#47 Model Airplane Building Clinic >> “Great Planes P51 Mustang" - Page 4 - RC Groups
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Feb 01, 2013, 05:46 PM
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PaulBrad's Avatar
Your Great Planes P-51 sure is coming along nicely. I built the same kit about three years ago and like Xanadu I elected to use electric power. The model really is a very nice flier. Once you get some flying experience with your trainer you will really like flying your nice P-51.

One minor change I made to mine since it is electric powered and does not have engine vibration was to make the forward fuselage section above the plastic cowl removable. In effect I created a split cowl. The two halves have plywood lugs that slip into plywood pockets that are glued to the firewall. The cowl halves are removed vertically and held in place with magnets. This makes access to the motor very easy without having to remove the prop

For your reference I have included a few photos of my Great Planes P-51

Paul Bradley
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Feb 02, 2013, 02:03 PM
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Harare's Avatar
Hello Paul

Thanks for posting the pictures of your plane. It looks really neatly built and I like the finishing. I have gotten quite a bit further on my build than posted here and am trying to decide how to cover it.

I really like the panels lines you have added, it finishes it off nicely. I don't think mine will look as smooth as yours but i will use a lot more filler now to try.

May 02, 2013, 02:03 PM
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Harare's Avatar
Its been a while since I posted anything as I got short of time and a bit lazy. Anyway here is an update of where I am now. Nearly everything is done except for final sanding and fixing up all the stuff I broke manhandling it. Here are the photos of the progress.

The next steps are the wheel wells for the retracts, filling in the gaps between the wing flaring and the fuselage and finally lots of sanding. The wing fairings need a bit of work still. As I was not looking forward to covering it, it looks difficult, I decided to build a SIG LT-40. I am at nearly the same stage with that build and will post some photos below.
May 02, 2013, 02:19 PM
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Harare's Avatar
As mentioned I was building a trainer to practice flying and covering, here are some photos of that. Not so many photos as it pretty much flies together. Still not sure yet if I will cut the wing cheeks off and install a cowl. I will probably not as I want to see what covering is like and a cowl wont make it much prettier.

Need to but the tail feathers on still, then sanding and covering so its pretty far.
May 03, 2013, 03:34 AM
Registered User

My goodness, those are rough cuts

Cuts? More like tears. Given the good reputation of SIG I would have expected better. Remind me not to complain about laser burn-marks again. Still, it seems like a decent trainer and I wish you luck/succes with it!
May 03, 2013, 09:47 AM
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Harare's Avatar
They were only stamped through 2/3s in places. So no amount of cutting with blades or sanding the back worked. After a couple of breaking blades I decided to just break them out instead of loss a finger. There were some problems with the preshaped ailerons and leading edges on the wings but other than that it was an easy build. I checked internet and seems nobody else had these problems so guess I got the last batch before they change the dies or go to laser cutting for it all.
Jul 09, 2013, 04:19 AM
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Harare's Avatar
The workload has reduced a bit and no need to work evenings and the weekends so it was time to carry on building again.

First step was to make a plane stand as the holes in the wood needed filling and some way to prevent more getting dings in the balsa. After that everything was sanded and filled in. It seems and looks smooth everywhere, hope its good enough for the covering.

The next step was putting in the wheel wells. This took a couple of hours and I still need to finish off with a sanding and smoothing.

After that I filled in the wing fillets with epoxy and micro-ballons. It turned out very nicely if I do say so myself. At the same time I did it with a SIG LT-40 trainer where it did not go so well. This was mainly as I used 2 hour epoxy and took the wing off to soon. No matter a sanding and some wood filler made it neat.

At the moment I am busy with the cowl which is a much bigger pain in the a** than I thought. The cowl will be full of holes to get it on and all the piping out. I still need to add a hole for the glow plug starter and the carb adjustment. I thought I could pop the cowl on after starting but that is impossible with out losing fingers in the prop. An electric motor would make life a lot easier and prettier here.

