Thread Tools
Oct 02, 2020, 09:30 PM
Registered User
Thread OP

Adding retracts to a Kadet Senior

Iím currently building my first airplane kit( Kadet Senior), and I was thinking of adding retracts to it at some point. I have been browsing the forums to see how it could be done to a trainer that wasnít designed to have them.
I have not found anything so far.
Could someone point me towards a build thread/s, or something similar?
Any help is appreciated.

Also, should I post in another forum as well?

Sign up now
to remove ads between posts
Oct 02, 2020, 10:58 PM
Registered User
I think you would be the very first person to ever add retracts to a Kadet Senior. There really is no reason to add retracts to a slow flying plane like that. Plus the kit version of the Kadet Senior is a tricycle gear plane which makes it even harder. If this is your first kit I strongly recommend that you follow the instructions that came with the kit. They are detailed and very well done. If you want a build thread, here is a very long and rambling one:
Oct 02, 2020, 11:12 PM
Registered User
scirocco's Avatar
Even in aircraft designed for retracts, unless you spend a lot of money and add a lot of weight they are just a continual headache. And if your landings are not consistently near perfect, even more so.

Hence no trainers with retracts!

Do a really good job on the build and enjoy a great design for what it is.
Oct 03, 2020, 01:33 AM
B for Bruce
BMatthews's Avatar
Even the non scale models that use retracts are intended either for speed or for precision aerobatics where the drag of the wheels that low would cause a slight pitch down effect in a vertical line. There is simply no need at all for retracts on something like a Kadet Sr. And that's why there's no build threads with such a modification. So far you are the only person I've ever seen ask such a thing.

I would also strongly suggest that since this is your first build that you focus on learning the craft of clean accurate building that results in light but still strong models. Focus on producing components that are symmetrical where they need to be symmetrical and warp free with nice tidy almost invisible glue joints due to precisely fitted dry joints before the glue is added. If you find you get to the end and need filler for any reason then you didn't learn as well as you might have done. Or if any glue joints show through the covering then you've still got things to learn on the second build.

Now if you're still keen and really want to do something different?.... what about making up a bomb drop with two or maybe three lightweight and very dayglo orange "bombs" mounted to a couple of drop trigger pylons on the belly of the fuselage? Rig the releases with an escapement setup so each time you flip the retract switch it drops one bomb. Set a target on the ground and have some fun!

For safety reasons the "bombs" will need to have a very soft nose on them so they don't hurt any cars or other folks in the area. A small and not overly heavy weight just behind the inch or two of resilient foam similar to sleeping pad foam or EPP foam for the nose cone will ensure the bomb drops correctly.
Oct 03, 2020, 09:04 AM
Oxford Panic
AndyOne's Avatar
Retracts on a high-wing! even more troublesome and difficult than on a low-winger.
Oct 03, 2020, 03:45 PM
A man with too many toys
That is a very strange airplane to add retracts ?

Oct 03, 2020, 05:01 PM
Registered User
wingtips's Avatar

Retracts for a Senior kadet

There was an article article in one the Model magizines about 15 or twenty years ago about how to install retracts inTo a high wing type rc model. Kinda like what a RG Cardinal Cessna does . It was a complete construction article on a Plane and how to construct the plane and a complicated process for bending the wire Gear and constructing the mechanism. When the gear folded up and back it affected the Center of gravity. Of the model. It looked pretty neat though. . To the OP. Pretty much anything is possible these days given Enough time and energy. The mechanism was stout and weighed a lot, I donít think it would work well in a light design like a Kadet Senior. Wish I could remember which mag it was in. I would like to look at it again.
Oct 03, 2020, 07:05 PM
Registered User
N1EDM's Avatar
I figure that as long as everyone else is giving you advice, maybe I should too :-)

Years ago, no self-respecting Pattern pilot would fly a plane without Retracts. But over time, even those guys gave it up and they all fly with fixed gear because retracts caused so much fuss and hassle.

