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Old Jun 20, 2002, 06:32 PM
Balsa to the Wall
Deep in the East Texas Piney Woods
Joined Dec 2001
4,355 Posts
Building the Pitts Special from HL

I really like the way my TM looks flying. The biplanes fascinate me, so I wanted to get a bipe with ailerons. This led me to the HL Pitts Special, especially after I saw the video of it flying, so I ordered one.

I got my Pitts Special from HL and if anyone's interested, I'll post my building and flying experiences
here. This is what the finished plane is supposed to look like.

First impression - this seems to be a quality product. It's made from formed foam sheet. About 1/4 inch thick, just a smidgen thicker than Bluecor,
even the fuse. That means a smooth skin, no mold dimples. The control horns are already attached to
the control surfaces. The horizontal stabilizer and elevator are already hinged together as are the
wings/ailerons.
The instructions are somewhat difficult to understand, as they use different terms than we do and leave a lot
of the process to your own imagination. The landing gear wire is called a chassis, the ailerons are called
small wings, and so on.
The struts are plywood and the plywood motor mount comes glued to the front of the fuse.
I believe that replacement wings and tailfeathers could me made from Bluecor, so
I traced some patterns on fan-fold computer paper in case I ever need to make new wings.
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Last edited by Chuck; Jun 25, 2002 at 04:56 PM.
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Old Jun 20, 2002, 06:36 PM
Big Member
Capslock's Avatar
San Francisco, CA
Joined Nov 2001
138 Posts
Looks great.

Chuck,

Let us know how it goes. Looks like a fun little plane!

Capslock
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Old Jun 20, 2002, 06:36 PM
Balsa to the Wall
Deep in the East Texas Piney Woods
Joined Dec 2001
4,355 Posts
Here are the fuse, wings, and molding for cowling and wheel pants
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Old Jun 20, 2002, 06:40 PM
Balsa to the Wall
Deep in the East Texas Piney Woods
Joined Dec 2001
4,355 Posts
The fuselage. It has balsa inside the sides of the cockpit and a tray for the esc, Rx, and servos.
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Old Jun 20, 2002, 06:44 PM
Balsa to the Wall
Deep in the East Texas Piney Woods
Joined Dec 2001
4,355 Posts
Here are the wheels and struts, LG, etc.
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Old Jun 20, 2002, 06:45 PM
Balsa to the Wall
Deep in the East Texas Piney Woods
Joined Dec 2001
4,355 Posts
Motor with adjustable pitch counter-rotating prop.
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Old Jun 20, 2002, 06:53 PM
Balsa to the Wall
Deep in the East Texas Piney Woods
Joined Dec 2001
4,355 Posts
Decals and Fixtures for setting dihedral and locating top wing
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Old Jun 20, 2002, 06:54 PM
Balsa to the Wall
Deep in the East Texas Piney Woods
Joined Dec 2001
4,355 Posts
Cowling and wheel pants. This is much thicker and more flexible than the one that came with my TM.
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Old Jun 20, 2002, 06:57 PM
Balsa to the Wall
Deep in the East Texas Piney Woods
Joined Dec 2001
4,355 Posts
Showing the thickness of the wing. These are pretty stiff little buggers.
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Last edited by Chuck; Jun 20, 2002 at 08:05 PM.
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Old Jun 25, 2002, 04:53 PM
Balsa to the Wall
Deep in the East Texas Piney Woods
Joined Dec 2001
4,355 Posts
Here it is with the servos mounted,

I had a devil of a time getting the top wing mounted. Had to line up 6 pieces for the struts, ended up tacking the wing struts then lining up the top wing with the template, taping it in place, tacking all the rest of the gluepoints until it dried, then doing the final gluing.
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Old Jun 25, 2002, 04:59 PM
Balsa to the Wall
Deep in the East Texas Piney Woods
Joined Dec 2001
4,355 Posts
Here it is almost ready for the motor. I believe I'll try it with the GWS IPS motor and QC batteries until I get used to flying it, since HL says it's overpowered with the 370. Since it'll be lighter, it should fly all right.
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Old Jun 29, 2002, 09:01 PM
Balsa to the Wall
Deep in the East Texas Piney Woods
Joined Dec 2001
4,355 Posts
Well, it's about ready to fly, if it ever stops raining in East Texas. I put the GWS Tiger moth motor in it with the QC batteries. The motor is 1 oz. lighter than the stock motor and the QC's are 1-1/2 to 2 oz. lighter than the nicads. AUW is 9-1/2 oz. this way. I hope it flys ok with this setup, because i'm broke out with QC's and I won't have to invest in a bunch of new batteries.

Here it is with the cowling.
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Old Jun 29, 2002, 09:05 PM
Balsa to the Wall
Deep in the East Texas Piney Woods
Joined Dec 2001
4,355 Posts
Well, it's about ready to fly, if it ever stops raining in East Texas. I put the GWS Tiger moth motor in it with the QC batteries. The motor is 1 oz. lighter than the stock motor and the QC's are 1-1/2 to 2 oz. lighter than the nicads. AUW is 9-1/2 oz. this way. I hope it flys ok with this setup, because i'm broke out with QC's and I won't have to invest in a bunch of new batteries.

Here it is with the cowling off. I mounted th motor on a piece of 1/32 ply with a 1/16 ply stiffener at top and bottom. Thrust angle can be altered by shims at either side or top/bottom.
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Old Jun 29, 2002, 09:07 PM
Balsa to the Wall
Deep in the East Texas Piney Woods
Joined Dec 2001
4,355 Posts
Here it is ready to fly.

Wish me luck.


Chuck
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Old Jun 29, 2002, 09:12 PM
jah
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North Georgia
Joined Nov 2001
1,851 Posts
Look forward to your flight report, I have on in a box. Picked it up at SEFF. Was thinking about putting in a GWS IPS dual C drive. Hope you have good luck with yours!
Jerry
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