Building Micro and Lightweight RC kites and models using CF Rods and fabric/film - RC Groups
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Jan 26, 2013, 07:40 AM
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Building Micro and Lightweight RC kites and models using CF Rods and fabric/film

I started indoor flying only recently and have been exploring the smaller model designs that are available...
One of my favorite ultra light models is the Vapor , which as you know is a CF and film build and is an easy slow flier.
It occurred to me that since lightness is a major factor in any these indoor models, and ,as the vapor uses the CF and film construction, that some of my larger kites designs would do very well in the indoor venues when made at reduced sizes

My definition for any kite is that it should be a rod and fabric/film build..
So this includes flat kites and more normal plane shapes like the vapor

For indoors a lot of indoor venues, they now have weight limits with about 100gms as the top limit, but for general use lightweight to me goes up to double that
Last edited by davereap; Feb 01, 2013 at 01:18 AM.
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Jan 26, 2013, 07:49 AM
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My night kites thread is here, and through it you will find redraws of various rc kites...As well as some foamies that were rebuit in kite style

The simple kite was my starting point for a smaller version
Inspiration when I started redrawing, came from the IFO and LiteBug
A mix of the 3 is giving very good results

Here is the basic 'simple' as a starting point... at this size it will fly in larger indoor venues...
Last edited by davereap; Jan 26, 2013 at 08:46 AM.
Jan 26, 2013, 08:06 AM
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here is the design processed through a series of redrawing and rebuilds

V1 lines was built exactly as seen .. but missed on the plan, is the size of the bracing rod on the elevons, this was 2mm CF and the horn was fixed to this rod... the holographic foil is just UHU glued to the rods , it was not shrunk, although it will heat shrink..
the structure is well light, stiff and strong...

but I was trying to go lighter...

V2 built as seen.. and although I used narrower rods and a lighter film covering the weight ended up again at 35gms AUW..
The extra bracing rods and a set of wheels added the weight back on..

V2 flies fine... although it is slow in the roll it cruises arround about half again as fast as a vapor on a 5gm motor at less than half throttle... lovely, smooth and easy, it will loop from level cruise
Last edited by davereap; Jan 26, 2013 at 08:18 AM.
Jan 26, 2013, 08:25 AM
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Now was the time to be critical..
V2 flies good but....
Looking at the V2 there are a couple of things that can be improved...
The leading edge can come forward by at least 1" with the new position still leaving enough room to fit the prop in the front open area curve..
The pushrods go out at an angle.. it works fine but a straighter run would be better.. The bracing rod where the horn is fitted can be moved in closer to the end of the curved aileron...
This lets you fit the two rod ends onto one longer hinge tube, now you dont need the horns rod to be so big..

the redraw to a V3...
Jan 26, 2013, 08:35 AM
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Flying the V2... was lovely..... the COG was set at 70mm back from the leading edge...
The model was slow, smooth and easy, it could do very tight circles, loop from cruise, but it was slow in the roll..mostly becaue it was flying slowly and I lacked the power get it to speed and to use the motor in high alpha maneuvers...
Our hall is unheated and at zero degrees it just kills my little 1 cell lipos....Back at home, in the warm, I have loads of vertical
Jan 26, 2013, 08:41 AM
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The V3 will be passed by as a result of the way the V2 flies.....the V2 is slow and easy..the V3 should be even slower and more docile which for me is going the wrong way...

To improve the roll I have again redrawn....its now a V4... by slightly reducing the area down to 1sqft it will have to go a touch faster..Ive kept the length the same but reduced the span... longer narrower models should roll faster..

