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Old Mar 18, 2006, 02:21 AM
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Joined Mar 2006
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places that sell rubber band powered, balsa wood, indoor plane parts

well, i figure this subject is close enough to ask here.

does anyone know a store in huntsville that would have kits for rubber band powered, balsa wood, indoor planes?

places that would also have:

propellers
rubber bands
rubber band winders
japanese tissue paper
mylar

i've tried hobbytown USA, but all they had were solid balsa, and i need balsa-frame, tissue paper skin planes.

anyone know a place?
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Old Mar 18, 2006, 03:43 AM
Fly long and land softly
Jim_Marconnet's Avatar
Madison, Alabama USA
Joined Oct 2005
5,388 Posts
You already know about the (former) HobbyTown USA! They are an "If you can find it in the store, then Yes, we have it!" store.

That leaves:
R/C Hobbies - You want it, they got it! If it's planes you want, ask for Rick!
3303 Meridian Street, Huntsville, AL 35811
Phone : (256) 539-1347
Fax : (256) 539-9924
Business Hours : 9-6 Mon-Fri / 10-6 Sat / Closed Sun

They were the only true RC hobby shop in town. Now they are the Only RC hobby shop in town.

In general, they have those kits and the stuff you listed. To determine whether they have everything specifically on your list, suggest you call ahead and ask for Rick. He knows everything they have, and can tell you if he carries exactly what you want. The other staff is helpful and friendly, but knows less about airplanes. They all have their specialties. Rick's off on Tuesdays.

I was in there the other day when a new customer came in. He nearly exploded with excitement, "This is a real hobby shop! I've been all over North Alabama, and this is the first real hobby shop I've found!" He was like a kid in a candy store! More correctly, like an Adult in a real Hobby Shop!

Jim
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Old Mar 18, 2006, 07:12 AM
Back behind The Controls
Johnnie Paul's Avatar
Toney, AL
Joined Dec 2005
1,016 Posts
Hobby Lobby sells the $7 stick built P-51 mustang, Cessna and Bi-planes that are rubberband powered. These are the small tissue cover models.

Johnnie
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Old Mar 18, 2006, 10:31 AM
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Mars Flyer's Avatar
Huntsville, AL
Joined Mar 2004
396 Posts
Michael's across the complex from Hobby Town has some balsa and tools. They may also have the rubber powered kits back amongst the models and rockets. I don't think you'll find everything you need but you may find some of the items. Check the newspaper each Sunday for a 40% off coupon for any single item in the store. That is how I buy my bulk model rocket motors and any tools they happen to carry.

Rob
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Old Mar 18, 2006, 01:06 PM
You are building WHAT?
JoHowell's Avatar
Huntsville, AL
Joined Apr 2004
98 Posts
Alienshards,

I build/fly dime scale, No-Cal, and other rubber-powered free-flight models. Rick down at R/C Hobbies occaisionally has lightweight wood. He may, on occaision, have a Dumas kit in their 17" span range that can be flown indoors, but they are typically fairly heavy.

What specifically are you looking for? Scale? Endurance, FAI? I have an extensive stash of wood, kits, and plans that can be flown indoors. If you are looking for something along the lines of the true Indoor category models such as Easy-B, Pennyplane, A-6, Science Olympiad or the really serious indoor models, you are probably going to have to go mail-order or internet. Tim Goldstein at f1D.biz in Colorado, Lew Gitlow in Oregon, or Penn Valley Hobbies are my primary sources for kits. I special order lightweight wood from Tim, Lew, and Lone Star Balsa. Most stores can't stock the light-weight balsa. It doesn't survive the handling of folks used to 12 lb. density wood.

I strongly suggest that you stay away from the Gillows kits that Rick has and can be found at Hobby Lobby stores. They weigh about 4 times as much as they ought to and simply aren't suitable for indoor flying. They have to fly really fast - for indoor planes - because of their weight. That makes them really hard to trim, and increases the amount of damage when they hit a wall, ceiling, fan, etc.

How can I help?
Jim Howell
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Old Mar 18, 2006, 01:52 PM
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well, i'm building for science olympiad.

i've built one plane out of a right flyer kit from the internet. i have 7 such kits left (although i'm planning on canabilizing 2 to make a biplane)

i have the sorcerer kit, enough to make 2 planes.

both are designed for science olympiad, i think.

