Build Log - STARFIRE! Mc Clain Wing Cores 48" Beta Build - Page 4 - RC Groups
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May 30, 2009, 12:00 AM
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video - day two flight # 1 of three

McClain Wing Cores 48" Starfire Beta #1 mid engine pusher wing (5 min 17 sec)
Last edited by pval3; May 30, 2009 at 12:08 AM.
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May 30, 2009, 12:04 AM
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Hey Atom

thanks for the look and congrats . .

been just hankered down the last few months working my tailfeathers off at work and no time home unless there has been a crisis

No time for building until I realized my beach trip was right around the corner! Two weeks out . . building madness . . got it done to this point .. .fins go on when I get home (didnt want to mess with something that took finess when I was drooling on myself with the late night building sessions!

Then this one will be "done" right . . . with the original ALpha winglets, the thing really does well, no real "need" for big ole fins . . but they shure add to the asthetics of things and this is more of a fun plane than a barn burner . .

Mid engine really is nice though . . very easy to balance with the second heaviest thing practically on the CG . . .

May 30, 2009, 12:49 AM
Fly it like you stole it..
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Looks like it flies really well. Congrats..

Stitch looks awesome..
Last edited by Tram; May 06, 2010 at 01:34 AM.
May 30, 2009, 07:31 AM
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every kid on the beach recognised what I was trying to do, while every adult says it looks like a rabid alien squirrel
May 30, 2009, 07:32 AM
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The real issue is how I am going to outdo this on the beta #2
May 30, 2009, 07:39 AM
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I bought a whole bunch of new Creatix colors to do this . . before I realized how long it was going to take me to mask all this out and opted to just freehand brush it on..
May 30, 2009, 07:43 AM
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beta #2 update

The Beta #2 build is:
same base wing with a rear pusher config
Kellys with Spray 77 to adhere it to the foam (mixed foam epp leading edge and virgin foam trailing edge)
JR 517 std BB servos
JR ultra mini Dual Conversion RX
dons wicked 2700kv 450 motor
2500 maH 3s 30c Lipo battery
60A esc
BEC (as I intend to eventially use a 4s pack in this)

I really wanted to beef this build up as I want a much higher wing loading for better penetration and a faster flying bird . . .basically . . .lets see how heavy I can make it and still get it to fly fast . .. . . .
May 30, 2009, 11:52 PM
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flight report

This evening I had a chance to really push the Beta 1 hard.

The weather was just increadible . . this is my last evening here

I wish I could stay another week

The weather is severe clear with winds 70 degrees to the slope at 19 kts...

Sunset flying was a joy . . until it got too dark to find the plane in the turns!

Upgraded to an 8X6 prop, upped the dual rates to 70% and upped the differential up just a little more.

I only had time for two flights but . . . . what a change.

The top end was more reasonable . . lots of wing "noise" but more speed to go with it. The roll rate was noticibly better and the ability to corner tight in close to the dunes was phenominal.

The plane is very stable in all phases of flight and when control input is put in, the plane goes where you point it.

The inverted flight required just a little bit of pitch input, a little more than the 48" mcw ..both with speed up and speed down.

I did a bunch of tight inverted turns at high speed and then at slow speed.

For the first time, on the first try, I got a slow rolling circle. It wasnt pretty . . but I got it on the first try...usually I botch it 4 or 5 times before I get it even reasonably recognizable.

I love the slow speed handling as it is very responsive without having to jack up the rates in slow flight.

Trim input is minimal once you get it trimmed out . . high and low speed is managable without any change.

Inverted, inside, outside loops, outside turns, high rate rolls, point rolls...all easy to manage...the plane made me look like a pro!

I am discovering a new "favorite" airplane.
Jun 09, 2009, 11:19 AM
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beta one update

hey all

tested out the mounting technique on the beta 2 and sealed the mount so as to prevent it from having glue on it that would reduce the bonding later ifwe choose to add the fins later to beta 2.

Beta one:

While I was at home depot looking for a new tube of gorilla glue, I found some nylon bolts and inserts that will allow the fins to be removable and hold them tight for temporary mounting.

I believe that the weight of these insets is negligable and will not effect the CG.

I will recut the fins the weekend and install these inserts then route out the trailing edge to accommodate the fin mounts.

At this time, the motor, battery and control set up will ALL remain the same so that we can get a good idea of how these fins effect the stability and performance of the starfire beta 1.
Jun 09, 2009, 11:35 AM
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Beta 2

The build is going slow but progressing.

last weekend I used the dremel routing bit with my router cone keeping things straight with a flexible metal ruler to set trenches for the fins should we decide to install them.

I then cut and placed painters tape in the trench to prevent the spray 77 from getting into the slot which would greatly reduce the bonding ability if the fins later on down the road.

Henry's 183 was cut to overlap the inside of the battery bay on all sides as well as on the bottom of the wing below the battery area extending 1" on all sides.

The cloth was then adhered with gorilla glue white (low foam faster drying) and placed in the wing cores with weight over to compress the tape and the glue. after about 10 minutes, I pressed down any foaming that came up in the battery bay. I also spread the glue only in the esc and rx bay to add a little strength. When it was dry, the area was sanded smooth.
Last edited by pval3; Apr 26, 2010 at 11:07 AM.
Jun 09, 2009, 11:44 AM
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beta 2 update - kelly cloth

The entire model was sanded with 80 grit sand paper on a electric sanding pad to level all high points. The model was then sanded down with 200 grit and roughness removed.

