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Sep 15, 2013, 10:45 PM
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Best Waco UPF-7 scale drawings?

UPF-7 drawings by Nick Carstens, which now are appearing over on:

Scroll down to frame #1049 for a taste.

Well resrearched and showing lots of important dimensions very helpfull to build in model accuracy. This is an example of some excellent work. IMHO, very accurate with only a few minor discrepanciess apparent. One of these is not even a real discrepancy, but shows alternate surface features not born out with the photos accompanying the article (compare lower rudder outlines).The other is the pointed nature of the wing tip (in front view), as shown. I cannot find a photo of any UPF-7 with such a thin feature. Easily corrected with good photo consult. The rest is near perfect. Let's call this a stelar effort.

BTW, I got to compare these drawings to the real deal, when they first appeared Model Builder magazine . Our shop was modifying a stock airfame into a Jimmy Franklin type fully aerobatic special. I was impressed at how good they compared, overall. Our aircraft had the larger lower rudder,however we also had an original Waco drawing showing the other (Nick's) type.

This particular Waco variant has a rather complex "stepped" fuselage frame and multi-stringered fabric fairing. Latter compares similarly to Hawker Hurricane, in number and complexity! A Beech "staggerwing" fuselage might be slightly simpler. IMHO, Nick did a credible job of showing this complexity and correct underlying fuselage shapes.

The Paul Matt effort of the same subject is rather decent, but the Carsten rendering is so much better. IMO, apples and oranges.

Carsten's UPF-7 scale drawings are available from the NATIONAL AIR & SPACE MUSEUM' and are listed, along with Nick's friend Pete Westburg's offerings, on the official website. IIRC, the prints are generated from their original mylars. and are larger at 1/12 or 1/10 scale formats.

AFAIK, the drawings a appeared in now defunt Model Builder magazine and later, in Air Classics. Good articles/series and photos in both.

As an aside, both Nick Carstens and Peter Westberg were Douglas Aircraft draftsmen, both starting their work with company in the 1930's, thru retirement.

Rated by this reviewer as ****, with five stars being perfect.
BTW- I'm open to any other type grading system, shall we standardize?
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Sep 16, 2013, 05:34 AM
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Just as history is "a story about the past that purports to be true," these images purport to describe an aircraft at a particular moment.

If you wish to "grade" a drawing, certainly do so. The criteria is yours to define. However, I do not support an official grading system. In my opinion, any "grading" is inherently subjective. For example, in your post above, your having compared "drawings to the real deal" lends you an expertise I would be reluctant to question, even if I thought less of the drawings than you. If I did so, there is the opportunity for me to hurt your feelings.

Successful grading systems must be defined, trained and enforced... or they become seeds of contention between those with differing opinions and equal perceptions of their own grading expertise. If such contention arises, I will quietly leave, for I have had more than enough of conflict and stress over a 30-year military career. It is a personal need.
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Sep 16, 2013, 12:51 PM
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Thanks for your input. You are, I assure you, not going to hurt my feelings and anyone is certainly free to think and post ANYTHING in direct responce to what I posted. It was offered as my personal opinion and offered rating of a particular and specific drawing. I will admit an overt interest in UPF-7's, which may axplain my enthusiam

While I do not readily accept your mantel as offernig expertice, I relish your keen observation that my views are, in fact, VERY SUBJECTIVE. But then so is your label and your observation. Circular argument.

In modeling since age 5 (1955) and developed an interest in scale soon after, I find it funny that scale aircraft drawings have assumed a sort of "sared cow status" among hobbiest, etc. It's almost as if they shant be attacked or critisized or even praised, in anyway.

I belive we tend to forget scale drawings are first and formost CONSUMER PRODUCTS. In our lives we rate many consumer products everyday and think nothing of it. Chevy's over Fords. Sony over Hitachi. Even "Jeannie" over "MaryAnn". We understand the context and it doesnt phase us much.

So why does the very thought of scale drawing reviews seem to evoke such a mental roadblock??
Sep 16, 2013, 03:24 PM
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Very well said... I've been a modeller since the mid 60's (with a 20 gap in service raising kids), 20-years a manufacturing engineer (mostly at Bell Helicopter) and a retired naval reserve intelligence officer... It's good to meet you.

I appreciate your observations about me... guilty... and about the perceived "sacred" state of the general arrangement drawing. I have a difficult time understanding it as well. I suspect it may grow out of the great esteem granted to those who build the championship scale models. It is the drawings (and photos) that feed that aspect of the hobby, and owners accrue some status by virtue of owning them. I've met some folks, here in Northern Virginia, who take inordinate pride in owning really good drawings, much as other art aficionados do... or wine lovers... etc.

