The Topsky Build Thread - RC Groups
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Oct 04, 2009, 09:09 PM
Kyle Clayton
Wave Glider's Avatar
Build Log

The Topsky Build Thread

So after many questions, here it is, the first real reveiw of Top Soaring's Topsky! The builder Wzg asked me to find someone to post a build thread and test fly his Topsky on here so I hooked up my friend Marcus, and ten days later, the big box arrived!

First impressions are really good! The packaging is great, it was double boxed, stuffed with tons of foam, and even had wood lined around the outside box to prevent the ever so gentle shipping companies we're all too familair with from crushing it during the overseas transit. Out of the box there was zero damage and all the parts were present. Upon opening the box you'll find the all the usual bits and peices and a very complete hardware kit, with control horns, pushrods and housings, carbon rod, lots of carbon and glass, pre-cut servo tray, even the wing plug is included! The manual is also very nice too, with step by step picture instructions.

The first thing I noticed out of the box was the wing, its beautiful! The glass work is impecable, and both the LE and TE are armored with a strip of carbon making them very strong. The carbon on the tips is also extremely clean and verrrryyy tough, we're gunna be hard pressed to get a peg through it! The pod is also very nice, with very graciously sized crabon strips and a very slick carbon hatch. The tails are competition grade balsa along with the stab mount. So lets start building!
Last edited by Wave Glider; Oct 04, 2009 at 10:28 PM.
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Oct 04, 2009, 09:36 PM
Kyle Clayton
Wave Glider's Avatar
So we started the build with the boom and pod. The stub of the pod was sanded down and the boom cut 10mm at a time until there was a snug fit. Then with some 5 min epoxy and microballons, she was set in place.

After that cured, it was time to mess with the servos and electronics in the pod. For rudder and elevator, Marcus decided on using some Eflite S-75's. The Rx is an AR6100e and the rx battery is a 220mah. In order to fit the S-75's, the holes in the tray had to be widened, they are pre-cut for about a D-60 sized servo.

After everything was test fitted, Marcus marked in the pod where the tray would set, roughed up the inside of the pod, and glued it in with some medium CA. Once in place, the servo wires wre trimmed up to the propper length. A switchjack is also in the works, but not istalled yet. Even still, there is plenty of room to remove everything if needed.

At the end, we drilled out the holes for the pushrods where they will exit at the end of the pod to go down the boom. The best way to do this was to drill a pilot hole with a tiny bit, and then file it into an oval using a rat tail file.
Latest blog entry: Helios and XXLite DLG
Oct 04, 2009, 10:00 PM
Kyle Clayton
Wave Glider's Avatar
Time for the wing! The wing root is pre-beveled for a 6" dihedral, so that saved A LOT of time normally spent sanding in the angle. Also, this wing uses balsa at the root and carbon sleeves down where the wing bolts go in, so no hard points are needed, also saving time.

Marcus decided to use HS-45's for the ailerons, so first thing to do was make a template. Using some thin cardboard from a servo box, we made a template to match the outline of the 45's. Following the directions, the servos were to be placed in front of the carbon spar. Then also using another plane of mine for reference, we decided to place the horns on the ailerons in 30mm from where they're cut out of the wing. Marking 30mm in, I used a square against the hinge line and placed the servo template on the wing.

After taking some careful measurements of the template on the wing so that servos would be even, it was time to cut! Exacto made quick work of the glass, and then the foam left over was dug out with a scratch awl. And the fit? Like a glove! The 45's fell perfectly into place. Then I used a hole saw made out of brass tubing to make a wiring channel.

Next it was time to mark the bolt holes through the wing. The best way I've found to do this with the balsa root wings is to line the wing up on the pod, mark the holes with a pencil, and then use a rat tail file to file out a channel through the root. This eliminates the "is it square?" guess work when drilling the wings after they've been joined. Plus, this creates a pilot hole so that all is needed is to enlarge the holes to fit the bolts. Also the wire channel was marked and filed out. After the balsa was filed, Marcus took an exacto and added a few pin holes in it to give the epox in the root a better bite. Then it was time to tape off the roots and sand the skin so the wing-root glass would have good bite.

