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Feb 18, 2014, 01:45 PM
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P. Tritle's Avatar
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Building the 60" Span AC-130A

The AC-130 project has been in the works for some time now, and is finally to the place where its time to get started on the proto-type. The plan going was to build a C-130 carrgo bird, but since I wiorked on AC-130's in SE Asia, I figured it would be fun to model one of the airplanes I actually worked on.

The design is of the Stick-and-Tissue type to keep the weight down to a reasonable level. The fuselage is built up with formes supported by a keel and spine, then stringered to provide the shape. The wings and tail section will be of the Egg-crate type making for quick construction. The wings and tailplanes will plug in for simplicity of both building and transport.

Projected power for the new design will be 4, 380 outrunners, but we'll take a closer look at that when there's a little better understanding of the finished weight. Guidance will be 5 ch. R/C. Flaps will be incorperated, but as with most of these type models, no retract is available, so we'll have to pass on that. However, with the typical C-130 landing gear arrangement, flying it with the wheels down won't be all that noticeable.
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Feb 18, 2014, 01:51 PM
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Getting Started on the Fuselage

Because the C-130 fuselage is quite large -- over 6 1/4" in diameter, so the formers couldn't be cut in one piece. Another problem when they're that large is strength at the cross grain, so the round and oval formers were done in 4 sections. Then moving back toward the tail, the formers around the ramp are done in 3 sections. At the far end, they're small enough that a one piece arangement works fine.

That being the case, construction begins with assembling all orf the formers over the provided cross sectional drawings.
Feb 18, 2014, 01:53 PM
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Building Up the Wing Saddle and Masin Landing Gear Mount.

The wing saddle and main gear mounts are integral parts of the fuselage assembly so need to be built up before the fuselage frame is assembled.
Feb 18, 2014, 01:57 PM
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Starting to Assemble the Main Fuselage Frame

The fuselage frame begins in the middlewith the wing saddle and releated formers. The parts are assembled onto the keel assembly and glued in place.
Feb 18, 2014, 02:00 PM
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Building the Cockpit Assembly

The cockpit assembly is built up next. The nose gear mount is an integral part of the assembly, so it's built ino the main assembly and the bearing tube lashed in place in the bulkhead.
Feb 18, 2014, 02:02 PM
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The Foreward Fuselage Section

The remaining formers are added foreward of the wing saddle and LG mounts and the keel and chine parts added. At this point the major assembly of the front section is done.
Feb 18, 2014, 02:05 PM
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Assembling the Aft Section

The rear formers are added next, and then the loading ramp opening side frames, chine pieces, and a few stringers are added to stiffen things up a bit. The stabilizer tube support formers are also added to complete the basic frame work aft.
Feb 18, 2014, 02:08 PM
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Adding the Stringers

The stringers are fitted and glued in place beginning with the left hand side. I'll hold off on the right until the servo locations are determined so's not to hinder easy access for adding the internal components.

More coming soon.

Feb 18, 2014, 02:32 PM
I eat glue
Hey now, this ain't no civi lightplane!!!!
Feb 18, 2014, 02:34 PM
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Spitfire1954's Avatar
Looks great Pat - an iconic aircraft, will be following with great interest.
Feb 18, 2014, 02:55 PM
Fly, dangit!!!
Led Zepplin's Avatar
Awesome! Looking forward to this one Pat. I grew up just a couple of towns over from the Little Rock Air Force base, the biggest training base for the C-130 in the world. So even now it's common to see a line of C-130s flying over at just a few thousand feet. The drone of that plane is permanently etched in my mind after hearing 3 or 4 times a day for pretty much my entire life…

J. B.
Feb 18, 2014, 03:38 PM
Veni Vidi Volavi
Brian Allen's Avatar

I wants one I wants one I wants one. Sign me up!!

Just gotta love the sound of four props beating at the air like the DC-6/C-118A of yours that I built.

I see and hear C-130's flying overhead all the time here
in Northern VA.

Looking great!!

Brian Allen

Veni Vidi Volavi

I came I saw I flew
Last edited by Brian Allen; Feb 18, 2014 at 06:30 PM.
Feb 18, 2014, 04:00 PM
Still the "Pro"-crastinator...
Steve85's Avatar
Wow, this is going to be a great model. You ought to enter it in the Build-Off!

I had half a dozen training flights as an Air Navigator trainee in RCAF C-130s in the early '80s, and God knows how many as self-loading cargo over my subsequent army career. Like many, I have a love/hate relationship with the Herc; it was a hot, stinky, uncomfortable and usually too-long ride, but it sure was nice seeing it spiralling down in a tactical approach coming in to take us out of some God-forsaken place.

Feb 18, 2014, 09:20 PM
Keenan smith's Avatar
Holy crap that's awesome!, subbed
Feb 18, 2014, 09:21 PM
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