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Aug 14, 2019, 11:45 AM
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Affordable balsa or kit DLG that I'm missing?

Hey folks,

My background is flying mostly slope for many years starting about 24 years ago, with some thermal thrown in, and a couple electrics (back when the batteries were lead bricks and a 6 minute flight time was pretty good!). I kind of got out of flying during and after college and pursued other hobbies like guitar building, but now I'm getting the bug again. I also live near some great open fields that seem like they would have some decent thermals.

I've done a decent amount of research trying to find a fun and affordable DLG, but I'm still having trouble finding what I want. I really don't mind building, I kind of prefer it actually. Here's what I want:

-A kit that has either full balsa built up wings, or foam core/balsa sheeted wings. I don't want to deal with vacuum bagging quite yet.
-Less than $200
-1.5 m
-Ailerons and Elevator, not polyhedral with rudder/elevator
- Doesn't need a fancy radio, I don't want to deal with crazy programming.
-Can launch well enough to make small thermal catching pretty common. (I know this has alot to do with skill, but you know what I mean?)
-Somewhat durable

Is there something like this out there? For the cost I'm tempted to go with the Libelle (plus I know Michael from flying about 20 years ago, and he's a great dude), but I kind of want something that can penetrate a bit better, with a stiffer non-foamy structure. Thanks for any leads!

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Aug 14, 2019, 12:02 PM
Registered User
I know you said you wanted balsa / built up or foam sheeted kit for 200.00 or less- are you including the building materials / glue /. Covering - and radio gear ( servos / receiver / battery?

If you budget is 200.00 all up ready to fly -less radio- I would tell you to save your money for a used contest ship.

A used contest ship is the best way to get into DLG and maximize your success and enjoyment .

If you go for a foamy - you arenít getting the real DLG experience that you will get from a good used contest ship-and you will have wasted the money on something you will out grow quickly.

The performance comparison is night and day.

Good luck , jack
Aug 14, 2019, 12:15 PM
Registered User
Thread OP
I guess really I'd like a kit like this to be $100 or less, but I didn't know what to expect these days. Just the kit, I know the rest will be extra.

I hear you on getting a used contest rig, but part of the enjoyment for me is building. I guess I may end up scratch building something, but to remember some of the techniques a kit would be nice.

I agree that a foamy is not what I want right now, though I did have a good amount of fun with my old Alula and some small thermals.
Aug 14, 2019, 01:07 PM
Registered User
There are a few around like this:
But as Jack mentioned, the performance difference between something like this and a modern molded plane must be seen to be believed. If you see a contemporary DLG fly you may become quite dissatisfied with a wood plane.
Aug 14, 2019, 01:27 PM
Have Fun and Just Fly!
l shems's Avatar
Radio: frsky XLite will do, or even the x9lite. With opentx.

You need a good radio to set up a dlg properly.
Aug 14, 2019, 01:58 PM
I know the Inside out.....
This kit is a bit above your budget but it seems an interesting option.

This dlg kit includes the option to add a shaft for a rocket engine, but you can off course build it without this option.
Aug 14, 2019, 02:45 PM
I'm not as bad as they say.
I might have a falke left.
Latest blog entry: AIrcraft I've built.
Aug 14, 2019, 03:35 PM
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Thread OP
Rosbrik, that Evo looks beautiful. That might be just what I was looking for. Seems a bit pricy for a balsa kit, but it's hard to tell what's included from the website.
Aug 14, 2019, 05:42 PM
a.k.a. Bob Parks
If you are handy, read the Dollar Foam DLG thread, by BOA2110.

After a few iterations he has a DLG with lap that costs very little to put together.
Aug 14, 2019, 09:58 PM
Free Flight rubber flyer
jwfinn's Avatar
As mentioned above, Evo Fire is a development of a proven airplane. Traian did an awesome job on it and the results speak for themselves. If you want to know more about the airframe, have a look at the development thread:

And the Evo Fire demo, with lights onboard, if you haven't seen it:
Flight demo of the Evo Fire F3K/Discus Launched Glider! (3 min 25 sec)
Aug 14, 2019, 10:30 PM
Registered User
Thread OP
I did see that, and tried to follow the thread though it's a long one!

It's at the top of my list currently, I dig it.
Aug 14, 2019, 11:10 PM
Registered User
If I had to choose between ailerons and a rudder, I'd pick the rudder. Much better in slow flight. Both is better if you don't mind the extra pilot workload and complexity. It's nice to be able to steer when the flaperons are all the way down.

Drela's Apogee can be converted into a nice little DLG, but it doesn't need ailerons. I tried one with ailerons for a few minutes. At first, it was hard to keep right side up! There used to be a kit for a dlg version. Details on Apogee javelin launch version at . Plans for the dlg kit version at Outerzone.

If you can force yourself to accept rudder-elevator, and you've got a good overhand throw, the DJ Aerotech Chrysalis hlg is very nice. It's a real floater, but has a wider speed range than you might expect. You can always use a small hi start.
Aug 15, 2019, 10:56 AM
Will fly for food
davidjensen's Avatar
The one thing not mentioned so far in this thread is the performance difference between a "wood kit" and the current crop of DLG's on the market. It's a night vs day kind of thing. Even a used thrashed 1.5m "competition" style will outperform a brand new wood kit DLG, and by a big margin. If you want something to throw around get an Alula. Don't bother with the foam DLG's that are out there as they are not worth the $$$$$.
Aug 15, 2019, 11:16 AM
Registered User
Thread OP
Thanks for the suggestions folks.

David, just from seeing that video demo of the evo fire that looks plenty good to me. I don't need to be competitive with anything, and that launch height and flight characteristic looks plenty good to get into thermal territory.

From what I can tell this Evo is in a very different category than a DL-50 or a Chrysalis, both of which have been around for a very long time. I remember the Chrysalis from 20 years ago, can't believe it's still sold! I think it's great though too in it's own way.

I'm sure full composites are in their own category too, but I don't need that, and like I said I like building things.

If there's anything comparable to this Evo Fire kit it would be fun to do some comparisons, but otherwise I'll probably go with that.
Aug 18, 2019, 11:06 PM
Registered User
IMHO, the main problem with the Chrysalis is that you can't DLG it. However, even if you could DLG it, it's not meant for the same niche as a fancy moldie. More relaxing to fly. At least if you can handle a javelin style launch.

It's just an intuition, but it seems to me that the Evo Fire, unless it has a weird airfoil, might benefit from being sheeted further back on the top.

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