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May 10, 2017, 01:56 AM
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Build Log

Thermal Studio Ka-8b Junior


I thought it would fun to share my favorite manufacture of kits. The name of the company is called Thermal Kobo and they are located in Japan. Some of the larger subjects can be order directly from Thermal Kobo however communication can sometimes be a challenge. I have been order from Mr. Masaki (Owner) for quite a few years and appreciate his efforts to correspond in English. He is also an amazing modeler and designer himself!

Below is the link for the Thermal Kobo web site:

http://www.thermal-kobo.jp/

You can easily get info from the web site by using Google Chrome as a translation. In addition, Masaki the owner keeps a great blog that walks you through the assembly of many of his kits.

http://thermal2.exblog.jp/

You can also buy some of the smaller Thermal Kobo kits from Andy Ullman at Enya Motoren in Europe. Andy will ship his offerings to the US for around $40.00. Andy speaks English and is a very enthusiastic/helpful vender. Below is a link to Andy's web site and you can contact him directly:

http://scalehobbyshop.de/


The Ka-8b

Spec:

2 Meter Wing Span

Length 933 mm

Electric Power with Folding Prop

Weight 800 to 850 g

Although I own many Thermal Kobo kits, I opted to share the smallest Ka-8b Junior. The manufacture actually makes several iterations of the Ka-8b all the way up to 1/3 scale. All are similar in design and build method. The 1/4 version is the most detailed and the larger models easily break down for transport.

Fuse:

I opted to start the build with the fuselage first. I like have the fuse structure complete so I can double check wing alignment as the kit is being built.

The fuse is made in two assemblies, front/back and glued together in middle. I typically will use white glue rather than CA on all the plywood parts. Everything slots and clamps together and glue is wicked into the joints. The cool thing about using Aliphatic is that it can be heated up and easily repositioned if something is a bit out of alignment. It also provides a superior bond with plywood!

The plan is to go through the entire build process and provide a bit of detail on each sub assembly.

I will also touch a little on finish technique. I typically cover my wings in light film and will use Solartex with paint on the fuse.

-Tony
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May 10, 2017, 03:01 AM
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Front Fuse Detail


After clamping and gluing...Rear part of fuselage is next.

-Tony
May 11, 2017, 03:01 AM
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Tony,
very nice to see that build, we love these Kits
And a very god Idea to use Alphatic, great glue.
I also use CA only for fixing if necessary.
Best regards
Andy
May 12, 2017, 12:53 AM
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Fuselage Assembly #2


Had a chance to do a bit more work on the fuselage today. Basic structure is now complete with back and front structure joined.

Note: There is right and left side sheeting for the rear portion of the fuse. The parts are marked as R and L. The only difference being that holes for the rudder and elevator control rods are in different places.

Every thing else on the fuselage was very strait forward and easy to assemble a nice and strait!

Once again, no CA was used to glue the parts...Only aliphatic Resin (Ponal Classic purchased from Amazon)

There are still many detail parts that need to be added to the fuse...Will try to get to these tomorrow.

-Tony
May 12, 2017, 12:55 AM
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Thank you for your comment Andy...Please feel free to share any experiences you have had with your kit assembly/finish.

-Tony
May 14, 2017, 07:01 AM
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dion9146's Avatar
Very nice. I have an interest in smaller scale sailplanes these days, so I will be following with interest.
May 15, 2017, 08:27 PM
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mistairjoe's Avatar
I have emailed MR Masaki for a couple of his kits today. You mentioned that some times it is hard to communicate with him. I hope to get a response.
May 16, 2017, 01:26 AM
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Thermal Kobo Kits


Quote:
Originally Posted by mistairjoe
I have emailed MR Masaki for a couple of his kits today. You mentioned that some times it is hard to communicate with him. I hope to get a response.
You can also email Andy at scalehobbyshop.de

Andy is very responsive and may be able to help you get the kits you are looking for.

Note: Sometimes it takes Mr. Masaki a week or so to get back to his customers. Also, many kits are not in stock. It can sometimes take several months for him to manufacture his larger scale gliders. From what I understand, getting material for manufacture/cutting can occasionally be tough too.

-Tony
May 16, 2017, 01:36 AM
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More Progress


Sorry I have not posted progress in a few days. The weekend was crazy with family and Mother day activities.

I had a few hours tonight to install the rear strut structure detail and start on the bottom sheeting. The small rear lattice detail is easy to do but a bit time consuming to assemble/fit. The lattice work is meant to emulate the complex round tube structure of the full scale glider.

Building the basic structure of the fuselage is relatively quick but there are a many, many small detail parts that get attached/fit to the main structure. I am hoping to have everything complete with the fuse by the end of the week.

-Tony
May 27, 2017, 12:55 AM
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More Progress


I was hoping to have the fuselage finished already but family stuff has been occupying much of my time.

The main structure and most of the detail is complete. I plan on working on the mount for the motor and front nose cone tomorrow. On to the rudder after that!

Everything with the build has been pretty strait forward. However there are quite a few parts that make up the fuselage. It is of very high detail for such a small model.

-Tony
May 27, 2017, 07:51 AM
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bosley's Avatar
I have always loved the looks of the Ka-8 and am enjoying watching this come together.
May 27, 2017, 08:14 AM
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mistairjoe's Avatar
I got a response from Mr Masaki but at the moment he is out of. kits. Bummer.
May 28, 2017, 02:24 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mistairjoe
I got a response from Mr Masaki but at the moment he is out of. kits. Bummer.
I am glad you heard back from Masaki. Yes, most of his kits are made to order.
May 28, 2017, 02:31 AM
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Nose Cone


I was able to fit the nose cone today. It matches the front of the fuse really nice! The cone is made in two parts and designed to be removed. The material in the lower part of the cone is cut out after the two halves joined. There is a mount for a 480 size electric motor behind the plastic. I still need to fill the seem and prime.

-Tony
May 29, 2017, 01:34 AM
Scale Glider Guider
Airbus's Avatar
Great to see another fan of the kits from Japan.

I've visited the designer - company head Maski Tanimura several times in Kochi. He produces kits as a hobby to support enthusiasts like us. He has a day job producing industrial models etc.

I have about a dozen of his kits and highly recommend them. Well engineered designs and perfect parts fit.

Pics below are the Ka-8b super light kit. 1/3 scale and only 14.5 lbs all up. On 5 cells climbs real fast and thermal performance is amazing. With such a low weight it flys very slow and scale like.

Your build looks great. Keep up the good work.


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