United States, CA, Pleasanton
Joined Apr 2002
Adding Spoilers to Your Radian for ALES
First off I need to say that this project was inspired by a Radian I saw at a local (Bay Area) ALES late last year. Bob Schleimer owned that glider.
His solution to adding spoilers to the Radian was so elegant in its simplicity that I decided to do the mod and this is my sort-a build log.
You'll need The basic tools that any self-respecting foamy flyer has laying around:
Hobby Knife (with some new blades)
Dremel Type Tool
Clear Packing Tape
Cheapo- Hot Glue Gun
Two 9grm. Servos
Two Servo Extensions
Servo "Y" Cable
G10 or similar material at least 12" x 4" for spoilers
Like I said, except for maybe the G10 you already had this stuff in the garage, right...
I decided to make my spoilers 6" x 1" in size. This was just eyeballed and was also based on the fact that the piece G10 that I had
was 12" x 12". I'm into easy these days.
Dave (DCS of Bolero build fame) cut the G10 for me on his band saw. Be careful working with G10 as it is tough and somewnat brittle.
I then laid out the each spoiler on a wing and drew it's outline which was then taped off with blue painters tape.
Using your "custom depth cutting tool" (hobby knife with tape to control cutting depth) carefully cut the outside dimensions where the spoiler will be installed. I used a metal ruler to insure that I didn't mess up. The most difficult part comes next when you carefully relieve a small amount of foam to allow the spoiler to sit flush with the wing. Work slowly and carefully and you'll be fine. (I had help by using a rotary tool depth guide made by Stewart-MacDonald for guitar repair - it's perfect for hobbby use).
After the bed for the spoiler has been relieved you need to locate the servo near the center of the servo bed. If you use the "single channel" dual servo arrangement I chose the servos will both be orientated the same way since they are going to be driven by only one channel.
In my case the width of my 9grm. servos with the mounting tabs removed was just slightly smaller that the width of the spoiler so fitting them was mostly a matter of measure twice and cut once.
The spoilers are held shut by both the resistance of the packing tape hinge and a small ceramic magnet that is embedded into the wing. Bob used pieces of old hobby knife blade shanks attached to the spoiler to complete the hold down arrangement. I did the same.
You do not need to fool around with any linkages or rubber bands with this system.
As with any such installation, check your servo arm placement and throw as you go to avoid any ooops later.
To facilitate the connection of the spoiler servos to the receiver I simply cut a small hole in front of the stock receiver location in the Radian. I then matched the location of the "Y" connector ends to the point where the servo extensions exited at the wing roof and cartfully cut a channel to mount everything. I partially covered the embedded "Y" connector with packing tape to prevent any binding when rigging the wing.
Assembling the Radian is just as easy as rigging a stock Radian and you just connect the servo extensions when the wing is on.
I added some light weight clear packing tape to cover the servo extensions and pretty things up a bit.
My AUW using a 3S 35C 850mHa battery is only 27.1 oz. so the Radian retains it's floater wing loading of 6 oz / sq ft.
This mod is a simple and effective way to get your Radian ALES Ready. I probably spent more time taking the photos and writing this up than I did prepping the wings for the spoilers.
Thanks to Bob S. for the inspiration and Dave for cutting the G10 for me.
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United Kingdom, England, Wiltshire
Joined Apr 2011
For those of us in the UK and perhaps Europe the G10 material referred to here is also known as FR4 or circuit board material. In the form of circuit board material it comes in 0.8mm (~1/32") and 1.5mm (~1/16") thicknesses and usually has a copper layer which is meant to be etched away leaving you with a circuit to which you would solder electronic components. Usually it is an epoxy / fibre glass matrix but sometimes it can be epoxy / paper and even epoxy / cotton. A more common use in modelling for this material is as templates for hot wire foam wing cutting and sometimes as control horns.
United States, WA, Gig Harbor
Joined Aug 2007
You could probably also just use some hard 1/8" balsa or maybe 1/16ply and be ok on spoilers that small. Ive made them 11" longx1.5" tall from 1/8" and once covered on both sides they worked ok. You will get less warpage if you lightly glass both sides and be sure to seal all edges.
Nice write up , thanks....
this was a great write up. I had been thinking about how to do this ....but would lay down and rest until the notion passed
take care, john s.
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