Thread Tools
Nov 04, 2020, 10:37 PM
Registered User
Thread OP
Build Log

Balsa USA ....LAKER.....Build Log


I have started to build a waterplane ......the Laker from Balsa USA. I received the kit from very skilled builder and pilot who probably had too many projects to get to this one. He is also flying only electric now, so he moved this kit my direction.

This will be the 4th balsa kit that I will be building, so any help or suggestions are appreciated. Anyone who has built or flown a Laker please post comments and especially pictures of your planes.

I started the plane a few evenings ago and have framed up the sides and formers of the fuse.

The instructions called for CA glue, and I actually tried to use it, but for most of this build it will be the Gorilla brothers. Gorilla wood glue and original Gorilla glue to seal the hull.

I applogize for the messy table and busy photos. I wouldn't necessarily follow my build methods unless you are really desparate, as this is mostly for entertainment.
Last edited by El Falcone; Nov 05, 2020 at 08:53 AM. Reason: Spelling
Sign up now
to remove ads between posts
Nov 05, 2020, 09:00 PM
Registered User
Thread OP
So the next step...step 30ish ...involves cutting and installing the forward bottom hull. Plywood is 1/32. As it turns out the piece in the kit was naturally 'precurved', matched the shape of the forward hull very well.

The plans say to use thick CA, so I am going to do the right thing and use the wood glue. I may seal inside with Gorilla poly.....but I think I will be fiberglassing the fuse so it probably doesn't matter.

I have never used fiberglass on a model before. If any of you have better ideas let me know.

One thing about the plans and manual that is missing, is a picture of the model on the water,
to show the water line on the hull.
Nov 07, 2020, 06:54 PM
Registered User
Thread OP
Fuse alignment...this one is pretty good so far
Nov 09, 2020, 12:10 AM
Registered User
Thread OP

Engine choices


I have been giving engine choices some thought. Some say not to overpower the Laker. Others say it needs a strong .46, or even better a .55 to get off the water better.

I think I am going to start with a Thunder Tiger GP 42 and if that is not enough, then move up to a ball bearing motor. I have even considered a Saito 56 4 stroke....since I have it.

Again, if anyone has thoughts on this let me know.

More pictures will come soon.....
Nov 09, 2020, 01:35 PM
Registered User
Trying to take off with low power usually means that you pull more and more up elevator until the airplane struggles off the water with too little airspeed. Resulting a tip stall and splash. Finishing with fiberglass and paint will make the airplane heavy, resulting in even more likelihood of a splash.

I'm curious why anyone would say not to overpower an airplane. Don't they ever use the throttle? If full throttle goes to fast, or using full throttle on take off forces the nose down, retarding the throttle cures those problems instantly. You can always reduce the power, but you can't add more if isn't there.

I have flown model seaplanes and float planes for 30 years or so, and my recommendation would be either the BB46 or the 55 and using the throttle as needed.

Jim
Nov 09, 2020, 03:50 PM
Registered User
Thread OP
Point well taken.
I am very new to waterplane. It began a little over a year ago......
A fine gentleman saw a trainer plane I was flying and made the comment....you know that plane would make a good float plane. I found 2 pair of used floats on Craigslist, fitted one set to the plane and took it to a lake last September.
We claimed a success, since it was our first attempt and we actually made 2 or 3 flights and took the plane home in one piece. Fast forward to October of this year.....I took the plane out again......to a smaller lake....with trees.....
Take off was OK. I climbed to above the trees, but barely. Lost altitude in a turn and crunch...
The plane could definitely have used one size bigger engine.
That story is in waterplane forum under Bad Leroy Brown. That plane is being rebuilt and will likely be heavier yet.
Back to the Laker....I have some time to get the right engine and calculate the weight when it gets closer.
Nov 09, 2020, 03:52 PM
Registered User
Thread OP
Also Jim,
What finish would you recommend for the hull? Build manual mentions SIG coverall?
Nov 09, 2020, 05:10 PM
Registered User
A couple of coats of water based polyurethane varnish to seal the wood. Then Ultracote . Just make sure the seams between pieces of covering all face up or to the rear. In other words, cover the top of the fuselage first, then the sides, then the bottom. When flying check frequently for tears or separations. If you fly from a rocky beach you can fiberglass just the front section of the bottom. Do that after you cover the sides so that the glass overlaps the covering that wraps around from the sides.
Nov 09, 2020, 06:26 PM
Registered User
ckimmey's Avatar
Sorry, was responding to different thread.

I recommend dope for waterproofing. It takes covering better than urethane.
Nov 09, 2020, 08:18 PM
Registered User
Thread OP
Thanks for the suggestions
I have been working on the pylon, nacelle, engine holding thing. I am going to show a couple pictures showing a Saito 56 clamped on.
Actually, the Saito was on the other float plane that met the tree. That plane will probably get a 65 Saito, or maybe a retro K&B 61 that I have, so the 56 is available. Not sure if I will use it or not. Still time to consider options.

Here are pictures. The pylon building was a new thing for me, went together well, so far.
Nov 13, 2020, 08:10 AM
Registered User
Quote:
Originally Posted by El Falcone
Fuse alignment...this one is pretty good so far
Looks good! The peppers made me chuckle, especially since I lived in NM for a while.
Nov 13, 2020, 08:24 PM
Registered User
Thread OP
ktrails,

I really enjoyed your story ....First Flight Story

If anyone hear hasn't read it you might want to check it out. Right here in Balsa Builders...I believe
Nov 13, 2020, 08:50 PM
Registered User
Thread OP
https://www.ebay.com/itm/Balsa-USA-L....m46890.l49292

So...here is a Laker for sale on EBay. Nice one. I see wing servos in wing floats. I think I will put 2 wing servos instead of single. I may put mine on top. It may not look as good though. I wish I could see better how the wing servos were installed in the Ebay plane.
Last edited by El Falcone; Nov 13, 2020 at 09:56 PM. Reason: Spelling
Nov 15, 2020, 12:44 PM
Registered User
Quote:
Originally Posted by El Falcone
ktrails,

I really enjoyed your story ....First Flight Story

If anyone hear hasn't read it you might want to check it out. Right here in Balsa Builders...I believe
Wow, thank you! Iím glad you enjoyed it!
Nov 15, 2020, 05:44 PM
MAAC SAVED RC!!
vettster's Avatar
Hi EL...Im just sitting here in the dark(black out)...so I thought I'd throw you a tip I received from Laddy Mikulasko.

Make sure the chines are very sharp. That's where the bottom of the hull meets the sides. He told me he once gave a model to someone that would make fiberglass molds..but to make it easier to remove from the molds the glass guy rounded the corners. The end result was the plane never left the water because of the surface tention.

Enjoying your build.

Trevor


Quick Reply
Message:

Thread Tools

Similar Threads
Category Thread Thread Starter Forum Replies Last Post
Alert Balsa usa laker kit for sale on ebay. John38 Waterplanes 0 Mar 07, 2020 10:25 AM
Alert Balsa usa laker kit for sale on ebay. John38 Scale Kit/Scratch Built 0 Mar 07, 2020 10:19 AM
Alert BALSA USA LAKER Kit for sale John38 Vintage & Old-Timer Designs 0 Mar 07, 2020 10:09 AM
Discussion Wantd: Laker plane by Balsa USA Eric Balch Fuel Plane Talk 0 Jun 05, 2006 04:49 PM
Trade for NIB balsa usa laker + Fox 46 ABC jim e Fuel Plane Talk 1 Jun 05, 2006 04:45 PM