Human nature is constantly fascinating.

I'll try to be more upbeat... I am experiencing my first big medical challenge and it may have effected my normally-sunny disposition... or, so I'm told.

Best complements,
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Sep 16, 2013, 04:42 PM
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Sorry to hear about the med issue. They can be daunting. My wife of 39 yrs suffered debillitating strokes 2002-06 and no diagnosis as to cause. She and we are coping the best we can.. Have sold near everything to relocate and semi-retire. As I serve as her care giver, I work for the state of California (while there is funding!) and she collects SS. I'm 64 this year so will wait another for me to start drawing. It could all end tommorow but I'm certain we'd still get by!

44 years in the contruction trade, with intersting forrays into aircraft wood work and repair. Wrote some articles and drew a few scale drawings (Hmm...?) I was litterally born into a flying family and grew up with Travel Airs, Wacos, Fairchilds etc. Sold my 1938 Aeronca (photo link below) in 2007, but no longer fly.
Sep 16, 2013, 07:14 PM
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I was in a metalworking family, dad a steamfitter and g'dad a blacksmith/farrier.

My best to you and your dear wife. I'm 56, so have a few years to stay employed. Raised 4 by myself for the last 13 years. The youngest is off to the Army, soon. I may go back to Texas as that's where the older kids are.

Back to the Waco...

What a wonderful thread that is... I had missed it. I do like the drawings... the artical implies there are more than two sheets. I'll have to look and see if Carstens is selling prints of such drawings.
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Sep 16, 2013, 10:26 PM
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The limited number of Carstens drawings of the Waco calibur are now sold by NASM. Again, prices on their website. Carstens, like his friend and colaborator Peter Westburg, have passed away.
Jan 14, 2014, 10:06 AM
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quitcherbitchen's Avatar
Here is a UPF-7 that I bashed from a Dynam foamy. It is the same plane my dad soloed in 1944 V-5 at Ball State University. It is a tribute model that is still in progress. I plan on better landing gear and a 3 D cad "scale" model of my dad's bust to put inside. My friend has a $4000.00 laser scanner.
Jan 14, 2014, 10:44 AM
Bombs away!!!
quitcherbitchen's Avatar
Here is a UPF-7 that I bashed from a Dynam foamy. It is the same plane my dad soloed in 1944 V-5 at Ball State University. It is a tribute model that is still in progress. I plan on better landing gear and a 3 D cad "scale" model of my dad's bust to put inside. My friend has a $4000.00 laser scanner.
Mar 10, 2015, 01:02 PM
Registered User
"Re-discovered" this 3-view today:

Somethng odd about the fin rudder????
Apr 21, 2015, 03:00 PM
Registered User
from wikipedia:
The Waco F series was a range of American-built private pilot owner and training biplanes of the 1930s from the Waco Aircraft Company. The Waco 'F' series of biplanes supplanted and then replaced the earlier 'O' series of 1927/33. The 'F' series had an airframe which was smaller and about 450 pounds (200 kg) lighter than the 'O' series, while continuing to provide accommodation for three persons in tandem open cockpits. A similar performance to the earlier model was obtained on the power of smaller and more economical engines.

The UBF was equiped with a 210 hp (157 kW) Continental R-670

General characteristics

Crew: 1
Capacity: 1 trainee or passenger
Length: 23 ft 1 in (7.04 m)
Wingspan: 30 ft 0 in (9.14 m)
Height: 8 ft 5 in (2.57 m)
Wing area: 244 ft2 (22.67 m2)
Empty weight: 1,870 lb (848.22 kg)
Gross weight: 2,650 lb (1202.02 kg)
Powerplant: 1 Continental W-670-6A seven cylinder radial, 220 hp (161.81 kW)


Maximum speed: 128 mph (207 km/h)
Cruise speed: 114 mph (185 km/h)
Range: 400 miles (644 km)
Service ceiling: 14,800 ft (4,511 m)

Apr 21, 2015, 11:36 PM
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Here's a website with a lot of great photos of this Waco

Aug 19, 2015, 07:09 AM
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I just picked up a 88" Byron Waco UPF7 untouched in the box. So I'll be needing this kind of info. Thanks for the great contributions to this thread.
Aug 19, 2015, 08:07 AM
Registered User
Were any of the UPF7's done in the Cub Yellow?

From what I've read the first letter (U) stands for which engine was installed at the factory, and the last letter (F) stands for the fuselage style (mainly length & rudder size). But what does the middle letter (P) stand for?
Aug 19, 2015, 10:29 AM
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GeorgeG97322's Avatar

You can find more information here about the WACO numbering...


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