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Balsa Builders

#1
Hi, Are there any balsa builders out there? After flying and building ARF and scratch built foam planes for about two years now I am ready and wanting to get into balsa building. The idea of building scale balsa models is a huge part of what attracted me to this hobby. To me building your own model from scratch instead of just picking up an ARF is so much more fun. I would like to hear from people who are experienced balsa builders, or are a beginner like me or those that are keen to start. To discuss methods, ideas, share plans etc. I would like to see Flite Test do some articles om this as well, like more about glow engines, printing and scaling large plans, layout and setup of larger models etc. I hope to hear from people out there keen on this area of our hobby soon.
Cheers
 

Ak Flyer

Fly the wings off
Mentor
#2
I have two large balsa models that I bought from others but I've had to do quite a bit of repair (broke one of them in half). I like balsa planes. They are much more rigid and can be just as light. I just don't like crashing balsa lol.
 
#5
Cool Glad to hear there are other balsa builders about. Nice build post colorex I will read all that shortly. AK FLYER I don't like to crash balsa either I found that out when I was learning to fly made the mistake of buying a great planes SE5A. Nice plane flew well until I crashed it. I wish I owned it now that I can keep a plane alive for a fair while. I will still build foamies but the feel of a balsa plane you can't beat. I am just about to start building a 60 size ugly Stick seems to look like a good place to start, no curves and scale shapes. I will post pics as I go if anyone wants to see it. I did want to put a 90 size 4 stroke but decided to keep costs down and go with the 60 2 stroke. I have to get a covering iron and heat gun yet but I plan on taking it slow so will have them before it is time to cover them. No doubt I will have plenty of questions to come on this build.
 

pgerts

Old age member
Mentor
#6
What do you want to build? There are lots of plans, but what do you expect when writning "Large Scale Plan".
You dont "normally" build planes bigger than up to 2 meter span in balsa. Bigger planes do normally contain a lot of compisite material unless it is a really vintage scale model.
There are many sites with collection of plans for older balsa models.
THis year i have built "nostalgica" planes in the .40-size and a control line model for .1 - .15, all covered with silk but i cover with paper and shrink as well depending on the model.
Google will do a bad translation but you might look at some build pictures.
http://www.ripamfk.com/html/patrik/index.html
http://www.ripamfk.com/html/patrik/viking/index.htm
http://www.mfksnobben.se/galleri/Hugo/aerovanII.htm
 
#7
What do you want to build? There are lots of plans, but what do you expect when writning "Large Scale Plan".
You dont "normally" build planes bigger than up to 2 meter span in balsa. Bigger planes do normally contain a lot of compisite material unless it is a really vintage scale model.
There are many sites with collection of plans for older balsa models.
THis year i have built "nostalgica" planes in the .40-size and a control line model for .1 - .15, all covered with silk but i cover with paper and shrink as well depending on the model.
Google will do a bad translation but you might look at some build pictures.
http://www.ripamfk.com/html/patrik/index.html
http://www.ripamfk.com/html/patrik/viking/index.htm
http://www.mfksnobben.se/galleri/Hugo/aerovanII.htm
Some nice work going on there man. Thanks for the input, any help on building at all I am interested in. Yes 2m wingspan is plenty big enough for me. I really want to get into scale war birds eventually but plan on working up to it and learning on things like the Ugly Stick I have just started work on as we speak. Some planes I really would like to build in the future would be a Spitfire, FW 190, lancaster bomber, and I would really like to build a Hughs H1 Racer. help with finding some H1 plans would be awesome I am yet to find any. I only found a half set, the fuse only.
 

Ak Flyer

Fly the wings off
Mentor
#8

pgerts

Old age member
Mentor
#9
There are magazines with new plans every month. RCM&E is one good. If you can get the autumn special you will normally get a really nice warbird to build. The august issue has a nice small (1 m span) twin engine "semiscale" balsa model.
If you know some german you can get the FMT magazine - also with plans every month.
Go to their home pages on the net and check for interesting models. There are always back issues to buy. Plans for older models can often be found on the net somewhere - but as always - you need to know what you are looking for.
 

pgerts

Old age member
Mentor
#10
How does a Magnum .91 fourstroke for 129.99 sound? I'm getting one for my fourstar to replace the .60 two stroke it had.
Sure its a nice engine and perfect for the SIG Fourstar 60 - but if i am building a new scratch with all the hours included i would go for the newer OS alfa series - def not the cheapest alternative - but i think one of the best. Building from scratch will most certain be more expensive than getting an ARF.
 
#12
How does a Magnum .91 fourstroke for 129.99 sound? I'm getting one for my fourstar to replace the .60 two stroke it had. Here's where.

http://www.hobbypeople.net/index.ph...://www.hobbypeople.net/index.php/magnum-sale/

Everything i've seen and read and all the people I've talked to have had nothing but good things to say about the Magnum engines.
A 4 stroke is very tempting for sure, love the sound. But being my first glow powered model maybe should keep the price down. I was deciding between these two ASP motors from Hobbyking
http://www.hobbyking.com/hobbyking/store/__8984__ASP_FS91AR_Four_Stroke_Glow_Engine.html
http://www.hobbyking.com/hobbyking/store/__8988__ASP_S61A_Two_Stroke_Glow_Engine_.html
I can get the Magnum engines here for close to that price as well. I will decide depending on funds when the build gets close to finished. I still have to buy a covering iron and heat gun yet.
 
#14
There are magazines with new plans every month. RCM&E is one good. If you can get the autumn special you will normally get a really nice warbird to build. The august issue has a nice small (1 m span) twin engine "semiscale" balsa model.
If you know some german you can get the FMT magazine - also with plans every month.
Go to their home pages on the net and check for interesting models. There are always back issues to buy. Plans for older models can often be found on the net somewhere - but as always - you need to know what you are looking for.
Yeah I picked up a copy of RCM&E the other day with a nice plan in it only to get home and notice it was sheet 2 of 3 and can't get a back issue. I think I might subscribe to the magazine.
 

Ak Flyer

Fly the wings off
Mentor
#15
A 4 stroke is very tempting for sure, love the sound. But being my first glow powered model maybe should keep the price down. I was deciding between these two ASP motors from Hobbyking
http://www.hobbyking.com/hobbyking/store/__8984__ASP_FS91AR_Four_Stroke_Glow_Engine.html
http://www.hobbyking.com/hobbyking/store/__8988__ASP_S61A_Two_Stroke_Glow_Engine_.html
I can get the Magnum engines here for close to that price as well. I will decide depending on funds when the build gets close to finished. I still have to buy a covering iron and heat gun yet.
I will never buy another two stroke for my planes. I have to for helicopters but not for planes. I love the sound of the fourstrokes. I find the two stroke glow engines irritating, plus I prefer the torque of the four stroke. I think that for all of my future builds I'm going to bite the bullet and get gasoline engines. The up front cost is more but I'll save tons of money not buying nitro fuel at 35 bucks a gallon.

As far as hobbyking goes, here's their 15cc gasoline engine for 150 versus the fourstroke for 130.

http://www.hobbyking.com/hobbyking/...cc_Gas_engine_w_CD_Ignition_2_1HP_1_54kw.html