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Bixler landing gear buildup ideas

#1
Hello Everybody,

as I am new to RC iI just bought and assembled the Bixler :)

Before my first flight (it's windy down here in Poland now) I'd like to protect, somehow, my trainer because I suppose I will crash a lot!

My idea is to build simple langing gear made of bended metal rod with wheels attached on front, and one wheel mounted at the end of the plane.

But firstly as I have no needed spare I tried to glue some foam bumpers.
What I did You can check on the photos.

bumpers1.jpg
bumpers2.jpg

My question is if that stuff can fly?
Does extra foam stripes can cause changes to plane's aerodynamics so it would be hard or impossible to fly?

Extra weigth introduced by extra foam attached is low.
Plane is balancet to be little bit nose heavy (for beginners best they say).

thanks for any comments or hints on landing gear buildup/attaching ideas.
 
#2
It will work well and will be more aerodynamic than wheels. That EPO stuff is pretty good at bouncing, so with your extra bits it should be pretty crash proof
 

Klonas

Senior Member
#3
In my opinion don't go with landing gear. Belly landing is much easier unless you are absolutely forced to land on a hard surface like concrete.
Even if your model may look weak don't worry. Those trainers can take a hit or two.... Or a hundread :)
When you learn to fly good you will want to add mods to your plane, then will be the time to add those wheels.
 

colorex

Rotor Riot!
Mentor
#4
thanks for any comments or hints on landing gear buildup/attaching ideas.
I recommend you tape the leading edge for strength.

I have read that if you're using a 1300mAh battery you can stuff some flexible soft foam into the tip of the nose, this will help prevent damage from the battery's mass on nose-down impact. It protects the battery as well.

I suppose you have covered the plane in tape already? That's good to do.
 

PaulT

New member
Mentor
#5
My question is if that stuff can fly?
Does extra foam stripes can cause changes to plane's aerodynamics so it would be hard or impossible to fly?
What you have added should have very little effect. Have you seen the GoPro and FPV cameras that have been mounted on these?

Where you have the foam on the wings will never touch the ground so I think are not needed. Only the tips of the wings will touch and can be protected with just tape.

There is not enough glue and duct tape on your plane, by the way, so get flying!! ;)
 
#6
Thanks everybody for comments.

I am suprised, actually, that my belly landing stripes are accepted :)

I also put another foam stripe (twisted and glued) to protect battery from crash impact.

Now I see that it might be really needed to tape all the plane to incerase its strength.
BTW: only fuselage or wings also?

Thanks a lot to all.
 

colorex

Rotor Riot!
Mentor
#7
Now I see that it might be really needed to tape all the plane to incerase its strength.
BTW: only fuselage or wings also?
Figure it out yourself. :)

Think of where you'll be flying.

Foam my get dents or get scraped on stones, sticks, etc. Tape will protect foam from this.
Foam may get dirty and is hard to clean. Tape is easy to clean.

You don't need to put on excessive amounts of tape. Just make sure you cover parts that will face most stress on landings. Belly, nose, sides, leading edge, under the wingtips, etc. Imagine your plane landing and think where it will come in contact with dirt, stones, rough grass, and put one layer of tape there. Remember that the tape must stick well.

Hope this answers your question.
 

earthsciteach

Moderator
Moderator
#10
Good Luck with your maiden! I really like the foam strips on the bottom. Covers those with tape and they will be pretty durable.
The great thing about these planes is that you can abuse them, break them and easily repair. The flight characteristic will still be pleasant even when its looks aren't.
 

Ak Flyer

Fly the wings off
Mentor
#11
I have never had a plane without landing gear except my 3d foam profile plane and I added gear to it. After watching Bixler land several planes in the grass and my experiences with landings and non landings, I think a strip of clear tape from the nose to the tail along the bottom and across the leading edges of the wings is all you would really need. I wouldn't even bother with the foam. I honestly think that if you doink it hard enough that you need the foam, it's going to damage something else anyway. If you have a decent grass field to land it in, I wouldn't worry about it. But, what you have there shouldn't make to big of a difference in the way it flies. Very thought out use of foam by the way. Looks cool. If you do add gear, let everyone here know how you did it and how it worked out. For that matter, let us know how it flies the way you have it.
 
