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Nov 08, 2006, 03:25 PM
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Coastwatcher's Avatar
Build Log

Seagull "DUAL ACE TWIN" Electric Conversion

The Seagull Dual Ace twin caught my eye few months back. In the back of my mind I knew I would have to have one. Taking a break from the warbirds to build something different , I plunked down my money ( $180.00) and brung her home.

I think it maybe roughly based on a Piper Seneca least that is what it looks like to me.

Comment...... I not sure Im so all fired hot about the DORSAL FIN that runs along the WHOLE backbone of the fuselage. The Seneca doesn't have this ODD fin , and I really think I like the looks better with out it. I have not glued it down YET ........I may chop it down and blend it in at the rear different . It sort of messes up the lines of the plane ......????? YA THINK???

I'm a notorious SLOW and deliberate builder. The box lid art is comic and looks very cheap. But , once you see whats inside I think you would be very impressed least I was. One of the better balsa, glass and ply kits I've seen in an ARF. Wrapped and packed very carefully . I was delighted with the contents.

It makes a nice sized airplane with 70 " wingspan and 60 inch lenght.

It has 862 SQ in wing area also impressed me. Friendly .yet sporty design.

I predict the Dual Ace should weight.....oh.... perhapes 10 lbs when its done. Most glow set ups weight in 11.5 -12.0 lb range .

I've already started while I wait on my motors and servos to arrive. About 9 days wait on the servo order, so I an't in no big hurry .

Basically...... it calls for a pair 40-46 glow engines . I'm going to use two electric motors of simular power and (2) 4S Lipo power paks in parallel .

Heres is where I'm at.
Last edited by Coastwatcher; Nov 09, 2006 at 07:31 PM.
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Nov 08, 2006, 03:41 PM
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I glued ( 30 minute epoxy) in the motor boxs to the wing sets. These are REALLY heavy duty , the firewall being nearly 1/2 thick ply. I unmounted all the glow hardware( yuk) from the motor boxes . The motor boxes are PRE ASSEMBLED , nice work in this area, I checked their glue job and all looks up to snuff here.

I bought some Hanger 9 PRO Lt soft rubber wheels to replace the junkie foam ones that come with it . A 10 lb plane needs good tires , it would flatten the foamie ones. I mounted the mains and the steerable nose gear.

The nose wheel axle rod is slightly bigger than the mains so you have to drill out the wheel hub and collars . No big deal took a minute.

Mounted the steering assembly in the nose . It is partiall y done for you. The plastic tubes and rods are already in place out of the box.

The nose is a painted fiberglass piece , I cut a notch out for the steering gear . Glue the wood blocks to the fuselage and mount the nose cone with four screws.

LArge wooden canopy assembly is pre-built and is secured to the body by four small black bolts and blindnuts . It takes maybe 60 sec to unscrew the the four finger tight bolts and remove the canopy. This will be the access to the batteries housed in the rear nose area.
Last edited by Coastwatcher; Nov 09, 2006 at 07:33 PM.
Nov 08, 2006, 03:58 PM
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I peeled off the monocoat or ultra coat ( what-ever) ............ and fited the rear horizontal stablizer and the vertical stab. I CA'd the elevator and rudder hinges and alighned everything together , but haven't epoxied it in place yet.

There is a neat little painted rear fiberglass tailpiece/pod that fits to the rear of the fuse after all the tail feathers are installed . It will screw on once I epoxy everything.

My modest goal is to get a loosely assembled plane together by the time I get my motors and servos. This will provide a platform to preinstall and fit the motors and nacelles. I'll provide cooling slots when the all the engine /cowlings ect are fitted where I want them.

The wings are supported to the fuse by a large aluminium tube . Then four bolts pull the wings to the fuse. You have to remove the coating on the fuse to expose the holes for the rod, bolts and wiring. ( not done yet in the pics)

Note ...... this airplane uses a DUAL ELEVATOR ( two servos) operation , plus two in the wings and one for the rudder/nose wheel operation. Total of FIVE servos. Also you need TWO 12" servo extensions, TWO 6 "ESC extenions and THREE servo Y connectors. So ya see....... there will be a good amount of cash just in the wiring for a twin.

