Gday and welcome to the June WIW tour. In my part of the world, as the clock ticks down to the end of yet another financial year, and the Olympic torch starts its journey across my country ready for the Olympic and Para-Olympic games in some 100 days, we are getting ready for the introduction of a whole new taxation system. I suspect it means in reality that modeling prices will rise for we Aussies. Thank goodness that it doesnt cost that much to build a ParkFlyer or SlowFlyer!!
This month, Ive details of SlowFly in Japan, some beginner "how tos", a helicopter update, supplementary information on the Australian Electric Flight Championships and some great information and pictures of SlowFly and ParkFly information from fellow enthusiasts around the globe.
I had also planned to present this month some excellent information from England on the SlowFly applications and construction methods for that English 2mm thick insulating foam that I have mentioned in this column before. Alas, we ran into some "technical difficulties" squeezing all that great info. down the phone lines. Mark is beavering away putting the finishing touches on the article as you read this all I have to do is update my software so I can pass it onto you!! I have read the draft, and its great stuff thanks for your patience.
Meanwhile, please read on and enjoy!
The Australian Electric Flight Association Championships.
Last month I featured details of the Australian Electric Flight Association (AEFA) annual Championships/Rally over the Easter Weekend. There have been a number of inquiries from you requesting information on some of the models.
Anthony Mott from Victoria with his winning le pou du ciel or Flying Flea. It is 1/6th scale, span 44" (1120mm), powered by a SimpropD250 motor & gearbox. Controls are rudder, elevator and throttle. Original flying mass was344g but that has been reduced since. It flew very nicely and slowly, considering its mass. Anthony also had the Sopwith Triplane shown last month.
Bill Hamiltons Sky Hawk may appear ParkFly size, but it is an amazingly quick and agile aeroplane. The vertical performance is astounding. Bill has done a lot of work on motor/fan/battery combinations and is currently using a Kontronic BL480 and sensorless controller running a Mini Fan 480 on 12 x 3000mah Panasonic NiMH cells. Kits are available from Leading Edge Technologies (bsolanov(at)ozemail.com.au)
Small world in Japan
Keiichiro Ogata <kogata(at)a1.mbn.or.jp> emailed me with link information on his friend Tanakas site detailing indoor flying in his part of Japan. I checked it out and was impressed by the venue, the number of people they had attending and the great variety of model types and ages of the attendees - this is a sport for everybody!
I'm happy to hear you enjoyed his page.
We use several gyms but mainly it's Athletic Gym of Yokosuka Minami. Yokosuka is located at southwest of Tokyo. It takes about 1 and half hour from Tokyo by train.
We fly once or twice a month. The schedule is described in this page:
I'm Ok for a point of contact. But I appreciate if people would contact me by e-mail.
Visitors are welcome at all times. :-)
40MHz (5 channels) and 72MHz (10 channels) are used in Japan. The channels of 40MHz are a bit different from European's but you can use it by changing crystals. 72MHz is same as US but it is limited. The ch17 to 21 and ch50 to 54.
I down loaded some pictures to illustrate the diversity of models and modelers. If you want to see more, then check out this site:
Back to Basics
If you consider yourself an experienced builder/constructor of SlowFly models, then you may want to skip this next section it is for the newbies.
Firstly, welcome to the SlowFly world. I am probably guilty of pitching my columns to the not so new SlowFlyers amongst us, so consequently some of the column content may not be as clear as I (and others?) have assumed. If that is the case for you, then my apologies. The following email from Paul Vermette <paul_vermette(at)ca.ml.com> was a timely reminder that things are not always as clear as I may think they are!?!
I am very new to the Slow/Micro Flyer scene and am very much in learning mode right now. Your really fun to read articles have taught me most of what I know about the hobby. Two areas that are a complete mystery to me and, I am sure many others, relate to homemade geared motor systems and attaching propellers to shafts.
Geared Motors - Your articles often have detail photos that show tiny motors and reduction gears that are put together with spare parts. It appears that your construction philosophy is to use whatever is at hand to get the job done. Can you devote some time to explaining how you put these gearing systems together so they work?
Propellers - This is topic that people with experience probably don't even think twice about. How do you attach a propeller to a shaft so that it stays put without using a relatively heavy prop adapter? Your photos never really show how this is done but clearly the props don't fall off! What's the secret?
I really enjoy your column - many thanks for sharing your love of the hobby!
