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Author Topic: building balsa airplane kits  (Read 1876 times)
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Zeke
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« on: November 21, 2009, 08:54 AM »

would someone recommend a book on construction of balsa (sailplane) kits with emphasis on adhesives, CA types, methods, etc.  I just found an Electra power sailplane kit in storage so might make a winter project out of it...
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indigo_wolf
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« Reply #1 on: November 21, 2009, 09:10 AM »

would someone recommend a book on construction of balsa (sailplane) kits with emphasis on adhesives, CA types, methods, etc.  I just found an Electra power sailplane kit in storage so might make a winter project out of it...


Will check with my GF's father in a couple of days.

http://www.mercuryadhesives.com/  seems to be very popular among the other flying crowd.

ATB,
Sam
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Jeepster
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« Reply #2 on: November 21, 2009, 09:15 AM »

Zeke,

Let me offer an alternative.  Please don't try to fly your model airplane without assistance ... it's a sure recipe for disappointment.  When you were first learning to fly dual line or quad kites, you crashed ... no problem 'cuz kites can take a beating.  But, balsa planes are much more fragile.

If you're going to find someone to help you trim out and fly your sailplane, why not start now building a relationship with that individual.  You'll have a ton of questions not only on building the plane, but which electronics to use, how to balance it, how to cover it, etc ...  A mentor will be worth his weight in gold for the first plane.  Use the following link to find the RC clubs in your local area ... sort on your zip code:

http://www.modelaircraft.org/ClubSearch.aspx

I noticed that one of the clubs reasonably close to you is a soaring club ... might be just what you're looking for:

http://www.risoaringclub.org/

Cheers,
Tom
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stapp59
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« Reply #3 on: November 21, 2009, 10:03 AM »

+1  Balsa wood airplanes do NOT crash well  Embarrassed

Let me rephrase, balsa planes do not handle or survive crashes well  Roll Eyes
« Last Edit: November 21, 2009, 12:50 PM by stapp59 » Logged
UPNET
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« Reply #4 on: November 21, 2009, 11:49 AM »

Oh Yes...they do!   Cheesy



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« Reply #5 on: November 21, 2009, 11:52 AM »

You should find a lot of info here:

http://www.rcgroups.com/forums/portal.php?id=16
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« Reply #6 on: November 21, 2009, 02:16 PM »

The AMA has lots of information on Clubs in your area. Good idea to get with folks that know
It will save you time and effort. But most of all it will save you money.

http://www.modelaircraft.org/documents.aspx



Randyr


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xuzme720
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« Reply #7 on: November 22, 2009, 06:25 AM »

That radio looks to be a module based radio where the 2.4G signal is routed through a plug-in on the rear. Futaba, Airtronics, JR, Hitec, etc. all made this type a few years ago. The thinking was, I believe, that it made the change-over to the "new" frequency less painful on the wallet by not having to replace all the old gear on 72Mhz, 35Mhz or whatever you were flying on. Simply swap the module. Currently you do not see many of these for sale, the manufacturers going mainly to dedicated systems.  Beware though, that one looks like a Chinese clone, so, if you do get this, make sure you range test thoroughly! An RTF heli I bought had one of the 72mhz clones in it and it almost cost me the heli during a run up. Luckily I wasn't off the ground when it started taking hits, but I immediately took that radio out of the heli and replaced the receiver to work with my JR radio. no trouble since...

Your best bet, run that brand through Google or your SE of choice and see what people are saying...
ATB, G.
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Asfink tersez wot....

Exactly! Party on, Garth!
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« Reply #8 on: November 22, 2009, 07:56 AM »

I was aware of one club in the area with an official flying nearby but every time I stopped, it seemed there was a lot of negative input, sort of like ' you join the club and then we'll talk to you'.

the 2.4Ghz systems seem to be the thing for the 'weekend flyer'.

Zeke,

Please check at another site.  An RC club that doesn't want to share their knowledge is a rarity and not one you'd enjoy being associated with.  Usually if you ask a question, you'll get too many answers ... hobbyist tend to be an opinionated group.

The 2.4 GHz system is the way to go for all new fliers.  Unless you can buy some good used 72Mhz equipment at a really low cost, the 2.4Ghz is the best value.  Also, do purchase a name brand system ... JR and Futaba are probably the best from a service support standpoint.  HiTec runs a close third. All three companies have a lot to loose if their reputation is tarnished, so will go out of their way to support you. My experience has been with Futaba equipment and it has been great.

Your old servos might be reusable, but if you buy a new radio system the cost of new servos is minimal.   A six channel 2.4 GHz Futaba system without servos sells for $220 and with four servos sells for $250.  Don't gamble your time and money to save a few bucks on a questionable servo or battery pack.

Look for a computer radio that has the memory to hand multiple planes ... the above system will hold the settings for six different planes.

Okay, now where does this soap box go???

Cheers,
Tom

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UPNET
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« Reply #9 on: November 24, 2009, 04:02 AM »

Thick CA...Medium CA...Thin CA.....Debonder (to un glue whatever you glued your finger to)  Cheesy some Kicker (used to set up the CA really quick) and wax paper. Then your good to go.
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« Reply #10 on: November 26, 2009, 07:42 AM »

got another question:  where can I get carbon fiber cloth with the appropriate  epoxy/hardener ? I can find cloth but no mention of the hardener required.  I am sure i am missing something somewhere.  this is not related to the glider mentioned previously.

Zeke,

This is a good company for a wide range of adhesive products: Zap.  They are principally aimed at the hobbyist and their products can be found at many hobby stores.  I use their finishing resin when adhering fiberglass cloth to balsa.  It's a none brittle epoxy that has a good working time.

This is another good company for adhesive products: West Systems.  They handle products applicable for building everything from models to full scale things.  They're a little more expensive, but very complete.  Lots of good general info on their web site. They also sell vacuum bagging equipment ... excellent method of sheeting application that helps reduce weight.  I've used their 105/206 epoxy combo for fiberglass application.

There are quite a few other suppliers out there, these are simply two companies who's product I'm familiar with.

Cheers,
Tom
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Turkey9186
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« Reply #11 on: November 26, 2009, 09:03 AM »

Zeke,

Good advice on the West System products.  I used them on several projects on the sailboat I had.  Their website has a lot of info.  Also try the West Marine website.

Tap Plastics here on the west coast also has carbon cloth, and did sell prepeg cloth supplies a few years ago.

Before you start working with epoxy resins, make sure you follow and understand all the protective gear required.  It is really easy to acquire sensitivity to it.

Jerry
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