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Old Jan 13, 2012, 02:47 PM
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United States, WA, Seattle
Joined Feb 2010
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The Aerostar .40 gets some STOL Mods - Flaps and a Traildragger Gear

I have used the Aerostar for almost everything from converting it to electric, flying it off water with floats, putting skis on for snow to attatching four different camera on for aerial video. It has been a great plane but it dosn't always snow and even though there are a couple of lakes nearby, I only get a few opportunities to fly off them during the summer. So instead of letting it collect dust I decided to do one more modifcation - bush performance.

I cut out the original long and slim strip ailerons and replaced them with some new ones that have a longer width. I used a bigger width because I only have room for them on the second outer half of the wing. I then got some balsa blocks and carved the flaps out and attatched them. The hardest part about the wings was creating the new balsa spars for the hinging. Once I finished the wing, I took out the orignal trike gear and got a Du-Bro .40-.60 size gear and attatched some 3 1/2'' Lite-Flite wheels. The gear screws into the same place the floats attatch to.

After completing the main gear, I beefed up the area above the gear attatchment point, the battery floor by epoxing some blue (colored red) foam on top and adding an extra ply spacer. The next hard part was the tailwheel. I bought an Ohio Superstar 'Wheel Leaf Tiny 4-8 lbs' and attatched it. Then, I got an HS-82MG servo, cut out a hole for it and screwed it in.

After making the connection for the steering, I got a CC 10A UBEC and spliced it into the input connections on the ESC so it will get power from the main flight pack. I got this BEC because I am going from three standard servos to seven! Finally, I finished all the wiring and put a larger 13X6.5 APC prop on the Monsterpower .32 motor for some extra power.

The first 'modification maiden' (I have done alot of those now lol) was quick becuase I needed more nose weight but the gear and steerable tailwheel worked flawlessy. I then took off and tried the flaps and found out I needed alot of down-elevator mixing so I brought it in again. After programming that elevator in with the flaps, I had a great day of STOLing around with the flaps. Boy does it really open up the flight envelope! I highly recommend anyone wondering what to do with their .40 trainer to liven the plane up like this.

Here are some videos:

Build overview:

Taildragger, Flaps, Larger Ailerons etc. Modifications on my Aerostar (E-Conversion) (5 min 28 sec)


First test flights:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=T-7bU...el_video_title

Much better video with lots of STOL footage:

Aerostar STOL Flying and Rainy Tritle Pilatus Porter Landings/Takeoffs (4 min 22 sec)


Unfortunately I wrecked it a few days later. I was coming in for probally the 200th touch-and-go of that day when it suddenly dropped a wing and spiralled about 25 feet to the ground. I wasn't coming in any slower then before but it was windy and the club is near a lake so I probally got a windshift. I was able to recover from the spin at the last second so I didn't think it went in very hard. I was wrong. The rubber bands split the wing in half and the bottom part of the fuslage is destroyed from the impact. This is the fourth major crash I have had with it in the past 3 years (stalled it into the lake 2 years ago, wings flew off 2 years ago, tail got smashed last summer etc.) and I have decided to finally let it go

Well I hope this will help someone!

Ethan
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