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Old Feb 06, 2012, 11:35 AM
The world in foam & tissue
Rasterize's Avatar
United States, NY, Rochester
Joined May 2010
615 Posts
Build Log
Fiddlersgreen Tissue on Foam

Most are aware of the wonderful card models at www.Fiddlersgreen.net and many have built full fuse, flying versions of the same. Fiddlersgreen (FG) aircraft have a certain look and feel that I find nostalgic and have build a few paper ones myself. I have always wanted to make one fly. I am aware that this is not a new idea. Many have done it already in various sizes and using the FG plans in various ways as well.
I wanted to examine enlarging FG to around a 24” to 29” wing span. Why that range? Since the wing span is usually the longest dimension of an aircraft, I choose 24” to 29” because I have become quite proficient in printing out on 13”X30” size tissue paper.
The tissue could then be glued onto 2mm or 1mm foam, in my case Depron, depending on the part in question. The idea would be to cut out the plans and foam together and build a full fuse model similar to the way one would build a regular Fiddlersgreen paper model. On a side note; a new foam is hopefully going to come to market soon!
http://www.rcgroups.com/forums/showthread.php?t=1533245
An answer to white Depron and at a better price? Lets hope so!)

A word on Fiddlers Green plans.
I will only be using Fiddlers Green plans that have been offered by their website for free or that I have purchased. I will not be posting any plans from www.Fiddlersgreen.net or any of the images that I have modified for printing on tissue. This would be a violation of their copyright. Please acquire all you Fiddlers Green plans from www.Fiddlersgreen.net. Chip’s a nice guy! Support him!

I have the following goals in mind:
• Learn a ton! I have been in this hobby for 2 years now and I am still amazed at the amount of information that is relevant to RC aircraft!
• Stick with the FG plans as much as possible and discover their strengths and weaknesses in this process.
• End up with a flyable, near (however that’s defined) scale and nice looking plane!
• Keep cost down as much as possible.
• Post at least once a week. Probably on the weekend.

Some overall technical particulars that should apply to this and most FG planes I plan on if this works:
• Full Fuse (FG based plans).
• 24” to 29” wing span. Could go bigger later.
• 3 or 4 channel depending on the aircraft.
• Blue Wonder 1700Kv 24g outrunner motor or its equivalent.
• 800 - 900 mAh 2S unit.
• Prop for this set up is either a GWS 7x6 or an APC 7x6E.
• Total cost… unknown at this point. I’ll keep track and edit later.

FG plans in the works:
I can only build at home and when I have time but I can prepare the FG plans for my next planes on my laptop just about anywhere. If this one works, I will have several more ready to go!
• WWI Gotha G.IV
• Spirit of St. Louis – Printed on silver tissue paper! These I’m reworking in Illustrator with vector graphics.

Design applications used
Not what this thread is about but it does play a critical role in the readying of the FG plans for printing on Tissue.
• Adobe CS5 is today’s weapon of choice in the graphic arts industry. I used primarily Photoshop and Acrobat in editing of the files.

Printing on tissue
Not what this thread is about either, but it to plays a critical role as a build technique. With that said, you can find tutorials on YouTube showing how this is done. Here is what I use:
• Epson 1100 Refurb from Epson website $110
• A continuous ink system (CIS) with pigmented ink. Various one can be found on the web. Mine cost about $70. Ink is expensive as you are aware. $6 minimum for a 9ml cartridge. I buy in bulk. 110ml bottle is about $9. Pigmented ink (not dyed) gives the print some water resistance but does not make it water proof. Enough however to endure glueing. I use a coat of Minwax Polycylic 24 hrs after the tissue is glued to the foam to protect it..
• 20X30 inch tissue paper (940 count!) cut down to 13X30.
• I attach the tissue to a carrier sheet with 3M repositionable spray. Run it through the priner than peel the tissue off. Not rocket science but a very labor intensive and technique driven process.

Other "Fiddler Green" based threads:
http://www.rcgroups.com/forums/showt...ht=8+foot+b+17
http://www.rcgroups.com/forums/showt...ht=8+foot+b+17
http://www.rcgroups.com/forums/showt...ht=8+foot+b+17
http://www.rcgroups.com/forums/showt...rs+green+plans
http://www.rcgroups.com/forums/showt...rs+green+plans
http://www.rcgroups.com/forums/showt...rs+green+plans
http://www.rcgroups.com/forums/showthread.php?t=341565
http://www.rcgroups.com/forums/showt...r+s+green+p+47
http://www.rcgroups.com/forums/showt...highlight=p+39
http://www.rcgroups.com/forums/showp...00&postcount=8
http://www.rcgroups.com/forums/showt...t=297856&pp=15


