My Float Plane
A couple of years ago when i was cleaning out some stuff that i found when I was modeling when I was a much younger person, I ran across a Fox engine that I bought, but never ran. I sent an email to the members of my club and asked if it was worth anything. One fellow said he would trade me a float plane for the engine. I said, wow, ok.
Fred Stafford built a Joe Birdi plane, he had built a couple of them, both the 40 size and one 60 size plane. this plane had Goldberg floats on it with twin water rudders.
I flew this plane a number of times and it flew so well.
The other day I flew it and was delighted and then again on Sunday I got it out to fly again. The water on the lake was just like glass. So I got it running and set it into the water and throttled up. I have been flying a Spectrum radio in all my other planes, this one was on 72 Mhz, and as it got airborn, i lost contact with it and into the water it went. I made a big mistake and forgot to extend the antenna on my transmitter.
So now I am out my beloved float plane, it was a one of a kind, can't be replaced and I know it is just a plane, but I feel like I lost a good friend.
So this is a reminder to all who fly both 2.4 and 72 Mhz. Watch your transmitters closely. Whatever happens, don't do what I did.
This was a kit that Great Planes used to carry. It was designed by Joe Birdi and there were at least two versions. A 40-46 sized and 60 size. Fred had both sizes and both he claimed flew the same.
It has a fully semitrical wing, is very aerobatic, yet I never did rolls or loops with it while the floats were on it.
I have more images of it which I will add later.
I am sad to say that there are no kits that I know of, I did see an ad in one of the model magazines that someone is re-making kits of some of Joe Birdi's designs. At least they are doing one that is called "the Dirty Birdi".
What is left of the plane is sitting in my cargo trailer/ hanger and I am having a hard time taking all the parts out of it. I think my next big float plane will be the Sig Rascal 110 which I hope will fly as well as this plane did. I don't have a shop to build anything in since my place to work is not heated in the winter.
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