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Old Jul 24, 2006, 07:04 PM
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Joined Mar 2006
134 Posts
Not a build tip till after the problem occurs but always check your control surface directions especially when you bring multiple planes to the field using the same Tx. crashed my Mini Edge because of a reversed elevator this weekend after switching from my Siren and forgetting to switch the Tx program.
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Old Jul 24, 2006, 07:38 PM
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Tennessee
Joined Sep 2003
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Always use a standard setup for controls. No matter which model I select, the controls will at least move in the correct direction. Trim and throws may be wrong but at least I will have a chance to save the model.
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Old Jul 25, 2006, 12:06 AM
2 Mistakes Downwind
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Portland, OR
Joined Nov 2004
414 Posts
Quote:
Originally Posted by Sparky Paul
Don't wear sandals when working with an X-Acto knife.

Hmmm.. I guess my bare feet are a poor choice too!

I think the best bit advice for me is "take your time."

It's harder than it sounds for some of us!
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Old Jul 25, 2006, 12:53 AM
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gone fishing
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Old Jul 26, 2006, 05:55 PM
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Stuttgart, Germany
Joined Oct 2004
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I was always a scratch builder from a young age, and one day I was in the LHS sniffing through the balsa display when this old guy started talking to me about the virtues of scratch building, and I will never forget him telling me that

"A true hobby is not expensive."

Thats why scratch building was so popular in the old days, materials were not hard to come by and plans were next to free. Even today free flight kits are cheap; when was the last time your kid was entertained for days on end with a $5 toy? The next step is scratch building, so you can pick your own wood and ditch the die crunching.

I always prefer to build things like latches, landing gear, wheels, pilot busts, sanding blocks, balsa strippers, sanding fixtures, thrust stands, DIY motor kits, whatever.

Also, I like to cruise the shops and stores we frequent scouring the aisles for common items that can be "re-purposed" as building supplies. Almost none of what I use is specifically made for the model industry. Well of course I use CA glue, GWS props, lipo batteries, depron and balsa, but wherever I can substitute I do my best to be thrifty.

Don't get me wrong, I still spend a lot of money on my hobby, but instead of crashing $80 models I bought a 7 channel computer radio for $150 and crash $8 models. I prefer to spend the money on battery packs, motor kits, speed controllers, all stuff that moves from plane to plane as my interest wanders from model to model.

and thats all I have to say about that.

j
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Old Jul 27, 2006, 12:46 AM
JustFlying
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Joined Dec 2005
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Jlepinske, I am 100% with you, I only do scratch building. No matter where in the world you are, that is what distinguish real aero modelers from model flyers. But, at the end we all get to the field and enjoy flying together.
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Old Jul 28, 2006, 01:43 AM
I need a bigger garage...
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USA, CA, San Diego
Joined Mar 2005
1,294 Posts
When gluing with epoxy, wear latex or similar gloves. I tend to get the glue all over my hands. This way I can peel off the gloves when done gluing and carry on working without getting glue everywhere.

Andy
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Old Jul 28, 2006, 08:30 AM
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Know when to take short cuts and when not to.
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Old Jul 28, 2006, 11:47 PM
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Joined Sep 2005
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When they say "go by the instructions"I just cant! I want my project to be mine and not like all the others.so make that somethin'extra a sometwin'extra!!!!
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Old Jul 29, 2006, 03:26 PM
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Baku
Joined Jan 2005
61 Posts
Linkage...

A finished plane is only as good as the control linkage. Another way to put it is that a well built and designed plane with sloppy linkage will fly sloppy at best. Setting up a solid, practical, and slop-free contol linkage is time well spent.

My English feels sloppy today but I hope this came through clearly.
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Old Jul 29, 2006, 03:45 PM
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United States, NJ
Joined Nov 2005
237 Posts
Here is mine: Less weight does not always lead to better flight characteristics.


Quote:
A finished plane is only as good as the control linkage. Another way to put it is that a well built and designed plane with sloppy linkage will fly sloppy at best. Setting up a solid, practical, and slop-free contol linkage is time well spent.

