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Posted by Aer0naught | Aug 04, 2018 @ 10:22 AM | 1,897 Views
Among several projects that I'm wanting to get done, a new wing for my Gambler+ DLG is one that has been on my mind for a while. Ever since I got it last year, I've had a ton of fun chucking the Gambler around and learning to thermal with it. However, I've noticed the plane's limitations, namely launch height and penetration. The S3021 airfoil, while a good airfoil for larger thermal sailplanes, has been superseded by numerous other foils designed specifically for DLGs. The Gambler's designer, Allan Wright, is currently selling an updated version of the Gambler with a slightly increased wingspan and the Drela AG36 airfoil, which seems to work very well from what I've seen.

However, since I crashed my Gambler and rebuilt the fuselage, I'm thinking that building a larger wing would not be very beneficial. During the rebuild process, I somehow removed 1.7 oz/50 grams of weight, which changed the plane's AUW from a porky 7.5 oz/215 g to an underweight 5.8 oz/165 grams. Because of this weight difference, the Gambler is a lot more floaty now, but it also seems to be more sluggish in turns. The slower flying speed and higher percentage of mass in the wing probably contributes to this. All of this has led me to the conclusion that to get the best overall performance from the new fuselage, I should build a wing of the same size or smaller to keep the wing loading from getting too low, improve turning response, and offset any possible strength deficit of the new fuse. The fuselage...Continue Reading
Posted by Aer0naught | Jul 06, 2017 @ 01:21 PM | 4,629 Views
About a month ago, I was looking for a simple to build, relatively cheap upgrade to a Gambler+ DLG that I acquired at a swap meet. While the Gambler is a decent flyer and will occasionally catch a passing thermal, my particular model is on the heavy side (7.5 oz) and I feel like I have reached a limit in its performance, especially in launch height. Since I have no other hands-on experience with DLGs, I figured that I may as well build another balsa DLG to see if I could get better performance.

The Mimi was the perfect model for my requirements, as it is a newer design that is known to launch well. And, since it has several wing construction methods there is a lot of potential for comparison and experimentation. As a 1-meter DLG, it's also slightly more portable than the Gambler, although in reality I'll probably be flying both when the conditions are good. With all this in mind, I went ahead and got the free plans from the designer, Frans Bal. Frans, thank you so much for your generosity in making the plans available! I know that DLG pilots all around the world appreciate your excellent design!

After ordering my materials and printing the built-up and semi-solid versions of the plans, I decided to start work on the semi-solid version of the Mimi. This is because the 1/2" balsa I ordered from SIG is on the heavier side (around 8 lb/cu ft), so I am anticipating that this wing will end up heavier than the built-up one and will thereby provide a good baseline for...Continue Reading