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Posted by TRWolf | Aug 29, 2016 @ 10:56 AM | 2,743 Views
I recently completed this scratch-built 28% scale model of Scott Loepkey's full size Bird Dog (N5247G), which is based at the Santa Ynez, California airport. The intention of this project was to make a highly accurate replica of his airplane, suitable for competition in scale at the highest level. The finished airplane has a 121 inch wing span, weighs 38 pounds, and is powered by a Saito FG-57T twin cylinder four cycle gasoline engine. The airplane features pneumatic disk brakes from Robart, functional navigation and landing lights from RAM, and cockpit instruments and detail items from IFlyTailies. My wife Debbie did the leather upholstery work in the cabin (seats and cabin side panels), which adds greatly to the interior realism. Construction is conventional built up balsa/lite ply/plywood with balsa sheeting, and finished with epoxy fiberglass and Klasskote paint. The main landing gear is of scale configuration and is fabricated from heat treated 4130 steel, while the tail gear leaf spring is fabricated from spring steel. The main gear tires are from CB Associates, mounted on custom aluminum hubs and scale hub covers.

This project initially started with a set of 1/4 scale plans from a commercial source, that were advertised as being suitable for scale competition. When I received the plans and started checking them against the 3-view documentation I had collected along with photos of my friend's full-size L-19, a number of scale deviations were noticed. I...Continue Reading
Posted by TRWolf | Nov 06, 2012 @ 06:38 PM | 3,952 Views
I've attached photos of my two very old sport planes that I recently refinished with Klasskote two part epoxy paint. Both of these planes were previously covered with Monokote, but after 20+ years, they were looking very shabby. I stripped the Monokote, applied 3/4 oz fiberglass, and then painted with Klasskote (primer and top coats). Klasskote is an amazing product! Went on very nicely with a detail gun, and it flows out to a very high gloss, perfect finish.

The pattern plane is an MK Aurora 40 powered by an OS .50 SX, and the other is a Goldberg Extra 300, powered with an OS 1.20 AX....Continue Reading
Posted by TRWolf | Nov 04, 2012 @ 10:11 PM | 5,930 Views
I built this airplane from plans purchased from Bob Holman. It is a Brian Taylor design, originally 71" wing span, and Bob Holman blew the plans up to 81". The Mosquito has been my favorite airplane ever since I saw the movie "633 Squadron" when I was a young boy. When I saw these plans advertised in the model magazine, I decided that I just had to take this project on. The plans came with a canopy, fiberglass nacelles, and spun aluminum spinners. I did everything else...

It took me a little over a year to complete the plane, and it first flew in June of 1991. I've been flying it ever since, although the airplane has evolved over the years. It originally was modeled after SY-B / HP927 of the RAF and carried this paint scheme until late 2002. At that time, I had gotten involved with scale competition on the Scalemasters circuit using my TBM Avenger. The Mosquito was such a good flying airplane, I decided to re-finish it as TH-M / NS850 of the RCAF, and take it into serious scale competition (which I did starting in 2003). During this refurbishment process, a lot of scale detailing was added, including weathering, landing gear details, and inspection/access panels, etc. I have competed with the updated airplane until recently, and did quite well with it; finishing in the top 10 at the Scalemasters Championships on multiple occasions, and finishing in second place in Expert at the 2011 Scalemasters Championships. It also has been to Top Gun...Continue Reading
Posted by TRWolf | Jun 21, 2012 @ 11:50 PM | 6,047 Views
Unfortunately this airplane is no longer around; an engine flame out on the downwind leg of a landing approach resulted in an off-field landing in some very rough terrain....but it was a great plane while it lasted (about 3 years)! Flew well, but a little on the heavy side at 26 pounds (58 oz/sq ft loading!!!). Features included folding wings, operable bomb bay doors with bomb/torpedo release, operable gun turret (slew and elevate). Built from Bob Holman plans; highly modified to include folding wings, etc. Wing span: 81 inches. Power: O.S. 1.60 FX with custom in-cowl muffler/exhaust system.

Here is a video taken at our local flying field:
Tom Wolf's Grumman TBM-3 Avenger (6 min 10 sec)
...Continue Reading
Posted by TRWolf | Jun 21, 2012 @ 11:38 AM | 10,320 Views
I completed this plane in November 2011, after approximately two years of construction. Construction is balsa and plywood, closely following Brian Taylor's approach to construction. However, I redesigned the wing to be a two piece wing that plugs into the side of the fuselage (required fuselage redesign too) using a 1 1/2 inch OD carbon fiber joiner. The nacelles are fiberglass, using the lost-foam technique for fabrication. I pulled my own canopy, and built the scale retractable landing gear from scratch. Cockpit instruments are from InZpan and IFlyTailies. The pilot and navigator/radio operator are from Best Pilots. Finish is 3/4 oz fiberglass cloth, Warbird Colors, followed by flat clear epoxy from Klass Kote.

The plane first flew November 30, 2011 and it flies extremely well. Ground handling is excellent as well: Tracks straight down the runway for both take-off and landing. It is very easy to do really spectacular landings with fully deployed flaps (about 40 degrees) and power carried through the approach until short final. I placed 6th in Expert at Top Gun 2012, and first place at the 2012 NW Scale Championships. Here is a link to a YouTube video documenting the latter part of the build and the first flight:

Tom Wolf's 1/5 Scale Mosquito (18 min 28 sec)

I've attached a few photos as well; some showing the cockpit, scratch-built retractable landing gear, and the engine installation./

11/3/2012 Update: Here is a link to a YouTube video clip...Continue Reading