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Old Jun 30, 2010, 04:27 PM
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Emu Plains, Sydney
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Great Kit

I have a couple of these from Top Model - the shipping was a killer!

Still collecting equipment, but I have to say the kit looks absolutely spot on quality wise, and should provide a nice change from the demented willy wagtail flying style of the 3D's!

Planning a Turnigy TR35-36c and Quantum 45A speedie. Undecided about servos at the moment, but will probably try some Hyperions.
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Old Nov 20, 2010, 07:58 PM
Free as a bird now.
Brian Courtice's Avatar
United States, FL, Punta Gorda
Joined May 2002
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Really nice design.

I am wondering if there is a good reason for placing the motor so far above the wing and tail. Does this have not the same effect as using downthrust on the motor mount?

I am thinking it was probably done to increase prop clearance, and to get the motor above the carbon longeron. Because the wing and tail were placed below the longeron, the distance between the motor thrust line and the line the wing and stab are centered on, is increased even more.

The unfortunate side effect might be found in the control coupling that several people have noted.

Placing the wing and stab low on the fuselage also results in more fin area above the wing and less below it. This will tend to introduce roll coupling when the rudder is activated.

I would have placed the wing, stab and motor thrustline all on the line where the carbon longeron is, and then I would move the longeron above or below the wing. Just my thoughts on the control coupling issue.
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Last edited by Brian Courtice; Nov 20, 2010 at 10:11 PM.
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Old Jan 29, 2011, 12:01 PM
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Utica, Michigan
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I started to assemble mine, Anyone have a copy of the Assembly Manual in English?
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Old Feb 02, 2011, 06:49 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by zzw26n View Post
I started to assemble mine, Anyone have a copy of the Assembly Manual in English?
I guess there is no English Manual?
Pretty straight forward build, but it would be nice to know what it says.
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Old Mar 03, 2011, 05:42 PM
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TRANSLATION OF MANUAL: Sputnik F3A

I have translated the Manual for this plane, from the French TopModel manual.
I attach a PDF file.
The TopModel original SPUTNIK manual in French, in colour, can be obtained from: http://www.topmodel.fr/goodsdoc/09918_t ... 648411.pdf
Hope this helps

Note added later -removed this PDF file, because in next post I attach an updated version of the translated Manual.
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Old Mar 04, 2011, 06:34 AM
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Utica, Michigan
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ANSA, Thank you.

Ward
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Old Mar 06, 2011, 08:27 PM
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Revised English Translation of SPUTNIK Manual

After having now built (and flown) a SPUTNIK plane myself,
-and I also noticed some mistakes in the previous version of the translated manual
I now attach a revised English Translation -Version 1.5 -of the TopModel French Instructions for this plane.
Hope this is useful.
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Old Mar 07, 2011, 03:21 PM
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CG of SPUTNIK plane

The designer of this SPUTNIK plane, Nicolas Pietu, has given his own settings in the article shown below.
From: http://www.topmodel.fr/article.php?art_id=529
Nicolas himself uses a CG of 140mm behind the leading edge. The text by Nicolas is in French, I have translated it to English, as shown below.
-However, w.r.t. the Sputnik Manual, my objective with this was to translate the Manual as it stands, from French to English. And if the French original Manual specifies a CG of 160mm, then my translation has to give the same figure. Hope this helps:

TRANSLATION FROM FRENCH:
News - SPUTNIK XPower23.4.2010 -SPUTNIK personal Nicolas Piétu

" ... Hello everyone,
Here is my article on my personal SPUTNIK. Indeed, after about 30 flights I think I happened to find SUCCESSFUL settings.

