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NEXT LEVEL P-40 Group Build

BATTLEAXE

Well-known member
#1
I am out a warbird and I have a need for a new one. I have seen a lot of creative things from the Spitfire group effort and I am calling all who are willing to get in on this one. In the northern hemisphere there is only a couple months left to get the warbird hanger built up before the winter planes start skimming on snow, so this will be the last fast plane before the more practical winter Cub's, Storch's and Bushwacker's hit the skies.

This will be a preparation to a more advance Master Series build that will be a winter project or two. The P-40! As per the plans even though it is hailed as an entry level plane into the Master Series, I think it would be cool to see what kind of ideas come from taking a still fairly squared off plane and give it more grace in its lines and aerodynamics. The under nose scoop is one area that could use some creative work, actually the whole bottom could use some smoothing. Maybe take the ridges out of the wings for a molded profile for speed. Anything goes and any ideas are more then welcome to be shared. I will be looking at historical pics and trying to emulate the P-40 as close as possible. No holds barred on the details to create the most realistic warbird going. Striving to get the essence of this plane not only in the build but performance as well to test our improved skills, practiced over the summer, will be the name of the game.

Any takers chime in!!
 

BATTLEAXE

Well-known member
#2
20190904_164025.jpg
Plans printed and assembled. Watched the build vid and as it sits it looks like a basic fold it form it kinda build. the thing I am stuck on is how to make the bottom tip to tail a more formed piece and still maintain the accessibility to the electronics. What I want to do as far as a plan goes is to first, figure out how to build a top hatch for the battery and keep the ESC under the pod. Mind you having a removable pod and nose scoop seems to be a floppy operation and lends itself to overly extensive damage on hits to the ground. It happens. Hey if your not breaking planes you aren't pushing yourself! I don't think I want a removable wing either, which would be a simple solution to the accessibility issue. I will be installing a fixed pod to gain rigidity in the nose and using the Dollar Tree kitchen cutting board for a firewall, no more broken firewalls for this guy.

The full scale P-40 looks like it had a polyhedral close to the wing root as opposed to a center split dihedral like in the plans. Not sure how I will accomplish that yet either. There will be some practicing ironing FB edges tonight to get the tapers and bevels dialed in. Wish me luck lol (y):cool:(y)
 

The Hangar

Well-known member
#3
There will be some practicing ironing FB edges tonight to get the tapers and bevels dialed in. Wish me luck lol (y):cool:(y)
“Honey, where’s the iron?”
*thinking - wow - he’s really gonna iron his clothes for once?!!*. “It’s in that closet!”

An hour later...

“Are you done with the iron yet?”
“Nope, just have one fb hinge left.”
*eyes rolling*. “I should have known...”
 

BATTLEAXE

Well-known member
#4
What a good woman I have, she bought a new iron so I could use the old one... 20190904_225517.jpg
and it worked out famously... oh iron where have you been all summer, LOVE IT

Wing constructed
20190905_005040.jpg
20190905_005122.jpg
No ridges on top, first time
20190905_005305.jpg
Underside
20190905_005340.jpg
This wing looks so slippery I might want to fill in the underside. I will cover the exposed foam on the wingtips, kinda like the under camber for fly-ability. There will be spray adhesive and light poster board involved, or maybe just paper to help form into the edges. Now I know I said something about 2 breaks close to the wing root for a poly/dihedral but looking at the spars in the build made it look over complicated beyond my means or know how. I will say just taking the paper off the inside of the wings from the LE to an inch behind the spar has reduced a noticeable amount of weight just holding it in my hands, lighter then any other wing I have built. I could use foam filler to smooth things out more.

I did a test of beveling hinges with the iron as well and I am super impressed with that as well. So slick it makes me laugh. I might make a belt holster for the iron lol. Steppin the game up a notch in my books. More to follow. Thx for reading
 
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BATTLEAXE

Well-known member
#5
Didn't get much time today on the P-40 but I did get to covering the under cambers on the wing tips. I was also looking at a way to complete the underside open 2" space from the bottom panel to the TE to make it flush and clean. Tried a few different types of designs, one layer of FB filled it in half deep but still had a layer to make up to even it out. Made a B fold of another attempt to raise the one piece to make up the space but the bottom panel almost had the same profile as the top to make a symmetrical wing. Not what I was going for, so back to the original design.

The tail feathers came together nice though. I definitely need more practice with the ironing technique but it is still better the raw edges, which I used to seal with hot glue and a notched gift card. So much cleaner.

