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Old Jul 06, 2005, 03:09 AM
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mharms's Avatar
San Jose, California
Joined Oct 2004
870 Posts
Micro Flying Wing Design Advice

Hi All,
I'm interested in building micro-size (under 12" WS, under 28 gm) tail-less planes. From this forum, I gather that smaller wings tend to be harder to fly. What are the issues that come up as the size gets small? Any design recommendations (regarding planform, wingtip fins vs center fin, dihedral, fences, size of elevons, wingtip shape, tractor/pusher etc...)?

Since I'm new to wings and elevons, I'd prioritize ease of flight/stability over acrobatic capabilities (my experience is with micros/indoor planes with tails).

For my airfoils, I've just been using meat tray or fanfold foam with a slight "S" shape profile (slight downturn at LE and slight upturn at TE for reflex). LE is sanded down, similar to a ClarkY LE, while the TE is tapered by sanding on the bottom side.

I've made a lot of tailless chuck gliders and a powered prototype wing (tractor, 10.5" WS, actuators, micro RX, 21 gm AUW) that flew OK, except that it tends to crash during tight turns (pilot error and/or wind gusts may have been a factor). Its now in the repair shop after breaking the gearbox (see pic).

Got any design tips for itsy-bitsy tailless designs?

Thx,
Mark
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Old Jul 06, 2005, 12:55 PM
Registered User
United States, AZ
Joined Aug 2004
1,630 Posts
well small wings tend to fly fast, not glide great and if you don't keep the weight down they will not fly and if they do fly they don't fly well at all. thanks, ryan
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Old Jul 06, 2005, 04:47 PM
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makarov380's Avatar
Grapevine,Texas
Joined Mar 2005
764 Posts
The one thing I have noticed is that wings are very sensitive to elevator vs ailerons. On a bigger wing with proper gear, you can set end travel to tune this out. On a smaller wing with actuators, I don't think you have the same luxury. That could be another downfall to a small wing.
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