Steve C's blog View Details
Posted by Steve C | Jul 17, 2014 @ 11:19 AM | 10,746 Views
My dad and I have gotten re interested in slope flying lately. One day, on the way home from Del Valle, I imagined a set of heli rotor blades stuck together with some sweep and how cool it would be if that actually worked on the slope.

When I got home, I realized I didn't have a big enough set of blades, but I did have a couple of carbon arrows, a bit of blue foam, same length and thickness as the arrows that my dad had sliced up for who knows what, and some trailing edge stock that was about right. Also had two micro metal gear serves that are the same thickness as the foam.

It all came together too easily, so we'll see if it works!

I glassed it with 3.7oz and west. It was going to be a light air thing, but I couldn't resist.

Video -
Rotor slope soaring at Del Valle (9 min 25 sec)

Posted by Steve C | Jun 27, 2014 @ 02:48 AM | 11,149 Views
My dad and I have started flying slope a bit lately. It's been a while since the most reliable sites are about 2 hours away.

I've ordered some epp so I can cut some stuff we wont care about. Some places are pretty challenging to land, so it would be nice to have a few that can take a beating. Seems all the serious slope guys have at least one epp flying wing.

While looking for stuff to fly, I pulled my old Xcalibur down. It's been hanging in the shop for about 20 years and I think I can get it flying again. Just swapped the Airtronics servo pins around and plugged them in to an FrSky rx. Still works There are a few bubbles in the composite wing skin. I'll poke a hole in those and try to glue them down.
Posted by Steve C | Apr 13, 2013 @ 11:42 PM | 12,652 Views
Just got back from a float fly at Lake Minden, just north of Sacramento. It's a little tight with trees for the big planes (mostly because they don't want you to fly past them), but a really nice place otherwise. Everyone was friendly and between my buddy Shawn, my dad and myself, we did 15 flights today with no broken parts Normally I wouldn't even mention it, but there always seems to be a few busted planes at float events.

We only just started flying off water last year, but have quite a fleet already!
Posted by Steve C | Apr 12, 2013 @ 03:52 PM | 13,247 Views
I've been putting a bunch of EF-1 planes together lately. The best of the bunch (so far) is an Eflite Shoestring that I built a new wing for. It's fast and can turn as hard as you like.

I'm always interested in props and I read a bunch of stuff about a man called Paul Lipps, who I would have liked to meet before his passing. Anyway, he made some really different props and I wanted to try one like it. BTW, I'm not willing to give Paul full credit for props like this because I've seen pics of props on the back of Horton flying wings from the '30's that had a very similar design. The Lipps prop was more like bringing back an old idea with new tech.

Here's one for testing on my Shoestring. I flew it today and while I can't say it's any better, it certainly flew the plane just fine. I sorta hoped it didn't work at all so I could 86 it and get back to normal stuff! But it looks like I'll have to experiment with it some more.
Posted by Steve C | Feb 15, 2012 @ 08:50 PM | 15,196 Views
I've used an over square prop before and it worked really well. It was a 9x12 Grish racing prop that I fly the Jepe Spitfire with. It can run at low rpm and still makes that plane do 130+ mph.

Now these props are a really a big trend in speed planes, but prop manufacturers are way behind and there's really only one or two guys from Europe to buy them from right now. If they don't have what you want, then the only other thing you can do is make it yourself! I've made props before, so that's what I've been doing for the last couple weeks.

On Feb 12, I tested a 10.5x19 on my Flash hotliner. This plane is extremely well behaved and offered a great testbed since I can launch it without even running the motor until well after the throw. The only drawback is the light construction on the wing. I don't dare make any sudden moves with the motor running. I don't have any real data yet other than what I saw with my eyes and it seems really good. The prop runs very quiet once the plane has accelerated to the speed of your throttle setting. These things make quite a bit of noise at first because they are stalled. Even at 1/3 throttle, speed was high enough to worry about breaking the wing if I made any sudden moves.
Posted by Steve C | Dec 16, 2011 @ 01:12 AM | 15,990 Views
I picked up a few Stinger 64's for friends and myself. I rewound the motors with 7 turns of AWG21. Here's some of the work for the motor. It pulls 42 amps on 3s 2200 and the plane goes 98mph. I think that's pretty good compared to others.

Been working on a Habu 32 as well. It's powered by Neu 1515/2Y and my own design fan which had previously flown in one of the sorta famous "Stoli" MiG's. This one has 7 blades and 6 stators and with it's light loading, was originally intended for the Aveox 1412/2Y. With the lower kv Neu powering it, it only pulls 36 amps on 9s - about 1300 watts.
Posted by Steve C | Sep 20, 2010 @ 07:16 PM | 16,892 Views
Pics of Jepe fan. It came out of my Jepe F-16 when I made my own fan unit for it.
Posted by Steve C | Sep 01, 2010 @ 06:37 PM | 18,575 Views
The -86 was a joint project with a buddy of mine. I took a small plastic model and cut the fuse in sections. I traced them and scanned them to my computer (it's easier to use an overhead projector which is what I do now). I blew up the sections until they fit the side view drawing that I had chosen for size. The plug was made from blue foam and glassed. I had it roughed out and Mark finished it and made the mold.

The mold was originally just two pieces and getting a fuse out of it was pretty tricky. The wing saddle and inlet contours make it very tight. Recently, I've made a new canopy/hatch mold and cut that part off the fuse mold. I tuned up the cockpit area and made a vacuum forming plug so the next plane will have a clear canopy.

