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Old Oct 18, 2012, 10:46 PM
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United States, MD, Frostburg
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Build Log
Sterling Stinson Reliant 57 inch version

I finally decided to start a build log! And I am going to need a lot of help with this one. I decided to scrap my current project (which I have not touched in a year and a half...all I need to do is cover it, but I have lost interest) and we just moved and I have a much better building room than our last house. Of all of my kits, I decided to build the Sterling Model's Stinson Reliant. It is an older kit. I think from the 70's or early 80's. I have been wanting to start this plane for a few years and have dreams of scaling it out, but I am not sure how scale I can make it being that it is so small. I have a Great Planes GE Reliant (the big one) that I also want to build. I have never seen a build log of the Sterling version, but it does come up for sale every now and again, so I am going with it.

The kit is in pretty good shape. The "instructions" are just guides that are printed on the plans. The plans have no templates. The wood seems to be in good shape, but the die cutting (crushing) is inconsistent. Sometimes it is good, other times it is very, very poor. This is especially true with the ply parts (and the plywood is not the best quality).

A few issues after pulling the kit out. The plans are old and starting to rot a bit (or a mouse got to them). Not a huge issue, except I am missing most of step 4 for the fuselage! Also, I think the kit is complete, but I could not find the die cut sheet number 3. Maybe there isn't one. Maybe number 3 is supposed to be the plastic parts? If anyone has this kit, please let me know, and also help me with step 4 for the fuselage!

I look forward to your thoughts on covering the model. It calls for silk and dope, but I have never done that before. I would like a scale like appearance, so maybe I will try it. Is doing that hard? Also, the plans call for a .52 engine. I had a hard time finding anything on the Internet about this kit...just two places. One youtube video that says they used a .46 four stroke, and another blog where it was recommended to use a .61 two stroke. Your thoughts are appreciated!

I have also read that the wing is pretty weak on this kit. There is no single spar through the whole wing, and I don't think the struts are really 100% functiona...

Finally, I have to decide how I want to finish it. Part of me wants to finish it as a traditional SR-9 or 10, but part of me also thinks it might be cool to finish it like a plane I saw at Oshkosh this past summer. I took tons of pictures of it thinking that I might use it as a scale project with either this kit or the Great Planes kit. It is a British version which was used in WWII for reconnaissance and sea rescue missions (based in India). I have a couple pics of it below.

I will try to take lots of pictures! Here we go...
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Old Oct 18, 2012, 10:54 PM
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The plans are just one sheet, both sides. I don't think I could get it copied very easily (as it is falling apart), and there are no templates to speak of on it anyway, so I am just going to build on the plans provided with the kit. Being that the wing will be built on the plans and the fuse is really not built on the plans at all, and the issues with the mouse bites on step 3 (or 4?) with the wing right over that, I decided to built the fuse first to minimize the new pin holes I will put into the plans as I build the wings.

I started punching out the parts needed for step 1. The balsa parts came out pretty easily, but the plywood parts are very tough. Took my time though (I think this kit will take patience) and got 'em all out safely. I then cleaned up the stringer grooves. The Dremel really helps with that. Some of the ply parts split while doing this, so I reglued them. I decided to let the glue dry fully before sanding the pieces smooth and starting to glue them together! I hope to do that tomorrow.

The kit really reminds me of a larger version of the free flight rubber powered plans I built as a kid. I have built over a dozen RC kits so far, but this one will be a real challenge compared to the laser cut sweetness of Top Flite or Balsa USA. It will be good practice for the next plane I want to build!
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Old Oct 18, 2012, 11:53 PM
Zor
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4075aaron,

I will be watching your buid with great interest.

Zor
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Old Oct 19, 2012, 07:27 AM
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Traverse City, Michigan
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The Stinson SR Series is one of my favorites. I'm sure that you will do this kit justice.

Silk and dope ? There are more modern alternatives that are less work and produce similar results.
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Old Oct 19, 2012, 07:35 AM
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Neat subject! If this were my airplane I'd go the four stroke route. You're choice, of course!
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Old Oct 19, 2012, 10:33 AM
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Good to have you guys on board! I am very excited to have Tom on board as I have watched several of his builds. I look forward to any and all comments/suggestions from everyone. I was considering using Solartex for the covering, but I was not sure if that is practical with such a small model. I have always used that on larger planes. As for the engine, I am also leaning towards a 4 stroke, although I wish there was a gas engine I could use. Glow is so messy and the fuel expensive.

I hope to get a lot done this weekend!
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Old Oct 19, 2012, 11:06 AM
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This is a kit that I probaly should have picked up. I have too much on my table right now, to build one, but it will be interesting to follow your progress.
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Old Oct 19, 2012, 02:45 PM
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I found the plans, wish the resolution was higher!

http://www.rcgroups.com/forums/showthread.php?t=1634561
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Old Oct 19, 2012, 06:52 PM
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That's a pretty plane, I'll be watching the build as well.
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Old Oct 19, 2012, 09:10 PM
Zor
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Quote:
Originally Posted by 4075aaron View Post
Good to have you guys on board! I am very excited to have Tom on board as I have watched several of his builds. I look forward to any and all comments/suggestions from everyone. I was considering using Solartex for the covering, but I was not sure if that is practical with such a small model. I have always used that on larger planes. As for the engine, I am also leaning towards a 4 stroke, although I wish there was a gas engine I could use. Glow is so messy and the fuel expensive.

I hope to get a lot done this weekend!
How about a Saito GF20 or equivalent ?

Zor
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Old Oct 22, 2012, 12:20 PM
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Unfortunately, I made no progress this weekend. We had uninvited I mean unexpected guests come into town on Friday and they stayed until this morning. While it was good to have some friends in town, I was hoping to get some work done on the plane! They also for some reason found value in bringing their cats to our home (who travels with their cats?). Needless to say, we have a mess to clean up at home.



I hope to get some work done this evening and tomorrow, but will be out of town Wednesday through Friday for my wife and Iís 10 year anniversary. I should be fully back in the build by Saturday!
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Old Oct 22, 2012, 12:20 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Zor View Post
How about a Saito GF20 or equivalent ?

Zor
Hi Zor,

Thanks for the idea. Would the GF20 be too large for the kit? It seems like a good option...I think I would need something closer to a 9 or 10 cc.
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Old Oct 23, 2012, 07:36 AM
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I would think that a gasser, in this size model, would not be practical. I would look at a small 4 stroke, as ARUP suggested. I think that a .70 Surpass would do the trick.
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Old Oct 23, 2012, 08:46 AM
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I agree. I did a lot of research on smaller gas engines last night and it just does not seem practical. I also worry about how the plane would deal with the vibrations of a gas engine.

Not too much new to report...I got all of the pieces from step one glued together and sanded. The fuse will start coming together tonight. Once I am done with one half of the fuse I will need to stop and think about how to proceed. There are really no instructions for radio installation and I would like to include something of a scale cockpit. I will also need to make the final call on whether or not to make this a traditional Reliant or a scale version of what I saw in Oshkosh (the windows are different).

The plans show the rudder and elevator servos mounted aft of the cockpit. Easy to do before I finish the second half of the fuse, but I would like to have an access hatch of some sort to get at the servos in case of a problem!
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Old Oct 23, 2012, 09:56 AM
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On my larger, IKON version, the servos are mounted under the rear seat, with access from a bottom hatch.

Use your building experience to locate the radio gear. Do the cockpit last. Maybe you can hide some of the RX gear with it.
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