How about an alternative idea? With the Kadet, you may run into some rough landings that require you to keep re-bending the gear. If you are itching to make some kind of mod to your plane, may I suggest that you put in a beefy maple landing gear block across the bottom (which might require some modification of the Fuse doublers) and use that block to mount some heavy duty landing gear like these Dubro's"

If you go that route, then I suggest that you use three 10-24 NYLON screws to attach your gear. That way, if you make a rough landing, the bolts will shear and the gear will give way. The only damage will be your pride and you don't have to take time to glue that LG block back in place - just change out those nylon bolts (buy spares) and re-attach the Dubro gear.l

Just my $.02 if you were looking for something unusual to do.

Last edited by N1EDM; Oct 05, 2020 at 12:39 PM.
Oct 05, 2020, 10:55 AM
Paper Plane Scratch Builder
Lufo's Avatar
I say to turn it into a twin, add nacelles for the wing retracts and then a nose retract.
Oct 05, 2020, 11:37 AM
A man with a plan
Balsaworkbench's Avatar
"There's no reason to add retracts to a Kadet." This is funny advice coming from a bunch of grown men playing with toy airplanes.

The point that was made about the center of gravity is a good one. Perhaps one leg could fold forward and the other one aft.

The great thing about the Kadet is that you can let your imagination run wild. Build hinged landing gear struts, telescoping struts, or rotating mounts. The Kadet can handle extra weight with no problem. I'd love to see what you come up with.
Oct 05, 2020, 11:56 AM
Registered User
Captain Dunsel's Avatar
Actually, I can see a few reasons why I agree with the OP.

1. It's a challenge -- the harder the things you try, the more you learn.

2. Kadets have such a low wing loading that they can handle the added weight of retracts without becoming bricks.

3. Retracts were needed on Pattern models back in the days of ballistic pattern. The objective was to get a model flying fast, with maximum power. Hence piped, pumped engines and retracts on fast, heavy models.

Once the Pattern shifted to Turnaround, speed became a liability, so models had to get lighter. Going to fixed, taildragger gear helped a LOT. I know my Mach One wasn't fun to land, especially on grass!

4. I don't know the OP, but just thanks to the plethora of ARFs out there, he may be an experienced flier, just a novice at building.

Danilo02, if you ARE a novice flier, then I suggest you put retracts on a back-burner and wait until you gain hours in your logbook. As to how you might do it, I agree with making the gear like a Cessna's, although you could also install more conventional retracts in a stub low wing (as done in a few Stinsons).

Oct 05, 2020, 12:06 PM
Registered User
While adding retracts to a kadet is like putting a saddle on a stump, this will be interesting to see.
Oct 05, 2020, 01:40 PM
San Antonio TX.
sensei's Avatar
Last edited by sensei; Oct 05, 2020 at 04:23 PM.
Oct 05, 2020, 03:48 PM
Paper Plane Scratch Builder
Lufo's Avatar
OK ... if really serious about retracts then I would make the plane a taildragger and move the gear forward with them retracting rearward.

Frankly, I really, really feel it would be a better idea to buy a kit that is designed for retracts. While I applaud creativity and mod'ing stuff, the KS is just not conducive to having retracts installed.
Oct 05, 2020, 06:40 PM
Registered User
Zipman's Avatar
OK Daniel. Here you go. Nothing is impossible. Grumman already figured it out.
While looking for pictures I found this link on RCG for a 3D printable Albatross LG.

Quick Reply

Thread Tools

Similar Threads
Category Thread Thread Starter Forum Replies Last Post
Discussion Sig kadet senior. 80" ws montyb101 Balsa Builders 17 Jan 29, 2016 10:07 PM
Discussion Sig Senior Kadet STOVL Project Ed Couch VTOLs 15 Jan 04, 2016 10:46 AM
Discussion Kadet Senior...RIP Nergall Stone Mountain RC Flyers 9 Dec 02, 2015 09:44 AM
Discussion Decisions, Decisions.... Seniorita, LT-40, or Kadet Senior Sport??? G.F. Beurling Electric Plane Talk 6 Oct 31, 2015 04:49 PM