This would be about where I'm at........... till I get mo -parts
Last edited by Coastwatcher; Nov 08, 2006 at 10:49 PM.
Nov 09, 2006, 03:51 AM
<- Balsa flies better ->
wolw's Avatar

Darned Alex B got me interested in building a twin motor plane
And Seagulls models is a real bargain.

Last edited by wolw; Nov 09, 2006 at 04:42 AM.
Nov 09, 2006, 07:45 AM
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Yepper ......... I looked at the box at the LHS a dozen times, the cheesy cover and all didn't inspire me. . But when I actually took the time and peeked in and saw what the model was really like ......holy cow !!! would take me about 4000 years to build this model this nice out of a box of wood. The coverings are stunning , they are much darker in person on the Dual Ace than the flash on my camera reveal with lightens the colors in half. The Body is a creamish color with a deep rich blue belly.

I'm not a gifted model builder . I won't have retracts on this one, but boy they would be neat ! My goal is a sturdy airplane that I can use and enjoy often without alot of tinkering and hokis -pokis and LEAST amount of head scratching during the build . This part of my plane won't come cheap but it where I wish to put MY MONEY .

The instructions are not the worst I've seen , but close... because I have put together a few planes I can smile and go on. But , this plane is not for a beginner , they assume you know alot in advance. Alot of time is spent on how to CA a hinge , and little time on wiring, CG , ect........ the things that make us read each others threads .

I cut away the (extra tuff) ultra coat , requires a NEW BLADE and it will dull quick with this stuff. The covering is Excellent all over , no complaints , only a tiny wrinkle or two on plane..........maybe I lucked out.

When cutting away the ultra coat material , it revealed the holes for the servos wiring , power cables, ESC extensions and wing bolts on both sides of the fuselage. Slide the 1/2 alum tube though and slide the wings on.

I forgot to mention I hardened the landing gear mounts a bit yesterday . A less than greased landing will be stressfull at the three gear attachment areas. I located the L&R main gear blocks inside the wings. It's about 8 inchs in to it, then I roughed up the outer surfaces of the blocks and applied a nice thiick coat of 30 minute epoxy to the whole area. Then I squired CA into the rod hole to let that soak /dry out and then redrilled the hole. This provides a tuff core for the mains gear to sit in. Hopefully this will help from wallowing out gear blocks so fast. I also removed the nose gear mount , sanded off the fuel paint prep the surface and soaked it in CA too.

Stuck the wings on . Hope the motors will be here soon ( maybe tommorrow . I'll hang them next and fit the nacelles and spinners.
Last edited by Coastwatcher; Nov 16, 2006 at 11:15 PM.
Nov 09, 2006, 05:08 PM
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Ed Lyerly's Avatar
Invest a few bucks with SKS video and get the SEFF 2006 DVD. There was an electric powered version of the Dual Ace Twin that is featured in the demo flights. It flew VERY well .... I would just duplicate that setup.
Nov 09, 2006, 05:21 PM
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Coastwatcher's Avatar

Oh neat .!!! DO TELL? Where do I get such a video. ?

Nov 09, 2006, 06:26 PM
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Ed Lyerly's Avatar
Originally Posted by Coastwatcher

Oh neat .!!! DO TELL? Where do I get such a video. ?

Here you go . E Flite Power 46's, each on 5S packs. 11.5 lbs.;

Nov 09, 2006, 07:03 PM
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I'm Soooooooooooooooooooo glade you pointed this out. yes sir !!!...... Eflite POWER 46 's is what I had chosen to power the Ace ....hopefully they'll be here tommorrow.

My Hanger 9 40 Pulse is a pussycat with one Power 46 on a 4S set up. I was thinking PWR 46 the first time I laid eyes on that wing. I did briefly considered the Eflite PWR 32 . I needed the weight up front and the 46's gave me additional 6ozs ......and what the heck a bit mo kick never hurt.

