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Old Sep 11, 2012, 12:11 AM
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#1 Model Airplane Building Clinic >> Mountain Models/Laser Arts Switchback<<

This is my thread that I am going to use as my build thread for my Mountain Models Switchback. This build thread is just one small part of the build clinic that we are hosting here RCG. You can learn more about the build clinic here: http://www.rcgroups.com/forums/showthread.php?t=1704076

Here is the airplane that I will be building: http://www.mountainmodels.com/produc...roducts_id=225

She looks like this, but mine will not look as good. I am not that talented with covering.



I plan on using a Castle Creations T-Bird 18 ESC, and powering her with a motor I bought from a friend of mine. I'm not sure of the model, but it is a hextronik brand that will swing a 8x4 prop at 13 amps (IIRC). I have zero experience with hextroniks, but my friend practically gave it to me so I thought i would give it a try.

I picked this kit because the Switchback is probably the perfect parkflyer ever designed. OK, that may not be totally true, but the last one I had flew great and I put her through the ringer and she always flew great for me. That was 5 years ago and I sold her to another friend and he is STILL flying her. You can't complain about that.

So if you are new to building, like parkflyers, or just like Mountain Model airplanes then sit back, relax and I hope we all can learn something as I build this balsa kit in the next month or so.

Thanks for following along and if you have any questions or comments feel free to ask.

Frank
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Old Sep 11, 2012, 12:11 AM
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The tools below are what I have used to help build this model. Of course they are not "must haves" but I am glad I had them and they sure made the job easier and helped my build turn out better.

Tool...

Allen (Hex) Wrenches (Metric)
CA Tips (Pipette)…
CG Tool…
Covering Iron
Cutting Mat
Dial Calipers
Dremel Tool (Cordless)
Great Planes Easy-Touch Hand Sander 5.5"
Great Planes Easy-Touch Sandpaper 150 Grit
Great Planes Pro Building Board 16x36x3/4"
Hayes Large Clamp 4"
Heat Gun
Heat shrink tubing, multiple sizes
Jeweler's Files
Metal straightedge 36"
Painter's tape 1 and 2 inch
Paper towels
Parchment paper
Pin Vise
Pro-Edge Speed Clamp 4"
Prop Balancer (used between two magnets)
Rubbing Alcohol
Rulers 12"
Scalpel with #23 blades
Screwdriver Set
Seam binding tape (Dubro)
Small Drill Bits
Soldering Iron or Soldering Gun
Soldering Jig
Square
Syringe
T-pins
Vise
Waste basket
Wire Bender
Z-Bend Pliers
Zona Razor Saw 42T/in

If anyone needs links to those above let me know and I can add them.
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Last edited by Murocflyer; Sep 12, 2012 at 11:45 AM. Reason: Added tools
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Old Sep 11, 2012, 06:35 AM
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Originally Posted by Murocflyer View Post
She looks like this, but mine will not look as good. I am not that talented with covering.
Frank
Poop to that! Lets get you that talented. I say go for it and we will coach you along. Even if the first try isn't perfect you will move your skills along for the next one.
Get some windex, a covering iron sock, and an old hotel key ready for a squeegee.
mickey
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Old Sep 11, 2012, 10:37 AM
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Good one Mickey. Thanks for the pep talk and we'll give it a try.


Frank
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Old Sep 12, 2012, 09:40 AM
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United States, OK, Weleetka
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Wish I could still build. The Switchback Sport has always been one of my favorite planes.
I really think you are right when you said it was the perfect parkflyer.
It will fly great on even cheap parts. And even better on good stuff!
Wes
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Old Sep 12, 2012, 02:04 PM
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Originally Posted by 1987tc View Post
Wish I could still build. The Switchback Sport has always been one of my favorite planes.
I really think you are right when you said it was the perfect parkflyer.
It will fly great on even cheap parts. And even better on good stuff!
Wes
I feel so bad for you Wes that you cannot build anymore. I know how much you enjoyed it and you were a very talented builder.

I'll start posting pics of my build tomorrow if I get the chance and please keep me straight if I screw something up.

Frank
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Old Sep 13, 2012, 11:57 AM
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Since the Switchback has a huge thread detailing its build, I am afraid I am going to repeating many things that have been said in that thread and I apologize up front for that.

What I like about this kit was that it came with plans. Not all kits do, but I like the fact that I can lay the pieces on the plans (I use parchment paper over the planes so the glue do not stick to it) and build the plan on the full size plans.

One word about parchment paper. I like it the best. It doesn't tear easily and CA glue does not stick to it very well. If the balsa pieces do happen to stick due to too much CA being applied, I use an .008" feeler gauge to separate the sticks and paper.

The nice thing about a LASER cut kits is that they can be "assembled" without the use of a building board. I have done that many times. I use the word "assembled" because the kits made by MM/LA are really just like simple puzzles that can be assembled by just finding what piece goes where. I am using the building board for two reasons on this build. 1. I have one and 2. I like the way it keeps all the pieces flat, level, and where they belong easily.


Let's get to building.

Frank
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Old Sep 13, 2012, 12:20 PM
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Thanks Frank. Mountain Models kits are one of the brands I enjoyed not just for the way they fly ( great) but because building them was a great pleasure in itself.

They are perfect for teaching people how to build a kit. The RIGHT way.
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Old Sep 14, 2012, 09:35 PM
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Switchback is such a great plane.
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Old Sep 15, 2012, 11:47 PM
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Switchback is such a great plane.
It sure is.

Few more pics.

Frank
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Old Sep 20, 2012, 07:23 PM
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Time to start on the wing.

Frank
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Old Sep 21, 2012, 10:57 PM
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Continuing with the wing. This is where I screwed up. There is always one thing that I do wrong when building a kit. Here it is.

I am going to have to glue a shaped piece on the Otbd former to allow the covering to shrink well.

Oh well. It happens.

Frank
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Old Sep 22, 2012, 08:46 AM
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Try making a cleat out of 3/32 square on the outside of the rib to give the sheeting a shoulder to sit on. Then you can bend/glue a little a time.
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Old Sep 22, 2012, 09:00 AM
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I hear you on the hokey wingtip bits, Frank. Hard to get it right. Kinda like the missing battery hatch... one of those quirks you just kind of shrug at.

What makes it all worthwhile is the way she flies.
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Old Sep 23, 2012, 11:55 PM
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I hear you on the hokey wingtip bits, Frank. Hard to get it right. Kinda like the missing battery hatch... one of those quirks you just kind of shrug at.

What makes it all worthwhile is the way she flies.
I hear you on that! Flying her will make me forget all the little troubles that makes this bird unique. But I wouldn't have it any other way. Well it would be nice to have a box motor mount instead of a stick mount,

Looks like I am behind on the pics. Will post some more in the AM.

Frank
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