Settings:
Aileron deflection: ± 10 ° / Expo JR: 60%
Elevator deflection: ± 18 ° / Expo JR: 60%
Rudder deflection: ± 8 ° / Expo JR: 50%
Rudder for stall turn: ± 45 ° / Expo JR: 75%
(“renversement” = stall turn)

Balance: 140mm from the leading edge at the root of wing.
Mixing rudder to the right, give 1° right aileron
Mixing rudder to left , give 1° left aileron

SPUTNIK with my landing gear weighs 798gr with 2250mAh 4S Thunderpower batteries -and 828gr with 2600mAh 4S Xpower Xtreme batteries ... "
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Old Mar 07, 2011, 03:26 PM
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Further information on SPUTNIK plane

I attach two PDF Docs:
-The first PDF Doc shows various information I have collected on the SPUTNIK F3A plane, over the last several weeks. I have just been noting it all in a .txt file (i.e. using Notepad). I now give the info in a PDF file.
-The second PDF Doc shows the full article on this plane with pictures, by Nicolas Pietu, from April 2010.
Hope this all helps ....
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Old Mar 07, 2011, 03:56 PM
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Utica, Michigan
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ANSA View Post
I attach two PDF Docs:
-The first PDF Doc shows various information I have collected on the SPUTNIK F3A plane, over the last several weeks. I have just been noting it all in a .txt file (i.e. using Notepad). I now give the info in a PDF file.
-The second PDF Doc shows the full article on this plane with pictures, by Nicolas Pietu, from April 2010.
Hope this all helps ....
I read through both of your postings and attachments, thanks! Right now I'm at 140mm for CG and have yet to Fly it. The two items that I wanted to follow up on is Right Thrust (it looks like it needs it) and I was going to Fly it with no Landing Gear? Not sure if I could get away with that?

zz
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Old Mar 07, 2011, 06:33 PM
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Answers

Hello zz: Here are some answers:
Right Thrust: It does say in the (translated ) Instructions (Page 11):
" ... place pieces of tubing on the bolts part 1-1F as in the photo.
�� Then, tighten up these bolts on the motor mount part 1-1. By loosening or tightening the bolts 1-1F you can alter the angle of the motor.
Angles to be used:
Side-thrust (anti-torque) 1.5° right
Down-thrust 1° ...."

-So it specifies 1.5 degree right thrust

Landing gear: Again I quote from the (translated) Instructions (Page 9):
" ... �� The undercarriage assembly fits tightly into the slot.
If you use a paved runway, we suggest you should mount the landing gear ...
... Otherwise, may be best not to use the undercarriage, and strengthen the bottom of the fuselage with reinforced tape, to prevent damage to the bottom of the fuselage (careful with the propeller !!!) ..."

-So it suggests that you can fly without the undercarriage, and in that case use some tape on bottom of fuselage.

I understand that it is quite common that people fly this plane, without the undercarriage. Hope this is helpful.
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Old Mar 08, 2011, 10:26 AM
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NOTE: NO NEED TO MODIFY X-POWER MOTOR -for Sputnik plane

This was pointed out by Bob Blackmore -a.k.a. "The Professor":
PLEASE NOTE: THERE IS NO NEED TO MODIFY THE X-POWER 3514/12 MOTOR FOR THE SPUTNIK PLANE
-On Page 10 and 11 of the TopModel Instructions for this plane, it describes how to change the motor from front mounting to radial mounting from the back. There is no need to do this at all.
There is no need because: The X-Power motor comes with a prop adaptor that bolts directly onto the rotating can of the motor -and this should be used.
The photo below shows my own motor mounting on the Sputnik plane. I had already modified the motor, and moved the shaft, as per the Instructions, before Bob made this very good point to me.
If on the other hand, you use the prop adaptor that bolts on the rotating can, this leaves the shaft of the motor sticking out of the back (i.e. out of the static part of the motor). And as you see in the photo below, TopModel have placed a horizontal slot in the fuselage, behind the motor mount, for this protruding motor shaft to insert into.
So the plane is all set up for this rotating can prop adaptor to be used, and there is NO NEED at all to make the modification that I did -to move the shaft of the motor, so it protrudes out of the rotating can ....
I do not understand why, TopModel even put this in the Instructions ...
(The 45mm INOVA spinner will also be more easy to fit, if you use the rotating can prop adaptor ... -Because I moved the shaft, I ended up using the collet-type 5mm prop adaptor, which has its own little metal spinner ...)
-As you also might see in the photo, I slightly widened the EPP around the rotating can of the X-Power motor, to make sure the motor did not touch ...
Hope this all helps ...
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Old Mar 08, 2011, 07:14 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ANSA View Post
Hello zz: Here are some answers:
Right Thrust: It does say in the (translated ) Instructions (Page 11):
" ... place pieces of tubing on the bolts part 1-1F as in the photo.
�� Then, tighten up these bolts on the motor mount part 1-1. By loosening or tightening the bolts 1-1F you can alter the angle of the motor.
Angles to be used:
Side-thrust (anti-torque) 1.5° right
Down-thrust 1° ...."

