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Mar 04, 2013, 11:32 PM
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Gear Swinger's Avatar
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Build Log

My Standard Class Airtronics Aquila Build

Well I decided to give doing a build log a try. I see this plane has been covered in other builds but I have a few changes to incorporate although this won't stray too far from the plans. Hopefully you will find it interesting. This will be flown on the slope.

This plane has been on the "I'll get around to it" list since the early 80's. I picked the kit up from my good friend back when we were in Jr. High. I think this was his first attempt at building any type of model. I think maybe I had completed one or two RC gliders at this time. At any rate, I don't think an Aquila was a good first timer's kit to start with. He got frustrated with it and passed it on to me. So some 30 years later, I disassembled the wing panel, made some duplicate ribs (for a second wing) and started fresh on the tail.

Getting a new building board prepped and warp free proved to be my next challenge. My old boards were Tiger Squadron production cores about 2' x 3'. These were a laminate of foam, balsa and foam. They worked great. I instead invested in a Great Planes building board that is 48" long. This works great but would warp with changes in temp and humidity. I tried using a ceiling tile as a building board but really prefer the way the pins stick into the GP Board. Finally got that GP screwed down to a piece of MDF so it wouldn't change shape and now it is off to the races.

I have been working on this plane for awhile and now just playing catch up sharing my progress with everyone.

Last edited by Gear Swinger; May 28, 2013 at 10:44 PM.
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Mar 05, 2013, 11:04 AM
Kurt Zimmerman ≡LSF 4461≡
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Love woodie builds... checking in.
Mar 05, 2013, 04:51 PM
Registered User
Jeeez , even the box it comes in is beautiful .
Mar 05, 2013, 06:40 PM
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The box is really nice. Overall this is an excellent kit. Everything goes together like it should. The instruction manual and the plans have seen better days though.

Framed up a new horizontal stabilizer and the rudder. Attention to detail with placement of the brass tubing will keep you out of trouble later. I added some extra balsa just outboard of the tubing crimps so that they would be hidden under the transparent covering.
Last edited by Gear Swinger; Mar 12, 2013 at 04:43 PM.
Mar 05, 2013, 10:23 PM
Registered User
The one I fly to this day was built by me in 1978 . New ideas and technology come and go ,much of it is really good but nothing quite compares to a nice puffy sky with an Aquila in it .
May yours also live long and prosper
Mar 05, 2013, 10:41 PM
Bernoulli was only guessing.
Tspin's Avatar
I built an Aquila from scratch from an article in RCM magazine back in the 70's, and I still have it

I'll post a few pictures this weekend.
Mar 06, 2013, 08:57 PM
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Be sure to save all the punched out sheet and trace everything else .
Mar 06, 2013, 11:04 PM
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The rudder is complete.
Mar 09, 2013, 01:31 AM
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Time to start the wings. Originally these were built without the capstrips installed. This is why I disassembled the wing panels.

The rectangular balsa is planned for the spoiler servo.
Mar 09, 2013, 02:19 PM
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tailskid2's Avatar
Brings back many memories...and I still have one NIB
Mar 09, 2013, 02:44 PM
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Woodie Builds!!!

YES! Who doesn't like wood glider build logs? Nobody I know or care to associate with, that's for sure!

So, maybe I missed a comment, but are you putting on hardwood trailing edges on your wings? I did that with my almost-completely-modified-GP Spirit 2M (standard, not the "Elite") with a bunch of other aerodynamic clean-ups and I think it really helps plus definately makes it nicer for transport on the outside of my backpack to ride my bike to go fly.

Thanks for the build log on such classic plane - Paul
Mar 09, 2013, 09:08 PM
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Hey. Welcome to the build log. I think that is a nice idea to add some hardwood. This one however is just balsa.

Mar 09, 2013, 11:27 PM
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I think I added a 1/4" square hardwood to the trailing edge...made it dent-proof.....or was that the Sagitta 900???? Oh well, it added 25 sq in to the wing area
Mar 10, 2013, 09:37 AM
Registered User
Nice Job Gear Swinger! I love your joinery work, it is superb and undoubtedly will contribute to the strength of your framework. Thanks for posting, I am building my Aquila as we speak and your pictures are a great help!
Mar 10, 2013, 01:55 PM
Fly to live- Live to fly
ultimatetwo's Avatar
Beautiful sailplane and very clean craftmanship too Swinger,... love to see a Airtronics Aquila build-blog, actually this marvelous glider is a true classic woody wonder, and her thermal performance are still between the tops. I built mine in 1.979, and still flying like new with hundreds of flights and competition use during her early years, after that she flew just for fun. She has now three recoverings, sanding and painting the fuse and change radio gear.
If you let me, please consider install a little servo inside of each spoiler bay for operation, with modern radios, as you´re planning as seen by pics, that is a lot easier than the original riggings cords for adjusting.
Keep very closing your blog and it is like a travel in time...
Best regards.
Manolo Barba.

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