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Old Dec 11, 2012, 07:47 AM
KNS
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Switzerland, SO, Olten
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Build Log
Complete a Project Build Off Southerner 60 (Bill Dean, 1947, Ben Buckle woodkit)

Ok, I will take the plunge and report little by little on the progress of my Southerner 60 build. I shall do so to share stuff I learned along the way, ask questions and also to keep me going . I build for the sake of building, mostly, and enjoy myself doing so. I am not in a great rush to get this baby airborne, so don't expect a crazy race here. I will take some pictures along the way from now on. This is my first vintage-build, and so there is a lot to learn on all fronts.
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Old Dec 11, 2012, 08:06 AM
Hatters gonna hat.
madbomber's Avatar
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Nice. I am looking forward to this! Will be tuning in...
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Old Dec 11, 2012, 08:07 AM
KNS
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A few things to set the stage:
* I chose the BB kit in spite of knowing about the fabulous work vintage1 has done on redrawing the plans and making his kit. In fact, the huge thread on his S60 helped to get me hooked - I just think the S60 is an absolutely fabulous design. Oh, I love to shape balsa, so that was a good start. I chose the kit also because it was more readily available for me here in Switzerland. I also chose it because somewhere I've read that that was the way how people build things earlier on, so I thought it is a good idea of keeping some of those skills/spirit awake. I like to build, I am not allergic to balsa dust (yet) and so here we go:

* electric conversion
* dihedral as per plans
* rigging angle of incidence will be set to zero to gain control
* fixed tail
* removable wing with internalized connection
* internalized rudder/stab control linkage.
* plain solartex cover, cool looks come right after cool flying

However, I will use modern materials (e.g. cf-rods, cloth and resins, epoxy, etc) where required to build an airworthy machine which looks exactly as per plans. i did ditch the idea of adding ailerons to the thing (too much fun in one go).
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Old Dec 11, 2012, 09:07 AM
I like real wooden aeroplanes!
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Watching with interest, I love the Southerner. So glad you decided against the ailerons, I'm not a vintage authenticity nut but ailerons on the Southerner - -that would be a step too far even for me! It will fly beautifully RET.
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Old Dec 11, 2012, 11:18 AM
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You are right to ditch the ailerons if keeping the dihedral as per plan.

I dont think it necessary to change the incidence unless you are planning on throwing it around with a biig variation on flying speed.

see my blog for video and pics for my scaled up version to 72" based on
vintage1's plan for electric 60 version. Note that both straight dihedral and polyhedral are possible in keeping with the original 60 which had both versions on kit plan

John
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Old Dec 12, 2012, 01:04 AM
KNS
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Thanks for the suggestion to keep the inicidence as is, John38. Will do that to keep things a little simpler.
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Old Dec 12, 2012, 01:38 AM
KNS
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I have had this kit since April and have done a bit already. Not working really fast on - building is fun for me. My building pace will hopefully pick up a bit as I will work part time for some time next year.

My first steps on the build were to cut out all parts with a scroll saw and to sand all pieces according to the printlines. Clamped identical pieces from both sides of the the plane together to sand things symmetrically. That takes a while, and it gives you plenty of time for thinking the build through.
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Old Dec 12, 2012, 01:43 AM
KNS
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My assembly started on the horizontal stabilizer/elevator. As expected, all pieces needed quite a bit of sanding - even if cut to the center of each of the printed lines. But then this is a builders kit, and this is why I am here .
I did modify the stab a bit: CF-rod (3mm diameter) connects the two elevators. A servo arm is attaced as control horn (epoxied) in. The cf-rod turns in cutouts through the 4 center ribs. The two center ribs are now made of 1mm airplane-triplex to provide strength, and thickened to their planned strength with the original balsa ribs (another bit of sanding). Here, tri goes towards the outside of the ribs, so that I could make a cutout in one of the central ribs and remove balsa from the inside of the other rib to provide space for the turning rudder-control horn. The rudder-axle will be another 3mm cf rod which will probably get a tiny triplex support and turns in a bit of a plastic tube as a counter-support. i will use gold'n'rods (sullivan) as snakes, and will bring the one of the rudder through the leading edge and fairing between rudder and horizontal stab. the snake for the elevator is easier - it sits center to the fuselage end.
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Old Dec 12, 2012, 01:54 AM
KNS
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here are a couple of pics on the stab - this one still needs its final sanding. After rough building I used two-three coats of filler to "freeze" the structure and keep it from warping. After all, it is wood...
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Old Dec 12, 2012, 11:14 AM
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Canada, AB, Edmonton
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I was very interested to see your stab/elevator setup, because I'll be doing a very similar thing for my next build that I'm about to start. Can I ask what material you used for the horn (arm) and how you connected it to the CF rod? Glue, setscrew, both, something else?