All the best ... Paul
For Paul and everybody else thinking the same questions, but not yet asking, here are some trade secrets. Some of this short "how to" first appeared in the October 1999 column. Faced with limited time and resources (i.e. what was lying on the workbench at the time) and the need to build a reduction unit in a hurry, this is what I came up with.
The materials used were a length of 9.5mm poplar dowel, a hollow point 6mm drill and some 5mm triangular balsa. The dowel is first bound with thread and super glue to prevent splitting when drilled, then placed in a drill press and drilled full length with the hollow point drill. The triangular stock is then cut to length and slightly hollowed on the large face with sandpaper. Two pieces are then glued to the motor and two pieces are glued to the dowel. A packer is then inserted between the flat face formed by the triangular pieces on the motor and dowel, to get the correct gear mesh. The whole lot is glued together with super glue.
The photos and description are self-explanatory. Total time to construct was under ˝ an hour. The bearings are a push fit into the drilled out dowel and onto the carbon shaft. The 6mm OD x 2mmID bearings, carbon shaft and gears were all obtained from WES Technics.
To further illustrate just how simple a gear reduction unit can be, here are some pictures of several different reduction units I have in my collection.
These pictures show details a gear reduction unit made by Peter Gibbins. It uses 2mm carbon shaft & 5mm OD bearings, both from WES Technics. The shaft end opposite the propeller has a small amount of thread wrapped around it with a tiny spot of epoxy, which acts as a thrust washer stopping the shaft moving forward in the bearings. This is normally only required if the shaft is loose in the bearings. The motor is a Tamiya product and the white object on the front is a flexible propeller retainer. The prop is a loose fit on the shaft and a rubber band passes around each lug and around the prop.
These pictures show details a gear reduction unit made by Mark from Aeronutz in the UK. It uses 2mm carbon shaft & brass tube bearings. This time the thrust washer is another piece of brass tube glued to the shaft. The prop is a friction fit on the shaft.
A WES propulsion set 1a. This uses a DC5-2.4 motor mounted in a balsa block and a bearing tube also mounted in a balsa block. The carbon shaft is a tight enough fit in the tube to not require a thrust washer.
I mount all my propellers by friction only. I normally use carbon props that have had the center hole drilled or reamed to fit a 2mm shaft. All my motors and propeller shafts are 2mm diameter. If I have a prop that has a much larger hole, then I bush it with some plastic tube so that it is a friction fit on the shaft. Should a prop start to slip, then I will remove it and then put a drop of thin CA into the hole in the hub for the shaft, and then blow the glue through the prop let it dry thoroughly and only then re-fit it to the shaft. The dried CA is thin enough to effectively reduce the holes diameter sufficiently to restore a friction fit.
These pictures show details of several GWS plastic props that I bushed with plastic tube. Simply cut the tube to a length equal to the depth of the hub, chamfer one end of the tube and then press it into the hole on the prop hub (I use either a drill press or a vice as the press).
These pictures show details of a carbon prop that I bushed with a length of plastic tube. The hole in the prop was much too large, so I opened it out further to accommodate the OD of the plastic tube then pressed the piece of tube into the hole in the prop hub and secured it in the prop with CA.
Another flexible prop mount made by Peter Gibbins. The carbon shaft only protrudes a few mm into the prop, to centre it on the mount.
Where to get your own French Flair
It would seem that you, too, were taken with Gerard Jumelins <gerard.jumelin(at)wanadoo.fr> creativity last month! The extracts I presented from the April/May issue of "Looping" Magazine, featuring two different versions of Gerards canard design, caused a barrage of inquiries. My French is non-existent, so I troubled Gerard for some more details.
Looping mag is sold in Canada; look at the price on the cover. May be only in Quebec ...Anyway, Looping #62 Avril- Mai 2000 can be ordered from :
Editions Loisirs Techniques Rue du chateau - Tilly,77310 Saint- Fargeau, France ( Fax: ++ 33 1 60 65 35 94). E-mail : rcm(at)club-internet.fr price is 27 FF but you must add about 36 FF for mailing the magazine
Visa card is accepted ; send number & expiration date ...I was told that by the RCM editor, this evening.
I will send you the flying fish pictures soon . " Lucy in the Sky with Diamonds" (L.S.D.) appears in the June issue of Electric Flight International ...
There you are start building.
Robin 280 Update
Mario Arguello has been busy upgrading and developing his line of micro helicopters. Here is the latest info. from Mario.
Hoping all is well with you.
Attached are some new photos of the Robin 280 micro heli and some hop up parts I am making for it.