-So it specifies 1.5 degree right thrust

Landing gear: Again I quote from the (translated) Instructions (Page 9):
" ... �� The undercarriage assembly fits tightly into the slot.
If you use a paved runway, we suggest you should mount the landing gear ...
... Otherwise, may be best not to use the undercarriage, and strengthen the bottom of the fuselage with reinforced tape, to prevent damage to the bottom of the fuselage (careful with the propeller !!!) ..."

-So it suggests that you can fly without the undercarriage, and in that case use some tape on bottom of fusealge.

I understand that it is quite common that people fly this plane, without the underecarriage. Hope this is helpful.
Thanks again ANSA, appreciate all your hard work.

Ward
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Old Mar 08, 2011, 10:12 PM
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Improvements made to the SPUTNIK plane

I have recently built and flown a SPUTNIK F3A plane. It flies really superbly, very different to any other EPP model that I have had; -And I have owned many Freeair, RC-Factory, Hyperion (i.e. Hacker Models) and GB Models (i.e. Telink) EPP planes.
Here is a list of modifications I made, as I was building my SPUTNIK:
1. After adding the EPP strips that cap the grooves on the underside of the wings, I used a little filler and then sanded to wing profile; this made the EPP strips invisible.
2. I used 3mm carbon tubes on the fuselage, instead of flat carbon strips -makes the fuselage more stiff.
3. The slit in the fuselage between engine mount and wing -I only cyanoed the front half of this slit at first, to make it easier to put the wing through later. Then when the wing was in place, I cyanoed the rear half of this slit.
4. I used a 2mm carbon tube on the underside of the tailplane, spanning most of the width -this adds strength to the tailplane.
5. I added small hardwood blocks to the front and back of the ply undercarriage plates. This allowed me to mount a carbon undercarriage
see: http://www.carboncopyuk.com/acatalog..._Products.html
-I used the Shock Flyer Undercarriage Legs -height 85mm, width (at wheels) 150mm -this is same size as wire U/C supplied with Sputnik.
6. I added 4 half-hinges to the underside of the elevator hinge -these EPP hinges can fracture after repeated use, and half-hinges cyanoed on in this way, prevent any fracture.
7. I opened up the EPP slightly at the motor mount, to prevent the rotating can of the X-Power motor touching the EPP.
8. I used plastic clevises at the servo ends of the wire z-bend control rods (fixed using medium cyano) -rather than the grub (allen) screw terminal blocks supplied.
9. I painted (using acrylic paints) the top of the fuselage -looks much better like this ...
10. I added red stripes to the underside of wings and tailplane -like Nicolas Pietu has done.
11. When setting up, and cyanoing in place the tailplane and wings, I measured: a, from each taiplane tip to mark at front of plane, to make sure tailplane geometry was correct; b, from each wing tip to mark at rear of plane, to make sure wing geometry was correct.

Equipment: I used: XPower XC3514/12 motor; APC 11x7 electric prop (will try 11x5, and 10x5); ZTW 50 Amp SBEC ESC; EMAX ES08MD 12g digital servos; Orange (i.e. FrSky) FAAST 8-ch receiver; and for Li-Po, I have used HobbyKing 2100mAh 3S 35C, and also 2100mAh 4S 35C.

I used BSI cyano (the best) -mostly thin, with some medium. In total, I used less than a 1oz (28g) bottle of cyano, for the whole plane.

I attach some pictures showing the build; Hope this is useful.
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Old Mar 09, 2011, 02:14 AM
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Painted top and bottom of SPUTNIK

The plane looks better with painted top of fuselage
and as Nicolas (Pietu) had done, I painted bottom of wing and tail
Hope photos help
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Last edited by ANSA; Mar 11, 2011 at 07:30 AM.
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