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Old Jun 16, 2011, 03:37 PM
The Hun in the Sun
vonJaerschky's Avatar
Canada, BC, Comox
Joined Nov 2003
7,260 Posts
Build Log
1/5 Scale Dave Platt Bf-109

Hot on the heels of my successful Jungmeister build is an airplane that I've wanted to build for a long time - a Messerschmitt Bf-109G. I know that D-Rock has a great new design that is nearly identical in size, and specifically engineered for electric power. Absolutely no disrespect to D-Rock and his fantastic accomplishment, but I want to go for a competition calibre scale build here, and I think (although I can't be sure because I haven't built his design) that D-Rock's airplane leans more towards fun scale.

Dave Platt's design is older and intended for glow power, so it is of course over-designed and overweight by today's electric standard. I learned a lot from my Jungmeister build about converting an old design to electric and lightening the structure, and I can see that there are many similarities to the design philosophies between the Jungmeister and the Platt 109. I see many opportunities to lighten the structure, and I have some good ideas churning around in my head.

I ordered the semi-kit two weeks ago and it arrived yesterday. Included is a set of plans, a big, scale spinner, canopy, fibreglass cowl parts, and two sheets of vacuum formed plastic for the fuselage and wing bumps, supercharger intake, exhaust stubs, and some other little bits.

I dove right in and the first thing I did was assemble the supercharger intake from the vac formed parts. I don't know why, it just seemed like the thing to do! The parts fit well and a little bit of Squadron Green Putty filled in the minor gaps. I used Plastruct liquid cement to join the plastic. CA is a no-no, as it makes the plastic brittle.

Next up is the stab. The plans call for solid balsa tips. There's that old school design philosophy! I did the same thing as I did on the Jungmeister, and made some templates to form laminated balsa tips (Just like D-Rock's design!). It really is the way to go for light weight tips.

I scanned the stab ribs into the computer and then printed them out on card stock to make templates. Then I traced the pattern on to wood, and started cutting. Just a little while later, I have the ribs ready to go.

As I said, my plan is to go whole hog with this one, but still keep it light. The model has 1008sq in of wing area, and spans 79". I am hoping to keep the weight between 10-12lbs. That's with a fully sheeted wing and fuselage, retracts, and flaps. I haven't decided on a power system yet, but have narrowed it down to a few choices. I want to swing a near scale size prop and am planning on using a Biela 20X14 3-Blade prop. Scale diamater is 22", so that's pretty close.

No definite time frame for completion, but I would like to be able to take it to Chilliwack in May 2012.
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Old Jun 16, 2011, 03:50 PM
Low rates are for wimps
bwoollia's Avatar
United States, CO, Colorado Springs
Joined May 2008
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Watching with great interest for another VonJaerschky Masterpiece!

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Old Jun 16, 2011, 06:21 PM
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BuildItWright's Avatar
Melbourne, Australia
Joined Jul 2008
872 Posts
I'm building D-Rock's 109 at the moment so I'll be watching this one with interest!

What wheels will you be using?

BIW.
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Old Jun 16, 2011, 06:23 PM
The Hun in the Sun
vonJaerschky's Avatar
Canada, BC, Comox
Joined Nov 2003
7,260 Posts
Quote:
Originally Posted by BuildItWright View Post
I'm building D-Rock's 109 at the moment so I'll be watching this one with interest!

What wheels will you be using?

BIW.
I've been watching your build. God help me, but I think I'm going to use the Glennis 5.25" custom scale wheels. I got a quote. Don't even ask me how much! It's cheaper to put tires on my van! I'm planning the Shinidin Machining retracts, but converted to electric using Lado Tech actuators.
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Old Jun 16, 2011, 07:33 PM
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Phoenix, AZ
Joined Oct 2004
1,871 Posts
Wow, this is going to be one terrific model, looking forward to seeing this one frame up! What are you planning for power?

D-Rock
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Old Jun 16, 2011, 08:00 PM
The Hun in the Sun
vonJaerschky's Avatar
Canada, BC, Comox
Joined Nov 2003
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Thanks D-Rock. I feel kind of bad for not building your kit though! I am not sure on the power system yet. I have it narrowed down to a few choices. I want to be able to swing a 3 blade 20X14 prop.
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Old Jun 17, 2011, 01:12 AM
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thomanie's Avatar
Trondheim, Norway
Joined Jun 2003
2,801 Posts
Nothing beats a good, big 109 build. I'll be watching

The Glennis wheels are indeed amazing - but at a premium...
If you're opting for the spoked wheels for your Gustav, then check out the way Brian Taylor did his on his Emil. Looks equally good, at a fraction of the cost...

T
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Old Jun 17, 2011, 01:59 AM
Slip the surly bonds...
Sopwith Mike's Avatar
Christchurch,England
Joined Aug 2004
2,533 Posts
I'm watching from a long way away, behind a big wall. This is not my sort of modelling, and as I said to Frank, scientists have proved in lab experiments that the 109 can't fly.