#12
Of course I will put some info after my first flight.
Now as working week started and it's still getting dark early I believe I need to wait until weekend.
 

Ak Flyer

Fly the wings off
Mentor
#13
You know, I love that we have such an international crowd on this forum. What's the R/C atmosphere like in Poland? Is it really popular there? Do you fly with a club?
 
#14
As I mentioned I am new to this hobby.
I am also not so young while starting - almost 30 :)

Anyway I don't see lots of freaks around me that fly with anything.
I also have problem with finding any club to join to.

What I googled and found on the Net there are some contests in Poland but those are rather announced in specialized magazines.
Maybe if I really get into flying I will discover RC society I'd neve heard about before :]

Who knows - maybe I will be the next one to organize something in Poland?...

Anyway how's the flying up there in Alaska? You have good thermal cooling for lipos there <lol>
 

Ak Flyer

Fly the wings off
Mentor
#15
Yes, plenty of cooling right now especially lol. It's not bad. I am sort of leading a resurgence of the hobby in my community. A few of us bought the hobbyzone super cubs and have had so much fun we've got a few other people into it, now people are starting to come out of the woodwork with planes they put away ten years ago. It's good, lots more people into the hobby than I imagined, but most got tired or busy or just ran out of people to go flying with. For the last two years now we've even had a slot in the elementary school gym during the winter. It's been great.
 
#16
OK,

so as I am working late it was too dark outside today to try flying.
Istead of I took some time and prepared some sliders to strenghten plane itself but also enable me to have more safe landings on the snow or ice.

On the picture below this is how it's looking now:

bixler3.jpg

I made sliders from the stuff I have: some wooden poles inside plastic pipe, mounted to fuselage.

I used small piece of wood to stick it through fuselage hole and secured it from the inside with small metal plate and screw. On the outside I tightened screws, that goes through sliders, in between two metal pads. That makes sliders attached to the fuselage. There was no simple way to do it under the wings with use of zip ties. There was no way to stick that ties without drilling some holes.
At the end of the sliders I attached them to the fuselage with use of zip ties covered with another plastic pipe (smaller in diameter than sliders).

bixler4.jpg

Mounting to fuselage is shown, in more detailed way, below:

bixler5.jpg

Aircraft after modification looks now like below:

bixler6.jpg

Total weight with LiPo is now 820 grams. Is it still ok to fly?
It is also little bit nose balanced as it was before.
Thanks for any comments.

p.s. - sorry for images quality, my camera is almost dead :)
 
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#19
Today I managed to go for my first flight ever!

It was quite nice. Quite because mine flight took about 5 minutes only :)
I went to big open area and there was nobody around to get hurt (beside me).
It was windy so while I was flying opposite to wind direction, at full throttle, Bixler was almost hovering.

Maybe It was to windy for beginner, but I could't wait any longer.

Plane was well responsive and it didn't bother about attached landing gear and all pieces of foam.
I took few big circles and finally landed on nearby construction yard.
Of course I've crashed! I had to go through the fence and wade in the mud :p
I crashed on nose, and wings went apart. Stayed on carbon rod only because of servo's wiring :)

I noticed that piece of foam glued to the nose did the job.
Unfortunately rod broke so I need to replace it with aluminium one maybe.

I am new to flying, but it seems to me that Bixler is really easy to fly plane, in calm day.
I hope I will gain knowlege of landing very soon just to save my plane from stupid crashes.

Anyway eveything is in one piece now (beside carbon rod) and I am looking forward to go flying ASAP.

Throwing from hand was also easy though.
Important thing is not to panic if You do something bad up in the sky - just focus and try to level the plane! :)
Now I know why starts and landings are most important manoeuvres during whole flight.

That's how my first flying looked like...
 

colorex

Rotor Riot!
Mentor
#20
Cool, it was just like me though I didn't have THAT much wind that I hovered, I tried to do the hover, but it would just go slow, not backwards. Even at 20% throttle.

I recommend you check so your servo cables aren't sloppy if they got a hard pull!

How did you fasten the wings? I use velcro, it's a very efficient and lightweight system, and it absorbs energy in case of a crash.





I hope you had a nice time, and I wish you many good flights!