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2m sailplane fail

#1
As a project last summer, I made a balsa 2m sailplane. It was very nicely built and finished, all blue and white. I hand-cut all the pieces with an exacto knife. Then, I used CA to clue it all together. I finished it off with a blue solarfilm heat shrink covering. I tested the CG in the living room before going outside. I got ready, faced the wind, threw...and it flew a little bit then face planted straight into the ground! It was kind of sad seeing a few months of cutting and gluing splinter and die. But, I started a big project going of trying to restore it. It was very a dramatic crash!
 

cranialrectosis

Faster than a speeding faceplant!
Mentor
#2
If you haven't tried a foamie, do. You fix crashes with hot glue and packing tape. They don't take as long to build don't cost as much and don't take so long to repair. :)
 
#3
Sorry to hear about the crash, it sounds to me like it just stalled, my first sailplane flight ended the same way. It is good to see that some people actually take the time to build a decent balsa plane these days and don't just run to the easiest thing they can find. Foam is cool though for fast builds and learning to crash and fly..then after you are comfortable flying rebuild your balsa plane and fly the heck out of it.
 

RAM

Posted a thousand or more times
#4
I crashed my first balsa as well. Stall was the reason. I bought it used for very little money so I didn't feel the same pain you do. I just babied it too much at takeoff, should have given it more throttle, pulled up too hard and down went the nose. I did that three or four times before I got it in the air. It was so beat up at that point some of the old plastic hinges were broken. It started getting away from be because my rudder was no longer working properly. I managed to bring it to the ground (through a tree). Lesson learned.
 
#5
Yeah, I started in the foam business but I just wanted to see how balsa was. I like both. Something else that is fun is if you hot wire your planes.
 

makattack

Winter is coming
Moderator
Mentor
#6
Sorry to hear that... was this on a glide test? I wonder if it were possible elevator controls were reversed? I've seen the most experienced RC pilot make the mistake of not checking for a reversed control surface...
 
#7
Sorry to hear that... was this on a glide test? I wonder if it were possible elevator controls were reversed? I've seen the most experienced RC pilot make the mistake of not checking for a reversed control surface...
I have no idea what you are talking about. ;)
 

jhitesma

Some guy in the desert
Mentor
#11
Sounds like my first plane. Built it on my living room table in 2009:
DSCN3406-X2.jpg

Didn't put a ton of effort into covering it because I figured it would end badly:
DSCN3467-X2.jpg

But test glides it did rather well!
DSCN3492-X2.jpg

Still have it but have a few changes I need to make to it before I want to try flying it again.


Funny story. The first day I took it out to try it as I was putting it back in my truck someone pulled up with a fun jet. So my friend who had come with me and I went over to watch. We were impressed by the fun jet - but after a few minutes the guy lost sight of it and then couldn't recover - wound up going basically through a fence. He was able to recover the electronics but the rest of the plane was a total loss. I felt a lot better about the comparably minor repairs needed on my balsa glider!


Then a few months ago someone here in town who saw me on this forum contacted me about getting together to fly. Finally got together with him and his dad and found out I had met his dad previously in the local camera club I helped start. We haven't got together to fly again (schedule problems) but a few weeks ago there was an astronomy club stargazing event at the same place I had test flown the glider and seen the fun jet crash. They came out for that and at one point he commented "You know, this is where I crashed my fun jet a few years ago."

Sometimes I forget just how small this town is :D