I haven't ruled out a 5S ....... it sort of depends on how much batt I need up front to get the balance I want .

I do have a plan based on the Pulse power train X2 . and most likely start with 12X 8 E props . Might go 13 if ground clearance permitts.


Last edited by Coastwatcher; Nov 10, 2006 at 07:46 PM.
Nov 11, 2006, 12:38 PM
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Caddguy6's Avatar

Nose gear strut...

Just stopped by to see your progress, looks like a great conversion. One thing that kinda stood out, your nose gear strut needs to be spun around 180 degrees. When/if you land a little hard, you want the coil to resist the strut pushing back, not unloading against the force.

Page 16 of the manual shows the correct position.

Nov 11, 2006, 05:26 PM
She looks even better than the ads. Well, I've been lookin' at this plane for a while and durn glad the LHS doesn't have it in stock or I would have to buy it. I felt the Power 46 motors would be a good choice along with 5S packs. However I wonder about the CG using Lipos as compared to round cells, but since Ed noted the plane in the vid used 5S packs, it must have turned out ok.
I may have to sell off a few planes I haven't flown for a while and get started on this one. Yeah, well, my bedroom is too full of planes so it wouldn't hurt to clear out the hangar as well as some other stuff I no longer use. Who knows I may just be able to get enough together for it.
I like this plane much better than the Hobbico twin as it looks more scale......has a lot of potential for scale mods.
Good luck with your project! John Z
Nov 11, 2006, 07:06 PM
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Yes.. Many thanks !! I saw it ....After I took the pics corrected it and forgot to mention that point. Thanks for the reminder and pics.

It was to darn pretty today to stay inside , another 80 degree day and sunny with light wind .......... means I went to the field and spent the day.

I have made some progress on mounting the motors . I have starboard side pretty close to done.

My Eflite Power 46's arrived yesterday . They are rated at 670KV and will make good power on a 4-5 S Paks. I'm sort of hoping for the new Castle C's 60 's on Horizons website to make their debute ...........early DEC is the forcast . Great specs with good BEC like the Jetti spins now have.

Mounting the motors / fitting the nicelles and making a battery compartment are the hardest parts to do here , It's time.... I'm ready to start !!!!

The nacelles are a "clam shell design" . I first fitted the bottom shell and taped it to the wing good and tight with masking tape , they are in pairs and come labeled as such. As you can guess accuratecy is extremely important here. Then I fitted the top shell and marked it's location. Took the top shell off and fitted the motor + brace against the firewall . MArked the location and replaced the top shell . I repeated this step a few times till I was satisfied I had it "ALL" centered good. Drilled one corner hole and mounted the motor with the correct nylon spacers . Tightened it up and rechecked my nacelle fit . I was satisfied I drill the other three holes and installed the motor to test the fit .

I should point out you have to have your spinner clearance and collar worked out to as you pick out the spacers to shim the motor out.

There is alot to think about as you mount the motors. I suggest going VERY slow and rechecking youself continiously to be sure something has not slipped.

I am NOT an accurate builder of ply boxes . But that is one route that could be done is to build a box , mount the motor and glue it to the fire wall.

I just like mounting mine directly to the and gluing just don't get along. But I can mount them to the firewall quicker than I can build and glue together a box and be sure it is all straight . Each to his own.

I haven't screwed the nacelle halfs together yet .....but it looks like the fit should be with in reason. There is a wooden collar or ring that supports the the front of the nacelle. I'll install this as I do the final screw down of the Nacelle halfs.

Getting a nice fit will take ALOT of patience and maybe a tiny bit of trimming at certain points on the nacelle to get the fit I want.

All this may vary according to the manufacturing quality control kits nacelles maybe closer fit or worse than mine. Actually the fit is pretty good .... you have to be sure you are putting them together the RIGHT way !!

