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FTFC19-Build-ruary by Vimana89

Vimana89

Active member
#1
Build skill:1 Pilot skill:1
(new, with some attempts at scratch building, no kit building experience, some free sim time, and a bit of RTF flying experience with safe mode)

Build List:
1.) Custom Trainer
2.) FT Mighty Mini Scout(kit)
3.)Slender Delta
4.) FT Nutball
 
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Vimana89

Active member
#2
Custom Trainer: @Dr. Looping Looie is designing this for my training and his fpv needs. The 3d image included with pictures is his work.
1.) All pics of process and finished product in attachments.

2.)No thread of plans(yet!)

3.)Reasons for choosing this plane: This was something @Dr. Looping Looie and I were discussing already before I entered the contest. I'm building this plane for an AET trainer that flies slow and has gentle flight characteristics. @Dr. Looping Looie rendered it in 3d for me and gave me some tips. I definitely like the look of twin boom designs, and need a gentle plane to train ailerons.

4.)Build Log:
5.)Build difficulty: 2/5, Straightforward
Estimated total time invested: 9 hours

Build update 2/4/19: drew out the fuselage, a little shorter and stubbier than @Dr. Looping Looie 's cad design. Took me about 20 minutes. This is a rough draft and I'll refine it a bit for the final template.

Build Update 2/7/19: Having some trouble mastering these FT style build techniques for fuselage construction and stuff. I'm getting better, but it still doesn't come out quite so clean. I guess I'll get better as I go, so I'm thinking for now to take it a bit slower and more precise, and the speed and efficiency will come later. The fuselage took me an hour and a half or so, and the wing took me a bit under and hour, no ailerons yet. I'm going to try painting what I have before continuing. The main thing I have changed about the build from @Dr. Looping Looie 's cad drawing, is that I went with a flat wing instead of an under camber airfoil. My main reason was actually ease of design and assembly. I've got my hands full with all these new techniques already, and its not so much making the airfoil, its cutting the slots into the fuselage correctly to attach it. I don't have a laser cutter, so doing this by hand requires a lot of measuring and precision. I find a flat wing so much easier to mount, and the surface it provides inside easy to mount my electronics. Several hours and crippling mistakes later, Here she is. Just needs electronics and top hatch.

Update 2/8/19: installing electronics. Going to need to position the battery all the way forward to get the cg where it needs to be. I created a nest in the nose from the foam my motors came in. The cutout was just the right size to slot my battery in.

Build update 2/16/19: build finished and ready to test. I ran my antennas outside and made this top hatch in a similar manner to my delta's except out of 2mm foam board rather than poster board. Let's hope she flies, if not, rebuild better.

6.) See Pics


7.)Maiden report: I was eager to test, so I went out even with high winds. First launch was bunk, the plane was not stable and probably not going fast enough at 60% throttle. The large and slightly warped wingtip devices probably didn't help and broke in the first launch, so I ripped them off and launched again. Despite the damage from the first launch, this time she flew at 80% throttle and climbed nicely, but I lost control in the wind and totaled my plane. I will come around to rebuilding this one better. At least I know the design is air worthy.

8.)Fly Rating: 1-2/5(intended). As this design is still in prototyping phases and my first attempt couldn't tell me much about handling, I can't give it an actual rating, but it was intended to be as basic as it gets for an AET trainer.

9. Reflective statements: This won't be the last time I attempt this build. If I didn't have this challenge to finish up, I would have started the rebuild sooner. The rebuild will be closer to @Dr. Looping Looie 's original rendering. I should have stuck with the under camber wing in the design, or at least used a high mounted KFM. The rebuild will feature one of these two options, most likely the first. I should have made my booms stronger. Weak wings or weak booms can mess this build up, and mine had both. I have an idea for building much better booms next time around. A good amount of the time consumed building this was planning it out and trouble shooting things I messed up, since this is my first attempt at building both an AET and a twin boom design. I think I will be able to build a better plane that's truer to the rendering next time, and spend less time building it.
 

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Vimana89

Active member
#3
Mini Scout
https://www.flitetest.com/articles/ft-mini-scout-build-mighty-minis. 1.) pics attached
2.)Kit sold, plans free here on FT
3.)Reasons for choosing: Wanted an RET trainer that was simple and easy to build, and I heard a lot of good things about the scout.
4.) Build Log:
5.) Build difficulty: 1/5, Simple

Build log : 1) 2/4/19 Kits arrived today, still waiting on electronics and transmitter. I took this build very slow and watched the video many times. I didn't keep track of time well at first, but I'd say I spent about a little over an hour, maybe an hour and a half doing the wing and most of the fuselage, then I took a break, came back and did the tail feathers, along with control surface beveling. This took another 20 minutes or so. I'm not going to glue the tail in place just yet. I had some trouble getting the fuselage material removal completely clean, and my bevels are not perfect, but they are ok. I'm going to leave this build progress as is until all of the electronics arrive, and begin work on some of my other designs for now.