I read on some of the electrical model forums people wanting to know more about how to connect all the neat little components to make a micro heli work so here is my version (please see attached the Robin 280 Electrical Diagram in .GIF form).
I prefer to use separate modules because this way if any particular module does not work you can always swap it with a spare one. I thought of designing a single electronic module for the Robin 280, but I thought about it and thought it would be a hassle, if say the single unit were to break and had to send it back and wait for it to return. The other benefit of using separate modules a la Robin 280 is that people may already have the equipment suggested (i.e., micro receiver, servos, ESC's, gyros, etc.)
One of the things I am always particular about is the mechanics and looks of models so I am constantly looking for new and better ways to improve on my designs, sometimes this creates a bit of a delay in putting out the kits, but I ask people to be patient since the output is worthwhile. This brings me up to some new parts I have designed originally for the Robin 280 but will also work with a similar heli. These are the new MIA Pro Blades and Booms made from aircraft lightweight aluminum and anodized in brilliant colors. These are available for Clockwise and Counterclockwise rotation. I hope your readers find it as neat and fun as I do.
As always looking forward to your column although lately I have not had time since I have been working very hard on the Robin Kits. You may want to take notice the Robin 280s have been ground designed, produced, manufactured and sold by me. There are no middle companies, yet :) I don't know if that is good or bad but anyone buying the Robin or any related products from me, also get personal one to one technical support via my E-mail or phone number 480-218-6334.
Until next time.. when I will have more surprises.
Mario I. Arguello
What else is happening out there in Internet land??
This month, I have heaps of great information and pictures from fellow SlowFlyers thanks for sharing folks!! There are still plenty of emails in the queue, awaiting time for me to get to them. Apologies to those of you that may still be waiting I will get to you soon.
Peter Bernier <KateBPeteB(at)aol.com> sent in details of his experiences with the GWS motor and gear systems.
Have you had a chance to try the DX versions of this motor system which consists of a more powerful motor and ball bearings on the prop shaft. I have tried both and find the DX version to run cooler and last longer. The weak point of the std motor is the commutator which is engaged by metal wipers (no carbon brushes here, mate!) - this commutator is made of softer metal than the wipers. and is quickly worn thru. What seems to be reduced battery capacity is actually the motor degrading flight by flight.
How do you like your lithium cells? I'm awaiting delivery of 12, 800 mAh Tadrians and a charger. Been flying a Bleriot II since 1998 and am a dedicated back yard pilot who tries to get a flight or two in every morning before work. I may get in trouble by arriving late once I start using the Lithiums!!
Also, thought you might like to know that skyhooks and rigging is releasing a new ESC for 3 cell lithium packs that has a motor cutoff at 7.2V to protect the batteries from over-discharge!!!!!
Best Regards, Peter
Pat Daily <IluvYash(at)aol.com> sent in pictures and details of his beautiful Velie Monocoupe. Looks like a lot of experience went into this one!
My name is Pat Daily and I live in Richmond, Virginia, and fly with the DC Maxecuters club, of which Don Srull is a member.
I really enjoy your column and thought I would send you some .gifs of my Velie Monocoupe, built from old Flyline plans blownup to a 30 inch wingspan (150 sq. in. area), powered with a Puma electric motor, 2 HS 50 Hitec servos, 8 50 mAh size NiMH batteries and a Balsa Products receiver --total flying weight is 180 grams. It flies nicely at half power, does loops and ROGs. Lotsa fun.
Have just started an American Eagle for electric rc.
Keep up the column, I really enjoy it.
Ive mentioned Todd Long many times before in this column, and over the last 2 months Ive showed a picture or two of my Tiny, which Todd designed. Glen Peden <gpeden(at)telusplanet.net> managed to capture the man as well as his aeroplane in a great picture. Thanks Glen.
Hi there Wayne,
Here's a photo I took of Todd Long "hovering" his Tee Bee in the breeze at the recent fun fly at Chilliwack. It was a pleasure to finally meet him after all the chit-chat we've had by telephone:)
Looking for an alternative method of constructing parkflyers? Chuck Kriete <dotchuck(at)epix.net> sounds like hes on to a great method.