My English feels sloppy today but I hope this came through clearly.
Bu arada Kral Ingilizcende ben hic "sloppy" bir his uyandirmadi
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Old Jul 30, 2006, 12:05 AM
Registerd Beaver
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Australia, WA, Warwick
Joined Jul 2003
3,572 Posts
My 2c worth.

Rule #1 Safety first - keep sharps & glues out of reach of children, pets & idiots (and in that order)

Rule #2 A CG too far forward = your plane will fly badly. A CG too far aft = your plane will fly once.

Rule #3 (for beginners) If you can see your Rx antenna wire, then you are too close to the ground to fly aerobatics.
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Old Jul 30, 2006, 05:35 AM
You win again, gravity!
Muxje's Avatar
Rotterdam, NL
Joined Jun 2004
280 Posts
A very good tip I got was to make and experiment with laminated materials. I found it to be a good way to save weight, or to beef up a part without too much weight gain, when I have my doubts about its strength. I don't use solid ply except in critical areas such as wing joiners, landing gear blocks and firewalls, and I've done away completely with lite-ply. I replace it either with a laminate of balsa sheet glued cross-grain, or with a single balsa sheet laminated on both sides with proper 0.4mm or 0.6mm plywood, depending on the stress the part has to endure. You'll end up with something lighter, yet stronger and better suited to its purpose.

Another application of composite materials is replacing a hardwood wing spar with a balsa one, reinforced top & bottom with a thin strip of carbon. An added bonus of such a spar is that (if you make it properly) it will be absolutely straight: an ideal basis to build your wing on.

Quote:
I was always a scratch builder from a young age, and one day I was in the LHS sniffing through the balsa display when this old guy started talking to me about the virtues of scratch building, and I will never forget him telling me that
For me too, a challenge to start scratch building was the best "tip" I ever got. There's a lot of satisfaction to be had from turning a pile of balsa sheet and sticks into a flying airplane. Sadly the ARFs have gotten so good and inexpensive that people don't scratch-build or even build kits anymore; the guy at the LHS told me that if I'd go upstairs to the aircraft section, I wouldn't be able to find 3 kits in the stacks of boxes. Sometimes it feels if he keeps the balsa section just for me... some of the stock is still labeled in guilders (the euro was introduced in 2002).

It will be a sad day when they stop selling balsa stock and I have to order it on-line... One advantage of scratch-building is the ability to select quality balsa of the right weight, rather than make do what the kit manufacturer sends you.

Quote:
Rule #1 Safety first - keep sharps & glues out of reach of children, pets & idiots (and in that order)
To add to that: keep your workplace tidy. Not only is it nicer to work in a tidy place, it is also a lot safer. My own place is usually messy (a combination of laziness and lack of space), but one day the mess created a situation that almost took out one of my eyes.

Quote:
If the glue has already set, sleep on it before you try to fix what you just messed up.
How is sleeping on the glue going to help?
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Old Jul 30, 2006, 06:52 AM
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Launceston Tasmania
Joined Mar 2004
2,096 Posts
I've always taken extra effort in making the control runs smooth and bind-free; less stress on the servos and more accurate centering. Even a drop or 2 of oil can free-up control runs.

Composite fuselages; if you have a plane with a flexy rear (from wing to tail; you can squeeze the fuse between 2 fingers) lay your nyrods in, lay an aerial tube in (use a nyrod inner) then use a squirt of expanding foam to lock everything down; the fuse will be surfboard stiff and your rods won't flex and it weighs very little. Just be prudent with the amount you squirt; it expands 3 to 5x during curing.

Chris.
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Old Jul 30, 2006, 11:08 AM
RVM
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Joined Mar 2006
6 Posts
The outer housing for a Sullivan Gold N Rod (or any NyRod) makes a great tool for removing excess glue. Just cut a short piece, and make your cut at about a 45 - 60 degree angle.

Also I love some mini spatulas I got from Lee Valley for removing excess glue too, and spreading it around. Lee Valley also has some great syringes with various gauge, blunt needle tips. Great for glue application if you use aliphatics like I do.
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