Build update 2/17/19 :cut down a swappable firewall to fit a mini power pod. It will fit but position lower so I may need to put the skewer holes lower to compensate. I painted the parts and finished the fuselage.

Update 12/20/19: installed servos and linkages. Using this different motor required lower skewer holes on the fuselage. The do not seem to specify too well in these videos where to put you battery and receiver and all that, and it is a very tight fit in this little fuselage. Either way, the build is now complete . She's a bit heavier with the slightly larger motor, but 240g is still pretty modest and the cg seems spot on, about a third of the way back from the leading edge of the wing. Controls respond brilliantly. All I need is my new props to get here and a clear calm day.
6.) see pics
7.) reserved for maiden
8.)Fly rating 1/5, Easy(but still challenging enough for a beginner!)

9.)Reflective statement: When I first came to the forums asking for advice, people recommended starting with more basic planes such as the scout, tiny trainer, and a few others, but at the time I was intent on scratch building. I'm glad I never stopped scratch building, and continued to crank out scratch designs; I've learned a lot and I'm close to success with a couple, but I definitely should have built a scout right in the beginning of starting this hobby, while still doing my scratch stuff on the side, because this is a great plane to learn with for both building and flying. I'm definitely a fan of the scout now!
 

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Vimana89

Active member
#4
Slender Delta
1.) All pics of process and finished product in attachments.

2.Informational link herehttps://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Concorde#Slender_deltas. No plans yet, but here's something very similar that's awesome and I highly recommend. This can be built with the nice curved delta wing shown, with a regular slender delta wing, or simply used as a reference for custom builds. https://forum.flitetest.com/index.php?threads/plans-for-the-kolibri-high-alpha-flyer.56915/
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1549307946876.png 1549307985485.png 1549308019410.png 1549308082525.png

3.)Reasons for choosing this plane: This was a plane I have wanted to build since I first started learning/trying to build rc planes. At very first, the idea came to me simply because the sharp, slender triangle shape looks cool and works well with traditional paper airplanes, which are basically little slender delta gliders. I did some research from there on real delta planes of high sweep and low aspect, and it got me a lot more excited about building and flying this type of plane. I learned about the hp-115, the most acutely swept delta ever flown, and how it flew well with only a top speed under like 300 MPH for low speed research, and how this super-sonic looking shape could fly well at both low and high speeds and high angles of attack. I also learned about vortex lift generated by the shape. Neil Armstrong got to fly this plane in 1970 and enjoyed the experience. One of the main minds behind the hp-115's development and slender delta theory was a woman named Johanna Weber, a German born British mathematician and aerodynamicist who chose engineering over teaching because teaching at the time required her to be a member of the Nazi party, which she refused. After the city she worked in was liberated she went straight to work for the allies. Definitely an interesting history.

I love unconventional planes, especially mid-twentieth century jet age planes including a lot of prototypes with cool, retro-futuristic looking designs. The slender delta is sort of a signature plane for me, something I really want to master and be able to share with others. I would like to see a lot more people try their own takes on this general concept like @Dr. Looping Looie did with the Kolibri Flyer.

4.) Build log:
5.) Build difficulty: 1/5, Simple
Total time invested: Build: about 7 hours; Rebuild: about 5 hours

Build progress update:1) 2/4/19 Drew up a more streamlined fuselage design for 5" props. Took about 15 minutes. This is a rough draft.

Build update 2/12/19: starting slender delta: Wing blank with cut lines drawn on bottom. I'm using a modified FT swappable motor mount to mount my graupner 2806. Final draft hard cut fuselage template is ready. I used the template and a straight edge to draw up this simple A-fold fuselage. I am still sloppy at this.

Build log update 2/13/19: airframe pieces built and painted but no glued and no electronics yet. I built a cool top over from poster board but haven't added toothpicks yet. I should have used white FB to make my fuselage because my yellow paint faded to green on the black. It still looks cool but not originally intended.

Build update 2/15/19: installed electronics and linkages, but could not get proper function. elevons were sloppy. I will replace the elevons and try to link with my best two rods, if not, I will order some more rods. Build update 2/16/19:Build finished. I replaced the elevons successfully but my linkages are a bit sloppy and the elevons don't have much downward travel.I need to order more servo extension cables so I can use shorter push rods on future rebuilds.

