AERC F-4 Phantom Building and flying thread! - Page 14 - RC Groups
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Dec 26, 2002, 10:49 AM
Forgot how to fly
Mike Parsons's Avatar


Thanks Glenn,
I will be there. I am probably going to have to go early. I will probably be there a little after noon and can only stay a few hours (date night with the wife ). PM me if you think you will be there around that timeframe.
Hope everyone had a great holiday!
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Dec 28, 2002, 12:07 AM
Registered User
pval3's Avatar

ducting update

Hey folks,

been playing with the F4 for the last couple of days with the repair from the first day's flights . . here are some issues I see

1) ducting:

Unless you are gluing the ducting on the intake side to the outside of the fan, you may run into an issue with the duct sucking up on itself. As my last landing had a leaf on the intake inlet on the side with the paper duct, I found that even that slight block was enough to suck and twist the ducting on itself.

The transparency film has not even flinched and has mantained the form PERFECTLY . . I would whole heartedly recommend the material over the paper. It is far easier to work with and is impervious to the vaccuum and pressure from the motor. . . most of all, you can work around it without having to worry about cushing it. I am seriously considering replacing the paper side with the material.


what I have done to move the cg foreward is to make a battery duct in the nose between the f2 and f1 formers in the same manner the intake ducts were made - with the paper and placing you batttery in there with a little strip of velcro to hold the battery in place in flight. I also drilled a 3/8 hole in between the fans on f4 to allow the wiring to pass to move as much as possible foreward to reduce the amount of weight needed to balance this bird.

I will try to post pics shortly, im on vacation and do not have photoshop on my laptop...

Flight video will hopefully happen this weekend as long as the weather cuts a break in the North East, so far just rain, snow, sleet and wind . . . . . . . booooooooooo!

Dec 29, 2002, 10:00 PM
Forgot how to fly
Mike Parsons's Avatar


Have we got any actual video that proves that this plane will fly? I havent finished covering mine yet, but I am suprised that there is no inflight video or even inflight pictures after all of this time! I am beginning to think I am working on a UFO. "Unproven Flying Object"

Dec 29, 2002, 10:13 PM
Registered User
pval3's Avatar

video delays

I dragged all the stuff out yesterday but by the time I got the the flying field, the wind was blowing at 10Kts gusting to 16.......

I am trying desperately to get the video of the flying model...but Mother Nature is not cooperating...

Been flying a long time but not willing to compromise an virgin plane on the first flight because I was impatient.

I have my "crew" ready for tuesday . . . pray for calm weather in the North East!!!!

Once we get the stuff on video, the clip will be up on the AERC site in a matter of hours and I will send a link along via this forum

Dec 29, 2002, 10:20 PM
Let's Fly
gbagley's Avatar

I'll gladly add it to mine if you let me.

Dec 29, 2002, 10:20 PM
Forgot how to fly
Mike Parsons's Avatar


PVal, if you say it fly's then i trust you, just would like to see it with my own eyes. That way if mine wont keep the wind under its wings, I know it is because of me and not the design. I will say a small prayer for Tuesday.

Dec 29, 2002, 11:26 PM
drbird's Avatar
foamflyer -

If you feel at anytime that the design is "not air-worthy" and that it will not fly please contact me. We will make arrangements to have it shipped back to us and send you a refund. Video has been delayed much longer than expected due to mother nature and lack of equipment but rest assured the plane is very air-worthy and video will be up soon. Also remember that you are dealing with a very light aircraft and something as little as the type of paint you use on the wings will effect flight performance. In other words if you hand launch it and find it be a little off-balance (front/back/side-side) please do not jump to the conclusion that it will not fly - simply adjust CG and go from there. The prototype was flown with three different batteries and each time the CG had to be changed and re-evaluated. If you have any questions please feel free to contact me personally:

If worst comes to worst and the weather back east doesn't let up I will hire a crew to film me personally fly it here in LA.

Dec 29, 2002, 11:43 PM
Model Designer
keven64's Avatar
Even Concorde has to be re-trimmed during flight, dependent upon the fuel situation . . .

Different battery packs amount to the same thing, in an electrically powered model.

Dec 30, 2002, 02:24 AM
Registered User
pval3's Avatar

more bout it

gbagley, were you talking about adding the video I create to stuff you already have or were you inquiring whether you could put the clips up on your site???

As far as I am concerned, the video belongs to AERC as I am creating it for them . . . . ask John, he determines what goes where.

Foam flier,

dude, the thing impressed the crud out of me when it lept out of my hands and did a VERTICAL 9 because I had the CG wayyyyyy to far aft. The CG is aperently tricky on this bird. I am starting my flight this time with the CG 2.75" in front of where it shows on the plans. I have the ability this time to move the CG another inch forward if need be but I think this is right.

These guys have created a great plane . . . it will fly nicely . . have some faith in yourself and the folks that designed it! AERC does to offer you the ability to return it if you are in doubt of it's airworthyness!!!! Ive never seen Great Planes do that - or anyone else for that matter!!!


Man - - Im getting itchy fingers to fly this thing . . the weather has got to break soon. The wind is killling me since all I brought on vacation was park fliers!!!!!


PS Foamflyer - - take pictures of it before you fly . . that way the aviation gods will look kindly upon your plane . . . everytime I dont take pictures of a new plane before I fly it - - someting happens and it crashes.....they always outlive their beauty if you accomplish this simple task!!

Dec 30, 2002, 08:18 AM
Forgot how to fly
Mike Parsons's Avatar

Thanks guys.