The next step is probably to make the nose in a separate mold and I've thought of changing to a plug in wing. The current version has the bolt on once piece wing, which sits right at the bottom of the fuse for max room inside (that fan thingy goes there). If I go plug in, I can raise the wing that tiny bit where it would be scale.

The wing is hotwired blue foam with 2 x 1.4oz glass cloth skins on each side. There's a strip of glass applied to the leading edge right before I put the core in the primered mylar and then it gets vacuum bagged. They have held up remarkably well and are still flyable while I've trashed two fuses!

The stabilizers are just sanded balsa sheet...cough, sneeze, cough. I saved those too so I don't have to make balsa dust again.
Posted by Steve C | Dec 18, 2009 @ 11:30 PM | 19,724 Views
I'm an anti oversize inlet for jets kind of guy, so here's what I worked on for years (on and off for nearly 10!) until it worked. It's a pretty scale F-86, nearly the same size as the one Alfa made, but mine came first, so no I didn't copy them.

It has a glass fuse and glass over blue foam wings with RG-15 airfoil. It has had several different fans in it including two tandem 2 motor jobbies before this combo hit the bulseye. It's light and powerful. With a 30 or 40C pack in the next one, I expect to really have a winner.

Since it actually worked this time, I decided to spend some time on the mold. I made a new canopy/hatch mold with a more accurate outline. I also intend to make a clear plastic canopy for it, but haven't tried that part yet. I had cut the fiberglass canopy off and taped an Alfa canopy on it, but the shape isn't right so I want to do my own.

I have a video, but I was alone so the camera is just sitting on top of my truck. I just did it for doppler, but you can see me hand launch it and it climbs away with plenty of performance. The motor is a Hacker B40FAI running on 3S lipo. Pulls about 60 amps and top speed is near 140 mph.

link to the video ...

Posted by Steve C | Sep 22, 2009 @ 12:28 AM | 20,286 Views
I plugged an old hard drive in to my computer and coppied the contents. It takes up much less room than a cheap USB memory stick can hold these days! Amazing.

The paintings were from highschool, the Glasair was a scratch depron build and the Spit is a Jepe and really scoots with todays Lipos in it! The Pitts is my own, powered by a OPS 3.6 opposed twin. I used to race it in the USRA biplane class.

Posted by Steve C | Sep 11, 2009 @ 11:55 AM | 21,989 Views
Some more pics of the little sport class racer...
Posted by Steve C | Sep 02, 2009 @ 03:37 PM | 20,301 Views
I was trying to make this toy superman go fast and the design just doesn't seem to allow it. Perhaps there's a way, but I've crashed it enough times that I don't have patience for him anymore.

So...I've pulled the gear out and started cutting some depron to fit that stuff in. Here's what I have so far. It's just eyeballed from a couple of photos. I didn't try to make it exact, but I think it looks enough like what it's supposed to look like.

Posted by Steve C | Aug 17, 2009 @ 06:08 PM | 20,955 Views
Here's a plane that could go faster than it needs to! I made a larger fuse to fit the Hummer wing and stab. It's powered by a 1010/2.5D and 20c 4s 1800's. The battery is the limit right now. When I get one of the new 30 or 40C 2200's in there then I can go up with the prop size. It flew on a 4.1x4.1 cut to 3.75. That kept the amps down to 40, which is only slightly too high for that battery.

Speed is near 170mph with that stuff in it.

Steve C

Here's a video with 2200 cells in it and clipped CAM prop.
Extreme Speed 400 electric plane 200 mph (1 min 23 sec)

Posted by Steve C | Aug 16, 2009 @ 07:46 PM | 21,055 Views
This is an old Robbe Aero Commander that my dad had running on speed 480's. It had a controller fire that melted a hole in the side of the fuse, so after it sat for a year or so, I started ripping the old, yellowed Econokote covering off and refinished in epoxy and paint. It also got an upgrade with a couple of 3200 kv Turnigy outrunners and right now we're flying it with 6x4 props and a 2S 5000 battery. The gear can handle 3s and 5x5 props, but I'm not sure this flying ice chest needs to go over 100 mph!

It's a nice little plane. Too bad there's nothing like it on the market any more.

Posted by Steve C | Jul 22, 2009 @ 04:57 PM | 20,788 Views
I did some testing of my 74mm fan the other day. I had made this fan rotor about a year ago for the purpose of making a mold. I made the mold and then it sat for a long time. I was too lazy to make one out of the mold, so I ran the plug up to about 1200 watts and blew it up! Oh well, the static thrust installed in the Javelin was nearly 4lbs when it blew.

Here's my first try making a one piece rotor. I know the photo is bad, but I'll get another when the rest of it is done.
Posted by Steve C | Jul 11, 2009 @ 02:08 PM | 21,031 Views
EJ has done it again. He timed the purchase of two UltraFly Spears perfectly one week before they went on half off sale. Naturally he handed them to me and said, "Make it so number one"

So here's what I think a Spear should have looked like in the first place. Might call it Javelin.
Posted by Steve C | Jun 26, 2009 @ 07:32 PM | 20,817 Views
Been trying to finish up a few projects lately. This is a modified Q40 pylon racer that belongs to Erik aka "jetdryvr" The entire bottom of the fuse has be replaced and the wings and stab were clipped. It will run on 9s 3000's for short but very fast flights! The bottom of the wing has a surprise that Erik doesn't even know about yet.

Posted by Steve C | Dec 28, 2008 @ 12:59 PM | 21,831 Views
Here's a really modified Hummer. You cut the whole tail, wings and wing saddle off, then flip it upside down, turn it around and attach a MicroJet to the back/ now front of it!