flies great,
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Old Sep 28, 2012, 08:11 AM
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Hello,

The Zero fighters are great flyers, you will enjoy yours, for sure !!
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Old Sep 28, 2012, 05:20 PM
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It flies! Unfortunately my "hat cam" wouldn't turn on for me in the field so there is no video (the thing works fine now back at home...). Perfect conditions, no wind. I had someone else hand launch it for me but would have been fine doing it myself as it took off nice and true. Had the controls on low rate and just gently did 3 or 4 turns around the field. Got a little low downrange quite a ways and stalled - rather than try to recover I killed the throttle and let it nose into the tall grass. Broke the prop, didn't have a spare, so that was that.

But I'm encouraged - it flew quite nicely for those 2 or 3 minutes
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Old Sep 29, 2012, 05:51 PM
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Tried it again today. Put on a more aggressive prop (8x8 rather than the first 8x4) which seemed to give it a bit more thrust, which it needed. The thing is a bit much for my beginner piloting skills... First flight It kinda got away from me and I planted it in a tree behind the flight line It's tough though - fell out of the tree on it's own and suffered only minor dents in the wing leading edge.

The next flight I let another guy who I'd seen flying aerobatics earlier try it out. He did fine with it but thought that it was a little underpowered and a little "twitchy" - too much aileron authority, even with the rate switch set on "low". Certainly not a "trainer", according to him. If only I had spent a few more bucks and bought a computer radio instead of the DX5e that I *did* buy, apparently I could have adjusted this. But NO....

So I tried it a few more times but did a lot of walking to retrieve it from crash sites. The last time I plowed it in under power over the short grass and broke the shaft on the motor. The airframe is pretty darn sturdy, that's for sure.
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Old Sep 29, 2012, 06:46 PM
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I went through much of the same experience you described just now. I built something similar in style but out of home depot 1/2" foam called the Pink-51. Design wise, I found adding just a touch of dihedral makes the plane much easier to handle than a completely flat wing.

Anyhow, just my 2 cents
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Old Sep 30, 2012, 07:33 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by tripn4days View Post
... adding just a touch of dihedral makes the plane much easier to handle than a completely flat wing.
I think you're right!
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Old Sep 30, 2012, 08:17 AM
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You should be able to come in closer to the centre on your ail. servo to lessen the control throw. Not so twitchy then. May do that on your elev. servo too if necessary.. This is my 28 in. $ store scratchbuilt from a couple of yrs. ago. Flies well. Anyone for combat. Getting a little beat up from it.

Gord.
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Old Dec 12, 2014, 03:14 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by flypaper 2 View Post
You should be able to come in closer to the centre on your ail. servo to lessen the control throw. Not so twitchy then. May do that on your elev. servo too if necessary.. This is my 28 in. $ store scratchbuilt from a couple of yrs. ago. Flies well. Anyone for combat. Getting a little beat up from it.

Gord.
Good to know. My Zero is painted the same way. How did like flying it? Any bad habits?
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