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Willy Nillies Hummer 250 Balsa Build Along

chris398mx

Well-known member
#1
I bought a Willy Nillies kit to participate in the Balsa build along and thought it would be a good way to get my feet wet with balsa before I tried a bigger project. I am glad I did because as you will see in the pages following I learned a lot and had a lot of questions along the way. Unfortunately, I was very slow in getting enough time to get this plan built and kind of missed the target timeline for completion.

@Willy Nillies and others were very helpful in answering anything that came up. Follow along and maybe you will have some of your questions answered as well. This seems like it is going to be a great flying airplane in calm winds. Anyway, I hope you get some entertainment from this thread.

Some tips before you start your build.
  • Trial fit the servos in the wing ribs before you assemble the wing. Mine were supper tight and took some sanding the slots in the ribs to get them to fit. this would have been much easier before the wing was assembled.
  • Think about mounting the motor and receiver as you go before you put the top and bottom fuse plates on. It becomes almost impossible to hook this stuff up afterward. (at least with my big fat fingers.)
  • Trial fit all the parts before assembly. some of them need very light sanding or trimming to make them fit much easier. The balsa is fragile and you don't want to force anything.
  • Think about using the fishing line hinges. They seem perfect for a plane this size.
  • Make sure to clamp the horizontal stabilizer in place and make sure it is square before gluing. I tried to use med CA and hold the stab in place by hand. It hardened before i could get the stab in place perfectly.
  • Be careful when shrinking the covering especially on the vertical stabilizer. I must have shrunk one side too much before doing some on the other side and it caused the stab to twist quite a lot. I had to flex it straight when i glued it to the plane and it still didn't come out perfectly straight.
 
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chris398mx

Well-known member
#3
I couldn't take waiting any longer so after work I went out for my Maiden flight with the Hummer 250. As you can see in the video, it was grey overcast skys that made it hard to tell orientation. Unless the plane was directly overhead and close I couldn't really see the red/white checkerboard pattern on the bottom of the wing. At about 30 seconds in the video I lose orientation and the plane rolls upside down. Luckily I guessed right and put down elevator to the plane to keep it in the air. I was trying to trim the plane and it was really too windy to maiden it at least for my skill level, but I made it through it. Hopefully on a sunny day, I will be able to tell up from down a little better.

After I landed it, I reduced the throws on the ailerons and added more expo. Then put it up for a second flight. I also forgot about having stabilization on the plane which after I turned it on helped with the swirling winds. I live in pocket of trees that makes the wind swirl badly at times.

I had about 4 minutes flight time on my 2S battery. When I put it on my charger to check the level, it still had 70% left. So it should fly for 10 minutes on this pack pretty easy. 2S to me seems under powered but, it did fly.

Recommendations:
  • Make sure to get the balance spot on. Willy recommends 1.25" back from the leading edge.
  • Put plenty of expo in the ailerons. I changed mine to 40% on the second flight.
  • I also reduced the aileron travel quite a bit on low rates. You don't need much for the plane to have plenty of reaction. I suppose it would need even less on 3S.
  • Make sure you maiden on a calm day. (don't fall for the temptation like I did. I was lucky not to total the plane)
 
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chris398mx

Well-known member
#4
@Willy Nillies I am starting the Hummer 250 build. This will be my first balsa build in almost 30 years. I have only done one other when I was in High school. (Ultra Sport 40). Anyway, the sheets that came with the kit mention following instructions but I can't find any specific to the Hummer. I printed the ones for the GLH 250, but there are some differences. Are there specific instructions for this plane? If so, where can I find them? I have also watched your YouTube video showing the construction of the fuse twice so far and it is helpful. I think if I can get through this first one, the next planes should be a breeze. Everything has fit good so far except F4 below.

I was following along with the GLH instructions and came to the tail section of the fuse. The former F4 doesn't seem to be wide enough, there is a large gap on on side. The top and bottom pieces fit nicely and everything looks square.

F4 gap.jpg


The GLH only has 1 battery end try wall.? The Hummer has 2 I think.
Do they go to the top of the plane(as shown) or the bottom?

Battery Tray.jpg


What are these pieces for and where do they go?

Misc parts.jpg


Sorry for all the questions, but I can't find the build instructions or the balsa layout sheet for this model like the GLH.
 

Turbojoe

Well-known member
#5
The GLH is a completely different bird at least as far as the wing goes. I'd suggest looking at just about any of the other builds as they're pretty much the same. Eaglet, Jr. Skylark, etc. etc. etc. Failing that just post pictures of what parts are concerning you and I'm sure Doug or one of us can help.

Joe
 

chris398mx

Well-known member
#6
The GLH is a completely different bird at least as far as the wing goes. I'd suggest looking at just about any of the other builds as they're pretty much the same. Eaglet, Jr. Skylark, etc. etc. etc. Failing that just post pictures of what parts are concerning you and I'm sure Doug or one of us can help.

Joe
the GLH is the only one I can find any Instructions for. I will look on his website again. Thanks
 

Turbojoe

Well-known member
#7
@Willy Nillies I am starting the Hummer 250 build. This will be my first balsa build in almost 30 years. I have only done one other when I was in High school. (Ultra Sport 40). Anyway, the sheets that came with the kit mention following instructions but I can't find any specific to the Hummer. I printed the ones for the GLH 250, but there are some differences. Are there specific instructions for this plane? If so, where can I find them? I have also watched your YouTube video showing the construction of the fuse twice so far and it is helpful. I think if I can get through this first one, the next planes should be a breeze. Everything has fit good so far except F4 below.