I've been trying to figure out how best to do that, and see it as a bit of a problem because virtually nothing sticks to the nylon that most horns are made of, and CF doesn't much like being screwed into. And the setup must, of course, be "permanent". I almost decided to go with soldered steel parts, but would much prefer something like you've used.

Advice much appreciated!
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Old Dec 12, 2012, 05:18 PM
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I, too, love the southerner. I have a southerner major 84" span that, to my everlasting shame, I covered the wings with film. It's getting on for 30 years old now and, from time to time, I think I ought to refurb it but it still flies well with an OS 52 surpass.
Incidentally it has the polyhedral set up, it may be easier for me to fish the plan out and build the straight dihedral version as I've come to prefer that - ho hum.
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Old Dec 13, 2012, 01:26 AM
KNS
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Well, Braddock, it is winter and that could just be the chance to get some Southerner Major wings straight. Maybe it is time for fad and chisel ? Show some pics, if you can!
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Old Dec 13, 2012, 01:46 AM
KNS
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@ Harry:
here is what I been doing: The CF rod is 3mm in diameter and sits in the elevators at the pivot point, which means the hinges themselves pivot at ~1.5 mm depth in the elevator. Thus, the rod only runs until the innermost hinge of each elevator. I sanded the cf rod and glued it in with CA. One needs be quick, but the CA I am using works just great for this and the joint feels solid.
The arm/control horn is a leftover servo arm from a Hitec servo I still had laying about. Used some masking tape to only sand the area on the cf rod where the horn is supposed to sit (plus a little bit on each side), then used a tiny amount of CA to tack the horn in place, but afterwards generously filled the area with araldite (5min epoxy). That way the joint feels really strong - even stronger than the connection between cf-rod and elevator.
I didn't use thinner cf-rods because these get very flexible, and in this plane I am trying to minimize that. I also didn't use setscrews because screws indeed seem to be something cf doesn't like too much.
However, I am new to building vintage airplanes (this S60 is my first), so please get another opinion in as well. I would be curious to see how you solve your linkage - please show some pics.
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Old Dec 13, 2012, 10:00 PM
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Thanks, KNS. Good to know that CA+epoxy seems to hold OK on nylon. I'll be using a similar setup, but I think I'll be making the horn out of FR-4 (fiberglass circuit board material) since that seems to bond really well with several adhesives. That's one joint you DO NOT want to fail!

New to building, you say? I never would have guessed, by the fine work you've done on that model. Great stuff! Watching with interest.
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Old Dec 14, 2012, 12:36 AM
KNS
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Thank you, Harry, that is very kind of you.
Here are a few lessons I learned on building the stab:
* Use balsa plane and sanding blocks to bring trailing edges to shape before joining with anything else
* use thick CA to bring in the first leading edge strip. Then laminate the second strip using white wood glue (PVAc) and let fully dry out over night. There is no need for moistening the leading edge strips (at the given radius)
* pad/support all ribs - they can split grain-wise
* cover rib edges with masking tape (top and bottom) before sanding the remaing bits ofthe stab/elevator to shape.
* add a drop of oil on those bits of the hinges you still want moving after gluing
* fix hinges by drilling a tiny whole or two/hinge side and glue a bit of toothpick through that and the hinge.
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