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Back to the basics and on to the next level-The next phase of my RC Experience(learning diary)

Vimana89

Well-known member
#21
I went on Amazon and purchased some nicer looking 5x3x3 props from a different brand, some basic Raycorp 6x3x2, and another untested brand of 6x4x3 for bigger planes(bigger to my experiences anyway, some would say mid-size). I also bought some double sided servo tape to test, went with one that got the best reviews, which was Great Planes. This can help me prototype or do servos on easier/casual builds without getting a bunch of glue stuck to them that needs to be scraped off later. To top it off, I bought a two-pack of low battery alarms that were said in the reviews to be "soil yourself loud". I'm not too worried about my current stock of heavily used 650's and 850's, but once I buy some fresh batteries, I definitely want to start using these.

I will probably start a build today and work on it on and off as much as I have time. It will most likely be the next version of the Arrowhead, but could end up being the P.A. Special. After these, I'm going for a wider style delta, something closer to 30" in span and closer to 20" in chord, rather than the other way around like the Arrowhead, which has a 20" span, 24" chord, and tail plane for 30" overall. This might be a semi-scale model of the Avro Vulcan, or it may be a plane of my own design with a similar wing(at least in span, possibly in shape) to the Vulcan, but I'd like a high mounted pusher to keep the props safer and make CG easier, and add the vertical stabilizers on the wingtips like some of these more big stable delta RC's.
 
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Vimana89

Well-known member
#23
The second Arrowhead prototype seems to fly well, but couldn't tell with the massive wind, way beyond its capabilities to stay stable. I will know for sure when I test it in ideal weather and with light wind interference(wouldn't try anything past 10 mph, and that's probably pushing it a tiny bit with the build set up for a 650 battery). As I polish up this design and make plans for the Floating Kidney, and take another shot at the 1939 P.A. Special, I'll be somewhat busy, but I am considering my next build or two down the road, and now is a good time for me not to get distracted with quick spur of the moment sloppy builds, but to make some more well thought out, deliberate choices in what I design and build.

The next new build that isn't something I've already been working on will most likely be a semi-scale Avro Vulcan. There are many balsa models of it, so I could enter in in the FTFC20 challenge. It will give me more experience in several key areas; taking another shot at elevons(which I haven't done well with so far),designing building a scale or semi-scale model rather than just purely my own design, a prop in slot(haven't attempted one in a while and never had a really successful one), and building and flying a much wider style of delta than I've tried so far. If I'm able to get a fairly simple semi-scale build like that down well and master elevons, I may build one or two more three channel planes, and then its on to some more complex stuff.

My goals for next year after getting better with a variety of 3ch planes, are a 4ch build, then an EDF build(which will most likely be 4ch as well), and then possibly a twin engine, but that's not as big a priority quite yet. Another goal early next year, I also want to give the local RC club a shot. Pretty sure its an AMA club, but they seem to be foamy friendly(read some stuff on their site a while ago when checking it out briefly, and they have a section where foamies can be flown). I want to go in when I'm a bit more confident and knowledgeable, and have a few planes that are very reliable, and at least one that is rock steady in 10-15 MPH winds.
 

Vimana89

Well-known member
#24
The failure of the second arrowhead prototype taught me not to second guess myself. When I have a simple build like this that flies very well right off the bat, I shouldn't "fix what ain't broke"-I should fly the prototype as long as its in flyable condition, polish up basic build slop on the next rebuild(wiring, linkages, ETC.), and possibly very tiny details over a longer process of testing, not jump into the next prototype with drastic design changes trying to max it out further.

I can't wait to get my good props in the mail, hopefully today within the next couple hours. I have a funny video I'll have to upload of these awful flimsy props making horrendous noises and at parts sounds like the plane is firing weapons of some sort, and some of my rants/commentary on it. While I still have this nice blue papered foam, and the parts from the failed second Arrowhead, I'm going to get to work on the next version of the '39 P.A. Special. This will be the same as the already successful build, but with a bit of increase in wing chord.
Next thing on my list as I do these things, is polish up my linkage and control Kung Fu just a bit.

