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Mar 05, 2012, 11:56 PM
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flying_violin's Avatar
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StevensAero Quick Oats build

I've built a few blue foam planes before, and liked them because they were easy to repair, cheap, and fun. After looking at some of those little ultra micro kits, I decided to go ahead and get the Corsair when it came out. I never really liked how it flew, and it never seemed like an airplane I could relax with, so after looking at the tired, stress-cracked foam, I knew it was time for it to donate some organs. A friend of mine showed me the StevensAero website, and I saw that the have some kits that would fit the bill!

I ordered the Quick Oats kit, some props, wheels, and covering. I also went to the local hobby shop and picked up some thin CA, medium CA, and an iron. "Oh no, he had to go buy an iron?" I can hear you thinking, "This will not end well." Well, we will see! Enough background, so on with the build!

This is what I started with:

I opened the box, and everything was present and accounted for. Uncrunched, too!

Alright, any idiot can open a package and spill the contents on the living room floor. Now let's see if I can get this pile of surprisingly fragile timber into something airplane shaped! I decided to follow the instructions this time around, and started with the assembly of the tail feathers.

Ta-da! This ain't so bad after all! Next up was the wing. First the left side, then the right.

Only glued my fingers together once (Notice there was no de-bonder in the items purchased?)... Right side should be a piece of cake!

Wow! That even looks kinda like a wing should look! What does it say to build next? Ah, the fuselage is the only major bit left. As everything prior has gone so swimmingly well, why not tackle it while I'm on a roll?

Bam! It looks like the picture on the card that came with the kit!

Now how does this iron thingy work? Let's see, there is a cord hanging out of one end... I bet that goes into the wall. Dial on top should go to, oh, let's say 2. Well, it's getting warm, so that means maybe I should cut out a piece of covering. Smack it down with the iron, attempt to smooth out the giant wrinkle, and trim the covering down to the part. That wasn't too bad at all!

That was all good and dandy, but the next piece of covering threw me for a loop. This is really thin SoLite covering, and the first piece had been cut near the edge of the roll. They include this nice little flange out there so that you can peel off the clear backing, but when a piece is cut from the middle, you suddenly have the single most frustrating thing known to man! A frantic call to the dude who introduced me to the hobby in the first place gave me the secret to removing the backing: Get a new X-acto blade and carefully prick the backing near a corner and lift it right off! Well, after all that, I finally did manage to tack some covering down on the wooden frames!

After that, I decided to call it an evening, so I'll update it when I have a free evening again.
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Mar 06, 2012, 12:41 AM
I tell her RC is cheap !
carguy1994ca's Avatar
Nice looking build ! So much better than my guillows aeronca...I've been looking at those models for a while, the wood looks so nicely cut.
Mar 07, 2012, 12:18 AM
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flying_violin's Avatar
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Yes, the wood is wonderfully cut, and the pieces fit together so well that you hardly need glue to hold anything together! They just slide together perfectly and stay that way. It allows even a complete amateur like myself to look halfway competent!

Here is tonight's progress... More covering! The wing was a tad daunting, as I had a relatively large piece of covering that kept wanting to stick to itself, fold, wrinkle, and otherwise be a complete nuisance! When I first got it all stuck down, I thought I was going to have to peel it all off and start again, but after working with it for a while, I finally got something that looked kinda like a model airplane wing!

Flat side down, curved side to go! The top side initially looked to be a total disaster as well, but I finally got everything squared away after much fiddling around with the iron. Here is the result:

I don't think it looks too bad. Next up, I started covering the fuselage. Lots of flat surfaces without much excitement, so here it is.

I decided to remove the electronic bits from the Corsair, and went to town with the X-acto. The Parkzone stuff is held in with this white rubbery stuff that I am pretty sure is strong enough to be Chuck Norris' eye goobers. It merely laughed at my attempts to gently remove it with my fingernail, so I escalated the situation to using the knife. Well, it turns out I was a little too exuberant with the slicing and dicing, and I severed one of the red servo wires...

Dang! Out came the soldering iron, and a little bit later, the two halves were reunited into a single continuous piece of electrical conductor! A heavy coat of red paint to act as an insulator, and we are back in business.

I felt the fuselage, while it was covered and technically well on its way to being airworthy, needed a little visual enhancement. So I broke out the red roll of SoLite and made up some trim:

Stuck the wing and tail on just for kicks, and here is a little teaser of things to come!

Mar 07, 2012, 01:52 PM
I tell her RC is cheap !
carguy1994ca's Avatar
Lookin good ! I like your writng style

That plane should be a joy to fly. I want one ! I like their S-Pou, should really get one when i have time to build.
Mar 07, 2012, 04:20 PM
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looks good. i've got a rockette sitting here i am going to start in the next couple of weeks. really looking forward to building with the laser cut parts.
Mar 08, 2012, 12:48 AM
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flying_violin's Avatar
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I was also looking at the little "Flying Flea" model that StevensAero offers, but I thought I would try a normal airplane first, and then branch out into the exotic after I know what I'm doing.

Got quite a bit more done on the model tonight. It's amazing what can happen when you just sit down for a little bit and work on something! First up, the tail is only useful if it is rigidly attached to the fuselage. Funny how they don't do anything sitting on the workbench! In order for the glue to adhere to something besides my skin, the covering needs to be removed from the mating surfaces.