The glow engines are about 6-7 oz heavier than my 46 elecrtics ........but the electrics sit FARTHER forward in the nacelle Plus the 2.0+ ounce speed control and heavy wiring , the diff well maynot be so great after it all shakes out.

I had one 11/7 E prop on hand, it looks tiny with that huge spinner . I hoping to use a 12/8 if ground clearance will let me. 13 is probally a dream

Still waiting on the servo and extensions . I'll try and find time to get the port motor bolted up and nacelle fitted. Then I'll mount the main landing gear and install the wing servos .

Keep em flying.
Last edited by Coastwatcher; Nov 12, 2006 at 10:43 AM.
Nov 12, 2006, 09:09 AM
Looks good so far. I have a collection of those nylon spacers in various sizes and lengths. Nice to know you can get them at just about any hardware store.
I don't like to build motor boxes either and find the spacers easier and just as strong.
Where do you plan to mount the batts?
Nov 12, 2006, 10:34 AM
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Coastwatcher's Avatar

Correct... I bought my spacer collection from the hardware store too. It worked out that a 3/4 + 5/8 spacers gave me the correct lenght . The less glue I use the better my plane will turn out. I get it in my hair...cloths...carpet....and everywhere on the project but where I want.

I have run out of 4MM X 50mm Allen head screws Can't mount the otherside till I track four down more. The local Hardware store doesn't have them. Ther is ALWAYS something I an't got.

Location of Battery tray: is the area in front of the windshield to behind the nosegear ply wall. It is a huge area , but with a minor hassle or two to sort out. I plan on cutting out a battery tray of ply then epoxy it into this area. The nose steering rod is a bit in the way . But I can move it a tad and or build the batt platform just above it. I will have to cut away some minor bits of the former section below the windshiled to allow the batteries to slide in and out.

I'm a advocate of ONE power source for both motors unless it is impossible to do otherwise. I don't think this model lends itself to batt paks in each nacelle safely. The fit and acesss with the fragile fiberglass nacells is to clumbersome to take on and off repeatedly . I don't seal in batteries in planes. I believe that is asking for trouble. The weight of the batteries is too far back in the rear of the nacelle.s Alot of addtl weight would be required to balance.

The power cable run from the ESC in nacelle to the batteries is actually pretty short run of maybe 13-15 ins. One set of wires for each motor ESC though the wing to plug into the batt paks. Each ESC will be secured to the bottom of the wooden motor box I'll vent the bottom half of the nacelle to cool it .

I use 100% Thunder Power battery paks. I use a TP balancer and charger and keeping the same brand allows me confidently to mix my batt paks to fit many other planes I have in different configurations. So I will stick with what I already have and trust and just add to my collection of TP paks. I'm studying the paks now and will probally order a pair of TP extreme Lipos to run in parallel . I usually use the shorter rectangle paks , but I may go with the longer flater paks for this plane , if they will provide the balance of weight . I'm always thinking ahead when doing batteries .......can I use them in the NEXT plane or two I build as well. This helps offset the extra cost of TP batteries. The paks for this plane will ALSO fly my Hanger 9 Sopwith Camel when I get around to building it this spring. All my batteries pull multiple duty with several planes.
Last edited by Coastwatcher; Nov 15, 2006 at 05:20 PM.
Nov 13, 2006, 07:24 AM
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Here is the Starboard Nacelle fitted , I'll of course have to go back and install the ESC, wing servo and pull the wiring. It was a tuff one to get lined up in the end. I wanted it to REST screwed down. or train itself to the wing a bit so when I pull it back off it will fall into place a bit easier.

The port side nacelle fits near perfect ( whew ) testing the overall fit. I'll hunt me down the 4 screws I need to mount the motor soon as I can find time. Busy.

Good news , it appears there will be room to use the 12x8 props I have on order. Plenty of clearance to the fuselage , i could probally increase the wheel size and go to the 13 props . Just have to wait and see what shakes out. I would like to keep the wheels I have as they are close to scale and look nice.
Last edited by Coastwatcher; Nov 13, 2006 at 12:11 PM.

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