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Posted by aku | Jul 31, 2015 @ 06:32 PM | 6,349 Views
Well, I found these pics on my drive at work, and just had to share 'em here. This prototype Northrup N-9MB put on an awesome flight demonstration. The low speed handling was amazing; the pilot managed some tight low speed turns that looked graceful and smooth. The landing was spot-on. These few images show some pretty close-in flying.

This was originally a flying 1/3 scale version of the Northup B-35 concept that was in development, and eventually cancelled. The wings are molded plywood and the fuse is a steel tubular structure, beautifully restored by former Northrup employees and additional volunteers at the Chino Air Museum. The engines are twin air-cooled Franklins displacing 8 liters @ 300 hp each. Remember the Tucker automobiles powered by Franklin engines? Here is the wiki for more information:

And two other images, the Heritage Flyby and Mig 17 & F-86... awesome!
Posted by aku | May 16, 2015 @ 06:52 PM | 6,960 Views
Well this old kit is calling my name... Build me. Fly me.
I have not built a Wanderer before, I somehow skipped this right of passage in the 80s. So I found this old kit here on RCG. The order form is dated 1981 and the wood quality and die cutting are excellent. The fuse was started long ago, just the sides and bottom. It's been kickin around a while based on the dust and grime inside the fuse. It was a little misaligned, so i trimmed and reglued, and fixed a few broken formers.

Of course I have made a few mods along the way, added some reinforcement for more rearward towhook locations, some corner stock up front, added some basswood and gussets under the wing mount to better support the dowels. All small stuff. I'm working on a servo tray, pushrods and the tail feathers now, and the wing construction last.

Wing... I thought about a multi piece setup, but the wing is so light on structure its not simple to do without adding a lot of weight. I want to keep it floaty and fun, its going to do some light air sloping too. I'm considering adding some LE sheeting to the center panels, (top only) to reinforce LE and make kind of a Dbox to clean up the airfoil entry. I will post a few pics build along the way....
Posted by aku | Feb 14, 2014 @ 08:04 PM | 9,847 Views
I've been interested in flying a more modern DLG, and I recently purchased a used Stobel V2 DLG here on RCG. The airframe was nicely assembled by the original owner & was in great condition.

It was previously flown on 72 mhz. After some consideration I figured that I should move my DLGs over to 2.4 ghz, so I purchased an AR6260 and set it up with the new Spektrum receiver. The larger (!) receiver needed to move back behind the servos, and it's a tight squeeze with the narrow Stobel fuse. Its CF, so it needs the whiskers to protrude outside. One antenna exits out the top of the fuse, and the other is taped to the (fiberglass) canopy cover than faces the bottom. Another Stobel quirk is that canopy/fuse cover faces down and the install is done "upside down" of conventional. Here's a photo of the installation.

The current CG is about 68mm and the AUW is 283 grams with the CAM3 altimeter in front of the servos. I swapped out the elevator pull line using some .011" Beadalon. The rudder pull string is Spectra/aramid line for now (see fourth image).

I need to finish up the radio setup (JR 9303) and go toss it this weekend. Looking forward to some better launches with this newer design...
Posted by aku | Aug 26, 2013 @ 08:03 PM | 7,778 Views
I've been reading about a more recent EPP wing, the Mamba. They are kitted here locally, and the posts and comments have been favorable. I reeeally don't need another foamie slope wing, but I'm interested in a lighter ship that I can fly and combat with. You can buy a Mamba here: http://www.alofthobbies.com/mamba-combat-wing.html

I'm a Combat newbie, but Combat looks like a lot of fun. All up, last man standing kinda bump and nudge and crash flying. I have studied a few Youtube "furballs" and I'm game. I figure if I can build a durable ship and stay on the lighter end, recovery will be better and I can survive for more fumbling around. And how often is it that it's howling during a contest or planned event?

I've also heard about NewStuff covering material, and I would like to try some out on this project. Its real use is as a laminating film, so its clear, tough and has a heat activated adhesive on one side. Its found in a number of thicknesses and brands. Its cost-effective and available here:

Here are a few images, the EPP cores have been glued together with Zap Goo, the center fin mount is glued in, and the elevons are trimmed, sanded, beveled, and ready to cover. Here is the airframe mocked up for a look at the overall design... Next, installation of the servos and radio gear.
Posted by aku | Apr 29, 2013 @ 05:59 PM | 8,264 Views
I've seen posts about this local slope spot, so I took a short hike up from Rimcrest to check it out... We were having a strong SW wind event for a few days, and it made for some nice sloping with my Weasel. The site has a smallish bowl along the slope with good lift in the sweet spot, and fair lift further out along the longer ridgeline.

You are just minutes from residential along the hike, and right behind a few back yards at the trailhead. Out on the slope it's really nice, and feels further away. The site is actually on Chino Hills State Park. Coyote sign, birds and rabbits were spotted. Recommended for lighter models and SW breezes. I'll be back!
Posted by aku | Dec 03, 2012 @ 11:35 PM | 7,884 Views
If you enjoy sailplanes and electric power, here is a full-scale project you will appreciate:
Posted by aku | Nov 17, 2012 @ 12:58 PM | 13,302 Views
I found a used Oly 650 for sale here on RCG. It was originally a nice clean build, but had major hanger rash and some poor repair work. It needed a lot of fixing, the stab and vertical were both beyond repair, the fuse had been broken in front of the stab (no surprise), and the wing tips were badly warped. After looking it over, I opted to repair the wing, build a removeable tail set, and cut off the nose block and install a small 3s brushless setup. I really wanted to keep the setup light and floaty so it would still fly like an Oly.

I cut off the nose block in front of former #1, just like the plans showed for the old .049 installation. I epoxied a ply firewall in place to hold the mounting screws, keeping the 5* downthrust from the plans. I scratched up a little motor cover with light ply, balsa, and some 2oz. glass. I wound up needing 1.5 oz of nose weight with the E400 motor, Hacker X-20 esc, and a 3S-1000 mah lipo that just fits where the flight pack used to go. This setup with a 10x8 folder made 170 watts static, so about 85 watts/lb. its plenty for cruising around. My AUW was 31.5 oz with the CG slightly behind the spar. I bought the motor, spinner and prop from valuehobby.com.

I have a Airtronics Eclipse kit, similar to the original Oly 650, designed for the old-school brushed motor & gearbox combo. The Eclipse has a later rudder config with no counter balance, so I used this design for the new tail set. Im really pleased, as the rudder authority is very nice. I haven't tried any rolls yet though. Im still fine tuning and enjoying this easy-flying (relaxed!) vintage Airtronics design with modern EP power.

The re-maiden was 12 minutes, then I pulled out some nose weight, changed lipos and flew it for 20 minutes. Not too bad for a first couple of flights for this vintage 2M! She floats nicely and indicates lift very well.
Lift, Jeff