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Sep 20, 2019, 04:11 PM
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E-Challenged's Avatar
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Maxford Gee Bee Crash -Loose Wing Mount

My Maxford Gee Bee Model E has had a hard life with many "hard landings" and repairs. I took it out to fly today after making a number of repairs. It took off then started doing a"galloping" act, looking as if I was flipping the elevator stick full up and full down. I fought to level off and tried the trim button but it kept galloping until I finally lost control. The large dummy radial engine/cowl assembly and both wing tips were munched. This time we found the culprit. The rear wing mount structure, with wing bolts, had come apart, allowing the entire wing to flap up an down pivoting at the front mounting pegs. I mention this disaster, in this forum, because it can happen to any model airplane after one or more high impact landings or a simple glue joint failure. It is doubtful that replacement parts are still available to rebuild the dummy radial and ring cowl. Beat-up wheel spats were damaged again. Thankfully the Cobra motor, speed control and new 4S lipo were not harmed.
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Sep 20, 2019, 04:31 PM
AndyKunz's Avatar
So you were flying the Gee Bee ornithopter, eh?

Sep 21, 2019, 06:20 AM
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Did you perform a Pre-flight check? Why blame/mention the manufacturer?
Sep 21, 2019, 06:45 AM
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Grup's Avatar
I had a crash with a World of Models trainer, which ripped the wing off. At that time I was living in a country where shop rates were not high, and I didn't have a lot of space or tools, so I had them repair it for me. Thinking they would have done a good job.

It seemed well repaired when I picked it up, and it flew fine for about 4 minutes. Then, in a turn, the wing came right off. I am sure this was due to a less than adequate repair job.

If I had really really tugged on the wing, maybe I could have found out that it wasn't as well fixed as it should have been.
Sep 21, 2019, 07:11 AM
Rust: The poor man's Loctite.
TomM's Avatar
Ya got the Gee Bee curse I tell ya !!
Sep 21, 2019, 07:26 AM
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Captain Dunsel's Avatar
Many years ago, one of our club members had a Trainermaster (a low-winged, trike gear, .40-sized glow sport ship) he liked to do full-throttle touch & goes (more like 'slam & goes') with. As we flew off an old USAF runway, he had lots of space to do it in.

He sold the plane to another flier in the club. Shortly after that, my wife and I were at the field when the new owner made a nice, smooth landing, only to have the wing pull out. The aileron cable unplugged, the wing flipped onto the dowel and stopped, but the fuse rolled several feet on the nose wheel & tail before flopping over.

Seems the wing bolt blocks had pulled out of the fuse. How it managed to stay together in the air, I don't know, but the damage was minor. He epoxied the blocks back in, then did a THOROUGH check of the servo mounts, etc., before putting the plane back in the air.
Sep 21, 2019, 09:52 AM
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E-Challenged's Avatar
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Originally Posted by WingCommanderRF
Did you perform a Pre-flight check? Why blame/mention the manufacturer?

Did you notice that I said this could happen to any model airplane? I posted this to alert others to this potential problem, not to draw criticism. Yes it is a good idea to take a wing off periodically and check for loose glue joints, etc.

BTW: Maxford website shows that dummy radial /ring cowl and lg fairings/wheel spats are still in stock. Might order parts and make major repairs again or round file remains and move on.
Last edited by E-Challenged; Sep 21, 2019 at 09:59 AM.
Sep 21, 2019, 03:15 PM
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Clive66's Avatar

Must've missed something in your original post. since I saw nothing blaming Maxford.

I wouldn't hesitate blaming Maxford, but that's what I do LOL
Sep 22, 2019, 10:21 AM
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E-Challenged's Avatar
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Can't blame Maxford for this one, but think they should fall into another category than ARF.
Not for the average ARF'er. Models tend to be heavily wing loaded. With any brand of ARF model, watch for incurable wing panel warps/unequal washout. Choose a powerful enough motor/prop/battery/speed control and pay careful attention to CG, and use moderate elevator throws to get through the maiden and tweaking flights. Replace too-flexible push rods and odd hardware , make sure that pushrods work freely.

Lastly ,make sure rear wing mounting is securely glued in place and check it periodically.

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