YarSmythe's blog View Details
Posted by YarSmythe | Dec 22, 2010 @ 11:24 AM | 11,387 Views
Had my 2 year old hand tossing the Playmate outside this morning. He's much more into RC than his older brother. He'll be flying my Easy Star in no time.

Posted by YarSmythe | Dec 20, 2010 @ 10:04 AM | 8,964 Views
My good friend, Terry, took some great pics yesterday of my 48" Funder & Lightning. At the end of the day, we did some combat with our F&Ls and a couple of wings. Terry won with "Bubba".

The build thread for this plane can be found here: Funder & Lightning.


Posted by YarSmythe | Oct 24, 2010 @ 05:04 PM | 8,629 Views
A few pics from today's event. Didn't stick around for the Thunderbirds...sorry.

Sadly, the event wasn't that exciting. Not enough planes, too much dead-air time, and NO P-38 Lightnings. Glacier Girl was supposed to be there but was told it got held up in San Antonio.

-...Continue Reading
Posted by YarSmythe | Sep 18, 2010 @ 07:22 PM | 12,637 Views
Attended the Big Bird fly-in today @ Bomber Field. Lots of fun and many great planes to drool over. Here are the pics I took today. Enjoy.


PS - Not sure what's up with RCG's Java upload utility. All my pics are out-of-order. Oh well....Continue Reading
Posted by YarSmythe | Jul 22, 2010 @ 04:55 PM | 9,299 Views
A short video of my Funder & Lightning. This one captured in HD.

Funder & Lightning - Yellow Jacket (2 min 27 sec)

Posted by YarSmythe | Jul 18, 2010 @ 09:28 PM | 8,778 Views
Finally finished the rebuild on my old 80's Pilot QB-60. Went out to Scobee yesterday and maidened her as an electric tow plane. All went well and we did about 5-6 aero tows. It was friggin' HOT out there but well worth the trip.

Just a few things to tweak (landing gear & new battery) and we'll be good to go. May try to contact a few pilots over at Houston Hawks to see if they need a tow plane.

Pilot QB-60 ORCA, rebuild maiden and aero tow (1 min 6 sec)

Posted by YarSmythe | Apr 04, 2010 @ 09:05 PM | 9,600 Views
My buddy Terry from Clear Lake popped up to hang with me at Dick Scobee Airfield in West Houston. He snapped some great pics of two of my planes: Hangar 9 Piper Pawnee & Midwest Champ.

Posted by YarSmythe | Dec 20, 2009 @ 08:46 PM | 10,482 Views
Wood, paint, and metal tubes from Lowe's Hardware - $90
Banner from The Sign Company - $80
Markers from Hobby Lobby Crafts - $25

Showing off to your neighbors the "Joy of Flying" - Priceless

Merry Christmas everyone!!

Posted by YarSmythe | Nov 08, 2009 @ 02:21 PM | 9,378 Views
Finally uploaded the HD video of our aero tow from yesterday. My buddy Terry and I flew a couple of flights over at NASA in Clear Lake, TX.

Glider - Multiplex Easy Glider
Tow Plane - Hobbico FlightStar 40 / Electric

Watch the video from YouTube, making sure "HD" is ON. Enjoy!

RC Aero Tow, NASA, Clear Lake, Multiplex Easy Glider (1 min 38 sec)

Posted by YarSmythe | Nov 07, 2009 @ 11:49 PM | 9,271 Views
My buddy Terry and I attended a fun fly event down at NASA (Clear Lake, TX) today. The video is still being worked on but here is a cool still from it.

The camera was installed into a Multiplex Easy Glider canopy. The tow plane is an old Hobbico Flightstar 40 I converted to electric. The view is of NASA's main facility with Clear Lake in the background.
Posted by YarSmythe | Oct 25, 2009 @ 03:49 PM | 10,003 Views
This Hangar 9 Solo Strike ARF was acquired years ago and flew fine on an OS .40 engine. It hung in the hangar for years until I rebuilt a gummed up Saito .45 4-cycle that my father owned. Threw it on the Solo Strike for fun and it flew really well. Slow...but adequate power and a perfect trainer setup.

It has been in the hangar for more than a year and the original "tape covering" finally fell apart. I spent the last few days recovering the wing in Monokote and just returned from a nice little flight. Plane still flies great.

I normally fly electric planes but getting back to glow fuel once in a while is a nice stroll down memory lane. (minus the oily residue )

Anyone flying the Solo Strike? Electrified?

Posted by YarSmythe | Sep 18, 2009 @ 10:26 PM | 13,170 Views
Had a great time out at Bomber Field USA today. They are holding their annual Big-Bird Fly-In. It's typically large scale war bird aircraft but my Hangar 9 Piper Pawnee qualified me to fly. I was one of only TWO pilots flying electric airplanes....with well over 200 pilots registered.

