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Old Jun 02, 2012, 02:07 AM
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Looking for some advice on my first micro-ish build

I'm not normally a micro flyer, so bear with me here...

I've recently acquired a damaged HobbyKing 18-11 10g motor. I rewound three of the little beasties for someone and he gave me a fourth as a bit of payment. Now it just needs a rewind (easy) and a plane (hmmm...).

I know very little about this micro stuff, but here's what I've come up with so far:

- The plane itself is looking like it'll be a scaled-down version of my favorite balsa sport plane, a pretty quick and aerobatic craft. 54% gives me a 20" wingspan and a total of around 70-75sq. in. wing area. I'd like it to retain some of the original's quick, maneuverable nature without being a pig. Am I on the right planet so far, or should I look at scaling up a bit?

- I've hunted around a bit for power stuff. I found this battery and this ESC. I'm thinking I'll shoot for ~2500Kv with the motor, running near-square props in the ~5" range. Again, am I on base here at all considering the plane I'm looking at? Going for a bit of speed, but not a rocket by any means.

- The radio has me concerned. I've got a couple little 3.7g servos and I'm planning to use two of them (A/E/T). My main radio is a Spektrum DX6, so I'm limited to the big old AR6000 receivers. Will these be too big/heavy? I can also go 72MHz with a slightly smaller 6ch Corona receiver if necessary. Any advice here?

I appreciate any help y'all can give me on this one. At any rate, this micro stuff is really attractive to me. Smaller, cheaper, less room needed to fly... Mmmmm
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Old Jun 02, 2012, 03:36 AM
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It's very late and I was bored, so I tracked down the old 5/10g motor gallery thread to check what folks tend to use with this motor.

Looks like my haphazard figuring was fairly accurate. Good feeling there I'm thinking a 60%-scale version (22", ~95sq. in. area) would be a decent bet with the same equipment from the first post. Seems like the AR6000 won't be a problem, and I conveniently have one that lacks an outer case.

I'll check my balsa supplies and then start scaling down the plane's dimensions. I already built a foam wing today... errr... yesterday, now... but I'm already itching for another project
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Old Jun 02, 2012, 05:24 AM
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Tabriz, Iran
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I think you'd be happier with a Turnigy Plush 6A ESC.
I think a 5043 or 6030 prop will be OK for that motor...
Why AR6000? You'd better get something lighter and smaller. Like orange RX 6ch or spektrum ar6300.
3.7g servos may be an overkill. 2.2g or 3g servos may be better.
why make an AET sports plane? just add another and make it a full house 4ch.
What's the name of ur favorite balsa sport plane?!
Hobbyking.com is a great place for getting ur electronics...

By the way, why Butane?


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Old Jun 02, 2012, 09:19 AM
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Quote:
I think you'd be happier with a Turnigy Plush 6A ESC.
I checked around HobbyKing a little for the ESC and batteries, but I really don't like having to wait for it to ship from China. Batteries slow it down so much these days that I might not get the stuff until the middle of summer. Going with a US-based dealer cuts shipping to like two or three days, and postage is four bucks.

Quote:
Why AR6000? You'd better get something lighter and smaller. Like orange RX 6ch or spektrum ar6300.
Like I said, I have to go with the AR6000 because it's all that'll work with my DX6. The OrangeRX and such would be great, but they need a DSM2 transmitter and the DX6 (not the 6i) works on the original DSM protocol. I weighed an AR6000 without the case and it comes to 5 grams, so it's not even all that bad. Just... big

Quote:
3.7g servos may be an overkill. 2.2g or 3g servos may be better.
why make an AET sports plane? just add another and make it a full house 4ch.
The way I see it... I can skip the rudder and use up the weight savings with the 3.7g servos Really, though, I just don't want to deal with the extra fiddly-ness of a rudder on my first plane of this size. Maybe once I finish building it I'll see how the weight and space all pans out. I can always cut a rudder in later. I'll see if I can find some cheap smaller servos, though... Weight savings is always good, eh?

Quote:
What's the name of ur favorite balsa sport plane?!
Doesn't really have a name, actually. I call it the Ferret for my own uses, but that's just a carry-over from an old naming tradition I've used in the past. It's a 37" balsa scratchbuild that I whipped up a little over a year ago now. It weighs 19 ounces, has ~400W in the nose and does around 80-90mph. It's real smooth and just fun to fly. There are pictures of it somewhere on RCG...


Well, I got the motor wound. 15 turns of ~30AWG wire. It runs fine, but a bit warm. I might redo it with one more turn. I also got the wing ribs cut, and I cut and assembled the parts for the forward portion of the fuselage. I made some errors (sleepy...) but nothing major. It's all in 1/16" balsa so far and it feels very light. The firewall is very hard 1/8" balsa, and it's getting drilled to take the stock X mount backwards. I drilled clean through that aluminum mount and then flipped it to get the motor closer to the fuse. Worked great.

I need to hit up the hobby shop and grab some light music wire and 1/8" square stock. There's gonna be quite a bit of that in this plane. Three or four spars in the wing plus everything aft of the wing will be made of it. The wing will have some 1/32" sheeting as well, but I'm really trying to keep it light.

Oh yeah, and did I mention that this thing is freakin tiny? 60% ain't fooling around

I'll try to get some pics later.
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Old Jun 02, 2012, 09:29 AM
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This it?



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Old Jun 02, 2012, 01:36 PM
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That's it with the old fuselage. I sort of rushed through that part of the build and after a few hard landings I replaced the fuse with a much, much sexier design.



