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Apr 03, 2017, 02:05 PM
A man with a plan
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New Product

New short kit Osprey Bipe


I've never built the Osprey Bipe, but it looks like a really cool plane. If you have an OS 91 Surpass or Saito FA91 lying around and you're looking for a plane to put it on, maybe this would be a good subject. It's essentially a biplane version of the Osprey II pattern plane.

The short kit includes fuselage sides and doublers for either the long-nose or short-nose option shown on the plan.
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Oct 11, 2020, 05:16 PM
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I love your article about radios on your website.


http://www.balsaworkbench.com/?page_id=337

When I read this article I fell in love with it. I agree 110% with you. I did convert about 12 out of my 45 Airtronics radios to 2.4GHz DSSS and love it but I still love my 72MHz stuff just as much. I have nothing modern, or more recent than maybe the mid 90s My newest radios are the Spectra and RD8000. I'm not sure which is newer. I have converted every stile of Airtronics Hi-End transmitter there ever was with only one exception and that is the Infinity. I have always hated that radio because of it's looks. It kind of reminds me of a Queen song "Fat Bottom Girls" But that is only with the radios, not with the human race. My oldest converted is the Championship and newest is the Stylus and RD8000, and everything in between. I never got into the lower grade radios myself.
BTW, I was wondering why you never did a short kit of the RCM Douglas Dolphin. I have always wanted to build one or maybe two of those. I have the plans but never got to it. I even started to work on plugs for the engine nacelles and wing floats to make them either out of glass or Vac-Form. At this point I would like to build one electric and one for Glow Power. But definitely electric. If I did a glow power, I would like to double the size to 1/6 scale. The model as is, is 1/12 scale. Both scales I love. Also the RCM DH Hornet. That would also be a fantastic electric subject in 1/12 scale. Both plans are downloadable from various websites.

Gunny
Last edited by Otakar; Oct 11, 2020 at 05:30 PM.
Oct 11, 2020, 07:09 PM
A man with a plan
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Is this the plan you're referring to? https://outerzone.co.uk/plan_details.asp?ID=5604

I usually am shy about doing kits for detailed scale models because it's a lot of work for something that I would probably sell only once. But this one looks like it wouldn't be too hard.

The funny thing about old radios is that a few decades ago the big movers in our hobby worked really hard to get the 72 mhz band licensed, and now everybody acts like they don't even care. Think about it. It's illegal for anybody else to transmit on that frequency, because it's reserved for toy airplanes! That's amazing. Use it or lose it.

I had a friend who was a 2.4 ghz user. He crashed several airplanes when they got too close to the fire station at one end of our flying area. I kept telling him to get a 72 mhz radio. Eventually I just went ahead and got an old Airtronics computer radio and gave it to him. He ended up leaving town suddenly, and he left all of his stuff behind. I should go over to his place and get it. I don't remember which model it is.

I used to fly Airtronics exclusively from 1991 to around 2002. Then I switched over to Hitec servos and Hitec compatible receivers so all of my wiring and servo output arms and wheels would match each other. Now I have Futaba, Airtronics, Hitec, JR, World Expert and Aristocraft transmitters, too. It's all good stuff.
Last edited by Balsaworkbench; Oct 11, 2020 at 07:18 PM.
Oct 11, 2020, 07:18 PM
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YES that is the ONE. It is not exactly scale but even if the parts are cut for a short kit, it can be corrected. I was thinking of correcting the plan in CAD to make the outline more scale myself. I wish I had the PDF to DXF software to do it and not have to draw the whole thing from scratch. That would be such a nice fun fly airplane. Especially since it is an amphibian. It can be flown anywhere. The 2x scale would be FANTASTIC!
Oct 11, 2020, 07:26 PM
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Since I started doing drawings for laser cutting it has come to my attention that some people don't do it the way I do. People have sent me DXF files with really weird jagged lines, and I was led to the conclusion that they must have scanned the plan and pushed a button to make the computer draw vector files. I don't want to argue with the way other people do things, but I wouldn't do it that way myself. After 30 years of scratch building I know that plans have tons of mistakes, and it would be wiser to draw your own outline on the wood. For instance, if one bulkhead on the plan is 2.92 inches wide, and the next bulkead is 3.03, the draftsman probably meant for both of them to be 3", so that's what I would cut out from my piece of wood. I do the same thing when drawing parts on the computer. I open the PDF in a drawing program, and I trace over the drawing with my new parts, which are sized to make them fit, rather than just copying the original.

There are quite a few drawing programs out there, and some of them are free. My sons use Inkscape. They seem to like it, but I don't know if you can open a PDF and trace over it.
Oct 11, 2020, 08:47 PM
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I use Turbo Cad but I can't draw over the PDF once I is on the drawing. Do you have a program that will convert raster to vector? I know there is a program called PDF to CAD or something like that. But any modern raster to vector program can be used if you have one. I never leave the original lines I do trace over everything.
Oct 11, 2020, 10:11 PM
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I use Adobe Illustrator CS6. I guess there's a program to convert raster to vector, because I think that's what other people are doing. With all the lines running every which way in a model airplane plan, the software wouldn't know which lines to group, so I assume you would just get a bunch of tiny little short lines.

