Kavan Dr.1 Triplane - RC Groups
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Oct 21, 2002, 11:53 AM
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Kavan Dr.1 Triplane

I finally got my Kavan Dr. 1 from Hobby People put together this past weekend. Very nice kit, but the instructions are minimal. It took me about 6 hours to build. The hardest part is setting up the wings. I managed to mess this up initially (duh on my part). I did just the opposite of the way it was suppose to be and the top wing's leading edge wound up pointing more "up" than the two below it. The first time I attempted to ROG it would only climb to 1' before slowly decending back to the ground. It was in a permenant "stall" condition. I went back and did some research and realized the top two wings need to be pointing more down than the lowest wing. After a little reaasembly and installing a speed 300 motor the plane now flies great. I also had to use a larger battery pack than would fit in the built-in enclosure. The smaller 8.4v Nicad just couldn't sustain the amp rate the speed 300 pulled. So now I use a 9.6v 700 Mah NiHm (from my GWS zero). The C/B came out perfect without adding any additional weight. It now ROG's in about 10' and flies very scale like for about 8 minutes. I have to say it looks great in the sky. My friend bought the Sopwith Triplane so we can do "combat". I would definitely recommend this kit for someone with a little building/flying experience.
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Oct 21, 2002, 12:50 PM
Crash Test Dummy
cayuse's Avatar

I'm surprised your tripe flies better with the lowest wing set at a relatively positive angle of attack. My scratch-built version was a bear to fly until I lowered the incidence on my low wing and midwing to zero. Now I have the top wing set to 2 degrees, mid and lower wings set to zero, and the tail is around 4-5 degrees, all with respect to the thrust line.

Conventional wisdom on multi-wings is that the "leading" wing should be set up with slightly positive incidence so it stalls first. That way the nose drops gently and stall recovery is faster. If the trailing wing stalls first the center of lift moves ahead of the CG, lifting the nose and quickly stalling the remaining wings.

Did Kavan supply you with a jig to allign your wings?
Oct 21, 2002, 01:12 PM
Registered User
How did you mount the battery that would not fit into the compartment? I too have a DR1 and my flight times are short due to the available space. I would like to put a bigger battery in but not sure how.
Did you cut out the bottom of the battery compartment?

Thanks for your help

Oct 21, 2002, 02:32 PM
Registered User
Cayuse- Kavan did provide a jig but the instruction weren't clear on how to use them. The actually angle where the wings should have alligned at wasn't pointed out until later in the instructions (after the wing is installed, which was a little late). It showed a 0 degree for the bottom wing, .5 for the second the 1.5 for the top. The picture definitely shows the upper wings pointing more downward than the lower wings. I'm not sure if everything is alligned perfect but it flies great. I'm new to multiwings so I'm still learning.

Ngenoese- I tried using a 8.4v Nicad pack but it would cutout at full throttle (with the speed 300). I finally used a 9.6v nimh with velcro under the bottom of nose below where the battery would have gone in the slot. It's not the prettiest solution but it got me in the air. Actually you can't really see the battery as the fuselage is so wide. It helps keep the cells cooler as well. I want to try and locate a battery pack that will actually fit in the slot and carry the amp load prior to cutting up the battery box.
Last edited by SteveO; Oct 22, 2002 at 12:22 PM.
Oct 21, 2002, 03:13 PM
Registered User
Thanks SteveO.
I never thought of doing that!
It seems the simplest solution is usually the best.
I do have a 9.6 850 ma NiMh that I used in my Zero so I'll try that tonight.

Thanks again.

Oct 21, 2002, 03:27 PM
Registered User
No problem, other than that did you have any problems building flying your Dr. 1?
Oct 21, 2002, 03:35 PM
Registered User
Actually, the DR1 is pretty stable. It does need down elevator when at full throttle but I think some more down thrust will help.
It flies very slow and its top speed, even with a speed 300, is still pretty slow.

It does have a tendancy to tuck under (tip stall) if you turn at or near stall speed, but as long as you keep the speed up, the plane responds immediately and predictably.

The landing gear is the only weakness. You have to make a decent landing or you will snap the axle or the landing gear mounts. However, as long as you don't slam it into the ground, it is a pretty durable plane.

It looks awesome in the air and flies much like the full size DR1.
I'm happy with the Kavan kit. Thinking of buying the Sopwith Triplane.

Oct 21, 2002, 03:37 PM
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O riginally bought the Sopwith tripe but when the Foker Dr. 1 went on sale my buddy bought the Sopwith from me so we each have one. Of course he has yet to start on his (learning from my mistakes) How did you mount your speed 300 in the plane? did you use the original gearbox or modify the nose?
Oct 21, 2002, 04:47 PM
Registered User
I used the original gear box and just stuck a speed 300 motor in it. I also bought a 280 Ball Bearing motor in case the 300 didn't fit or didn't provide enough power.

Oct 22, 2002, 12:17 PM
Registered User
I did the same with mine. The gear off the old 280 wouldn't come off so I used a different gear on the 300. It has less teeth but the same pitch so it meshes ok. I'm thinking the ratio is more like 5:1 now instead of 4.3:1 the kit came with? I wonder if I could go to a larger prop or more pitch since the ratio is lower?
Last edited by SteveO; Oct 22, 2002 at 12:23 PM.
Oct 22, 2002, 12:38 PM
Registered User
Michael Heer's Avatar
I also have the Kavan Dr 1 and have been very happy with how it flies when my battery pack is working as it should. Unfortunately I used an 8 cell Nimh hump pack that is glued inside the fuselage and it doesn't always work the way it should. I will probably just have to bite the bullet and go in and surgically remove it. This plane is much easier to handle then the Simprop Dr 1. The Kavan does come with a foam jig system for building the wings. I use a 280 BB to power my plane. Mike
Oct 22, 2002, 04:07 PM
Registered User
I've got the Simprop Dr1. I'm using a Wasp 280BB geared 5:1 with a 9x6 prop. Recently acquired Kokam lithiums from http://www.b-p-p.com/kokam1020.htm that I'm going to use. Fast service and great customer support from Troy. I haven't flown anything yet but static test shows these cells to be very promising!!!!!! Much better pull than Qualcomms and easier to solder together in my opinion especially in parallell. I made a 4 cell 2x2 in parrallell pack. The weight on this is only 3 oz. with 8.4 volts and 2080 mah! I highly recommend for all you guys using speed 300 to go with this setup as it will give you less weight and much more flight time.
Oct 23, 2002, 04:33 PM
Registered User
Let us know how the inflight tests work out. As they get more popular the advancements for the Lion cells will become better and cheaper. I wonder if they would fit into the stock location in the Foker Triplane?

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