I got to the shop earlier and picked up some wood and supplies. The wing is framed up and nearing the covering stage. The motor mount has been... mounted... and is awaiting motor installation, which will happen once I get my ESC and battery

Current weight of the airframe so far is 9 grams. A bit on the heavy side, but not all that horrible. I'd like to be two grams lighter than that right now. Once I get to the tail section and covering, the weight is gonna go crazy.

Speaking of covering... I'm really looking to use the same cream-colored EconoKote that's on the big version. I have lots of it and I'd like to match the original's trim scheme. Is this a good/safe idea at this size, or will it cause a lot of warping in the wing when I shrink it? I know it's heavier than tissue or super-light indoor-flyer film...

This is weird. I'm not used to counting grams while building. Normally my planes automatically come out very light, but they also have an excess of power so weight is never an issue. With this thing, every extra gram on the scale just hurts to look at
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Old Jun 03, 2012, 02:03 PM
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Hmmm... Maybe I should just change this thread into a build log

Quick update time: The wing just needs rib caps and it'll be ready to cover. I got moving on the tail section and stabs, too. The tail moment is installed and waiting for those internal stringers, which are actually almost solely cosmetic. As for the stabs, I just need to work out the exact incidence angle before I cover them and glue them in place.

The total weight at this point is 15g, and this is with the motor mount attached to the firewall. I'm doing better than I expected. The tail stringers and rib caps might add another gram or so, and covering is anyone's guess. It's looking like the final weight of the airframe will be right around 20g. Cool....
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Old Jun 03, 2012, 11:18 PM
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If I squint at your plane as I lean back away from my monitor - and if I ignore the scallops on the trailing edges and the WWI-ish effects, I almost see a midget Great Planes Electrostreak. That was a plane I lusted after in the late 90's, but never built. It was a precursor of the hotliner/warmliner craze of the early 2000's!!!

I'll be watching this thread closely!!
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Old Jun 04, 2012, 01:09 PM
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Yup, that's exactly what I was going for. Have a look at the RadicalRC E-Hornet as well; it's got some big similarities. Flies awesome, too. I have a Suppo 2217/6 swinging an APC 7x9 on a 3S 1800mAh pack. Hits ~390W static, not bad for a 19-ounce bird It's got loads of vertical and tops out around 80-90mph.

Build progress: Rib caps.... Oh, those darn rib caps. The top of the wing is done. Ten ribs, twenty cap pieces on top. All cut from 1/32" balsa sheet. I'm sitting there manufacturing SPLINTERS of wood just going "Damn, how do these guys do this without going crazy?". My caps are 1/16" wide, 1/32" thick and some are as small as 3/4" long. I could accidentally inhale all of them and not even notice.

I also got the diagonal portions of the tail done. It REALLY looks like a plane now. Weight is still hovering at 15g on the scale and I can't imagine that my recent additions added more than a few milligrams.

I ran into an itty-bitty problem with my servos. Those "super-tiny" 3.7g Hyperions, the ones that I used to think I could lose under my fingernails, are now massive. Huge. There's nowhere to fit the elevator servo in the fuselage; it's a bit too tall. I'm gonna have to leave a sort of bay open in the bottom side of the wing to accommodate it. No big problem, but definitely a wake-up call

I'm working on getting pics. I had the camera in hand, but the battery is dead and the charger is MIA. I shall get this resolved
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Old Jun 04, 2012, 06:59 PM
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Well jeez...

Late, late last night I ordered a 6A ESC and a pair of teensy lipos (30C 250mAh 2S) from Value Hobby. I just checked my e-mail and saw that they've already been shipped out

I just decided to price it all out at HobbyKing for fun. Turns out it would actually be more expensive, and equivalent lipos are ALL out of stock anyway. Lord only knows when that box would arrive, but I'll have my VH stuff before the end of the week.

If you didn't notice, I'm quite pleased
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Old Jun 07, 2012, 05:01 PM
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Equipment came today. The ESC was a pleasant surprise; six grams WITH very, very long battery leads. I clipped those and the motor leads down enough that the final weight with connectors and heatshrink is less than six grams.

The batteries were a good and bad surprise. The quoted weight and size are both wrong on the site; they're only 20g as opposed to the 24g VH claims, but they're 7mm wider than they said. This could be a potential problem since they barely fit into the fuse, and can't go very far forward.

It's looking like the RTF weight will be almost exactly 80g. The covering is freakin HEAVY; the bare airframe is now almost an ounce Fourteen grams of EconoKote, and I did as light a job as I can.

My wing loading will still be lower than that of my Aero Ace bipe with the lower wings removed, so I'm not doing so badly.

My caseless receiver isn't functioning I'll solve that later.
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Old Jun 08, 2012, 08:48 PM
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Ok folks, the little beast has flown. Flies nicely, too. It needs a bunch of adjustments, which isn't surprising, but it came out far better than I expected. Final AUW is 91g, so 20 heavier than I wanted, and it still floats nicely. It'll be an easy front-yard flyer when I've got everything dialed in.

I have pics. I'll post them when I locate the camera's USB cord

Me likey this micro stuff, I think.

Bigger report will come later with pics.
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Old Jun 24, 2012, 11:34 PM
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It took me forever, but I'm finally posting some pics I took awhile ago.

I got the plane almost totally sorted out, but it never quite seems to be really locked in. There's always some weird pitch tendency that just swaps directions when I try to nurse it out, or a very slow roll that reverses with one click of trim.

The airframe is fragile, too. This whole super-small-balsa deal is fun, but I honestly think I'd probably be happier with foam I guess I'll fly this thing around until falls apart, but then I'm sticking the gear in a foamie.

Overall, though, I'd say I'm still pretty happy with this project. It was cheap to put together and it flies really well even with the occasional minor weirdness.
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