Once all the ground work was done, it was time to join the halves. Since this wing relies heavily on the strength of the glass and carbon patches to hold the halves together, only a small amount of 5 minute epoxy and microballoon mix was used to join the halves. The epoxy was set in and the dihedral was set at 6". Time to cure!
Latest blog entry: Helios and XXLite DLG
Oct 04, 2009, 10:16 PM
Kyle Clayton
Wave Glider's Avatar
Wings continued! So now time for the glass, Marcus had a large strip of glass and prefers the one strip method, so we cut a 40mm wide (20mm on each root) and 14.5" long strip. I just bought a new tool/toy for this that one of my buddies Brian showed me, the fabric cutting wheel. WOW this makes cutting glass a little too easy! I cant wait to use it on every build haha! Anyways, back to the build the glass provided in the kit is more than enough to cover the root in 2 pieces, so if you have no glass laying around, the kit has all you need.

After cutting it, it was time to 3M77 her and lay her down. After it was on, time to set it for good. We debated on whether we should CA the glass or epoxy it down, I voted for the CA because it is strong, and very fast, but Marcus, being a religious Paul Naton follower had more faith in epoxy. That being said, 60 min finishing epoxy was used. The epoxy was poured on generously and worked into the glass weave via Marcus. Once that was worked into the glass really good, the excess was blotted out with some paper towel. Once this is cured, the carbon reinforcing patches will go on over the bolt holes over top the glass. So since this process takes fffoooooorrrrreeeeeevvvvvveeeeeerrrr (stupid finishing resin) I guess this is it for now! We'll be back soon with the carbon patches and wing joinging to the fuse. Not bad progress for 2 days work!
Last edited by Wave Glider; Oct 04, 2009 at 10:34 PM.
Oct 04, 2009, 11:10 PM
specked out
mccainml's Avatar
I couldnt have said it better myself.........hahaha nice work Kyle

Oct 04, 2009, 11:44 PM
Where'd The Wise Men Go?!?
AC5FF's Avatar
Last edited by AC5FF; Oct 24, 2009 at 12:52 PM.
Oct 05, 2009, 12:04 AM
specked out
mccainml's Avatar
its an hs 45
Oct 05, 2009, 12:23 AM
Cool beans! I've been waiting for a buildup/review of this bird. I was saying on another thread that I was between this and a predator.
Oct 05, 2009, 09:31 AM
wzg_zxl's Avatar
Hi,Kyle what a beautiful work you done.
Oct 05, 2009, 10:42 AM
Kyle Clayton
Wave Glider's Avatar
Thanks! I'm really hoping we can have her done by the weekend and some flight reports by Sunday. One step I didnt get a chance to do, mainly because of a lack propper tools, was weigh the parts before we assembled it. However, there is a scale on the way and we will be able to post an accurate finished RTF weight.
Latest blog entry: Helios and XXLite DLG
Oct 05, 2009, 03:42 PM
I eat only vegetarian beef
Skycruiser's Avatar
If it helps, these were my weights

L wing 69.4g
R wing 68.9g
Pod 32.8g
Boom 15.7g
Stab 8.9g
Fin 6.8g

Boom is unsanded weight, tail surfaces covered.


Edit: Just weighed my wing after joining plus carbon patches, 130.7g. This obviously doesn't match with the weights listed above. I guess that's what I get for using a dealextreme $10 scale!
Last edited by Skycruiser; Oct 06, 2009 at 04:58 PM.
Oct 09, 2009, 01:38 PM
Mezmerizing...ain't it!
Robert N's Avatar

what's Next?

Wave Glider, Don't leave us "hanging" what is next in the build?
Oct 09, 2009, 01:55 PM
Father of Fr3aK, DLG Pilot
tom43004's Avatar
Good stuff Kyle... I'm looking forward to flight reports.
Oct 09, 2009, 05:55 PM
Registered User
Any idea what the price will be for this DLG?
Oct 09, 2009, 07:28 PM
Where'd The Wise Men Go?!?
AC5FF's Avatar
Last edited by AC5FF; Oct 24, 2009 at 12:52 PM.

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