I'm a double Z bend, right through the hole, no little metal stud thingies kind of guy. I have no reason to want to change that aspect of it any time soon, but I do want to polish up my work a bit here, and learn how to set it up to get max throws on my elevator and not be quite as sloppy. Might be something about the length of the push rod, angle, height, or something basic I can adjust to get better range of motion. Will research this further. I have tested the Great Planes servo tape though, and it seems to work well. Servos coming loose definitely wasn't the problem of the plane that used it.

Other things I want to work on at the moment are starting to draw up plans for the 1949 Floating Kidney, and starting to draw up a fuselage template and wing for the Avro Vulcan project(which at this point I think will go from a potential build to a legit FTFC20 entry). It's kind of nice to have some clear-cut goals on what projects I'll be working with now, rather than getting distracted with whatever random idea for a quick, one evening concept build pops into my head(especially RET stuff, want to give that a rest for a bit, aside from the Floating Kidney of course).
 

Piotrsko

Well-known member
#25
I'm a double Z bend pushrod person also. I have found that the Z portion is sensitive to: not being square to the pushrod, having the correct hole size for the wire along with small middle distance in the Z, and the preferred system is pull for up and right. I also prefer long servo arms and long horns because they hide some of the inherent slop. I like small surfaces with lots of movement for the same reason as opposed to big surface small movement. I'm not a fan of hotglue reinforced, prefer tape on both sides. Hope that helped some, time to sit on the porch watching for kids running on my lawn.
 

Vimana89

Well-known member
#26
I'm a double Z bend pushrod person also. I have found that the Z portion is sensitive to: not being square to the pushrod, having the correct hole size for the wire along with small middle distance in the Z, and the preferred system is pull for up and right. I also prefer long servo arms and long horns because they hide some of the inherent slop. I like small surfaces with lots of movement for the same reason as opposed to big surface small movement. I'm not a fan of hotglue reinforced, prefer tape on both sides. Hope that helped some, time to sit on the porch watching for kids running on my lawn.
Those are great tips, thanks for sharing(y). I've been hot glue reinforcing my bevels, sometimes makes the controls a bit stiff, but I manage to wipe the layer pretty thin with a paper towel. Works for me so far, but I may experiment with different methods. Good call on the longer servo arms and horns.
 

Vimana89

Well-known member
#27
Got my new props, and the 5x3x3 are much better. The brand is called Ethix, and the material is very touch and scratch resistant and the prop is thick enough but not overly so, but very rigid yet tough and flexible. Good value for the money, would try their brand in other sized.
 

whackflyer

Active member
#28
Are you talking about the HQprop Ethix? I have some of those and they’re fine but I’m now using 5045 Dalprop Cyclones. They are very tough and look nice. 5$ for 4 of em from Banggood.
 

Vimana89

Well-known member
#30
I started working on my Avro Vulcan build next before anything else. I already drew the wing and templates last night. I need to make a thread and post the build progress/process so far and post the link on the FTFC challenge thread. This one has been super fun to build so far. It needs linkages and electronics and top hatch/cockpit.
 

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Vimana89

Well-known member
#32
Ooh a Vulcan those are really cool planes!!
Yeah, definitely a Cold War classic. The Vulcan covers a lot of areas right now that make it the perfect project. It's a valid FTFC20 entry, I've expressed my interest in Cold War jets for a while, and I've been interested lately to dabble in some wide/higher aspect deltas, and try elevons again. This lets me do all those things.
 

Vimana89

Well-known member
#33
Windy today, going to work on the Vulcan some if I get a chance. I'd like to pick up some black papered and white papered Adams board at one of the local dollar stores if possible. The arrowhead will probably not need a rebuild for a good minute, so that project is squared away for now. The Floating Kidney is done and work should start on the plans soon. I need to get back around to the '39 P.A. special in a somewhat timely manner, but it's not a rush.