20190905_205641.jpg
Realized an aesthetic issue where the ironed edge meets the hinge line, splits it open... 20190905_205809.jpg
I usually cut the rudder hinge straight t the top no matter what the design calls for but since the extra strength from the smoothed LE of the V stab it worked out to cut in the balance profile...
20190905_205759.jpg
Turned out super square though... 20190905_205902.jpg
Another trick I want to see work out is sealing the raw edge of the hinge on the V stab side. With the elevator hinge I taped the underside as well as the top to beef up the hinge and seal it but it looks ugly. On this I ironed this flat against the cut until the paper slightly curled in towards the center, the foam hardened and adhered the paper to clean it up, no tape required. Lets see how it holds out in time, if the plane lasts that long lol

Thanks for reading
 

kilroy07

Well-known member
#7
I did a test of beveling hinges with the iron as well and I am super impressed with that as well. So slick it makes me laugh. I might make a belt holster for the iron lol. Steppin the game up a notch in my books. More to follow. Thx for reading
You'll also notice that ironing makes the control surfaces stiffer. All around my favorite tip I have learned here on the forums!
 

rockyboy

Skill Collector
Mentor
#8
Ironing in the hinge bevels is an awesome thing - very easy to do and strong hinge lines!

I'd be a little cautious about covering in the undercamber on the wing tips though - that will change the flight characteristics, especially the stalling behavior, and could make her do some unexpected dives when making lower speed turns (like coming in for a landing). It'll be faster though - less drag! :D
 

BATTLEAXE

Well-known member
#9
@BATTLEAXE - is it possible to make a cut and then bevel down both sides of the cut to make the hinge? :D
I guess it would be yes. Good idea. I just went with what I know lol. Should have thought of that. I was looking at the tail last night again and I am almost thinking I want to remake it but make some improvements like on the hinges. My tape reinforcing has some creases in it and I don't really like the way the hinge cut for the tips where it bends at the rounded edges. I might take the edges themselves and iron them more rounded as opposed to sharp tips profile... thoughts?
You'll also notice that ironing makes the control surfaces stiffer. All around my favorite tip I have learned here on the forums!
Ironing in the hinge bevels is an awesome thing - very easy to do and strong hinge lines!

I'd be a little cautious about covering in the undercamber on the wing tips though - that will change the flight characteristics, especially the stalling behavior, and could make her do some unexpected dives when making lower speed turns (like coming in for a landing). It'll be faster though - less drag! :D
The gains in strength are phenomenal, I was so surprised. I am looking at my Baby Blender and it is disappointing to know its to late for that one lol

I didn't fill it in to make the bottom flush, I just replaced the paper I took off to make the curved top profile. The under camber is still present. If i get brave enough I will build a plane like the Mustang or some warbird with the wing tips cut off for speed but that may be a ways down the line yet.

Thanks for coming in on the thread btw (y):cool:(y)
 

PoorManRC

Well-known member
#10
I'm going to be a late entry... But COUNT ME IN!!! 👍👍
I'm getting a P-40 to build for a friend of mine, I'm going to try the ironing method. Looks MUCH easier than my sand and seal, and might even be stronger than my method!!

I'll be short of supplies, but my P-40 is definitely happening - WITH extra details - and my friend wants the "Flying Tigers" Livery. 😁

I'm very likely going to TRACE copies of it, and make one for myself TOO!! (As opposed to "to") 😜😂😉
 

BATTLEAXE

Well-known member
#11
I'm going to be a late entry... But COUNT ME IN!!! 👍👍
I'm getting a P-40 to build for a friend of mine, I'm going to try the ironing method. Looks MUCH easier than my sand and seal, and might even be stronger than my method!!

I'll be short of supplies, but my P-40 is definitely happening - WITH extra details - and my friend wants the "Flying Tigers" Livery. 😁

I'm very likely going to TRACE copies of it, and make one for myself TOO!! (As opposed to "to") 😜😂😉
There he is! Was wondering where you went. Welcome. Excited to see you join up!
 

PoorManRC

Well-known member
#12
There he is! Was wondering where you went. Welcome. Excited to see you join up!
AWESOME!! My Friend and Drummer from our Band and I, love the P-39/40 Hawks!
I especially love the P-39, because of its forward CANNONS and Tricycle Landing Gear. 😁😊

I'm holding out for a Master's Series version of the 39...