I am Chuck Kriete in Gardners, PA (USA). I fly on my own farm with 22 acres of spelt outside my back door. Recently I got a pack of pink Styrofoam fanfold building foam for $13 US, each sheet is 1/4in thick. I cut them in half to get 1/8 thick sheets when needed. At present I am flying three models made of this, and they are all excellent flyers. First is a rudder only stick model (carbon arrow shaft fuse, fanfold flying surfaces, builders foam mini-fuselage, with an MG1 motor, 5-cell 350 mAh motor battery, FMAs80 servo, and 4 110 mAh cell rx battery) at an all up weight of 12 oz, 350in sq. in. It is a slow flyer that does about 5 minutes on a charge and will get high enough to thermal.
Also have an enlarged Thistle, same motor/battery/servo setup but with elevator control added. Thistle is from Model Aviation Plans of several years ago. This plane is faster, more sensitive on control, but a lot of fun to fly.
Also have an enlarged AMA Dart from plans that came with a British model magazine, fly ruder and elevator with a speed 400 7.2volt motor, 7 cell 600AE battery, 4-cell 110 mAh rx battery. Radio set is Hitec Focus III SS AM. This is a great flyer, park flyer size at 350 in sq., that thermals well and gets almost out of sight. Weight all up is under 15 oz.
I am sold on pink Styrofoam fanfold - the price is great and the reparability easier than any other material I have used. It reinforces beautifully with strapping tape, can be glued with white glue, spray contact (3M 77) and Weldbond (Frank T Ross and Sons, PO Box 128, Spring Grove, Illinois 60081 Tel 418-282-1107).
Chuck Kriete 205 Frost Road Gardners, PA 17324 USA
Danilo Colugnat <dacolug(at)tin.it> from Italy sent in pictures of his Bleriot.
These are some photos of a Bleriot II that was built from me and my club mate Marco Zaffaroni (the man in the photo). We fly our models in Venegono - Italy, mostly outdoors. To have access to an indoor structure is not so easy but our winter seasons are almost wind free or it is possible to fly in the early morning or at sunset, that are OK for small and light planes, so we never tried to build a really indoor model, but only planes in the 200/300 grams range.
The model was a first attempt to build a scale park-flyer, and probably is the best of all that were built from us (there is a second Bleriot and a Depron Morane-L). It is entirely of balsa, hardwood and tissue construction. Motor is a Ikarus 280 (the Bleriot type) with six cells from 280 to 500 mAh (indoor or park fly). We used a GO 417 for wing profile with a 33% of wing chord C.G., rudder and elevator control (no wing-warping). It is about 1200 mm. wingspan with a weight of 280 g. with the smaller batteries.
Danilo Colugnat (from Italy) built a Bleriot (from France) and powered it with a German propulsion system running on Japanese batteries I love this hobby!!
Al Backstrom <allbackstrom(at)ibm.net> mailed me some pictures and details of several of his models. I have scanned the pictures and letter to share with you.
Here are the pictures 1 think will be of interest to you. The plank type model is my own design as you might have guessed. It has a 30" span and about 195 sq. in. of wing area. Power is a VL HY50D using 6 x 180 mAh nicads. Control is rudder, elevator and ESC. Weight is 160 gm. It is stable enough to be a trainer and should fly with 4 or 5 cells with the HY50D motor. 1 will try the lower cell count if we ever get some light winds.
The sheet balsa model was a free flight when first built. The design came from Aviation Modeller International a few years ago. It was named the MayBee Mini, span is 21.5 " and the wing area is about 96 sq. in. I lightened it considerably by using thinner sheets etc. 1 used it to check different motors when it was a free flight. It now has a pair of Mabuchi' N20s geared 4.2-1 turning a modified 6" GRA prop and has 4 x NiMH cells, this is my buildup. It has rudder, elevator and ESC controls. Weight is 85 gm. This model was intended as an indoor type but the early flying shows it might be better as a park flier type. Last Saturday it handled winds of 5-8 mph with no trouble. It has enough of the free flighter left in it to climb well when under higher power.
This one probably will not mean much to those of you outside Australia, but you may wish to try the technique with your own brand of PVA adhesive.
Other blokes may be interested. I have been using bond crete or lock crete for years in the same way they use cover grip. Several others are using it in this area. It is water proof, goes on easy and is cheap to buy at the local hardware shop - $13 a litre. It pays to mix up a small amount in a small jar, say 150 mils add water to it so it is not too thick. You may have to experiment a bit, just dont make it too thin. Paint it on, let it dry (doesnt take long) give it a sand with fine paper (this is needed as being water based the grain rises), give another coat and iron on covering.
Doug Muller <yamongrel(at)iprimus.com.au>
Any of you had any experience with converting the small Cox foam electric aeroplanes to R/C??