Maybe I came off wrong. I am just suprised that there hasn't been video of this bird posted since the first day of her life. She has been out for a while and normally there is video and pictures taken during the Alpha kit or beta kit stage. I am an old marketing goob and advertising is the first thing that I think about. Go figure?! I should have mine ready by this weekend and will get to try it for myself.

I wouldn't dare ask for a refund as you are correct, there are too many variables involved in the build of this plane. Trust me, I have built planes that would not fly and have no one to blame but myself.

As I said before, I trust your judgement.
Dec 30, 2002, 11:04 PM
Forgot how to fly
Mike Parsons's Avatar

Ok, So I got off my lazy &% and finished it,

Here she is all covered up and wanting somewhere to go. I have to say that this was my first covering job and almost detered me from every covering again. I will say that if I can purchase any plane already covered, then I will most definatly spend the extra cash. This was challenging. It is supposed to rain this week, but I will hopefully get it in the air before or shortly after the rainfall.
Dec 31, 2002, 12:22 AM
Registered User
pval3's Avatar


Foam flyer:

great job on your first covering job . . that looks stupendous for a first go.

The first COUPLE of times you cover it is never easy.. you have to build on the techniques you learn from each plane you do.....this was not an "easy" plane to cover because of all of the short radius compound curves around the ducting / intakes and the tail.

OK, once step at a time. . . it wasnt hard to cover, it just took a little more attention to detail than others I have built.

My son just built his first balsa plane and did most of the covering . He was frustrated throug the whole thing and it took him forewver and a day.

He drove me nuts because he is so use to seeing my covering jobs (been using monocoat since the 70's when it came out) and was frustrated because my plane looked a whole lot better than his . . my Dad still makes me do all of his covering because he hates to cover too . . . It just takes practice and patience . . I have a 9 year old - I have to have lots of patience!!!

You did an great job - be proud of yourself - you get an attaboy for that job!

If you are interested in some great techniques, Jeff Troy has a book out through Kalmback I believe. It is all about covering and it is the best I have ever seen. I met Jeff at the WRAMS show a few years ago and he impresed the heck out of me. I use many of the tricks he teaches you every time I cover.


Tried to get the video today with a skeleton crew . . beautiful day but noone with a clue around to do the camera work..

The CG is critical...1/4" either way and it either muttles on or needs full down to keep the nose straight.

The CG I found to work best was 3.65" forward of the one noted on the plans . .this was optimal.

I had the person videoing catch the test "flights" while I nailed the cg down, they got that fine then screwed up when they went to catch the last flight which was the keeper. Camera was right on the plane but he hit the record button twice so the film never ran...GGGGGrrrrrr

I had 5 total sorties today and one was awesome! The plane, once I got the launch technique down and the CG and throws wired it flew like a dream both power on and off.

For those coming from propeller driven planes beware.

It does not fly like a propeller driven park flier, it flies JUST like a Ducted Fan model.

It is fast, it is maneuverable and it requires a good steady handed firm handlaunch and patience until it builds up flying speed - - just like a ducted fan model.

If you try to rake it around imediately after the launch - before it has enough foreward momentum, you are going to either stall the wing, duct or tailplanes.

I have a full report on my laptop and will post it in the AM.

If you are getting ready to fly it wait until you read my "how to fly"

For those that fly edf . .let it accellerate then fly it like you are use will be very happy with the results.

Dec 31, 2002, 09:42 AM
Always looking UP
FANMAN's Avatar

Re: Ok, So I got off my lazy &% and finished it,

Originally posted by foamflyer
Here she is all covered up and wanting somewhere to go. I have to say that this was my first covering job and almost detered me from every covering again. I will say that if I can purchase any plane already covered, then I will most definatly spend the extra cash. This was challenging. It is supposed to rain this week, but I will hopefully get it in the air before or shortly after the rainfall.
Looks good Mike, and you did finish it

One of my lessons on covering has been that you cant always cover when you want to! Sometimes it just doesnt want to work. Alot depends on your mood, at least it does with me.

I cant cover in the morning, as I must be totally awake

If I start to cover a plane and its not working well, or looking good, I stop. On the other hand, if its going well, I keep cruising on.

On several occasions I had to tell the hunny, `Im on a roll here cant stop right now'!
Dec 31, 2002, 11:18 AM
Forgot how to fly
Mike Parsons's Avatar


Thanks Phil and Thanks Glenn. It was challenging. Besides some wrinkles in places, i am pretty pleased with it. Believe it or not, I actually had the wife ironing some of the covering last night. The kid was in bed and everything on the tube was a rerun. She said that it looked "easy" (eyes popped out of my head), so I challenged her with the iron. She actually did quite well. I told her she could cover any other plane I did and she just laughed. I am not sure what that meant? I do have a questions about batteries though. I have a 2/3AA 350 mah 7.2 pack and a couple of 7.2 AA 600 Mah packs. Should I go with the 2/3AA pack or can I steo up the voltage to maybe a 8.4 or 9.6? I tried the 2/3 last night and then powered it up with the 9.6 and wow was there a difference in thrust with the 9.6! However, I am not sure if I will blow the fans using anything above a 7.2vt. I would imagine that I could use a higher voltage since it is pushing two motors? Or am I off my rocker?
Dec 31, 2002, 12:06 PM
Always looking UP
FANMAN's Avatar


Both fans will get the same amount of voltage, and the 7.2 is sufficient, 8.4 is high, and 9.6 will sizzle the lil motors. Dont use a low mh pack, unless 1 or 2 passes is all you want!

The LJ-50 traditionally uses a 6 cell (7.2) 600 mah NiMh, and that is plenty......

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