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Sep 14, 2006, 08:55 PM
Registered User
Thread OP

Bug optomizing project

Hi guys, I am new to this forum, but I have built a few HLG gliders over the years. I recently built another, but my bad back put a stop to the fun. I see two ways to solve the problem. 1. switch to DLG. 2. Build micro DLG or SLG type design. It seems that the smaller the design, the les likely to acheive laminar flow, so, what remains is just realy light wing loading. Otherwise, you just get a sled.

I have started a Bug. The first I intend to build mostly stock. I intend to use a 2 cell LIPO 300ma for power, a Berg RX, and 3.6 gm servos. I have some realy nice 5 lb balsa, and a tapered carbon tail boom of very high quality. I hope to be balanced and flying around 2.5 oz.

I also have a scheme to build a version with half the deheidral and interconect ailerons with the V tail. This not only gives realy quick roll, but also camber changing wing. I have done this before on other designs and it works great. Very little weight gain.

I would love to hear if you guys are interested in this and I will post pics.

Also, I would love to hear you ideas about what you have done to improve this design.

Any one have ideas about the suitability of DLG and V tails? do I need a new tail?

I have seen some folks have leingthened the wing. Is this a good mod?

How light can one of these be built?

Thanks for your comments...

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Sep 15, 2006, 09:18 AM
Registered User
Walter, I'd love to hear how the superbug works out. I've been flying them for about 3 years with a single cell 190 mah lipo, D47's or smaller bluebird servos and a Berg or GWS R4 rx. I've had no probs with run times. In fact, my Eclipse will sometimes sound the alarm before I run out of range or the servos get "chattery". With a simple carbon pod (carbon braided sleeve over lost foam) and carbon leading edges and spars I get an auw of around 70 grams or so, makes for a great floater. It doesn't penetrate very well but will fly in the lightest lift, slope or thermal. I also build Apogees and am working on my second Supergee but these little bugs are a heck of alot of fun. I'd love to see how it works out! I know the 1.5 meter Dlg's are true thermal machines but the compact size of the micro hlg/sal/dlg is REALLY appealing to me. Looking foward to your results...
Sep 15, 2006, 01:14 PM
Registered User
Have made and flown Bugs, and agree it's a very likeable plane. Have not tried tip-launching one. I totally agree that there is a lot of interest in micro SAl/DHL for many reasons. Just look at the thread with the guys clamoring to get the 30" Angel DHL. Have also had a ball with Swyft and learned a lot about small, weakish. yet to form thermals.
Would like to know more about your adventures with Apogee, and the lost foam sleeve technique.
Sep 15, 2006, 04:21 PM
Registered User
Thread OP
Ok, lets hear about what it takes to tip launch a Bug. Can you just add a peg? do we need a new tail design?

I have seen and read lots of threads, I know its been tried.

Sep 15, 2006, 04:36 PM
Registered User
I entered "Bug" is search HL thread titles only and got 2 pages of hits.
Here's first one that answere your quest.
Sep 15, 2006, 05:27 PM
Registered User
Thread OP
Thanks, John, I also searched. Some realy great information. One nice thing about these sites, is that after doing searches, and checking out all the historical information, one can then ask a question and get an update on whats been done lately.

I do hope to experiment and build a Bug that includes any benifit I can gain from advice and experience of others. You know, standing on the shoulders of others. I also think that I can maybe add something of my own and others will then benifit.

I also hope to generate new interest, and see others build a new batch of Bugs.

Sep 15, 2006, 08:17 PM
Registered User
Fly'n fish's Avatar
where would you get a bug?

Sep 15, 2006, 08:29 PM
Registered User
Thread OP

Rather reasonably priced plan.

Sep 15, 2006, 08:57 PM
Registered User
John255, the apogee is incredible. It launches high and covers an unbelievable amount of sky but slows down to float in the smallest thermals. It's spoiled me for any other micro sal/dlg/hlg that I've come across so far. I build them like micro supergees with carbon pylons and the smallest possible pod. My latest has a cruciform tail with 1.7oz kevlar wings.
The "lost foam" technique for the pods is very simple, so simple in fact that I've been putting off learning how to mold fuses, not for much longer though...
Start by carving/sanding a blue foam plug to the correct size for the gear and the foward end of the boom, slide some braided sleeve over the plug and smooth it out towards the ends. 3m77 does a good job of holding it in place until you slide it in the bag. Before I was given a vaccum pump I even used the brake bleeder hand pumps from the auto parts store. They work fine on small parts like these pods. Just pull a vaccum, let it cure then (in a well ventilated area) pour some acetone into the plug to melt the foam. Cut off the canopy with a razor saw and glue in the boom. Ta da, a light weight, super strong pod that takes less than 20 minutes to make (not including the time in the bag, of course). One of these days I'll get a digicam and load some pics. Here's a link to the site that I learned the technique from,
Sep 15, 2006, 09:09 PM
Registered User
Oh yeah, I meant to mention the peg for saling the bug, got carried away with the apogees and the pod, sorry.
I run the carbon spar out farther towards the tip, drill the appropriate sized hole in the spar, insert peg, and wrap the area with some carbon tow soaked with ca. Haven't had any sort of failure and the launch is way higher. I've used the vtail with good results but a cross tail seems to launch higher with less rudder input to correct. I keep thinking about a bug with the balsa being replaced with depron, less dihedral, ailerons, cruciform tail, etc... we'll see
Sep 16, 2006, 05:09 AM
outrageously large member
xtc's Avatar
i have flown the bug for a few yrs and also went DHL on the tail and love the little bugger

i have many high priced sailplanes BUT my bug gets flown the most

my bugs are more focused on strength than lightness becuase i do a lot of SMALL object ridge soaring

the bug will soar the side face of my house and if the wind is wrong ,i go next door to a yard of tractor trailers

i also have my own form of D.S. flying on the back edge of tree-lines

lots of fun
Sep 16, 2006, 06:25 AM
Registered User
John Gallagher's Avatar
Hope you are aware of the yahoo group for the bug.

You can see from my avatar that I have a 35" span bug with a + tail and I tip launch it. Mine is pretty heavy at 4 ounces.
Sep 16, 2006, 04:23 PM
Registered User
jrgospod's Avatar
Many of us have started with The Bug. I have three wings in the rack in my garage that some day I will use “somehow”.
I would recommend you look at this link for the next step in your self-built progression in SHL-DLG

Good Luck!!!!!

Sep 18, 2006, 09:42 AM
Registered Billy
I built my bug after reading through the yahoo group and incorporating some of the mods listed there. Cross tail and a stiffer/lighter wrapped carbon boom (Avia Breeze II). Extend the wing spar past the last rib and use some light .125 balsa for the tip and glue the spar to it well. AUW of 2.8 oz with HS-55 servos, small 4ch SC RX, and 150mAh NiMH (1/3AAA) battery. Specked out many times over 2+ seasons of use. Drop in some quarters for ballast on windier days. Although over 15mph it flew like a leaf, even with ballast. I finally retired it because the fuse was mostly CA and was getting flimsy and the wing was getting worn out. Just a drawback of building as light as possible. I have a few wings and fuses in various states of construction that I may finish some day. This plane is fun, go for it.


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