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Old Jun 03, 2008, 09:42 PM
Rehab is for quitters
LuckyArmpit's Avatar
West Middlesex, PA, US
Joined Jun 2001
4,853 Posts
Rant
landing gear wheels

Okay, my rant mode is on.
Just finished my repair of the main gear on my Great Pains Yak 54.
Last landing (last year) ripped off the main gear from the glued ply and balsa from the planes fuse.
I guess I don't get it. Are the model designers boozing it up when they design the gear? Seems like all these models are designed for pilots who fly off of paved runways. The wheels are too freakin small!! One little bump and the stinkin plane flips over or the landing gear breaks where the ply is glued to a balsa former.
Our field, you need at minimum 2 inch wheels and thats pushing it. The grass is mowed low and the field gets rolled every other time the runway is cut so high grass aint a problem. Its the small depressions.
I'd like to invite Mr. Anderson, prez of great pains to bring over his Yak to our field. Guarranteed he busts off the gear within 3 flights.
Every model I have thats not glow/gas powered has 2 to 2 1/2 inch foam wheels except my Outrage bipe and GWS corsair (belly lander). Sure the wheels are large but at least the plane will land without breaking or flipping over.
So, here is a hint to those who design models, especially ones like the GP Yak 54 and GP Reactor bipe, NOT ALL OF US FLY OFF PAVED RUNWAYS!!!!
Okay, rant mode off. Time for a Crown on the rocks.

Dave...
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Old Jun 03, 2008, 10:34 PM
Suspended Account
Brunswick, OH
Joined Nov 2005
5,547 Posts
I take my gear off and belly land.... of course that makes for lots more broken props. My Mini-Katana wheels ripped out of the thin ply the first time I tried to land in the grass. I Monokoted over where they used to be. I'm still considering going to a prop saver and doubling or tripling up on o-rings.
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Old Jun 04, 2008, 12:00 PM
Rehab is for quitters
LuckyArmpit's Avatar
West Middlesex, PA, US
Joined Jun 2001
4,853 Posts
My MUS broke where the gear is glued inside the fuse. I used some scrap wood and then used fiberglas cloth soaked in epoxy. Stronger than dirt now.



Dave...
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Old Jun 04, 2008, 12:03 PM
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Mark Wood's Avatar
United States, CA, Bear Valley Springs
Joined Feb 2000
26,452 Posts
Quote:
Originally Posted by LuckyArmpit
My MUS broke where the gear is glued inside the fuse. I used some scrap wood and then used fiberglas cloth soaked in epoxy. Stronger than dirt now.
Ditto (after the first two LG ripouts)

mw
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Old Jun 04, 2008, 12:46 PM
jrb
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jrb's Avatar
Edina, MN, USA
Joined Oct 1999
11,433 Posts
Never metal!

I always put my gear on via 10-32 nylon screws; rather have them fall off on a rought landing (or if I hit a hole), than have to repair a whole fuselage.

Three work fin on up to 8#; generally do four over that.
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Old Jun 04, 2008, 01:13 PM
Registered User
Newbury Park, California
Joined Apr 2002
651 Posts
Many if not most of us have similar trouble with breaking landing gear. Wheel size is only part of the problem.

A majority, a large majority, of model airplane landing gear is poorly designed. The wheels are too small for most unpaved fields. The wheels are too hard for the light models we fly. The landing gear struts are too stiff. Between the rigid wheels and stiff struts, most landing loads are transferred directly to the model structure. The "g" numbers are often high enough to break things.

In short: Very few models have significant suspensions. Can you imagine how a full-sized airplane would fare with solid wheels and stiff, inflexible struts?!

Wheels:
The Dave Brown Products Inc. "Treaded Lectra Lite Wheels", available in 1-3/4", 2" and 2-1/4" are the only wheels I have found that are soft enough and compliant enough for our relatively light electric models. They work on any field surface, track well and reduce bouncing to the vanishing point. Many if not most of the members in my club now use them.

Struts:
I've done some work with landing gear strut compliance. The latest Fliton struts have been, I believe, influenced by that work. Many if not most struts whether they be carbon fiber, fiberglass or aluminum -- are too stiff. As springs, they are too stiff for the models they support. The results are bouncy landings, nose-overs and shattered gear mounts.

Model designers are clearly not suspension experts and that is fine. But, when they design models for us -- they need to find someone who is and take his advice, make tests and apply what is learned.

Enough ranting. Fit a set of the Lectra Lites. You'll have more fun, grease more landings and not need a bag to take your plane home. -- At least not as often.

Joe
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Old Jun 04, 2008, 04:53 PM
ARF Hater Club
tommyeflight89's Avatar
Toronto, Ontario
Joined May 2004
2,660 Posts
It's called quit buying BARF's and build the thing yourself. Beef up the mount as much as you like and use whatever wheels and wheelpants you want.
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