I was following along with the GLH instructions and came to the tail section of the fuse. The former F4 doesn't seem to be wide enough, there is a large gap on on side. The top and bottom pieces fit nicely and everything looks square.

View attachment 161445

The GLH only has 1 battery end try wall.? The Hummer has 2 I think.
Do they go to the top of the plane(as shown) or the bottom?

View attachment 161446

What are these pieces for and where do they go?

View attachment 161447

Sorry for all the questions, but I can't find the build instructions or the balsa layout sheet for this model like the GLH.
The round ply parts are wheel retainers. The kinda sorta triangle pieces are new to me. They weren't in any of the three kits I've built so far.

Joe
 

Turbojoe

Well-known member
#8
the GLH is the only one I can find any Instructions for. I will look on his website again. Thanks
Look here at our different Willy Nillies kit build threads. I know Doug is working on more build videos but I think he only has GLH videos for now.

You may be the first here with a Hummer build.......We can all learn from your experiences...

Joe
 

TooJung2Die

Well-known member
#9
What are these pieces for and where do they go?
Larger plywood washers are optional motor spacers. Smaller plywood washers are wheel retainers. My guess for the triangles is they're landing gear reinforcements. There are noticeable differences with the Eaglet I built. We better let Doug from Willy Nillies jump in here to clarify things. Did you try calling him? He's in Central Time zone.
 

chris398mx

Well-known member
#10
Larger plywood washers are optional motor spacers. Smaller plywood washers are wheel retainers. My guess for the triangles is they're landing gear reinforcements. There are noticeable differences with the Eaglet I built. We better let Doug from Willy Nillies jump in here to clarify things. Did you try calling him? He's in Central Time zone.
No, i haven't called him. I will try later if he doesn't chime in. Thanks
 

Willy Nillies

Well-known member
#11
Hi Chris,

F4's job is to prevent pushrod flex. Center it up and glue in place. It doesn't need to touch the fuse sides.

You are correct, battery tray gets forward and aft ends and they do face up.

The ply disc are wheel retainers, ply piece with rounded side is for a tail skid.

The triangle shaped balsa pieces with the small hole go immediately forward of the wing saddle with the long part facing down. The forward wing dowel hold down goes through them. These are meant to re-enforce the forward wing dowel and provide more surface area/strength should you choose to install landing gear.

Please let us know if you have any more questions! Woo Hoo! Another Hummer gettin built! :)

Sincerely
Doug and Becky
WillyNillies.com
 

chris398mx

Well-known member
#12
Hi Chris,

F4's job is to prevent pushrod flex. Center it up and glue in place. It doesn't need to touch the fuse sides.

You are correct, battery tray gets forward and aft ends and they do face up.

The ply disc are wheel retainers, ply piece with rounded side is for a tail skid.

The triangle shaped balsa pieces with the small hole go immediately forward of the wing saddle with the long part facing down. The forward wing dowel hold down goes through them. These are meant to re-enforce the forward wing dowel and provide more surface area/strength should you choose to install landing gear.

Please let us know if you have any more questions! Woo Hoo! Another Hummer gettin built! :)

Sincerely
Doug and Becky
WillyNillies.com
Thanks, I will continue on. So there aren't any hummer specific instructions yet?
 

chris398mx

Well-known member
#17
Here is some progress.
Glued in the landing gear supports. I hope this is the way they were supposed to go in. I used the dowel to make sure they aligned with the holes. Make sure to twist the dowels as the glue sets up so that you can remove them till after covering.

1 Landing gear support.jpg

2 Landing gear support.jpg

Make sure the big hole in F2 is in the upper part of the fuselage away from the wing side. I haven't glued in the front battery tray upright just yet. want to make sure the fuse top fits first.
3 Battery tray.jpg

Mounted the motor to the fire wall and glued the firewall in place.
The T-nuts are a great addition to the kit in case you need to remove the motor after final assembly.
8 Motor mount assembly.jpg

9 Motor mount assembly 2.jpg

10 motor mount Installed.jpg

More later.

Any tips on what i should do as I build so that covering will be easier?
 

Attachments

TooJung2Die

Well-known member
#18
Good progress! You're blazing the trail with photos for those to follow.
Any tips on what i should do as I build so that covering will be easier?
It's a personal choice but I like to cover the tail feathers and ailerons before installing them. I remove film so wood is showing at the glue joint. Some people are good at getting the covering into the inside 90 degree corners, not me.
 

rockyboy

Skill Collector
Mentor
#19
Some people are good at getting the covering into the inside 90 degree corners, not me.
Yeah, that can be really tricky. The approach I've been trying recently to solve that is to add a little 1/4 or 1/2" strip of covering along the hinge line of the control surfaces and trailing edges before installing them. Then install the hinges to mount the control surfaces. On big planes next I will pin the hinges into place with a toothpick to make darn sure they never come out, and then cover the rest of the plane with the surfaces in place. Finally a careful cut with a scalpel / xacto / razor blade frees the control surface to move and a quick pass with the covering iron seals the covering edge down onto the covering strip already in the hinge slot. It take a little longer to do, but there is no question about the hinges coming out in flightand it looks really clean. On these little Willy's planes, I think pinning the hinges is a little overkill, but if you are planning to use separately installed hinges instead of a covering hinge this is another technique to consider.
 

chris398mx

Well-known member
#20
@Willy Nillies or anyong else that can answer.
do i have the layout correct? Does 2 go on the middle side of the wing compared to 2A?
This wing doesn't have any dihedral, correct?
What is the tiny hole toward the front of the unmarked ribs for?
11 WING LAYOUT MARKUP.JPG