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Jul 11, 2011, 10:07 AM
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Sopwith Mike's Avatar
Discussion

Repairing an Ivan's Auster


My version of Ivan Pettigrew’s Auster Aiglet was modified and decorated to become an RNZAF J/5 Auster at https://www.rcgroups.com/forums/show....php?t=1031870.

It flew very well but after an unfortunate TX failure ended up cavorting around the sky like a demented butterfly before diving in nose first from 30 ft. The crash was impressive and the impact was only a few feet from Trevorh’s car and a number of his superb models spread around the periphery. I was very lucky!

The subsequent Board of Inquiry found that the tail surfaces and rear fuselage up to the cockpit were undamaged, the wing had a broken main spar and the front of the fuselage was BER “beyond economical repair” as we said in the Army. Dismantling the wreckage and removing most of the covering was quite a discouraging experience and in the end I scrapped the entire fuselage. The only question remaining was whether to rebuild the model as KZ 1705 or try something different

The Army Air Corps museum at Middle Wallop is only a few miles away and while researching the Auster I had taken a number of photos of WJ358, an AOP 6 that hangs from the roof. At the time I was not sure about the rather drab Army colour scheme, but the more I looked at those pictures, the more I saw how the wings and tail would appreciate a new fuselage and a different identity.

The AOP 6 has a different rear cockpit profile from the J/5 and would have to have two seats this time to show off the new build.

But I need answers to a couple of questions:

The colour scheme is not a simple replication of the RAF “brown and green” and looks much more like kahki and green. I’ve attached a selection of pictures and would be very grateful for advice. What colours were specified for AAC aircraft of the 50s and 60s?

The flaps are completely separated from the wing by four fittings each and an operating rod which exits from the cockpit. The model does not need working flaps and although they would be fun to play with would add a lot of complication to the rebuild. But can anyone suggest a reasonably simple way to attach the flaps to the wing TE?
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Jul 11, 2011, 10:17 AM
Complete the Illusion!
35Mhz's Avatar
Mike,

Try this http://www.simmerspaintshop.com/page-RGB-colors-UK.html, it is not a complete list, but unless the lighting is playing tricks in the photo, looks more 'desert' in finish
Jul 11, 2011, 12:50 PM
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Warren Jones's Avatar

To Sopwith


Ouch! Sorry to see that.
Jul 11, 2011, 01:35 PM
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Sopwith Mike's Avatar
Hi Warren,

Nothing to do with the model, which is a beauty. Yours is looking very good indeed and some of your techniques will find their way into my rebuild.

I saw Ivan flying his at Chilliwack last year, and he threw it around with abandon: it was a very impressive display of piloting quite a large model quite close to the ground. Mine was more of a "float around and look nice" model.

Best of luck with yours,

Mike
Jul 11, 2011, 02:13 PM
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Sopwith Mike's Avatar
Just to show how difficult it is to compare colours, here are what I have in the Tamiya range. Looking at them on my desk, I can see that the Tamiya Flat Earth and Olive Green are pretty close to the museum aircraft. Olive green would be good, because it is one of the Solartex colours.

My apologies for misspelling "khaki" previously
Jul 12, 2011, 02:53 AM
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Trevorh's Avatar
Glad to see the Auster is on the mend Mike. I look forward to following its reincarnation.
Jul 17, 2011, 10:34 AM
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Sopwith Mike's Avatar
While I have the plane in pieces and uncovered, I thought I should take the opportunity to add some detail I forgot last time. Here are the very obvious trim tabs (or do they move in opposition to the elevator to take some load off the pilot's right arm?), with a good old English foot for scale. Also I've reverted the fin to the older style, which has a balance weight projecting from the top of the rudder (yet to be fitted) instead of the aerodynamic balance.

I have learned by painful and frustrating experience that de-covering a structure requires care and patience, if one is not to have to undertake an even greater rebuild. The components shown here stayed together very well: no superglue needed.
Jul 19, 2011, 04:32 PM
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Sopwith Mike's Avatar
I asked Peter Capon, the Archivist at the Museum of Army Flying (to give it it's correct title) about the colours of Army Austers. He enclosed some documentation showing that "dark earth and dark green" were correct, so Tamiya flat earth and flat green will be a close match. I had a look at Solartex dark green today and it seems close to the Tamiya colour and just a shade darker and more green than their olive drab.

I've stripped off the last of the covering from the wing to get at the structure, so whatever happens, it's a re-cover job.
Jul 19, 2011, 06:39 PM
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vonJaerschky's Avatar
Ah, the requisite photo of Mike's socks! Oliver is salivating as I type.

Nice to see the Auster being refitted. She's to nice to not fly again!
Jul 20, 2011, 03:40 AM
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Sopwith Mike's Avatar
So far no-one has confronted the challenge of duplicating (however simply) the cast metal hinges between wing TE and the barn door flap that hangs out in the breeze.

There isn't much meat to bolt/screw the wing part of the hinge to, and the flap has to be reasonably firm so as not to move around when the wing part in front is dragging it round the sky.

Frank - any ideas?
Jul 20, 2011, 03:49 AM
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Sopwith Mike's Avatar
I keep drawing up the hinge as if I was trying to reproduce it exactly. It did dawn on me after the last post that the easiest way would be merely to have bass 3 x 3 strips between the two, undersurface to top surface. There are three hinges on the real thing and this would secure it at the right relative position. I don't really think it needs to work.
Jul 20, 2011, 07:52 AM
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vonJaerschky's Avatar
Quote:
Originally Posted by Sopwith Mike
So far no-one has confronted the challenge of duplicating (however simply) the cast metal hinges between wing TE and the barn door flap that hangs out in the breeze.

There isn't much meat to bolt/screw the wing part of the hinge to, and the flap has to be reasonably firm so as not to move around when the wing part in front is dragging it round the sky.

Frank - any ideas?
Actually, yes! Those hinge brackets quite resemble the hinge brackets on my Jungmeister. I'd make the brackets out of ply. You can add soft balsa to the sides to give them some more thickeness and then shape them. Then use a length of carbon fibre tube as a hinge pin. Put Aluminium tubes inside the flap for the hinge pun to run through. I don't know if I'm explaining myself very well. Have a look at my elevator hinging here
Jul 20, 2011, 08:40 AM
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Sopwith Mike's Avatar
Ah yes, I remember the hinges in your thread Frank. Perhaps I could work in some of those hinge point thingies from Dubro...perhaps I could make the scale actuating rod lower the flaps...perhaps I could hide the servos in the wing roots...perhaps I could wake up from this dream where I'm running faster but getting nowhere...
Jul 22, 2011, 12:45 PM
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I'm about 1/2 way through the fuselage build. I keep forgetting what I had done last time, and having to refer to my old build thread (old age). I did manage to use the old spruce doublers at Formers C and D. They are the key to the whole fuselage build and since they were undamaged I thought they deserved resurrection, as did the ply UC plate.

Former B/the motor mount was pretty bashed up and a new one was required. When I came to measure up the structure it was plain that I had made the original too narrow at the top, so the rebuild will be more accurate in this area.

There is quite a lot to do for the new rear canopy and crew area. I discovered through the Museum that the observer's seat was a swivel affair, so he could face forward or backward depending on his role. This explains why you see pictures of the same aircraft in different crew configurations.

I remember being told at the RMA Sandhurst in the mid-60s that the pilot could never be a lesser rank than the observer. There were many Sgt pilots in the AAC, so presumably there were a lot of Sgt observers. Strange place, the Army.

I've been using "Gorilla Glue" for the first time and made a fine old mess at first with all the foam squeezing out of the joints. It does seem to make quite a strong joint.


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