Lastly I hope to update this at least once a week! Wish me luck!
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Last edited by Rasterize; Mar 06, 2012 at 10:38 AM.
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Old Feb 06, 2012, 11:37 AM
The world in foam & tissue
Rasterize's Avatar
United States, NY, Rochester
Joined May 2010
615 Posts
My first FG build is the P40 Warhawk, US markings. The planes were enlarged in Photoshop too around 240% which should give the finished plane a wingspan of 24”. I deleted the glue tabs as they won’t be used and layed out the parts to maximize the space and minimize the number of sheet of tissue needed. Only took two sheets of 13X30 tissue to print up all the P40 parts! Nice! I must say they look better than I thought. I was worried about the quality (resolution) of the image with the amount of enlargement that was done.
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Old Feb 06, 2012, 12:05 PM
The world in foam & tissue
Rasterize's Avatar
United States, NY, Rochester
Joined May 2010
615 Posts
The main wing cut and covered. I like to rough cut each piece, both foam and tissue. I can then decied if it would go on 2mm or 1mm Depron. This should also minimize foam waste. I like to hit the the tissue with a coat of Minwax Polycrylic 24 hours after it has been glued to the foam (3M77 spray) and before the final trim. When attaching the tissue to the foam, I use a scrap piece of foam as a squeegee to minimize wrinkles. Check out this thread, post #648
http://www.rcgroups.com/forums/showt...881739&page=44
it explains the process I use to align and attach tissue to foam.
I will also be building a paper version in parallel for comparison. I can see this being extremely helpful in so many ways! As Vyceroy (a well known FG plan builder) started in one of his posts, the FG plans, although nice looking, suffer from a lack of precision. Small issues, although benign in the shape of a small paper model, grow with the enlargement of the graphics themselves and can become troublesome. He also mentioned sanding to correct issues. That is ok with this build as long as we don't sand the outside where the graphic already resides! FG models do have a certain graphic style with a heavy black outline on all parts. This gives the printed paper a certain look. I intend to use this outline as a bit of a fudge factor for sanding and lends itself well to simple touching up of the edges with Sharpie.

Questions to answer:
• Fuse former. How many and where? One comes with the plan. It goes right at the main air intake under the engine.
• The spinner. Use the one with the plans? How?
• Am I over my head?!?!

Decisions made:

• Well, one decision. It’s a belly lander. Going leave landing gear to your imagination!
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Last edited by Rasterize; Feb 06, 2012 at 12:20 PM.
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Old Feb 06, 2012, 12:16 PM
The world in foam & tissue
Rasterize's Avatar
United States, NY, Rochester
Joined May 2010
615 Posts
After everything is dry. I trimmed out the final piece using a razor and a straight edge for long straight runs. I have found that just using scissors is easy and fast on most parts with curves. Really speeds up the process! I tried to trim just inside the black lines in hoes to give me some fudge room. We will see if it bites me in the rear when it starts to go together!
Trail edge pieces on the flight surfaces will be sanded thin to give it more a a taper. Any white foam should be hidden nicely with a Sharpie.
I'm still very happy with the way the graphics turned even compared to a nice print of the original plans. Check out the tension the tissue has put on the wing!

Questions to answer:
• Dihedral and main wing spar. I think it’s going to need one. Carbon fiber or wooden dowel?
• Ailerons? If so, what kind of control linkages?

Decisions made:
• The graphics pass quality muster!
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Old Feb 06, 2012, 12:33 PM
The world in foam & tissue
Rasterize's Avatar
United States, NY, Rochester
Joined May 2010
615 Posts
All the main parts have been printed and cut. That went faster than expected! Total build time thus far about an hour not including file creation and printing of course. You can see a white area on the nose. Two gun and an air intake flaring go there. Minor cosmetic pieces like this will be done in 1mm Depron. There are a few on the bottom fuse and wing as well. In the future, I think I will edit out the white in Photoshop but leave in some subtle guide marks.
Obviously I have done some initial bending of the fuse. Want to do a separate write up on that latter this week.

Questions to answer:
• Make the air intakes operational? I’m leaning toward it. Should be simple to do.
• Wing saddle and attachment to the fuse. I’m very up to suggestions here!