I assume I'm going to figuring out my own vectors anyway, so I just draw them from the start.
Oct 12, 2020, 10:48 AM
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There are a bunch of the raster to vector programs. Some are better than others. We had one where I used to work that was very good and it was easy to get a nice line. One that I uses many years ago was just like the one you are talking about. It was just a swarm of tiny little short lines. There is supposed to be a good one called something like 'PDF to CAD' but am not sure. The problem with all of them is that the program do not know where one line finishes and another line starts. This is why I trace over the whole drawing anyway, line by line. I will just have to see if I can actually trace on top of the PDF in my program. What I need to change on the drawing is the fact that the fuselage starts to taper way too far forward. Meaning that bulkheads C, D, E, should be approximately the same width. I will have to look at my three views again.
Oct 12, 2020, 10:51 AM
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This representation is much better and is the only I can show at this time.
Last edited by Otakar; Oct 12, 2020 at 10:58 AM.
Oct 12, 2020, 11:36 AM
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That's what I always wondered about. When I look at a hand drawn plan I know where the wing rib stops and the top of the fuselage starts, but the software doesn't know anything about that stuff. The software is also probably going to vectorize text, arrows, balsa grain lines, and dirt that was on your scanner glass. If you're going to fix or redraw all the parts anyway, you may as well just get a program that will allow you to open a PDF and draw vector lines on top of it yourself.

The way I do it, I open the PDF (most of them are rasters) and I draw shapes on top of it, just as if I was drawing on tracing paper on top of a paper plan. I correct all drafting errors, dimensions bad curves, and other defects while I'm drawing my part. So if there's an error in the plan I'm not reproducing it. I'm drawing my part correctly in the first place. Then I copy the shape I made and paste it into a new document. I make a document for every sheet that will go in the laser cutter, so there's a separate document for each thickness.

When you get a decent drawing program and get comfortable with it, you can go pretty fast. There are lots of drawing shortcuts built into the software. Like if you make a bulkhead, then you make a square the size of a stringer, and you just place it in the correct location and use the Subtract function. That way you don't have to actually draw the notch. You draw the stringer the correct size and the software subtracts it from the shape for you. Or you draw only one side of a round bulkhead, copy it, flip the copy, then join the two to make the whole piece. This way your plane is actually straight and symmetrical. But if your software vectorizes a drawing, you're setting yourself up for the computer to reproduce all errors that were made in drafting, inking, printing, and scanning before the PDF got to you. If you have to fix all of that, why not just cut this step out of the process? It's sort of like hiring an employee to sweep the floor, but he doesn't know how to use a broom so you end up sweeping it yourself.
Oct 12, 2020, 11:37 AM
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By the way, that's a great looking seaplane. I love planes from that era. They're really classy.
Oct 12, 2020, 12:09 PM
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If I draw / re-draw (CAD) the plan, You want to partner up with it? The first would be this size which is 1/12 scale (60") this I would do for electric. I would do the plugs for vac-form floats and engine nacelles. maybe even some other parts. The rest would be built up. I think that a foam wing would not be a bad idea on this since it is a seaplane. Some built in flotation. Nose block and other fuselage parts out of foam also. Replacing any carved balsa. Also build the construction as light as practical. Retractable gear would also be very easy on this. Or just removable as an option. I have always loved this airplane. I would also love to double up the size to 120" for engines. A couple of 4-strokes in this would be fantastic. Because they are as close to the centerline as you can possibly put two engines, it would not be an issue with an engine flameout. I would put two RCV 59CD engines in it. I don't think anything larger would be required. A couple of 13/5 or 14/4 props and it would be fantastic. The real airplane had 9' props. Because of the engine nacelle design the cooling is fantastic with good prop exposure. This makes a much better model than any Grumman Goose or Widgeon or anything such.

I also want to do a Zlin 126/226/326 "Trener" Same scales 1/12 and 1/6 but also 1/4. This is the two seat version of the "Akrobat" the 1/12 for electric, the 1/6 far power optional and 1/4 for engine.
Last edited by Otakar; Oct 12, 2020 at 12:16 PM.
Oct 12, 2020, 12:20 PM
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How big do you suppose the market is for such a kit?
Oct 12, 2020, 12:30 PM
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I think it is there. There are very few flying boats out there that would be easy to build like this one would be and also friendly to fly. This would fly like a trainer, both the 60" and 120" . As we know, the bigger they are the better they fly, plus the engines this model would require would not be expensive. I think that this model would be a small investment for anyone wanting to build and fly a flying boat and not worry about busting it up. This airframe puts the following features into the packaging of a "Trainer" Scale, Amphibious, Twin-engine, Retractable gear, Flaps, Starting out with the 60" version and see how a larger version would be accepted. The possibilities for some very cool paint jobs in both military and civilian. It is one of the very few aircraft flown by every branch of the armed services including coast guard and foreign services such as Brazil and Australia.
My paint scheme is simple U.S. Marines. RD-3
Last edited by Otakar; Oct 12, 2020 at 12:44 PM.
Oct 12, 2020, 01:01 PM
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Sometimes I wonder if I'm too much of a hermit. I would say that I haven't seen many of this kind of plane around, but then again I don't see much out here in the woods. If you want to do a kit with auxiliary plastic parts, I'm game.


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