this the V4....
Last edited by davereap; Feb 04, 2013 at 02:18 AM.
Jan 26, 2013, 09:13 AM
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the vapor..features an all flying tailplane and rudder and is where I am going ...all flying surfaces give best control at the low how about a cross between the vapor and the carbon traveler and a kite...
The vapor is too fragile for aerobatics, but works well
The traveller is just a bit big for what I want... the original has a quoted 50+ft of CF in its build, so that is expensive

yes they are now plane shapes... but rod and film.. so a new thread is started for the plane shaped models
Last edited by davereap; Feb 02, 2013 at 12:51 PM.
Jan 26, 2013, 11:08 AM
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Strength.... a mid air with a 3d model caused the damages shown in the pic... first flight... mine crashed and bounced, the 3d carried on for a couple of seconds then his prop disintegrated and he crashed...we all laughed.. its just too many models in too small a space..
all great fun...
All my rods were fine and I carried on flying with the film flapping, it didnt seem to make any difference...I need to remember the tape next time
With the depron down the middle each side is covered seperately, so its easy to fix.. it takes a while though as the material is well held on by the UHU...first remove the film, then remove the old glue, that takes a while.. the new cover then doesnt take long to fix and shrink

next job....lights
Jan 26, 2013, 01:47 PM
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Thinking of an all flying model......more thoughts on the design this a kite crossed with a plane fuz..
Last edited by davereap; Feb 02, 2013 at 12:50 PM.
Jan 30, 2013, 09:14 AM
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here is a biplane version, with all moving surfaces...18" span and 1.8sqft of horizontal area..use different rod sizes if you feel they are more appropriate
Moved to new thread here
Last edited by davereap; Feb 02, 2013 at 12:52 PM.
Jan 30, 2013, 01:37 PM
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The version2 kite that had a midair was recovered and now ive added lights...
3 leds each side plus an 85Mah lipo to run them.. .the AUW is now 40.5gms..
Adding the little lipo is usefull because it was flying nose heavy.. now its spot on my predicted COG..
The lights are running at very low amps, nowhere near their optimum ..

edit.. in fact my predicted cog is too far back, its nicer flying a bit forward, and it loops well from that position, with very tight turns, but rolls are still a problem..I am thinking the elevons act as brakes, and half way through the roll the airspeed is down too low to get the roll continuing...more power will be the solution but its so nice and easy as it is.. the lights are visible but perhaps a bit dim with hall lighting on
Last edited by davereap; Feb 01, 2013 at 01:14 AM.
Feb 01, 2013, 01:09 AM
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started on the all flying frame

Ive a new thread started for conventional plane shaped models in CF and film
Last edited by davereap; Feb 02, 2013 at 12:49 PM.
Feb 01, 2013, 01:17 AM
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My flying buddy wants an easy flier so I have drawn up a Vapor type for SU micro gear..gone to double the Vapor area as the SU setup is a lot more powerfull....
edit....I will do a build log for this as its turning out very nice for the micro ar6400 gear, and put it over in the indoor section..

Calling it the Whisper..@20" are its seen in the final pics it weighs 27gms now... so it should end up at 40 or so as he also wants some LEDs put on it... cheeky S** that he is

Here is the build log for the Whisper and its a new thread for the non kite models I am developing...
The Whisper..Indoor micro model (1 min 4 sec)
Last edited by davereap; Feb 07, 2013 at 05:23 PM.
Feb 12, 2013, 12:22 PM
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I had this frame already built but decided it would be good with a 10g motor and lightweight gear..It had too big an area for the 1 cell setup , and was plenty strong, so I thought 2 cells and some light gear would be better suited..
Ive used a 2 gm orange micro dsm2 rx with 3 x2gm servos and a 6A esc and 10gm motor..all is working fine..
next to cover the wings and fit the elevon pushrods

The rods used were 3mm main fuz, 2mm spars and 1.5mm for the main curve and bracing... 1.5mm for the elevon bends
Last edited by davereap; Feb 22, 2013 at 06:03 PM.
Feb 13, 2013, 11:48 AM
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This latest simple has worked out well... The AUW is 90 gms with a 300 2s lipo. The little 10gm motor has more than enough thrust for vertical and draws under 3A using a 7x3.5gws prop..
Its one of those models where it all feels right...
The 18micron bag material went on with a few creases, but an iron at 107-110 degrees will shrink it nicely as can be seen in the pictures

The AUW is 90 gms exactly.. so its very close to 2ozsqft in its wing loading
Last edited by davereap; Feb 14, 2013 at 10:40 AM.

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