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New Guy! - Question About Canopy/Cockpits - Hotwire

#1
First post!

I've decided to take the plunge into RC airplanes, largely out of an interest in recreating some of the airplanes I work with. I work in the Aviation sector of the NC Forest Service fighting fires. Our planes include an AT-802, AT-802A, Cessna 182s, and a Cessna U206C.

I'm in the planning stages of an Air Tractor AT-802 build and have found the attached build plans. My intention is to carve the fuselage out of joined pieces of hotwire-carved foam, using the bulkhead outlines as my templates. The only issue I can see is that these plans say nothing about how to build the canopy, and I'm not entirely sure how to factor that into my templates. Is this some sort of standardized part I'm supposed to seek out? Am I missing something?

Piggyback question: From the looks of things, this can be an exceedingly expensive hobby. A beginner's intro kit is upwards of $200. What are some things you guys do to save money?

Cheers and happy flying!
Patrick
 

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CarolineTyler

Well-known member
#2
Hi there!!!
Welcome to the rabbit hole of RC planes. Making a realistic canopy is always a difficult one, many just don't bother to male it clear, instead opting for using black graphics to represent the glass areas. Of course you could cut the canopy shape in foam, cover it with filler, sand it to the right size (minus the thickness of the plastic of the glass) and then use a vacuum molding process to shape come clear thermosetting plastic over it. Or you can use plastic soda bottles cut up to make the canopy....etc, etc... it's really down to how much trouble you want to go to!
RC plane modelling can get as expensive as you want but its easy to keep it to manageable 'chunks' over a period of weeks/months, and scratch building like you are planning to do.
The dearest single bits you are going to need will be the radio and the batteries (if electric is your thing).
 
#3
First post!

I've decided to take the plunge into RC airplanes, largely out of an interest in recreating some of the airplanes I work with. I work in the Aviation sector of the NC Forest Service fighting fires. Our planes include an AT-802, AT-802A, Cessna 182s, and a Cessna U206C.

I'm in the planning stages of an Air Tractor AT-802 build and have found the attached build plans. My intention is to carve the fuselage out of joined pieces of hotwire-carved foam, using the bulkhead outlines as my templates. The only issue I can see is that these plans say nothing about how to build the canopy, and I'm not entirely sure how to factor that into my templates. Is this some sort of standardized part I'm supposed to seek out? Am I missing something?

Piggyback question: From the looks of things, this can be an exceedingly expensive hobby. A beginner's intro kit is upwards of $200. What are some things you guys do to save money?

Cheers and happy flying!
Patrick
I found bulk items in ebay, like 30-40amp esc 4 for $28 9gram servos 10 for $12-$17. Motors for quads can get great deals too. Flite Test themselves have very resonable prices too.