New Guillows Mini-Models: 4500 series - RC Groups
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Jan 16, 2014, 07:50 AM
dusty bible = dirty life
Majortomski's Avatar
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New Guillows Mini-Models: 4500 series

I'm 58 years old. My first memory of a stick built model was my Dad giving me a Japanese Zero with a solid balsa profile fuselage and tissue covered stick wings. It didn't last long, I was too young to treat it right.

Walking through Hobby Lobby last night I saw these:

I think this is the modern version of that first plane of 50 years ago. All lazer cut and they have self-stick covering for the wings. All for $9! Looks like a great way to get someone into building.

I'll glue my Hellcat toghether this weekend and let you know how it turns out.
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Jan 16, 2014, 02:39 PM
B for Bruce
BMatthews's Avatar
Somewhere in the archives of my plans cabinet I've got the original newsprint plans for the Hellcat and Stuka from the original kits. I built and tried to fly them back when I was a kid.

Frankly unless built from the lightest contest balsa you can find these things just come out too heavy and need too much nose weight to fly. So unless Guillow is cutting these from very nice light wood their best way of becoming airborne is at the end of a thread hanging over the work bench. At least that's what the two of mine were like.

The printed self stick covering IS a nice touch though. As is the printing or light laser etching markings on the wood.

I know that all this sounds like sour grapes. And for that I apologise. But it's the reality of these designs.

If the goal is to produce flying micro models of this style I'd suggest that the methods used for the No-Cal profiles would be far more flyable. Especially with the ability to make up carrier sheets using Post It glue stick to bond white tissue to a carrier page and use colour laser or inkjet printers to print the colour scheme on the tissue that gets used for the model.
Jan 17, 2014, 08:25 AM
dusty bible = dirty life
Majortomski's Avatar
Well, it went together last night. Loved the lazer cutting. Wood was a bit heavy, didn't have a chance to weigh it.

It did glide well on the first try.

The clear self stick covering is awkward to work with. I can see a kid getting it folded over and that's the end of the story. The front prop hook was bigger than the opeining in the fuselage. The prop,shaft and bearing are pre assembled. The bearing is just a teflon tube that you are supposed to glue in the nose. Mine broke loose on the first wind. Need to find a glue that will work on teflon and balsa. May try flexible thin CA tonight.
Jan 17, 2014, 06:53 PM
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Basically they are toys. For what you pay for one kit, you could buy enough material to build a slew of Paul Bradley No-cals... and they do FLY!
Jan 18, 2014, 11:49 AM
For us He died, in me He lives
Jimmy JFlyer's Avatar
Hello folks, being new to S&T I am just starting to see what's out there. I fell in love with No-Cals, especially Paul's. The first thing I thought of when I saw these was a No-Cal. But suffice to say, yes it is just a toy and even then just looks to fly out straight and down. This might just be the build aspect to get folks started maybe? Obviously easier than a No-Cal but just for that first balsa gluing experience is more the purpose maybe. I looked at these just an hour ago at the LHS and they even say on the package "Flies up to 50'!" OK there you go, even Guillows makes no false bravado as lets face it, a 50' flight is nothing to write home or get excited about.
I still want to buy one just because I can't resist a simple build balsa war bird.

Would be interesting to see what could be done to one of these to actually get a good flight and even trim it to turn and hold a circular pattern. Of course, after all that work, yes, you could have printed one of Paul's plans and just built a nice No-Cal.

Majortomski by all means please post how the maiden toss goes. I am curious to hear how it turns out.
Jan 18, 2014, 06:07 PM
dusty bible = dirty life
Majortomski's Avatar
Jimmy, you looked at it the same way I did:is this a viable recommendation to someone starting in the hobby? Not contest level, just something that will hold their attention long enough to get built and fly a bit.

