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Old Mar 24, 2007, 11:40 AM
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sbrackets's Avatar
Simpsonville, SC
Joined Mar 2007
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"MRC" 1976 Piper Cherokee Archer- To be Re-born

Hello Guys
New member today! I guess now that I am starting this project of putting my Cherokee back together after 30 years. And thought you all might like to know about it.

Well! back in 1976 after I graduated High school I purchased my first RC airplane from Orange Blossom hobbies in Miami Fl. down on N.W 36 street.
Some of you may know the place. Anyway! I bought the plane and flew it about a month later at Markham Park RC flying field on State RD. 84 West of Ft. Lauderdale, Fl.

Well, It was my first flight and I put her in the ground. Well the crash took out the nose area just behind the fire wall. The fuselage is all fiberglass and the wing is foam core with balsa sheeting, and real nice plane for it's time.

Well now after all these years. I have now decided to put her back together.
I am going to need replace the original ENYA .40 engine with a NEW O.S 40 FX, and purchasing a Spektrum DX7 radio. I had to build a fiberglass cowling by hand to match the original design which was not too easy. It looks Ok but is not perfect.
I hope to start this project within a couple of weeks and have it finished by springs end.
I have attached a couple of photos from the other day that I took in my front yard. I hope to dig through my old family photos of the plane when it was NEW back in 1976 and attached them here also for you to view.
I will add photos of this project as I make progress so come back soon.
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3/30/07 Two photos have been added below of how the model looked before the crash
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4/4/07 Tail section repair: I have added a few more photos of the repair I made to the horizontal stab.
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4/7/07 I Ordered replacement wheel pants from Hanger 9 and they have arrived. They look pretty close to the original ones that came with the Piper.
I picked up the O.S 40FX and motor mount from my local hobby store and have test fitted it to the Cherokee fire wall, looks pretty good!
I have sanded the fuselage and would be prime painting today, but it's too cold. Will have to wait a few more days for that.
************************************************** ********
4/15/07 Well, Now I have added the plywood ring to the firewall carved out the engine cowl to accept the O.S 40FX engine, and attached the main nose landing gear to the firewall. See photos below. The weather is still to cool to primer paint, maybe next week!
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6/3/07 I had to remove the paint from the fuselage using paint remover for fiberglass, worked great! but was a little messy. The wing had several dents and dings all over. I filled in all those places using Spot putty. I did a final sanding and primer painted the wing and fuse today. I have added pictures to show the results.
Also purchased a Spektrum DX7 radio to fly the beast!
I hope to start the final paint job soon.
************************************************** ********
6/20/2007 Have just completed the re-build of this plane, and have installed the engine ,radio and all control rods. "It's Alive, It's Alive !!!!
Please view the most recent photos from today. Just a couple of static shots.
Next step is to tear it all down and prep for the paint job.
************************************************** ********

6/22/2008 Well after one year I'm back at it again, Due to weather conditions in 2007 I had to delay painting till now. I painted the fusealge today all white with Top Flight paint. Will let the paint cure a day or two before adding the red and blue stripes.
I ran out of white paint to do the wing, so will pick up more tomorrow.
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6/27/2008 I received my "NEW" decals for the Cherokee, New "N" numbers, and the words (Cherokee ARCHER) for the rear of the fuselage.
Picked up more paint for the Wing.
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9/1/2008 Here are a few pic's of the Cherokee wing with aileron sevo and the main landing gear installed. Just finished it today, Next is the fuselage. It's already painted white, just need to add all the striping and paint in the windows to her.
I have to get her painted and ready to fly before cold weather sets in.
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9/8/2008 Here are the latest photos of my painting progress. I shot the Blue stripe on the fuse and tail section this weekend, Hope to have the masking complete tonight to shoot the red color tomorrow.
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9/11/2008 OK! Tonight, I finished painting the fuselage except for the windows. Decals and "N" numbers will come after the windows are airbrushed in. She's staring to look like I remember her from 1976
I have added more pitures from tonights work. see below.
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9/14/2008 I have completed painting the windows in today. I decided on not using a airbrush and just painting the windows black. Was less trouble, and after much review, I decided to go with black windows instead of Silver/Gray.
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9/21/2008 The plane is finished!!!! Ready to fly. Yee Haa!!! She looks good too. See photos below.
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5/13/2012 Mothers Day today!!! Mom found pictures of my Cherokee and me from 1976 when my plane was NEW.
Regards, Jim Stratton
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Last edited by sbrackets; May 13, 2012 at 10:20 PM. Reason: Found old photos of plane when it was new.
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Old Jun 19, 2007, 10:05 PM
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RAZ82's Avatar
Fort Lauderdale. FL
Joined Aug 2003
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I remember that plane. It's starting to look good again. Good luck.
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Old Jun 20, 2007, 02:53 PM
Current project: Electrolyte
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United States, OH, Dayton
Joined Apr 2004
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Looks great! Must be a labor of love. keep up the good work
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Old Sep 01, 2008, 09:05 PM
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sbrackets's Avatar
Simpsonville, SC
Joined Mar 2007
84 Posts
Wing is complete!