But doing our pair of Flying Tigers P-40s will be a lot of fun!! I don't have the first one yet.... But I'm still in the finishing touches on my Scout anyway. 😉
..... I have neither the capacity or SPACE to get TOO backlogged! 😲
 

BATTLEAXE

Well-known member
#13
3viewP40color.png Curtiss_P-40F.jpg curtiss_p-40q.gif Curtiss-P40-Warhawk-Callout.jpg P-40 3 view 2.jpg P-40 3 view 3.jpg P-40 3 view.png
So many different versions of this plane. Can't decide which to go with. I like the sleeker nose and razor back profile of the first, I think the bulbous nose intake vent of the 5th one will be harder to build out of FB. The bubble top canopy of the 3rd and 6th looks streamlined as well. Hard to say
 

PoorManRC

Well-known member
#14
View attachment 141746 View attachment 141747 View attachment 141748 View attachment 141749 View attachment 141750 View attachment 141751 View attachment 141752
So many different versions of this plane. Can't decide which to go with. I like the sleeker nose and razor back profile of the first, I think the bulbous nose intake vent of the 5th one will be harder to build out of FB. The bubble top canopy of the 3rd and 6th looks streamlined as well. Hard to say
Funny, I like the Bubble Canopy, newer models....
But they wouldn't be accurate for the Tigers!! They were ALL Razorbacks. They were not replaced with newer models, but with P-51s.
Never looked right with the Shark Teeth.... That was purely P40!! 👍👍😉
 

BATTLEAXE

Well-known member
#17
I made new tail feathers and I marginally like the new ones better. I say marginally because both have pros and cons. The tail section on the right is last nights version and the left is todays attempt:
20190906_171304.jpg
In some ways the new ones have a cleaner look in the ironing, mostly with the elevator. And the taping is cleaner as well, no creases...
20190906_171410.jpg
The leading edges are rounded and the tail edges are symmetrically tapered. I can't think of a way to eliminate the relief notch where the hinge cut meets the rounded edge at the tips, although I cut the notches instead of them ripping open on there own. The rudder/Vstab hinge is now double beveled instead of the single bevel...
20190906_171532.jpg
… did the same with the elevator hinge as well. I also eliminated the tail skid brace cause she will be a belly lander, (plus I forgot to add reinforcement paint stir sticks to the wing lol). As you will notice there is no BBQ skewer in the elevator for torsion on the new one. The bevel on the elevator stiffened it up on its own. In the build video they call for the bevel to be on the H stab which is what i did to the first version. Looking at the pics I think the new one is cleaner, getting better at working the iron.

In conclusion... going with the new set
 

BATTLEAXE

Well-known member
#19
So, how did you do the double bevel? Did you separate the control surfaces from the rudder and elevator and then do half bevels on both sides, connecting them with tape? Btw, what kind of tape do you use?
I just use regular packing tape, thin stuff, not the gorilla tape. And for the new tail it was only used on the relevant hinge side to reinforce the paper so it doesn't tear apart mid flight. the double bevel is the same technique as the LE wing fold over, like you said, separate the hinge onto itself, bevel one side down to the paper then flip it over and repeat for the other side. Light sanding with 180 grit to knock off the hard little globs and leave it be, no tape on that side. makes for a free moving hinge with little to no resistance.

I have heard of people using the pin style hinges you would normally use with balsa builds and I was thinking of experimenting with that on some scrap pieces, but I hadn't exhausted all options with the FB paper hinge yet. Might still be something I will play around with yet. I was thinking of Ironing the hinge edges round on both the stabilizer and the control surface, using a hinge cutting too to open a cavity in the center of the edge, and glue in a hinge. Just like you would on balsa but with FB. It seems to work in my mind, just haven't put it to practice yet... Thoughts?
 

The Hangar

Well-known member
#20
I just use regular packing tape, thin stuff, not the gorilla tape. And for the new tail it was only used on the relevant hinge side to reinforce the paper so it doesn't tear apart mid flight. the double bevel is the same technique as the LE wing fold over, like you said, separate the hinge onto itself, bevel one side down to the paper then flip it over and repeat for the other side. Light sanding with 180 grit to knock off the hard little globs and leave it be, no tape on that side. makes for a free moving hinge with little to no resistance.

I have heard of people using the pin style hinges you would normally use with balsa builds and I was thinking of experimenting with that on some scrap pieces, but I hadn't exhausted all options with the FB paper hinge yet. Might still be something I will play around with yet. I was thinking of Ironing the hinge edges round on both the stabilizer and the control surface, using a hinge cutting too to open a cavity in the center of the edge, and glue in a hinge. Just like you would on balsa but with FB. It seems to work in my mind, just haven't put it to practice yet... Thoughts?
It seems like those would work... I never realized there were so many ways to do fb hinges😂