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Old Mar 08, 2008, 08:16 PM
B for Bruce
BMatthews's Avatar
The 'Wack, BC, Canada
Joined Oct 2002
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Ron, I hit that limit when I did a 50 cm span paper stick model.

I'd wound the motor for it's very first test flight and turned to walk to the flight line. Someone walked past in front of me about 8 or 10 feet away, When I got to his path there was still enough turbulence from his passing even a couple of seconds later that it twisted my wing and it folded like a house of cards. Never even got a single flight from it.

Erich, don't make them THAT light....
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Old Mar 09, 2008, 05:56 AM
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erich's Avatar
Holden , Massachusettes
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First fly session is history. As someone said, good news and bad. The good, the penny plane pretty much flew right off the build table. Somehow the front of the stab came loose making stab pivot 180 deg during flight. The thing still flew for about 2 minutes, with the crooked stab. After regluing, had 5-6 more flights, most of which were over 4 minutes. Last flight of this one, we put on close to 2000 turns and managed to get it caught in the lights (65' ceiling). One of the guys had a real long pole, and managed to get it unstuck. Other then the loose stab, this plane suffered no other casualties. The A6 flew real badly, cause of a totally misaligned prop, so that ended up back in the hanger after one test hope. Ezb #3, the one I had spent so much time on making it fly to the left and not right. Just kinda dove into the ground. We found the LE had been broken, maybe during assembly. Since it was late, didn't get another shot at flying this one. Ezb #1 which weighed about 5 gr. flew pretty good making some tight left turns . Only put about 500 turns on this one, so it never really got much height. Wish I coulda flown this one some more, but ended up going to the penny plane. Learned quite a bit about a fly session. One of the things is: Peanut Scale planes, are real hard to fly, well, even by seasoned pros. Another is: don't bring too many planes, it's better to concentrate on one or two, and get them trimmed out properly. High point of the night was watching a young MIT student fly a large F1D plane, the thing only got about 6' high, but took 2 min. to make a 20' dia circle. Was just incredible to see.


BMatt,

No need to worry about me making anything real light for quite awhile. Will be making things that fall into the weight of a Pennyplane for the forseable future. But most definitely have seen.... lighter is better. At least a lighter wing loading. Which is mostly true in RC soaring as well.

So back to rebuilding, and waiting for next session.

Hope photos came out, 2 of em are pretty big. First 2 photos are of my PP, the next two of a MIT students beautiful F1D. Session is at an MIT gym, organized and well presided over, by, Mr. Ray Harlan.

erich
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Old Mar 09, 2008, 09:12 AM
slow but inefficient
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Riverhead NY USA
Joined Dec 2000
3,097 Posts
Hi erich -

This has become my favorite thread. Writing down your experiences and the advice you receive is a great idea. If you can draw, make sketches. The world could use another book on indoor flying. Your last post is really interesting to read. If you'll notice, my book is kind of thin on flying and recording those kinds of observations.

I kept a notebook with sketches during my learning process and by the time it was and inch or so thick, people would see it and disappear into it; guys would forget to fly and sit for long periods poring over it. When the first publisher suggested an indoor book as a project I was already with my notes and we were off and not quite running. It was actually another three or four years before the book itself was ready.
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Old Mar 09, 2008, 12:03 PM
B for Bruce
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The 'Wack, BC, Canada
Joined Oct 2002
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4 minutes on your first pennyplane and at your first flying session is sure nothing to sneeze at. That's darn good performance for starting out.

And obviously you've seen the other end of the spectrum as well with that F1D model's build and performace.

Now you know why indoor is so fascinating to so many that are up for the challenge.
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Old Mar 09, 2008, 12:18 PM
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Holden , Massachusettes
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Ron

Appreciate your confidence. But writing a how to book, requires a LOT more expertise, then I'll ever have. Am mostly doing this, cause of an excess of free time, I have at the moment. Ray Harlan is the guy you want, he makes notes, and keeps records of almost everything. He spent a lot of time getting mine and others' planes off the ceiling. Believe he fixed everyone else's plane at least once. I know he reglued things on mine, 3 times. He even chastized me, somewhat, for not taking notes on which loop of rubber was used on which plane and the number of turns. Am just not that methodical.

I know how one can get lost in a book. Read parts of yours for close to a month, before finally deciding to build some of the stuff in it. Glad I did. Still go over it most nights. Am concentrating on the rolled tube and PP section right now.

BMatt

No...am real happy with the times, as a matter of fact the only reason I know that it was up over 4 min. is Ray timed all my flights. He even manged to partially trim out a Peanut scale he had built. Yes...the whole night was fascinating. The janitor finally kicked us all out, as we went over the alotted time.