Finally completed the wing to the Cherokee. The Fuselage is painted with a white base coat. Now for the details, such as stripes and windows.
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Old Sep 01, 2008, 09:39 PM
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Beaumont tx
Joined Oct 2004
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Nice, nice job -- and a lesson to all of us. Sentimental airplane?

howell
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Old Sep 08, 2008, 07:13 PM
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Simpsonville, SC
Joined Mar 2007
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Have added a few photos of the detailing of the Blue stripe work on the fuselage. Prepairing for the red stripe tonight. This masking stuff is a lot of work.
Jim
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Old Sep 08, 2008, 09:35 PM
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Cheektowaga, NY
Joined Sep 2007
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Very Nice.. they don't make fiberglass planes like that anymore..
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Old Sep 23, 2008, 09:24 PM
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Simpsonville, SC
Joined Mar 2007
84 Posts
Ckerokee is finished!!!

Hey Gang
Well, I finally finished the Cherokee over the weekend. WOW, She's done.
I was begining to think it would never happen. Looks pretty good too.
Hope to have her airborne in the next couple of weeks. Will get video of the flight and post it on Youtube.

This has been a fun rebuild, but glad that it's a once in a life time kind of thing.
Hope you all enjoyed following my Cherokee rebuild over the past year.

Keep'em flying!
Jim
1
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Old Sep 24, 2008, 11:57 AM
Master of the Figure "9"
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Wichita, Kansas
Joined Dec 2005
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Talk about bring back memories – I’ve always wanted one of those planes, but at the time it was way too expensive for a high school student. Never heard anything negative about the either the Archer or Cessna MRC sold back then, and from what I remember the quality was top notch in its day (and as good if not better than what you get in today’s ARF’s!).

I was lucky enough to get an MRC 765 radio as my first new 5-channel radio – talk about expensive…………

Hope all goes well flying it this time around. You’ve done a great restoration of a classic plane.

Hogflyer
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Old Sep 24, 2008, 01:14 PM
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Beaumont tx
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VID---EEE---OOO!!!

VID---EEE---OOO!!!

VID---EEE---OOO!!!

howell
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Old Sep 24, 2008, 09:31 PM
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Simpsonville, SC
Joined Mar 2007
84 Posts
Thanks Hogflyer
Yeah I believe the selling price of the MRC Radio at that time was $385.00 and the Cherokee was $125.00, a little over $500 buck. Yes that was a lot of money back then.

Yes gwinhh, I will get video with my NEW Sony DV Handycam You guys will be the first to see it.

Regards, Jim
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Old Oct 16, 2008, 06:21 AM
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Simpsonville, SC
Joined Mar 2007
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VIDEO-VIDEO!!!! HERE Come See.

It's my taxi video of the Cherokee. Rolling on the runway for the first time in 32 years. The maiden flight will come hopefully this weekend.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_k3QrzaWHes

Jim
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Old Oct 16, 2008, 09:36 AM
Master of the Figure "9"
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Wichita, Kansas
Joined Dec 2005
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MRC definitely got the lines right on that one. Looks great, can’t wait to see the flight video.

I noticed the exhaust extension is exiting right on the wing. Do you think this will create an issue with the exhaust residue into the wing/fuselage joint and inside the fuselage?

Hogflyer
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Old Oct 16, 2008, 12:43 PM
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Beaumont tx
Joined Oct 2004
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You can either get a Dubro exhaust extension, or just rotate the tail end of the muffler upward.

I think I'd consider doing one of those -- and maybe some sealing tape on the wing fuse joint.

It needs to stay pretty for a looooong time this time......

howell
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Old Oct 19, 2008, 08:28 PM
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Simpsonville, SC
Joined Mar 2007
84 Posts
Hello Group
Well, I maidened the Cherokee today! We had windy conditions most of the day. It wasn't till 5:30pm till I got the chance to get her airborne.
All I have to say is that she flew like a dream!!! I was a little concerned about the C.G balance but it seems to be OK. She wanted to climb so I has to adjust the trim a little for level flight.
This O.S 40 FX does this bird well. I flew around at 1/3 throttle and plenty of power to spare.
I'll tell you, it was hard to keep a tear from my eyes just seeing her fly again. It was like a dream come true for sure. I couldn't believe it. My baby is flying again.
I just flew a circle pattern around the field, nothing special or fancy, Just played it cool.
I say I flew her for about eight minutes and still had 3/4 fuel tank left. Keep in mind that I'm using a 12oz. tank.

The landing was sweet, and everything went well through out the flight. This bird will fly again.

I did manage to get video of the flight with the help from a fellow RC Pilot.
Guys, Give me a day or two to edit the video and load it to the net.
I believe you will be pleased.

Thanks to all of you guys who followed my build and thanks for all of your support.

Regards, Jim
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Last edited by sbrackets; Oct 20, 2008 at 05:51 AM.
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