My club did AMA Cubs with an 8th grade class a few years ago. The kids were hooked by the fact that something they built would fly (somewhat)
Jan 20, 2014, 12:01 PM
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MUTCAKE's Avatar
I love the look of these small models, and although they are heavy I have a more sinister objective. I've been waiting for them to come out and picked up my first, a P-40 warhawk over the holidays. I wanted to convert them using one of the many spare PZ bricks I have for 3 channel rc. I will post in that section when they are finished. I will probable go with tissue covering on the wings with a misting of Crystal Clear for water resistance. Or I will just use thin grocery bags adhered with UHU glue stick. (it does work rather well and can be shrunk with low temp covering iron).
Jan 20, 2014, 02:17 PM
For us He died, in me He lives
Jimmy JFlyer's Avatar
Now that would be interesting to see. Be sure to let us know when you post it.
Jan 20, 2014, 05:52 PM
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MUTCAKE's Avatar
Will Do! I just think it's rude to post rc in this forum out of respect to my fellow freeflighters!
Jan 21, 2014, 07:56 AM
dusty bible = dirty life
Majortomski's Avatar
Originally Posted by MUTCAKE
Will Do! I just think it's rude to post rc in this forum out of respect to my fellow freeflighters!
Just post a link to your new thread in the micro RC discussions!
Jan 21, 2014, 12:22 PM
Registered User
what could be done to get a bit more than 50 feet of flight?....I was thinking replace film wing coverings with esaki tissue, reduce tail feathers to 1/32 balsa, upgrade prop to silver Peck or other, delete landing gear, the wings are built very stout, perhaps reduce wood size....any thoughts?
Jan 21, 2014, 02:12 PM
B for Bruce
BMatthews's Avatar
Tomski, you raise a very valid point about the performance vs effort ratio. Being at the other end of the range for performance expectations it's easy to forget to look back and remember how magical our early models with modest performance fascinated us. They might well have only flown for a few seconds. But each of those seemed an eternity to our young eyes.

Hinterdude, if you want to push the envelope then the best option was given earlier. Just build smaller size No-Cal models and they'll fly great. Especially if you further reduce the weight by using indoor style sheet wood with center stick spars for even less weight. The result would be like a No-Cal Peanut. Or Profile Peanut if you would.

Suggestions for wood for a PPN (Profile P-Nut);
  • Wings to use 1/16 x1/32 vertically for front and rear spars. 1/32 sheet sanded down to 1/64 and the arc shaped 1/16 deep ribs sliced from this. Use a 5% camber simple circular arc for the rib shape.
  • Fuselage to use 1/32x3/32 strips for the outlines and uprights. This would be built around a 1/4 x 3/32 hard motor stick.
  • Tail surfaces would be from 1/32x3/64 strip
  • Wet form the wood around outlines as needed to achieve tip and fuselage shapes.
  • For short nosed designs a fairly stout 3/32 vertical grain "cowling". Might as well put in some of the nose weight in a manner that toughens up the model.

A small size plastic prop would be a great way to add nose weight on the short nose models. But few of them have the proper pitch. So I'm more a fan of making them from balsa or yogurt container blades with hardwood dowel as the hub.

A model made like this should be light enough that .040 to .050 or so rubber should make it fly well.

If you want to try a sheet version with built up wings to keep things simple then I'd suggest;
  • Wing from 1/16 square spars and 1/32 x 1/16 sliced ribs. This is classic No-Cal stuff but at a reduced size. Not as light as it could be but still pretty good. Top covering only..
  • Fuselage from a 1/8x1/4 motor stick on it's side with 1/16 top and bottom fuselage profiles glued onto the stick. An "upgrade" fromt his would be 1/16 foreward upper and lower profiles with 1/32 upper and lower rear profiles. Glue on a vertical web at the stabilizer location to give some added support to the tail area. In fact this stabiliser support could be part of the fin in many cases.
  • The tail surfaces would be from 1/32 sanded a little to smoothen, thin and further reduce the weight.
  • Built up yogurt container and dowel prop for sure on this one.

This "simplified high performance" version would likely do well on .055 to .065 size rubber.
Jan 22, 2014, 10:57 AM
Registered User
Bruce, I'd love to see a drafted plan of your profile peanut design. Is there one available? This sounds like something I would like to build and fly having not tried this genre. It's probably just me, but I'm having a hard time translating your words into pictures.

Jan 22, 2014, 12:10 PM
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glenn2626's Avatar

at $4-5 it might be fun

While $9 is cheap, $4-5 is even better.

At this rate it might be fun to just simply take a kit and sand it down to 1/2 its normal thickness. Use a sharpened aluminum or brass tube and punch out strategic holes in the fuse to further reduce weight. Punch holes in the tail feathers and recover with tissue or light plastic to make even lighter.

While I appreciate how much better a well-built proper FF plane will be, sometimes you just can't help yourself messing around.

So - anyway, how do you get one of these kits at half price?

if you go to Hobby Lobby (the craft store, not the RC store) or Michaels, you can ALWAYS find a 30-50% off coupon online and save a big chunk of $$$.

WEEKLY Hobby Lobby coupon here
WEEKLY Michaels Ad here, see coupons on right side

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Jan 22, 2014, 02:37 PM
Registered User
yes, for me Most of the fun is to Modify an existing kit to perform better than the stock configuration....I would love to see Just how much could be done with these?