Now.... to get on with some building:

Have cut the slot for the forward web piece. The drawings in Ron's book really help here. It shows much better then words exactly what needs to be done. Cut a small web from some 1/32" stuff, with grain running up and down. Hardest part here was making sure slot was totally centered on end of tube. Started by making slot narrower then needed. Then widening it out till web fit snugly and perfectly centered. Would have glued it in, BUT ran out of Ambroid.

The only place that carries, Ambroid, around here, is a local Hobby shop called Henry's Hobbies. Now I know very few people are gonna believe this, BUT..... the mini mall where Henry's is, burned down, 2 days ago. Shoulda bought 2 tubes last time I was there!! Hope he had insurance. Heck....hope he has a fire sale. Well gotta go get some glue.

erich
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Old Mar 09, 2008, 12:54 PM
Free Flight rubber flyer
jwfinn's Avatar
United States, GA, Warner Robins
Joined Mar 2005
506 Posts
Quote:
Originally Posted by erich
Learned quite a bit about a fly session. One of the things is: Peanut Scale planes, are real hard to fly, well, even by seasoned pros.
Not really. Most people just seem to have a poor understanding of pnuts. The biggest problem is that a lot of people try to make them excessively scale or use wood sizes that are more appropriate for a plane twice that size. One of my favorite pnuts is a Goon racer from plans drawn by David Aronstein. I've had people come up and look at it shock saying that they'd built one and could never get it to fly.

There is no trick specific to pnut scale. You build light, just like any other class, and fly them just like other airplanes. People have this absurd idea that they need this pretty doped finish on the covering, and this, along with poor wood selection and excessive/heavy detail results in a heavy airplane. A well built single engine pnut will do close to 2 minutes outdoors, and would probably be able to do the same in the site you were flying in. I fly in a 30' site and the Goon will pull 70 sec in there very reliably. I could make it do more, but it's way too fun setting the thing up to fly extremely fast so as to further entertain spectators. Hey, it was a race plane, so make it race!

The best place to start with pnut scale is something like a Fike, Lacy, or Pottier 100. Many biplanes will work well, too. Especially good biplanes are the Hawker Fury, SE-5, Albatross D.III, and Sopwith 1 1/2 Strutter. I'd say the best of those is the D.III, which makes for an incredible little flyer. A 10 gram D.III should be capable of 90 seconds outdoors, probably 50-60 indoors. Leave low-wingers alone until later, as they can be a little more touchy. If you want to just make people drool, build a Voisin Hydro. It's a canard pusher biplane on floats. In FAC scale competition it gets 35 bonus points on top of its flight score, which makes for a tough competitor combined with the capacity for nearly 2 minute flights indoors even in Cat II sites.

Personally, I find pnuts far easier than 600 mg EZB's!
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Old Mar 09, 2008, 01:19 PM
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Holden , Massachusettes
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Jwfinn

To make or to fly? (in re: "Personally, I find pnuts far easier than 600 mg EZB's!").

There were 2 peanuts there, think one might have been a citabria, and the other was definitely a Fokker Biplane. The longest flight was 4 seconds. One of em almost did a roll, not on purpose. Got to admit these things were real scale looking, the citabria even had inflated rubber tires. I'm not kidding. The 2 gentlemen who had these pnuts, had been modeling for 50 and 30 yrs., so they most likely did know something about triming a plane. Yet neither got anything close to an even (level) free flight. Will admit they are rugged, with all the crashes these planes made, there was virtually no damage to em. Got a sneaking suspicion you're right about the weight. Both these planes had shrunken tissue on em, and seemed like minature tanks. They were gorgeous however. The ironey is, even though these planes crashed on almost every flight, the only person who walked away with broken planes...was me.

What do you think of a Pietenpol as a first pnut plane? Have been toying with the idea of building the Manhatten cabin in Ron's book. There's full size plans of one called: Columbia II. Miss building a real fuselage. And the cabin's are most likely, a little eaiser to get in the air then the pnuts (just an uneducated guess).

erich
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Old Mar 09, 2008, 01:42 PM
Intermediate Multi
Trisquire's Avatar
Columbus, OH
Joined Mar 2005
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Pietenpols are OK. Not as efficient as a Lacey or a Fike because of the wing struts, and less wing area. I made my 'Piet' from the Peck Polymers kit back in the '70s. I think it was my first peanut.

Scale modeler Bill Henn was getting 2 minutes with a Lacey and 3 minutes with a Fike back at the Columbia University indoor sessions. Carved balsa props help. That's an art in itself.

