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Old Jan 24, 2013, 09:10 AM
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Build Log
Dan Marlowe Ultimate Bipe

I have always loved an Ultimate Bipe and after crashing my foam Ultimate I decided to build another one, but from Balsa this time. I settled on the Dan Marlowe Ultimate plans. It has a wingspan of 105cm (42”) and was designed for a .48 - .53 four stroke motor or a .35 - .40 two stroke motor. I have decided to go the electric route. I have not decided on a power plant yet. I will decide closer to completion. I work full time and study part time so free time is limited and I have no idea of what to expect in terms of a completion date. I’ll just get cracking and see how it goes.

This is my first full Balsa project so the experienced builders out there are welcome to give their input if they see me doing something wrong or suggest better ways of doings things. I am open to constructive criticism.

Here are some foto’s of the plane. I have also attached the plans in PDF and DWG format for those of you who are interested.
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Last edited by Riaandt; May 14, 2013 at 03:22 PM.
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Old Jan 24, 2013, 09:27 AM
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I started by cutting the wing ribs from 2.5mm Balsa sheets. There are 44 wing ribs in total.

I then laminated three 3mm x 100mm x 1000mm balsa sheets together using super glue. Once the glue dried I sanded the joins with 220 grit sand paper to get it flat and smooth. The super glue sands down very easy.

From this laminated sheet I cut the fuse sides and a few fuse formers.
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Old Jan 24, 2013, 04:30 PM
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Cut the H-stab, V-stab, Rudder and Elevator from 5mm Balsa sheets. I hope I got the grain orientation correct.

I also got around to tracing the rest of the fuse formers, motor mount etc onto 3mm ply. Will cut that out this weekend.
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Old Jan 25, 2013, 06:51 PM
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I was just looking at the plans of these and thinking about trying one. Searched RC groups and found this. Subscribed.
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Old Jan 26, 2013, 03:40 AM
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Hi Schoolya. I also searched for build logs for these plans but found none. They do not seem to be very popular plans. No matter, there will definitley be a learning curve involved
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Old Jan 26, 2013, 06:56 AM
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Trusty old band saw made short work of the 3mm ply cut outs. I still need to do the inner cut outs on the one former, but that will have to wait for another day.
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Old Jan 28, 2013, 05:10 PM
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I have decided to complete the bottom wing first so that I can finalize the wing cut out on the fuse. Once this has been finalized and everything lines up I can start putting the fuse together.

I only managed to complete one half of the bottom wing in one evening. It took a lot longer than I expected but it came out nice and straight so I am chuffed about that. I have not added the sheeting to both sides of the wing half just yet. I am first going to complete the other half of the bottom wing and after joining the two halves I will complete the sheeting on both sides.

I was unable to get my hands on 3mm x 6mm Spruce sticks that the plans call for so I used 6mm x 6mm instead. Little extra weight, but extra strength as well so a trade off I can live with.
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Last edited by Riaandt; Jan 29, 2013 at 02:02 AM. Reason: More detail.
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Old Jan 28, 2013, 10:17 PM
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Plans are getting printed and mailed. Once I see them full size I will be getting my wood. Balsa that is.
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Old Jan 29, 2013, 01:47 AM
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Awesome! Will you be doing a build log as well? If so, please send me the link when your build log is up. I definitely want to see how you go about completing this project. I am sure I will learn a thing or two. I'll be relatively busy for the rest of the week but I am hoping to finish the second half of the bottom wing this week. I am going on Holiday from Friday so I may not make any progress for at least a week.

I have also decided to keep track of how much time and money I spend on this project. This is something that I would like to see in a build log as it gives a novice builder like myself a good idea of the amount of time and money that needs to be set aside to complete a specific project. At the end of the build log I will have final figures but for now I will track the amount of time spent with every progress post I do. So far I have spent a total of 13.5 hours on this project. 9.5 hours were spent cutting the parts and sanding them to fit the templates and it took me the remaining 4 hours last night to build the bottom wing half.
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Old Jan 29, 2013, 03:10 PM
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So I completed the second half of the bottom wing and the merge of the two halves in about 2.5 hours and that includes a break for dinner That brings the total hours to 16.

The only problem is I ran out of glue so the wing is all I will get to work on tonight. It's off to the LHS tomorrow for more glue.
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Old Jan 30, 2013, 10:34 PM
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off to a good start. Getting my wood ordered next week.
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Old Jan 31, 2013, 04:43 PM
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Top and bottom sheeting completed as well as the rib caps. I wasn't 100% happy with the finish on certain spots of the leading edge so I filled them in with Everbuild One Strike Filler before smoothing it out with 220 grit sand paper. Next step is to start putting the fuse together.
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Old Feb 08, 2013, 10:10 AM
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any progress? Also, what was your bill of wood, and do you find yourself missing anything.
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Old Feb 08, 2013, 10:19 AM
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No progress so far. I have been on holiday for a week. I will continue the build process on Monday. I buy the materials as the build progresses and I need them so I can't tell you if anything is missing from the bill of materials as per the plans.
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Old Feb 10, 2013, 04:35 PM
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I started putting the fuse together. I will have to make a cut out in the bottom of bulk head 2 for the battery once the plane nears completion and I have decided on the power setup. 18 Hours total.
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Last edited by Riaandt; Mar 20, 2013 at 08:29 AM.
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