I've got a TON of pics but narrowed it down to these 200. Enjoy.

-...Continue Reading
Posted by YarSmythe | Sep 18, 2009 @ 09:02 AM | 10,887 Views
I've attended the B-17 / Big Bird Scale Fly-In at Bomber Field USA several years ago. An amazing collection of scale warbirds and other aircraft. This is the first time I'll be able to attend and fly now that I own a Hangar 9 Piper Pawnee. Not sure I'll be welcome with open arms as it is an "electric" conversion but we'll see.

Here is the link to the website. For those of you in the Houston/Austin/San Antonio area...it's worth the trip.


September 18, 19 & 20
Posted by YarSmythe | Sep 02, 2009 @ 10:00 AM | 10,615 Views
Anyone catch this on the news? Let's hope the FAA doesn't come after us with a clinched fist and then throw new rules and regulations at us.

MLB News - RC Plane at Dodger Stadium

There is a good video to see in the above link.

I believe it "was" a ParkZone Sukhoi .

Posted by YarSmythe | Aug 02, 2009 @ 11:19 PM | 10,178 Views
Decided to move up from the Guillows plane and make something out of foam.

I took the very popular "Blu-Baby" and created a mini 12" wingspan version. Normally you use one motor up front but I like how the twin props work on the Blu-Baby....especially for its small size.

The Blu-Baby thread can be found here along with more pics of my build:


Posted by YarSmythe | Jul 30, 2009 @ 12:38 PM | 10,662 Views
My son put his Air Hogs X-Twin in the bottom of the toy chest and piled stuff on top of it. When we pulled it out recently we found the foam crushed out of shape. Not pretty.

For fun, I removed all the electronic gear and installed it on a Guillows Strato Streak plane. Our 'test' flight in the den had it flying straight and fast. We'll be heading over to a gymnasium later for further research.

Elevator trim tabs are used to keep the nose up during power-on. We also thought THREE (3) propellers looked cool. We'll spin up the main prop for take-off and use the electric motors for cruising speed.

Posted by YarSmythe | Jul 22, 2009 @ 10:45 AM | 9,380 Views
I've been working on a similar product for almost a year and then find out these guys have something on the market. Timing is everything...my loss.

Battery Buddies are rubber caps for your DEANS connectors. It allows you to protect the connector while, at the same time, providing instant battery charge status. Personally, I would have preferred a GREEN and RED cap (GREEN=charged, RED=discharged) but hey....it'll work.


I don't work for them...just promoting a product that I think is pretty darn cool.


Question: I've had a discussion with several people about the color coding of CHARGED vs. DISCHARGED. What are your thoughts? I'd like to know what you consider the appropriate representation of the two.

For me, my Makita charger proves my point: When a dead battery is installed, the charger lights goes RED. After it is charged, the light turns GREEN.

Posted by YarSmythe | May 19, 2009 @ 10:03 PM | 8,970 Views
Found this on CNet's website:


Looks big right now...but this would totally rock our industry, ya think?
Posted by YarSmythe | Apr 14, 2009 @ 10:45 PM | 10,295 Views
Just found this article on CNN's website:


Zenair's website:


It appears that the Zenith Zodiac 601 is an older, possibly discontinued model. Their website displays a 'new' model 650. Hope this doesn't hurt their company too much. I'm a big fan of their STOL home-built kit.

I'll follow up to this blog if I read any further news on it.
Posted by YarSmythe | Mar 29, 2009 @ 07:58 PM | 9,125 Views
I've had this project shelved for nearly two years! I could kick myself for taking this long to finish it.

Long story short. I built a Goldberg Electra kit about six years ago. Great flying electric glider. Back in 2007 I tried to catch it and ended up snapping the wing. In a way, it was a good thing as the plane desperately needed spoilers and the wing needed more reinforcement. I found a kit (hard to do) and built up a new wing. However, when I started designing the spoilers I kept changing my ideas around and finally just put it aside.

In the end I decided to go back to my original idea: Install 9g servos into each wing and just use their arms to push up the spoilers. The area is small and every thing I tried to 'link' the spoilers to the servo failed. I could have spent more time investigating other ideas but these are working fine...so why mess with it?

The pre-cut ribs in this kit left HUGE gaps between the spars. I brushed on small amounts of Gorilla Glue and water to fill everything. You can see some of the 'foam' in the photo. This wing feels MUCH stronger than the original albeit a little heavier.

Hope to have the wing covered by Wednesday and at the field on Saturday.