Vac the entire model with one of the brush heads from your shop vac (usually used to clean blinds) this ensures that you get a great glue joint with the Kellys cloth.

I then cut Henry's 183 into three long strips to allow ample overlap and added a light coat of Spray 77 to the bottom of the wing.

I start at the nose and lay the cloth spanwize on the model gently rubbing with a sheet of wax paper to move the wrinkles out.

After each sheet, respray the cloth laid down on the seam and lay the next sheet.

Spay and lay..

once the entire underside is covered, spray eveny and generously with the spray 77 and work it into the cloth with the wax paper. Work fast as it dries quickly.

cut the cloth 3/4 inch from the leading edge and trailing edge. Spray a little spray 77 on the top of the wing on the leading edge and trailing edge so as to accept the wrap around of the cloth from the underside of the wing.

Make sure you get the edges with glue near the motor mount so that the cloth will hold, then wrap to the top.

Once the entire underside is covered, lay the model somewhere safe and let it sit overnight. You need at least 12 hrs to really let the carrier in the spray 77 to evaporate. It seems heavy . . and it is - until the carrier evaporates, then it is much more reasonable.
Last edited by pval3; Apr 26, 2010 at 11:08 AM. Reason: KELLYS is really Henry's 183
Jun 09, 2009, 11:53 AM
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Beta 2 top cloth

Once the glue has dried (at least 12 hrs) you can start on the top.

You need to make sure that the servo arms are rotated down then tape over the servo arm under the wing surface to prevent glue from getting on the arm.

Install the battery hatch with two light dabs of hot glue to hold it down lightly while you are covering and to ensure a cohesive flow later.

Spray lightly with the spray 77 then start from to back with the cloth with the same overlap.

Again, spray over the new cloth to allow the cloth to adhere.

Once you have the whole thing covered, cut a 3/4" overlap then spray a light coat to allow for the overlap to adhere.

Once you have it all in place then spray with a consitent even coat of spray 77. work it in, then hit it again.

It is important to use several light coats rather than one heavy one as the carrier can still burn the foam if it is too concentrated and soaks the foam before a light coat can seal it.

The idea is to get two to three light coats on the model.

I like to shove my models in the trunk for a few days in the summer heat to "bake" the glue into the cloth.

Let it set for a few days in a safe place as it it going to be very sticky until the glue dries.
Jul 09, 2009, 11:40 PM
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update on beta 2

Hey guys

no - I have no fallen off the face of the earth.

I got extended at work then vacati on started - - road tripping with my boy with no place to finish up the beta 2 . . .it amazes me how many hobby shops have gone out of business...I was trying to find some connectors to no avail.

The plane has traveled through 7 states and over 700 miles but needed some resolder work as well as final tuning . . no where to get it done and no time.

I have a funeral this weekend then work again until thursday - - -then a quick solder job and off we go.

Hang tight and you will be rewarded with flight video!
Jul 10, 2009, 12:03 AM
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update on Beta 1

Have the beta one with me on the road and was flying it at several points along the road with my son. It was the first time he had seen the beta 1 run and with the new prop and higher c rated batteries it was a joy to tool around with.

I had the fins with my but did not have time to install them on the road so we flew in the previous format with winglets.

The Dual rates were pushed up to 80% on the roll and 75% on the elevator.
Exponential was turned up a little more.
Differential was increased by 15% to provide a little better correction for adverse yaw.

The roll rate was amazing with the changes, the plane rolls about 20% faster with much less rock. The plane is almost neutrally balanced meaning - it goes where you point it . . roll in and the plane stays in the roll with no roll out until you tell it to come out.

Inverted flight takes about 1/4" of up stick to hold it dead on level and just slightly more in turns.

I had the plane doing figure 8s in the air . . both upright and inverted with little effort.

I was able to get it through rolling turns with big turns . .it is the first wing I have been able to get it done on... the orientation was tough but it worked.

I have put about 14 flights since my last post and am still very happy with the plane.

My only issue is with my battery box. When I cut this out, I decided that I would allow myself a huge variety of battery packs and configurations. I have found that, when you leave such a large area open, you also open yourself open to the large open area on the nose when smaller packs are used.

When you build, decide on a general battery length and width. Cut the battery box to that size with only a little latitude. It is imperative that you reinforce the area if you are using the water based poly as it does not allow for the flex that the Kellys or the tape does...

I love the ability to spray any color and any pattern I want but the water based poly is slightly brittle and does not allow for the flex that many expect from this type of model.

You can do one of two things if you want this type of finish:
1) use at least two coats of WBP on 1 oz cloth..use a diamond shaped piece under the center of the wing at least 2" wider than the battery box and all the way back.
2) use .75oz cloth with finish cure epoxy to provide the flexibility.

The plane is still great and very light..the set up is dead on but my need for flexibilty is creating another issue with stress cracks in the battery box when I have "hard landings".
Jul 18, 2009, 08:38 AM
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BETA 2 update

Spent last night cutting out some new winglets for the Starfire Beta 2 that were a little taller above and below the wingtip than than the set I put on the Beta 1.

The under wing tip was what I was more interested in but to make them "look" right, I though a little more above was needed.

Rewired the speed control and changed the prop from a 5X5 apc racing to a 5X4 APC racing prop for starters.

Tried to go out flying today but every time I took the airplanes out of the car it started pouring!

Picked up a new 30C 2300 Lipo pack to run in the Starfire Beta 2.

More tomorrow I hope but rain still in the forcast~!

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