I'm pretty happy with how easily my big sloppy ultra-slender delta flies with the new 6x4x3 props. I may try up propping a bit further still, but may not be worth it. I'll see how warm this gets on extended full throttle, and if it's cool as a cucumber I can experiment with some more aggressive props. As I said, The basic design of my slender deltas will stay as is for now, and I won't be putting a lot of time and effort into drastically changing the design or switching from RET to a different style of 3ch controls or 4ch. I like them for what they are as a RET fun flyer right now, and trying to make them more advanced isn't that feasible with my current skills in designing, building, or flying.

All this said, I did mention there would probably be some rebuilds of those birds with very small tweaks. The only real design change will be to make the horizontal stabilizing surface on the top of the vertical stabilizer smaller, and the rest is all construction and lightening techniques. I know even with the limited powerplant it has, my big slender delta flies pretty gently and easily now even with tons of glue, wood reinforcing bits, repairs, and no paper removal from most or all parts. What I want to do is rebuild this plane in all black(except the belly spine(or box if I go that route). I want to use this build as a testbed for better, cleaner lightening and construction methods I can apply to all of my builds.

What I'll do is remove one side of papering entirely from top coupling/reinforcing layer of my custom KFM(I did not do this on the current one). If I use a belly spine rather than a box, I'll remove paper from the side that glues to the wing. I will experiment in constructing the nose box using a B fold rather than an A fold, and using the FT technique of leaving only paper on the edges of the plates so they all fit in flush like a B fold rather than leaving foam core edges of white. I already de-paper one side and mold my curved plates, whereas I used to make little score-cuts on one side(totally inefficient!) I also used to do two nose plates, when I realized I could just curve one and wrap it right around the front of the nose for a really clean look. I've already done this with my Vulcan prototype(but not with the paper edges/full FT technique).

This endeavor should hopefully result in two things: One being a seriously sleek, sexy, and smoother handling/lighter loaded version of my big ultra slender delta in all black, and two being it will get me accustomed to using more refined techniques and putting a little more patience and attention to detail into all my builds. If I get this down well with this build there is now reason I can't go and adjust my FTFC20 entries to reflect the more refined techniques too. I have yet to draw up plans for them, and two are still in the prototyping phase, so it would be an easy change to make.
 

Vimana89

Well-known member
#34
Learning experience: Narrators on aviation related videos frequently use the wrong terminology. For the longest time, I used the term "Dutch Roll" to refer exclusively to wing rock, when wing rock really seems to be one facet of it. As far as I know now, Dutch roll is a whole host of conditions that come with yaw and roll being very coupled like on RET planes with dihedrals and affects quite a few things including the pitch axis such as dips on sharp turns. For the longest time before today, I though Pugachev's Cobra was a straight forward shot at a high angle of attack, close to or at 180 degrees. It's actually a much higher G flare that extends back past 180, to the point where most planes, even ones decent at high alpha, would lose balance.

So the lesson? If you hear a narrator use an unfamiliar term in a vid about planes, double check it(y)!
 

Vimana89

Well-known member
#35
No black papered foam at the stores in town. I'll probably be making the big slender delta in white. I'm going to use 3mm trifold foam for the KFM section of the wing.
 

Vimana89

Well-known member
#38
Do you have a weight comparison?
I will soon. I'll measure the old plane fully loaded before transferring electronics over, and then measure this one fully loaded when it's ready. The air frame is done and feels like it weighs nothing I'll go weigh that right now. Same aspect as the last one but looks a little skinnier up front from a less bulky KFM.
 

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Vimana89

Well-known member
#39
New build is missing the final two servo extender cables but fully loaded besides those, weighs 13.75 oz with 850 battery but a bit nose heavy like the last one,which wieghs 14.75 oz fully loaded 850. New bird CG seems perfect with a 650, which puts it at only 12.25 oz. I took off an ounce of pure air frame weight, and more if I get good balance with 650.
 

Vimana89

Well-known member
#40
The maiden of the new slender delta was successful, will post footage in a bit. In most ways, it was an improvement. The main issue is just a little trim/subtrim and dialing in. I noticed that my directional stability seems to drop markedly when I do not employ a "taillet". The rudder goes all the way up so no room for a traditional retrofit, so I'm going to try some small triangular fins placed somewhat cruciform rather than on top, and ending before the rudder surface. I'm no expert but they should play a similar role as the taillet.