Making some progress (sort of) - RC Groups
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Oct 15, 2008, 06:27 PM
Registered User

Making some progress (sort of)

Hi Guys,
Although it's been a little while since I visited, I havent been idle. I now have two new models awaiting test flights at our next indoor session - 26th October.
I'm still experimenting with materials and techniques, trying to decide which I like the best, so one model is built up balsa while the other is all Depron. I started the balsa model first, but got sidetracked with the Depron one. So far I've only built profile fuselage mdels but was getting heartily sick of the tangle of wiring exposed to view - as would have to be the case with the balsa job. Impressed by the neatness of the Classroom Fighters, I started to look for ways to emulate it - here's what I came up with.
The vintage style model, called Snoopy for want of something better, uses a triple laminated fuselage of 1 mm skins and a 2 mm core. The core being much lightened and providing hiding places for all the wiring. All flying surfaces are 1.5 mm Depron and finish is printed tissue. The AUW is higher than I would have liked, but I can work on that with the next project. Ready to fly, the 15" span model weighs 19.5 grams.
I like the solid appearance the Depron gives, so will definitely be perfecting the technique on future projects. Probably reducing all foam thickness (except the fuselage skins) by .5 mm.

The balsa model, a very simplified scale model of the White Monoplane, was originally intended to be three channel, but then I remembered that Plantraco gear is Mode 2. Since trying to climb by shutting the throttle doesn't actually work very well (I'm a Mode 1 flyer), I decided to stick with just rudder/throttle control.
Once again, finish is printed tissue and the 16" span model weighs 14.5 grams.

Comments and suggestions are welcome, before I make a start on a profile Pfalz E1.

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Oct 15, 2008, 06:47 PM
Registered User
Good luck with both planes!!

The White Monoplane gives me an idea for one of my next forthcoming indoor planes. I try to debut a new plane every month or so.

The indoor/micro experience is all about experimentation, with some "friendly" copying of fellow modelers' designs and techniques. Each of us applies them, then transforms them to suit our needs and tastes. It makes this hobby so wonderful.

I'm an active modeler at 67, having been a modeler for 59 years, now. I would take my first models (hand carved solid balsa fighters) to school in my pocket for the recess/lunchtime "battles" we would have on the playground at Benjamin Franklin School in Glendale, CA, when I was in third grade, circa 1949. WWII had ended a few years prior, and us youngsters had heard many a tale from returning servicemen who had served our country so valiantly. Impressionable youngsters as we were, we needed an outlet for our imaginations!!

I'm happy and proud to say that I enjoy learning new things on a daily basis via this forum!!
Last edited by 356Jim; Oct 15, 2008 at 06:56 PM.
Oct 15, 2008, 09:07 PM
in persuit of low wing loading
Gordon Johnson's Avatar
Nice plane. I happen to like semi-profile printed tissue fuselages. I did one with hand cut laminates in a Citabria, and later with Dave Wulff's help a laser cut Staggerwing fuselage.

The thing I like about semi-profile fuselages is when covered with printed tissue that's wrapped around the perimeter it gives a surprisingly nice look compared to a pure profile fuselage. Unfortunately, even with extreme skeletonizing and then sanding the outer layers to be thinner and then covering with printed tissue, it's hard to keep the weight down. Still, it's a nice look.

I've been thinking about doing another semi-profile Citabria as the original used a JMP RX and larger MiniAct (rather than the later MicroAct's). With newer lighter equipment it could be made an easy 2g or so lighter.

Oct 16, 2008, 01:04 PM
Registered User
I totally agree about the experimentation side of things. After 40 odd years of radio modelling I still enjoy learning new stuff. Believe me, when it comes to micro models, I have an awful lot to learn. Should keep me happy for the next 40 years or so.

Your models were the main inspiration for my Depron experiments. They are sufficiently scale to grab my interest and look exceedingly nice.
As regards the weight issues of laminated fuselages, I can live with that for the better appearance it imparts to the models. As long as they can be flown in our hall, I'll be more than happy to continue with them. Even If I do still try to get them quite a bit lighter. Ideally, I'd like to shed around 4-5 grams, but feel that may be a little ambitious. However, since I like two channel flying anyway, the Butterfly Rx and smaller LiPo may get me a good part of the way there.


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