The final step is to balance the plane and then it is ready for covering. I have balanced the trainer on both axis and it is ready for covering. If the covering arrives this week hopefully I can have at least one covered before vacation next week. I have watched some covering videos and I am still unsure whether it is easy or difficult, siding towards the latter still.
Jul 09, 2013, 04:29 AM
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Harare's Avatar
I ran in both of the engines a couple of weeks ago on a test stand and boy do they make a noise and a mess. My garden fence, bench, clothes etc. were covered in oil.

The vibrations were also more than I expected and am wondering if my magnets will hold the cowl on. Its jammed in place so it cant fly off but it might shift around a bit.

After running the motors in I decided perhaps switching to electric would be a good idea. These planes will stay glow powered as the engines are awesome but we will see what the future will bring. I ordered a SIG wonder and will probably but an electric power train in there to see what that is like.
Jul 09, 2013, 08:23 AM
Flying Low
cbarnes0061's Avatar
Covering isn't to bad. It can be frustrating but just take you time. I would do the trainer first as it will be easier having less curves than the mustang does.
Jul 09, 2013, 11:22 AM
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Xanadu's Avatar
Yes, get your skills from covering the trainer first. You will do fine, just take your time with it. There are quite a few excellent videos on covering, just search youtube for "monokote" and watch a few more.
Jul 09, 2013, 02:25 PM
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Harare's Avatar

Thanks for the advice, I have checked a few videos and it doesn't seem to hard. Don't want to get a too big head though. Else there will be a lot of
Jul 16, 2013, 01:40 AM
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Harare's Avatar

Well I got the covering materials in and started up on the wing of the SIG LT40. So far I have only done flat bits and it takes time but seems doable. Tonight I will try the wing tips and we will see if I stick to my conclusion. It took all my free time last night, so I hope there is enough time to get both top and bottom done tonight.

The wing will be transparent purple over part of the wing with white on top and black underneath. Its similar to the concept colouring of the SIG EP42B ARF, which is I guess an electric LT40.

Also got the pilot in for the mustang and so is also now ready for covering. I still have decide a colour scheme though. There are very many nice looking ideas out there.
Jul 18, 2013, 04:24 PM
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Harare's Avatar

Well I have the wing nearly done on my trainer, it was slow going and I made lots of mistakes. The biggest Is that I overlapped the wing tip the wrong way so there is a bit of white on the side. I have to think if I want to fix that with a stripe or just black. Will get better as it goes on, need to do the ailerons and then on to the fuselage.

It will have to wait a few weeks though as I am off for vacation.
Aug 23, 2013, 04:05 AM
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Harare's Avatar
Back from vacation and finished off covering the trainer.

Now its time to choose the colouring for the Mustang. I think I will combine the designs pictured. I will use the yellow nose (as I already have the spinner) and then follow the rest of the other plane as it is not so busy.

After practicing the covering on the trainer I found the most annoying parts to cover are concave surfaces. This means covering the wing fillet will be serous pain in the butt. It took me 3 weeks to finish the other plane but that was mostly due to thinking and cutting templates. The Mustang should go quicker if I can put the time in.

I really liked how the panel lines turned out in the pictures posted by PaulBrad but I will give those miss at the moment as I have no idea how to do them.
Sep 02, 2013, 03:49 AM
UAS Pilot - FAA# *******HRK
CryHavoc's Avatar
Its too bad I didn't read this before you cut your cowl. It looks like the engine is sitting pretty far out on the mount. A prop shaft extension would allow the engine to be moved back to put the carb more inside the cowl. Here is a link, http://www.amazon.com/6530-4-28x1-Sh.../dp/B001BHLS3O

There is also a 3/4 inch version if needed. The control line and scale guys use these all the time.

Here's a better idea of what it looks like installed,

Here the whole build if you want to see some excellent construction,

Last edited by CryHavoc; Sep 02, 2013 at 04:00 AM.

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