Decisions made:
• I think at least 3 Fuselage formers. In front of the shark eyes, one behind the cockpit and one in beween maybe somehow tied into the wing?
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Last edited by Rasterize; Feb 06, 2012 at 12:47 PM.
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Old Feb 06, 2012, 12:57 PM
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United States, CA, Yucaipa
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Wow, that looks good! A few questions: how do you print on that paper? Is it a special printer? How do you seal it to protect it?
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Old Feb 06, 2012, 01:09 PM
The world in foam & tissue
Rasterize's Avatar
United States, NY, Rochester
Joined May 2010
615 Posts
Quote:
Originally Posted by bkboggy View Post
Wow, that looks good! A few questions: how do you print on that paper? Is it a special printer? How do you seal it to protect it?
Thanks bkboggy! The bottom of the first post has the major details of the printing process. I cut my teeth on tissue printing with SGTalons Enterprise. I designed and print the "skins" for the kit. It's kind of a pain but Iove the results!
As to protecting it, first I use a printer that uses pigmented ink (The Epson) as opposed to dyed ink. This gives the image some water resistance but it does not mean it's water proof. So I hit each part with a coat of Minwax water based Polycrylic from Home Depot. It's important that you only hit it with the Polycrylic only after the glue that you used to attach the tissue to the foam has dried completely! If you don't, it can really bubble up on you in humid/moist conditions.
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Old Feb 06, 2012, 01:27 PM
"Not All Change Is Progress"
United States, VA, Fairfax
Joined Jun 2010
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Subscribed, I look forward to hearing your tips, I started using FG models last year, built several versions of the SB2C Hell Diver.
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Old Feb 06, 2012, 01:54 PM
The world in foam & tissue
Rasterize's Avatar
United States, NY, Rochester
Joined May 2010
615 Posts
Quote:
Originally Posted by intheblue View Post
Subscribed, I look forward to hearing your tips, I started using FG models last year, built several versions of the SB2C Hell Diver.
Sweet! Got a link to a thread on the Helldiver? I'm thinking of posting links to other threads about FG models in the first post of this thread. I had a time finding threads and it would be cool to have a list of them. So many people have done great work with these plans.
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Old Feb 06, 2012, 02:29 PM
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Oops, sorry I missed those instructions in the first thread. Thanks!
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Old Feb 06, 2012, 02:47 PM
The world in foam & tissue
Rasterize's Avatar
United States, NY, Rochester
Joined May 2010
615 Posts
Many FG models us the cylinder on cylinder method for building a fuse. After doing a bit of bending and taping I think some form of stabilizing structure or former will be needed. Here we have some closes ups of the rough "shaping and taping" to get an idea where formers might be best be utilized. I also think I will be using foam tabs or strips that span the seam between cylinders. I hoping this will provide strength and continuity between cylinders. You can see creases on the Depron inside the cylinders. I don't know if this is a concern. I need to try a few more techniques on bending foam to see of I can minimize this. Hot water is out! Maybe a little kiss from the heat gun?
I't doesn't seem to effect the look of the outside surface other than a few "stretch marks" which are not really visible 4 feet away. Does my wife's camera make good close ups or what! A little to good maybe. Again my collection of colored Sharpies will come to the rescue and take care of the white foam in the seams.
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Old Feb 06, 2012, 05:32 PM
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United States, CA, Yucaipa
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Quote:
I will be using foam tabs or strips that span the seam between cylinders
Exactly what I was thinking. How about bamboo skewers or thin carbon rods (the more expensive option)? Another option could be putting a few (H) shaped foam supports inside the fuse to keep the shape and to make it more rigid. (|-----|) <--- like that or that ----> ((-----))
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Old Feb 06, 2012, 06:28 PM
The world in foam & tissue
Rasterize's Avatar
United States, NY, Rochester
Joined May 2010
615 Posts
Quote:
Originally Posted by bkboggy View Post
Exactly what I was thinking. How about bamboo skewers or thin carbon rods (the more expensive option)? Another option could be putting a few (H) shaped foam supports inside the fuse to keep the shape and to make it more rigid. (|-----|) <--- like that or that ----> ((-----))
I was thinking carbon fiber or wooden dowel for the main wing.
The wooden dowel option is cheap, can be formed into a dihedral-ish shape with a hot water bath/jig approach providing one continuous piece.
Carbon fiber however is strong and light and epoxyed into a dihedral structure. I will be using it for support in the tail and elevator.

I seriously was thinking the H shape option as well. I do happen to have a Guillows P40 plan that I could copy a few formers from, digitize them and scale them to a 24" wingspan bird. Knock a hole in the middle and I'm there.

I still like the tab seam support however. I keep coming around to that especially with UHU Por as my "go to" adhesive. 2mm is not a lot of surface area for contact cement.
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Old Feb 06, 2012, 07:17 PM
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That tab support would definitely make the lightest/cheapest option. And it'll probably be just as strong, since the model won't weigh much at all from the looks of it.
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Old Feb 06, 2012, 07:50 PM
When pigs fly rc
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USA, NY, Chester
Joined Apr 2008
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looks great!
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