Build update: 2/26/19: Last night and today, I rebuilt the whole plane slightly differently. The rebuild needs a top hatch and then is good to go, I'll take a pic when it is done. Thrust angle is feeling a lot better in hand, cg feels good, and less control slop than the previous build. The A fold fuselage is still a bit uneven, and mounted just a hair unevenly to the wing, which is very slightly warped like the last one. I do not expect these minor imperfections to be detrimental to basic flight. I cranked this one out in about 4-5 hours total time.

6.)See pics

7.) no maiden

8.)Fly Rating: 3/5, moderate

9.)Reflective Statement: I really wish I would have had more success with this one, as it is a huge milestone and personal scratch building goal that I really want to achieve. Also, it is a cool flying experience I wish to have. There are so many little factors with this one that I still have to perfect. Thrust angle can be difficult with high mounted pushers, and durability concerns for both your wing and prop arise when making this a prop in slot build. One thing that gives me hope is, I heard a podcast about Josh Bixler's approach to scratch building. Basically something along the lines of; "Start with picturing the end goal, what type of plane do you want, and how do you want it to fly and handle? Then build it as basic and crude as possible, launch it, crash it, learn, repeat. Keep at this and keep making adjustments, and your plane is pretty much guaranteed to turn out good." Well that's the approach I have been taking with this plane all along, and will continue taking, not to mention all the help and input I receive here on the forum.
 

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Vimana89

Active member
#5
Nutball. (All info except for build log and pictures added after 2/28/19)
1.)pics attached
2.)kit, plans available through FT
3.)Reasons for choosing: My main reason for choosing this plane was that the end of the competition crept up fast and I didn't want to rig one of these off size motors to a nice $30 kit, so I opted to scratch build a nutball instead. My other reason; I like the nutball, it is weird and easy to build. This was the first plane I built that actually flew, but I could not fly it. That was with elmers board and a 15" diameter. This is/was my attempt to try it again.
4.)build log:
5.) Build difficulty: 1,simple


Build log 2/22/19: Drew up my fuselage design. It is an A-fold type, and all of the electronics will be situated in the top section with one long top hatch. The underbelly of the fuselage will not contain any electronics, but serves several purposes; to provide a grip for hand launch, to reinforce the wing lengthwise, to balance the plane and make it a bit less top heavy, and to provide a surface other than the wing to skid on when landing. I used a fan stand of 20" diameter to trace the wing. I did the elevator and dihedrals and finished the wing, and joined it to the fuselage.

Build update 2/23/19: fabricated and mounted tail and front and back plates for my fuselage. Mounted motor. Used colored vynil sticker paper to create color scheme with decals.

Build update 2/25/19: finished

6.)see pics
7.) No maiden. Motor inexplicably crapped right before launch and now just stutters.
8.) Fly rating: 3/5, moderate
9.) reflective statement: I really wish I had more to say, but the motor quit. All I really have to add is that I plan to revisit the nutball again, but probably not too soon, as now that this competition, is over I have more pressing priorities for building. I definitely like the nutball design and the ease of building, but I found out the hard way with my first nutball that this is not a beginner plane as far as flying. It is a decent first foamboard build for an otherwise experienced RC flyer just getting into FB, but a good trainer it is not. That being said, it scales up huge, it scales down tiny, it has 3 channels,does stunts, and is dead simple to build. Plus, its basically a flying disk with a tractor prop. What's not to like?
 

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Vimana89

Active member
#7
I am entering this with only a battered A pack, some mismatched batteries, and a mostly complete inrunner/EDF power pack that I have no business using just yet, and don't plan to for this challenge. A big part of this, for me, will be going shopping to build a big pool of resources, enough for three extra planes. I'm trying to keep the cost reasonable and get the best bang for my buck. Many starting this already have a huge inventory of parts to choose from, but I have to build mine up.

*I'll be buying new FB and stuff, and placing orders tomorrow, the 1st. I'll be starting work on the custom trainer, utilizing my A pack. To cut costs a bit, I've decided the best route for the other three builds will be to build my own power packs using these motors and the esc generally sold with the F and A packs. These have similar performance to the F pack I believe, they just use different props. https://www.graupnerusa.com/ULTRA-2806-1900KV-BRUSHLESS-MOTOR-CCW.html. I'll have to see what the shipping is like and where they ship from, if I can get them in a timely manner, I think they will give me the best bang for my buck. I'll also be getting a new transmitter with servo mixing and expo, making handling easier and eliminating my need for onboard mixers.

*update, 2/1/19: as far as I can tell, Graupner USA ships from inside the US. I got three day shipping because it was only $5 more. I ordered all of my electronics and some other stuff today.