I read your article each month and I have had great success following your advice and picked up countless ideas. I just finished a Piccolo heli and when the Picco board gets off backorder I will get a chance to fly it.
What I am working on now is something a little different than I have tried before. Cox makes a series of electric freeflight models that are available here for about $20 U.S. They use two 110 mAh cells and a fairly low wind motor; in fact the wires get hot after 5 seconds with 4 cells. There is a Cessna and a Mustang, both have high lift wings and can almost fly at a dead stop as they glide down. The wingspan is around 20 inches and the prop is about 3 inches.
I have removed the original two cells and their circuit board, inserted two of those FMA 60 super micro servos, a 3 channel receiver, an FMA 20 ESC, and 4 110 mAh cells. The weight out of the box is 2.8 oz and with all the rc gear + 4 cell pack it is 4.2oz. Assuming that the new motor and esc don't weigh much more I should stay under 4.5oz.
The core issue here for me is the choice of a power package. I need some sort of direct drive for the thing. I want to keep the cell count low for weight purposes but most ESCs need 5. What I am looking for is an ESC and motor combo that will produce decent power from 4 cells. My receiver is a Hitec 3 channel designed for 4 cell operation.
Any great motor/ esc tips you can offer? If you need pictures or anything let me know and I thank you in advance for even looking at it.
Hmmmm My experience Scott is with the larger cell counts. However, you might consider 2 rechargeable 430 mAh lithiums at 11.5g each. I got mine from WES Technics. Two lithiums will give you 6 volts and greater capacity (i.e. Flight time) than the 4 x 110s at a similar weight. Keep the current drain below about 1 1.2 amps and they will do the trick. Alternatively, what about 7 x 50mah nicads or NiMH cells and a drive system similar to what Pat Daily used in the Monocoupe? What about the rest of you are you able to help Scott?
Mr Pixel, Alexander Van de Rostyne" <alex(at)staf.planetinternet.be> has developed an Astro 010 pattern model. This sounds like a great model for me to try out my new Astro 010 in how about some plans Alex??
I have developed a small (60cm , 24 inch span) aerobatic model around the Astro 010. It looks like the F3A/pattern machines of 10 years ago. It's a fantastic performer and holds more than 5 minutes on full power full acro flight. It flies on 7 cells 250 mAh. Power is great and it does real aerobatics (long verticals for example) from level flight. It is way to fast for indoor, but does pattern program on a football field. It is full 4 channel (3 times 6 gram servos and the Astro controller). The only regretful thing is that RPM control is on/off only. A linear speed controller would increase flight time and give a more natural feel. Fuselage is all balsa with a top deck from glass/epoxy. Wing is around a carbon tube main spar with ribs sliding over it. Leading edge is 3x1 mm carbon strip double with balsa for rounding. Trailing edge is 3x1 carbon strip.
I'll send you some pictures for eventual publishing. Propeller is a Graupner 4.7x4.7 clipped by some 4 mm at each tip. Total weight during flight is 249 grams (9 ounces)
Alexander Van de Rostyne
What about the rest of you what have you been up to??
Dont forget to email me. whadkins(at)ezonemag.com with all the SlowFly or ParkFly or electric free flight happenings in your part of the world. Based on my performance these last few months, I am a little reluctant to tell you what is up next month!?! However, I do hope to present the Foam "how to" from England, and some more motor information, and maybe even a kit review. I guess youll just have to wait with baited breath, friends!!
Thats your SlowFly lot for this month - Thank you for joining me for this months tour of Waynes Indoor World. Until next month, wherever you may be on this SlowFly planet of ours, enjoy your aviation, do it low and slow, and most of all, HAVE FUN!!
See you all again next month - Take care friends.
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|Article Wayne's Indoor World - December 2000||Wayne Hadkins||Electric Plane Talk||0||Dec 19, 2000 01:00 AM|
|Article Wayne's Indoor World - October 2000||Wayne Hadkins||Electric Plane Talk||0||Oct 13, 2000 01:00 AM|
|Article Wayne's Indoor World - September 2000||Wayne Hadkins||Electric Plane Talk||0||Sep 13, 2000 01:00 AM|
|Article Wayne's Indoor World - August 2000||Wayne Hadkins||Electric Plane Talk||0||Aug 16, 2000 01:00 AM|
|Article Wayne's Indoor World - May 2000||Wayne Hadkins||Electric Plane Talk||0||May 22, 2000 01:00 AM|