But it'll be interesting. Go Frank go!
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Old Jun 17, 2011, 04:02 AM
What's 3D?
trumps's Avatar
Australia, WA, Ellenbrook
Joined Feb 2008
3,316 Posts
very nice, looking forward to following you build on this beauty! HELLS BELLS... just had a look at the gear sets and wheels you are planning on using, thats worth more than most of my planes combined, i suppose if i ever try to do something as full on as this build i will have to sell off some non essential items...Hmmm, wonder what i would get for the wife

Cheers
Craig
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Old Jun 17, 2011, 04:56 AM
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Mike Smart's Avatar
Aylesbury, Buckinghamshire, Great Britain (UK)
Joined Jan 2000
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Nice choice vonJ - is it a G6? Obviously great minds think alike, I have been researching a G10 with a view to modelling it at 2.25" to the foot.
How accurate is the Platt kit do you think?, I see it is available in the UK as well.

Mike
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Old Jun 17, 2011, 09:35 AM
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Modelholic's Avatar
Perth WA
Joined Feb 2007
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Quote:
Originally Posted by trumps View Post
very nice, looking forward to following you build on this beauty! HELLS BELLS... just had a look at the gear sets and wheels you are planning on using, thats worth more than most of my planes combined, i suppose if i ever try to do something as full on as this build i will have to sell off some non essential items...Hmmm, wonder what i would get for the wife

Cheers
Craig
In the words of the Mastercard advert - she's priceless!

Looking forward to this build - I'm sure you'll do her justice Frank.
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Old Jun 20, 2011, 11:24 AM
The Hun in the Sun
vonJaerschky's Avatar
Canada, BC, Comox
Joined Nov 2003
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Mike Smart View Post
Nice choice vonJ - is it a G6? Obviously great minds think alike, I have been researching a G10 with a view to modelling it at 2.25" to the foot.
How accurate is the Platt kit do you think?, I see it is available in the UK as well.

Mike
The plan shows a G6, but the kit includes a very large scale 3-View that also shows the G10. I rather like the tall tail and had thought of building a G-10, but that would mean finding a way to make the Erla canopy (which I actually rather like). I haven't reached a final decision yet, but I suspect I shall be lazy and use the included standard canopy. Mr. Platt says his plans give a 100% scale outline. I am no judge whether to agree or disagree, but given his credentials, I'll say it's pretty darned scale.

I have made a start on the horizontal stabilizer. I made some changes. The plans show one spar of 1/4" square balsa that goes right through the middle of the balsa stab ribs. I didn't like that idea, and changed it to two spars of 1/4" X 1/8" balsa in a more conventional manner. This meant building the stab in a jig, as there is an even taper to the stab that is difficult to achieve on a flat building board. The single 1/4" square spar solves this alignment problem, but only if you manage to accurately cut 1/4" square holes in each rib at exactly the right location - something I'm sure I would have messed up. Also, the plans call for the tips to be shaped balsa block. I want to keep things light, so instead I made up some bending templates out of Depron foam and formed the stab tips out of 4 layers of 1/16" X 1/4" balsa. I soaked the wood in water for 30 minutes and then used yellow wood glue to gently bend the tips around the form, and let dry for 24 hours.

Another tip I picked up from the building notes is to assemble all sheeting first and sand it flat before applying it to the model, where ever possible. This helps prevent the "Starved Horse" effect, as if the sheeting is sanded heavily when it is on the framework, it will sag very slightly between formers and ribs while sanding, where it is unsupported. Makes sense to me.

Also, I have drilled the holes for the Robart hinge points now. This is something I finally remembered to do. If you drill the holes after the model is sheeted or covered, tiny bits of balsa will get trapped inside the model and rattle around forever, driving me crazy. Or maybe that's just my OCD coming though. But isn't OCD a prerequisite for a scale modeller?
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Old Jun 20, 2011, 11:42 AM
Low rates are for wimps
bwoollia's Avatar
United States, CO, Colorado Springs
Joined May 2008
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Make sure you reinforce the trailing edge of your elevators, maybe with carbon fibre or music wire. You never know when a Stuka might be tailgating.

(private joke)
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Old Jun 20, 2011, 11:54 AM
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Canada, ON, Owen Sound
Joined Oct 2008
2,717 Posts
Hi von: Great build, I especially like your idea of insisting on a scale size prop! Nothing turns me off more than a beautiful airplane, detailed to the max, with some skinny, undersized stick hanging off the front!
Electric propulsion certainly gives us the opportunity to fix that!! I will be watching this build with interest. My skills ( I freely admit) are nowhere near your build expertise. I hope to pick up some light building pointers to enhance my next build, a Cdn Grumman Tracker!
Doug B
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Old Jun 20, 2011, 01:12 PM
The Hun in the Sun
vonJaerschky's Avatar
Canada, BC, Comox
Joined Nov 2003
7,260 Posts
Quote:
Originally Posted by bwoollia View Post
Make sure you reinforce the trailing edge of your elevators, maybe with carbon fibre or music wire. You never know when a Stuka might be tailgating.

(private joke)
Well, then let's make it public, shall we?

Stuka Und Messerschmitt Bf-109 (3 min 33 sec)
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