Tom
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Old Mar 09, 2008, 02:25 PM
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erich's Avatar
Holden , Massachusettes
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Can see in the photo of your Lacey, the wheels on it, must weigh 1/3 of the ones I saw on that Citabria. Really like the looks of the Lacey. And Ron's book has full size plans for that plane... hmmmm. You say carved props, do you actually mean carving it complete, out of a block, or built up like, the ezb's, with a hub and blades? Thanks for the photos. That Pietenpol looks great! Maybe more light? I got a real cheapo camera too. In fact it was the absolute cheapest I could find. Once in awhile my photos come out like the two you posted, so usually take 2 shots of everything to make sure I get some good ones.

erich
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Old Mar 09, 2008, 03:09 PM
slow but inefficient
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Riverhead NY USA
Joined Dec 2000
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Hi erich -

You should know that I was not any sort of expert when I started my book and never was or will be the level of expert Ray Harlan is. In fact I haven't flown indoor for 20 years or so.

I could draw reasonably well (actually I was teaching drawing at Columbia when we started the indoor flying there) and had passed a few English courses in high school and what was required in college. The secret to writing a book is collecting information and thoughts without thinking "book". Just doing what comes naturally for ones self and keeping it in reasonable order can (but might never) add up to a book.

It was amazing how effective Simon & Schuster's editor, Jim Ramsey, was in making my book work.

Tim Goldstein at Peck Polymers has Ambroid (it has become hard to find). He also has a nice kit of the Lacey that would make a great indoor flyer.

The parasol winged planes like the Pietenpol are very frustrating to trim and fly. Their flight characteristics are inconsistent; they fly differently at different speeds. When I complained of this while trying to get some consistency out of my indoor Pietenpol my fellow flyers pooh-poohed my wailing. I finally proved that I was right by enclosing the strutted under wing area with tissue and a curved wind shield - it flew like a dream. I've also seen the same thing with RC models like the Cutie (sp?) and good flyers who've tried them say the same thing.
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Old Mar 09, 2008, 03:34 PM
Intermediate Multi
Trisquire's Avatar
Columbus, OH
Joined Mar 2005
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Quote:
Originally Posted by erich
...........You say carved props, do you actually mean carving it complete, out of a block, or built up like, the ezb's, with a hub and blades?...........
Yes, a block. I've uploaded Bill's formula. The March MA has a prop block with a different formula (p141); it looks interesting.

Tom
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Old Mar 09, 2008, 04:56 PM
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erich's Avatar
Holden , Massachusettes
Joined Feb 2004
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Tom

Thanks, for the prop plan. If I can figure it out, I just may take a shot at carving a prop.

Ron

Even if you weren't an expert, you probably had, an in depth knowledge of your subject. Not the case with me. I do like writing short descriptions on my building attempts, but writing something like a how-to, requires a lot more comitment, then I'm able to make. Have found some Ambroid at a place called "Hog Heaven". Believe it or not, it's a well stocked hobby shop (even open on Sunday). And it was only 40 mi. from here, even got a deal on some real light tissue paper. Will most likely get a kit of the Lacey from A2Z, or just use the plan in your book, to scratch one out. Have already traced your Columbia II, cabin. So will make one of the two in the near future. First gotta finish this tube job. Then make the rest of the things, it needs, to fly. Had to scrap my A6 and ezb #3 (both to sick, to recover). So now, my flight box has space for 2 new planes.

erich
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Old Mar 10, 2008, 07:45 AM
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Holden , Massachusettes
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Ok...got da Ambroid, glued front web into slot in tube and sanded smooth. Cut a shallow angle, then added a 1/32 cap. While waiting for glue to set, made up rear motor hook. Cut out a 1/32 web with small triangle area near bottom to act as hook support. bent up .015 wire w/loop at the top for bracing wire. Will obviously not need any bracing on this, monster tube, just want to get in habit of making hook with the loop. Glued hook along top and back, then added some light tissue along top back and bottom, a touch of ambroid on tissue, and rear hook assembly is ready to install.

erich
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Old Mar 10, 2008, 12:23 PM
more balsa please!
dcloin's Avatar
Princeton, In
Joined Jul 2007
792 Posts
erich,

I've really enjoyed following your build. Thanks for taking the time to take pictures and post. I just got my copy of Building and flying indoor model airplanes in the mail today. I did'nt think it would ever get here. I'm going to read over it some and get started. Nothing fancy, just somthing that will fly. I'll keep reading your posts for tips once I progress.

Thanks to everyone else who posts here too. Nobody in my club flies rubber band, so I'm all alone on this one. Is'nt the internet great to have for stuff like this.

Darvin
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Old Mar 10, 2008, 12:58 PM
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erich's Avatar
Holden , Massachusettes
Joined Feb 2004
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Darvin


Great. I started with the hand toss job, on pg 26. The thing flew right off the board. If you got a digital camera, and get to the ezb's or PP planes, take some photos and post em, please. Good luck.

erich
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