However, only the sorcerer has japanese tissue paper.

the right flyer kit has something like thin computer paper, which is why i'm looking for a place that would have mylar and japanese tissue paper.

i'm also looking for a rubber band winder because hand winding, i can get about 5-8 test flights in an hour. not very efficent way to use time. i would order online, but that has shipping more than the item and i'd rather just drive to some store and get one, even if it's got a markup, as there'd be no shipping charge.

i'm moving away from following the kits exactly (although, i have never followed it exactly. used my own tail the first time). i think soon i'll be moving to designing, cutting, and assembling planes completely from my design. i'd need balsa and basswood, which i saw that hobbytown USA had.

but i'd also need the afore mentioned japanese tissue paper (or mylar), lots of propellars that i can shave and repitch, rubber band motor material for my rubber bands.

if you have any advice on how i should design my science olympiad plane, please tell me. things like, how far apart the wings on a biplane have to be to not interfere, or if i can just use saran wrap for my wind coverings (probably not).

and if vortex fences help much, and when i should use tourqe burners, etc. etc. etc.

yes, i have a lot of questions. many things i have a good idea about, but i don't feel like building them just to see if they work, as i haven't really got the time.

it's two weeks to competition.
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Old Mar 19, 2006, 07:20 AM
Servos can't have all the fun!
Moonbeam Six's Avatar
Athens, Alabama
Joined Jun 2005
1,117 Posts
Alienshards,

I'm not sure how Reynolds Colored Plastic Wrap compares to Japanese tissue for weight, but I've used it successfully on a couple of planes. It is very easy to apply (using Duck brand gluestick), quick, surprisingly durable, easily repaired (patches self-cling), and can be easily removed from the structure for repair or to add a new look.

I saw some props for rubber-powered planes in Hobby Town yesterday evening. There were about a half dozen, gray, about 6" diameter. They were in a basket on a shelf along with other types of props for electrics. Dig through what they have.

Being "Renegades," I guess most anything airplane-related can be part of this forum. Personally, I'd like to see some pictures and hear more about these indoor planes. Maybe I could find out what a "torque burner" is.

JoHowell, sounds like you could concontribute much to this area.

Share the knowledge; spread the fun.

MB6
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Old Mar 19, 2006, 07:21 AM
You are building WHAT?
JoHowell's Avatar
Huntsville, AL
Joined Apr 2004
98 Posts
Give me a call at 881-8495. I think the Sorcerer might be one of the better starting points. As I understand, the rules for SO are tweaked regularly. And as a result, the older designs are no longer best. The rules change for this year shifted the emphasis to a biplane configuration. I belong to the metro Atlanta Free Flight club and there are a couple of guys that are top-notch designers that might be able to answer your questions about indoor biplane design. I'll get in touch with them about plans.

I have some 1/2 mil, and maybe some 1/4 mil mylar, I don't know if that's what is best. I have a couple of extra Ikara props but no hangers for them, and I have the Harlan Cruiser SO biplane kit/plans as well as Lew Gitlow's SO biplane kit/plan.

Yes, you need a small winder. Let me see if I can find mine. It disappeared a couple of years ago.

Jim Howell
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Old Mar 19, 2006, 08:23 AM
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Miderror's Avatar
Huntsville AL
Joined Sep 2003
896 Posts
Quote:
Originally Posted by alienshards
well, i figure this subject is close enough to ask here.

does anyone know a store in huntsville that would have kits for rubber band powered, balsa wood, indoor planes?

places that would also have:

propellers
rubber bands
rubber band winders
japanese tissue paper
mylar

i've tried hobbytown USA, but all they had were solid balsa, and i need balsa-frame, tissue paper skin planes.

anyone know a place?
I have a small pile of stuff including rubber,winders and props.
Let me get it all together and I will send a PM.
Don
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Old Mar 19, 2006, 09:42 AM
You are building WHAT?
JoHowell's Avatar
Huntsville, AL
Joined Apr 2004
98 Posts
Here's a plan for an '06 SO biplane that my friend in Atlanta says has been a good design for some of the metro Atlanta kids. I've also attached a Word file of the usual sources for indoor ff materials and stuff.


Jim
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Old Mar 20, 2006, 12:39 AM
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Joined Mar 2006
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ahh, i remember the grey props at hobbytown USA.

yea, there were black ones too. they're the type that come with the sorcerer kit.

i finished my first biplane last night. flew it a bit today, it's doing better than the monoplane (which isn't hard, really), and i've put a grey prop on it now, which should help. i'll have to shave the grey prop to spec tho.

the lack of a winder is getting to me. I'd order one from online except that i don't want to pay shipping and i don't want to wait.

my biplane looks rather disproportionate when trimmed for flight. i'll see if i can take some pictures. the wing is much closer to the tail then in all the other model planes i've seen- but that's what balances the CoG and CoL. maybe my tail is too heavy.

i don't really feel like following any plans. i've an elementary understanding of the physics at work (lift, drag, etc.), so the biplane is my own design (except the wing ribs, which i used from the right flyer kit). However, any plans (like the finny) are a lot of help because they give me some stuff to draw ideas off.

i plan on making my final airplanes with the sorceror's wing ribs, which are lighter and longer, and should give me more lift.

jim howell, i'd prefer to use email instead of calling. could you please mail me at alienshards(at)gmail.com? thank you for your help.
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Old Mar 20, 2006, 12:45 AM
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Miderror's Avatar
Huntsville AL
Joined Sep 2003
896 Posts
alienshards,
Here are some items I dug up in my pile of stuff.
If any of it is up your alley PM me.

Thanks,
Don
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