DAW Ka6 Build Log - RC Groups
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Feb 12, 2008, 01:43 AM
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CuriousMarc's Avatar
Build Log

DAW Ka6 Build Log

We're a few months away from the Los Banos scale meet and it's time to build my first scale sailplane. I ordered a DAW Ka6 foamie kit from http://www.skykingrcproducts.com/rcp...t/DAW_Ka6.html

I really liked the way they looked and flew at the last Los Banos meet (see them at the end of the video https://www.rcgroups.com/forums/show...73#post7347987 ).

Actually I was surprised to discover that they were "foamies" when I looked up close after the flights. I really did not know what a foamie was, but quickly grasped the prime advantage of it. The crazy Ka6 flyers at Los Banos started to try to run into each other just for fun. They actually succeeded. Pretty indestructible. This is a large scale plane you can fly relaxed. And at 3m in size, it also flew large and majestic, very scale. On top of that I learned to fly full size on a related Ka8, so this brings back good memories.

But I had never built a foamie, and I could not find a build log for the Ka6 - apparently everybody knows how to build them but me . From the excellent online build manual I quickly figured out it's mostly white packaging foam cut to shape with tape reinforcement all over it. It's actually quite a miracle it works! I should be able to do that.

This will be a low profile DAW Ka6 build log reporting my first timer experience, hidden in the cozy internet corner of our club posting area. But hopefully I'll get some help along the way from people in the know .
Last edited by CuriousMarc; Feb 12, 2008 at 02:10 AM.
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Feb 12, 2008, 02:05 AM
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CuriousMarc's Avatar
I received a personal e-mail notification from Ed shortly after ordering online - Thanks Ed! It's always comforting to know there is a human on the other side! The kit arrived within a week from ordering in one very light carton. The whole thing is mostly made out of packaging foam, so it packages fairly well and is hard to break during transport...

See the pictures. Wings are in 4 panels. I already started assembling one inboard wing panel before taking the picture - couldn't wait. Fuselage is kind of squarish, will need to be rounded up. The kit parts are very simple but complete, with wheel and linkages and all. Each bag of parts has a neat little list of what's inside.

It now even comes with a clear canopy (the foam one is still also included). I remember the Los Banos guys telling me they made a canopy molding plug for their models and made it available to Sky King. That's very kind of them.
Last edited by CuriousMarc; Feb 12, 2008 at 02:16 AM.
Feb 12, 2008, 02:43 PM
High Lift Coefficient
Sailhigh's Avatar
Dave Candee and I bought one each a few years ago. Mine is still in the box, but Dave is in the process of building his currently. You may want to get his input on some things before you proceed which may save you time.

Best of luck with your build

BTW, we missed you at Mission on Sunday, here are a few pictures:
Last edited by Sailhigh; Feb 12, 2008 at 02:53 PM.
Feb 14, 2008, 01:52 AM
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Kai@UCSB's Avatar

Looking forward to see the building log.

Feb 18, 2008, 12:55 AM
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CuriousMarc's Avatar
Originally Posted by sailhigh
Dave is in the process of building his currently. You may want to get his input on some things before you proceed which may save you time.
Yes indeed, it appears we are building the same thing at the same time! I talked to him briefly at one of our last meetings. Dave, please chime in or post photos of your build if you want.

Originally Posted by sailhigh
BTW, we missed you at Mission on Sunday
That's too bad I was nursing my flu. I took my revenge today by flying both at Dartmouth off the winch with Bob and all (there must have been 5 or 6 of us) in the morning, then trying the thermals off the slope at Mission in the afternoon where I saw you sans glider... Conditions at Mission were mediocre as you predicted, just got one 15 min flight then the haze set in and I packed up... Are you still planning to go back tomorrow?
Feb 18, 2008, 01:55 AM
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CuriousMarc's Avatar
I started the inboard wing construction. The wing comes with a channel for the spar pre-cut, but that's about it. You have to glue in the spar, sub trailing edge and trailing edge, rib root and trim/sand them to size. In the process you'll need to cut the foam to install the wing joiner and wing attachement plate, and cut the channel for the outboard wing spar link.

Interesting for me was the choice of glue for foam to wood joints [Edit: see later in the build log, Gorilla Glue turned out to be the best glue to use by far]. I tried the recommended hot glue, as well as Goop (Zap a Dap a Goo II to be exact). I found none of them ideal. The hot glue is nice because it is quite runny and sets very fast, but often too fast. You've about 15 seconds to work with which is very difficult on large pieces such as the wing. Goop gives you more work time, but is, well, goopy and takes forever to cure. Hard to smear in slots and takes a long time to dry, sticks everywhere. I haven't yet tried Gorilla Glue (Polyurethane), which is runny and not too fast. It's recommended by SkyKing . But it foams to 3-4 times its initial volume, so you have to clamp your pieces together so they are not pushed apart and remove the excess glue that oozes out after it's cured. And you have to moisten the wood beforehand to catalyse the cure. Choose your own evil. I found myself alternating between glue choices depending on the task.

I mostly followed the well written and precise instructions (http://www.skykingrcproducts.com/support/Ka6E.pdf ). The only thing I changed was cutting the foam pockets (for the joiner, the outboard spar and the wing bolt plate) before other pieces were glued in. This way there is good side access to cut the bottom. It's much easier and cleaner than plucking foam out from the top. Did one panel with hot glue and the other with goop, and liked neither method...