-1x Flysky I6 Transmitter
-3x Flysky I6 receiver
-2x Graupner Ultra 2806 1900kv motor CCW, for Scout and DR1
-1x Graupner Ultra 2806 1900kv motor CW, for Slender Delta
-3x Flite Test 20A ESC
-Flite Test wooden control horns
-Flite Test push rods
-2X Tattu 11.1V 3s 850MAH battery(Scout, DR1, possibly Trainer)
-2X Tattu 11.1V 3s 650MAH battery(Slender Delta, possibly Trainer)
-10X cheapo bulk 9mm servos
-1X FT Mini Scout kit
-1x FT Mini DR1 kit
-64x bulk pack of 5x3 Raycorp props(half and half)
*still need to get supplies downtown; Foamboard, Exacto blades and/or new knife, glue sticks, wooden dowels, bamboo skewers, Velcro, and some method for paint or at least decals.
 
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Vimana89

Active member
#8
Update 2/4/19: FT kits, ESCs, batteries, and more out for delivery. Motors are coming with UPS, probably tomorrow. Motor mounts for custom builds and new transmitter expected by Thursday. It has been rainy and windy here anyways, great time to build, but not so much to fly.

*Kits, batteries, FT brand ESCs, control horns, push rods arrived. Kits are more compact than I thought, especially the scout. The DR1 requires a lot more board, no wonder it cost twice as much. Makes sense with three wings.

I think I'll start with the scout kit, and get as far as I can without mounting the motor or installing a receiver, because I'm still waiting on those parts. The kit looks straight forward, and will teach me how to build an under camber airfoil, which I'll be using on the custom trainer project.
They sure didn't skimp on the little FT stickers and decals, which is a great touch, not even so much for my kits, which everyone knows are FT, but for my custom builds like the slender delta, so I can show my support for the community and my appreciation for all the help and encouragement.
 

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Vimana89

Active member
#10
Update 2/5/19: ESCs and motors came in, and a slight difficulty. I should have checked the specs, because these motors are a bit larger in diameter than the regular A and F pack motors. I believe that should be no problem once I get the swappable firewalls in, as those have holes for many motor sizes. These fit on the mini walls but barely, and I would have to modify the holes. Graupner also sent me no screws, so I had to order those. My new strategy is to use my A pack with the scout. Using the graupners should be no problem for my custom builds, but I will have to build a firewall or adapt an existing one to use on the kits.
 

Vimana89

Active member
#11
I'll most likely be painting my planes with basic acrylic crafts paint. Spray painting sounds like a mess, it's not something I'm used to, and the weather is not warm or dry. I may also use some colored sticker paper to make some decals. I'll see what colors are available when I go shop around, which should be tomorrow.
 

Grifflyer

WWII fanatic
#15
I'll most likely be painting my planes with basic acrylic crafts paint. Spray painting sounds like a mess, it's not something I'm used to, and the weather is not warm or dry. I may also use some colored sticker paper to make some decals. I'll see what colors are available when I go shop around, which should be tomorrow.
If you plan on painting with a brush I suggest only painting on color accents (stripes and such) instead of painting an entire airframe, as it can add lots of weight.

You could also try colored PACKING tape (not duct tape) for decorating.
 

Vimana89

Active member
#16
If you plan on painting with a brush I suggest only painting on color accents (stripes and such) instead of painting an entire airframe, as it can add lots of weight.

You could also try colored PACKING tape (not duct tape) for decorating.
I have some colored sticker paper too. I'll be careful to keep the coats light. It should only add a few extra grams if I do it right.
 

Vimana89

Active member
#17
Update 2/6/19 I have all parts except mounting screws. Time to get to work. My biggest challenge now is choosing what color schemes I want on what. It doesn't matter too much since I'll probably wreck all my planes pretty fast, but I want to try to come up with schemes that fit each plane well.
 

Vimana89

Active member
#18
So these Graupner motors don't fit any of the mounts/firewalls, even with some modification. I can still build my custom trainer with the materials I have but I was worried about finding the right mounts or making a wood one for the graupners...I had this desperate idea, and its turning out awesome. I took three little scrap squares of poster board, and hot glued them stacked together and pushed out all the excess glue. The resulting piece of laminate material is very light and rigid. I'll see how well a drill works on it. If it drills good, then I can measure out and produce super cheap custom motor mounts to my exact needs! If this works well, I'll share the idea outside of this thread, because there's nothing not to like about quick, cheap DIY firewalls.
 
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Vimana89

Active member
#19
Ok, the material drills just fine, but will need a little shaving/trimming around the holes. Easy. I'm debating making these four layers thick for extra durability, though I would say it is plenty strong with three already, as strong or stronger than wood and at least as light. This is totally doable. I think I just found a huge DIY hack!
 

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