After bending the landing gear wire up and installing the wheels, I then chocked the mains with the wheel chock set provided in the kit, and propped up the tailskid with the tail stand (sanding block)! The trim also turned out so splendidly on the fuselage, that I felt confident tackling the trim on the wings. I found that wing trim is not too much harder than fuselage trim. As you probably want more pictures and fewer words, here is the result of the above efforts:

And then you look at the thing from the front, and see if anything is cock-eyed.

Once everything is in place, grab the glue bottle, and fix everything in place.

At this point, I needed to start thinking about the electronics that should be going in at some point. I started with the motor installation, which is not what the instructions recommend. However, the instructions should be followed and the motor installed later, as I found out the hard way! But in the bliss of ignorance, I glued the motor onto the mount.

Then I turned the plane upside-down and installed the magical green board in with some double stick foam tape:

At this point, I realized that the motor wires are really short, and would only barely reach the connector on the circuit board! If the motor is not yet glued down with enough super glue to keep an angry freight train at bay, it could probably be wiggled around enough to get everything hooked up. However, my motor would not come undone, so I proceeded to unstick the other side of the equation! I ended up turning the board upside-down, with the motor connector pointing forwards, and then plugging the motor in like that. However, in order to get the servos pointed in the right direction again, I had to right the board, which meant that I had to bend the motor connector up, as the wires were just a hair too short to allow the board to sit flat!

I fired it up, and everything ran, so I hooked up the pushrods to the servos, and moved onto the last little detail. A quick weight and balance check showed that I was aft of the CG limit, which can make for some very exciting (and usually short) flying! Included in the kit was a little "faux motor" that emulates a little gas motor on the front of the airplane. I decided to use this kit in order to get the CG forward a little bit. Here is the contents of the faux motor:

The cylinder head is made up of the little balsa donuts, and they are kept true by the T pin.

Then the little aluminum tube (glow plug?) is put in place:

Next, the paper cylinder is glued on, and the T pin is removed. The exhaust port is a stubby piece of heat-shrink tubing:

And a coat of paint is thrown on for looks. I used "gunmetal" as it had the word metal in the name, and I assume that is what glow engines are made from!

Tack it on the plane, add the glow plug wire (more heat-shrink tubing), and viola!

Now we are ready to hit the skies!

Here is a size comparison to the original Corsair carcass:

As you can see, the Quick Oats looks to have a lighter wing loading, and more generous tail surfaces. You can't really see it in this picture, but the vertical of the corsair is almost comically small compared to the Quick Oats tail. Probably explains why it handled so terribly!

Well, once I get it outside, I'll take some more pictures of it, and hopefully get some shots of it aviating! (Well, I won't get the shots, but maybe a kind soul at the flying field can get some nice ones.)
Mar 08, 2012, 01:55 AM
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PeteSchug's Avatar
Gotta ask.


As a guy who makes and plays fiddles (1 1/2 so far on the build side) and loves flying your name has caught my attention.

Any explanation?

Pete. Check my blog for some flying stories, mostly sailplanes.
Mar 08, 2012, 08:44 AM
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flying_violin's Avatar
Thread OP
Originally Posted by PeteSchug
Any explanation?
As is the case with most things in life, yes, there is an explanation! Basically, I've been playing violin for most of my conscious life, as my mother is a violin teacher. But my dad is a private pilot, so my heart has been pulled towards aviation! Getting into RC was a rough start, as I bought and repeatedly crashed an RC plane in high school. I had given up on the "stupid hobby" when I noticed some friends of mine had RC planes in college. I borrowed parts from all of them, and built up a few blue foamies, and buddy boxed with one of them until I could actually get a plane up and back down without being totally out of control! When I was thinking of usernames that had a good chance of being available, I decided to combine two of my hobbies together.

If you notice the avitar, I am the kid in the picture, pan-handling at an airshow!
Mar 08, 2012, 09:20 AM
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Vrated's Avatar
Cool! Maybe we can hear some Charlie Danials background music with the video of the maiden. BTW great job on the Quick Oats!
Last edited by Vrated; Mar 08, 2012 at 09:29 AM.
Mar 08, 2012, 11:41 AM
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PeteSchug's Avatar
Thanks for the explanation.

I've been flying RC and full scale for about fifty years, but fiddle for about fifteen, not counting some self taught stuff on fiddle and cello. I date my real playing from when I started lessons.

I haven't flown full scale for twenty-five or thirty years, mostly because the costs got very steep but also because I no longer felt like spending my entire weekend at the airport.

I've got four or five Stevens Aero kits, but I need to make room in this cluttered apt! I fly mostly micro these days. Fits my fantasy of flight better than quarter scale, which I also fly.

Convenience is strongly on the side of the tiny stuff.

I'll probably start the DH Hummingbird first. The ultralights of the Lympne (sp?) trials are really interesting planes.

Mar 08, 2012, 02:16 PM
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MUTCAKE's Avatar
flying violin,
Thank you for this great thread! As posted above your writing style is excellent. I also have been looking at these kits and love the looks of balsa planes. Good Job. Hope it flies as good as it looks. ( I know it will )

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