The only difficulty I encountered was fitting the wing bolt plate over the joiner tube. Because of the wing dihedral and the straight joiner, the joiner tube comes up from the bottom of the wing at the wing root, and you can only set it up so low so it doesn't poke through the underside of the wing at the other end. There wasn't much thickness left to fit the plate over it and have it match the wing profile. I had to thin it a bit over the tube.
Last edited by CuriousMarc; Jun 21, 2010 at 01:21 AM.
Feb 19, 2008, 10:58 PM
BUFF-USAF's Avatar

Dave's Ka6

Hi Marc

I finished my wings, and so far I have used either Wood Glue (i.e. Titebond) or epoxy. Titebond takes 24 hours to really set up and you need to make sure your working area is at the specified temperature. I used epoxy on the spars in the wing.

I am working on the fuse and have set in most of the servos. Find yourself a set of kitchen knifes to make the cuts. One out of the set will become your favoriate. Test them all on a piece of scrap first as some will tear rather than cut clean.

When you make the chanel down the side of the fuse, use a dremel with a depth guage and clamp a straight edge as a guide. Build up you tail feathers first so you can have a direct line to the servo horn.

You should have come to the club meeting, as I brought in my Ka6 for show and tell.

Have fun building!

Feb 20, 2008, 01:19 AM
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CuriousMarc's Avatar

Thanks for the tips.

Yours is a better choice of glues. I just tried the Polyurethane Gorilla Glue on an outer panel spar for a change. Started good, very easy to apply. Put weights on the spar to prevent it from moving when the glue foams. Of course the glue comes up the sides and tries to glue the weights to the spar . Then to my surprise it foamed through the porous foam on the underside of the wing and tried to glue the wing to the bench ! Fortunately I caught both before it was too late, but this is yet another imperfect glue. Epoxy was the right choice. I also have Titebond wood glue, haven't tried it yet, I'm not sure if I have your 24 hours patience...

Wednesday evenings is the day I have to drive my daughter to her harp lesson, so I can't make it to the club meetings unfortunately. So the web is my alternate meeting place...

Any pictures of your build you can share with us?
Feb 20, 2008, 04:02 PM
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MAVA's Avatar

i have one too...

Good Job Marc,

You have come a long way from the day you flew my white THL Zagi. I also have one of these Models. Marc. You are inspiration!! Looks like you may pass me by. I will try to finish mine by April 5. It has been an insider tradition to go to Los Banos a few weeks before the Scale event to “Bash it (just have no pressure flying day-work out the kinks in the models) out with other fliers”.
Talk to Eric to get the particulars on the day.

Keep up the good work,

PS.. build the model with Gorilla glue it will be a lot stronger. If you do use Gorilla glue, use a hair spray bottle with tap water, and spray both contacting surfaces. Then apply glue. The glue joint will be stronger, and the glue cures a little quicker.

Martin Vargas
Feb 21, 2008, 01:47 AM
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CuriousMarc's Avatar
Hi Martin, nice to hear from you! "Flying" is a flattering word. I thought I "crashed" or more exactly "bounced" it within a few seconds ... Yes, all this thanks to your and Eric's introduction to RC flying on that day. So now I will have one of each, a "woodie", a "crunchie" and a "foamie"... By the way, you are the one that pointed these Ka6 out last year and suggested I started with that for scale. See, I do listen. Looks like we will be able to fly formation at Los Banos with you and Dave...

PS: totally out of subject but I can't help - did anyone see the moon eclipse tonight? I managed to take a picture during a break in the clouds.
Feb 21, 2008, 01:00 PM
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MAVA's Avatar

You are on the path to success, I see you have picked-up some of the slope slang language, now you really being intoxicated with this addicting hobby….

About last night, the moon was spectacular. I was at about 650 Meters of altitude watching the whole thing through 14” Schnidt-Cassegrain Celestron Telescope, but was most spectacular was watching Saturn to the lower-left side. I do wish we had optical filters to see the rings in full color.

Let’s see who finishes the model first, I will post some pictures of my progress, but I do “wish” to implement a full flying elevator like the full scale-the model will fly much better with the modification.

Feb 23, 2008, 02:20 PM
High Lift Coefficient
Sailhigh's Avatar
Marc, Dave, Martin,
Here are a few links on KA6 modifications builder are incorporating.




Feb 24, 2008, 12:39 AM
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MAVA's Avatar
Here is something interesting...


Feb 25, 2008, 01:40 AM
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CuriousMarc's Avatar

Outboard Wing Panel

I tried Gorilla Glue for the spar on this one. Moisten the wood, brush glue over, put weights on the spar. The glue foams but it is very easily sanded off, unlike goop or hot glue. Some glue seeped through the bottom of the wing, nothing bad. A better glue choice altogether.

The aileron shaping takes a patience. A sliver of the trailing edge has to be cut to match the scale wing plan (I did it the wrong way first!). Then the aileron has to be sanded to conform to the wing profile and equalize the trailing edge thickness. There is washout in the tip which requires care in sanding the aileron.

The tip of the wing has to be cut to scale shape and rounded off. This is easy and it looks nice!

Pictures tell most of the details.
Last edited by CuriousMarc; Oct 30, 2015 at 04:49 AM.

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