I was wondering if any of you guys have a built a plane completely from elmers foam board (as in your fuselage tailfeathers rudder and wing) and if you could post pics here i am trying to learn tips and skills plus tricks working with this foam. Like strenngthenning big wings and fuselages.
I use foam-board from Hobby-Lobby the craft store but have use Wallys and it is close to the same.. Hobby Lobby in my area has 2 thickness of foam 3mm and 5mm. Used to get 1/2 inch but cant get it anymore so they say.
I use mostly 3 views and some plans available off the net and size them to what I want. Trace the templates on the foamboard and then cut it out with a Exacto knife or scroll saw. I have a 3 foot long plastic storage tub that I soak the parts in for 20-30 minutes and then the paper peals right off. You can use a bath tub if your life partner agrees but I heard too much yammering so I spent the $4 for the tub.
For extra strength I use 1/8 in square spruce and balsa.. BBG Kabob scewers and HL has cheap dowels that are made of some oriental wood that is real fiberous and bends but takes a lot to break them. Most of my construction is like balsa building--box fuselage and add thicknesses and sand to rounded shapes. Airfoils are bent into the foam and are either undercamber, Clark Y flat bottom or KFm type.
I quit useing balsa and went to foam about 5 yrs ago so I have a large fleet now. You can build the simple planes in a matter of hours if you really get after it. I am a slow builder and work a little, drift off and then go at it again. Im retired so I have the time
Wow your guyses' planes are amazing now i have a question how do you guys build the fuselage's are they hollow or no just the part where you put the electronics in and mount your motor. WOw great planes now what about glue? What do you guys use? What does the Epoxy glue look like anyways?
Niceplanes again great job i like the idea with the Sharpies too.
I build my fuselage hollow just like a balsa type simple slab side model. I put a former in the front (I leave the paper on this one for extra strength) also servses as the motor mount a former on the LE of the wing and a former on the TE of the wing. For extra strength for most planes I put a triangle running long ways from the TE former to where the fuse is pinched together in the tail.
I put a balsa 1/8th square on the hingeline of the horizontal and vertical stabs to act as a spar, little extra strength. Somtimes do the same the length of the fuse if I use the 3mm foam. The 5mm is stiff enough and ussually doesnt need it. You will find that the foam has a grain just like wood, it bends twice as easy one way as it does the other so you use that to your advantage when you build with the stuff.
I have been useing Locktite Sumo glue lately. It sets up faily fast and doesnt sand too bad. Just about any water base glue will work, even Elmers white glue. Most of it is stronger than the foam. Also use some contact glues like GWS kit glue, Liquiid Nails Perfect #1 and a vinyl wallpaper seam repair glue.
Get yourself a sheet, decide on the plane and have at it. One thing about foam it is cheap compared to balsa nowdays.
Hey thanks for the info bob. Yeah i am working on getting me some Fan Fold Foam to build with. Thanks for all the replies. THanks too for the tips. You guys ever crash and have the prop chew up your plane.
Their are people that leave the paper on but the weight is like 2 parts paper and 1 part foam. Also with the paper on it the material is more brittle, and with more weight their is more enertia so ussually more damage in a crash. I was always taught to build light for a good flight, build heavy for a good crash!!!!! Even this type of foam compresses some and bounces a little.....Your choice.
i havent made a plane out of it but i did make a rudder extension for my easy star and i hammered it down now the foam is a lot thinner and more dense i also at first covered the edges in boxing tape and then coated the whole thing and it works great
This thread is a tad old, so I'm not sure anyone is still monitoring. Just in case some are, I offer the following details and options. I have been playing with both poster boards with the foam core and the Elmer's (Walmart) is very difficult to get the paper off compared to the Dollar Tree store poster board. I want to get the paper off to save weight and also so I can cold roll the foam into a tube, or less curve, which I do often for RC airplane construction. The Dollar Tree poster board is still cheaper at $1 plus tax per sheet, but if I can find fan fold foam (FFF), also known as blu-Core (Dow- insulation for flooring), and get the bundle at around $1 per sheet, it is slightly better in cost. The FFF comes as 2'x4' sheets folded into a bundle. So far the only place I can find FFF is at Lowe's warehouse for home improvement. I did find some pink FFF at Sutherland's home improvement warehouse, but it was slightly more expensive. The bigger problem is the warehouse store's don't seem to be selling the stuff very often (unless I happen to buy some) and aren't restocking. The pink FFF (Corning product) is stiffer than the blu-Core (Dow product) and may be more like Depron, the expensive thin foam board used by many foam airplane builders (scratch building). The primary problems with Depron is it's brittleness (cannot cold roll easily without problems), cost, and the fact it isn't a foam product made in America. It is made in Europe, as far as I can find out, and has to be shipped to the states. Shipping costs are getting to be a real problem due mostly to the rise in fuel costs. In short, if you find a foam you like, it is best to stock up when you can get a good price. Each foam type has different characteristics and you will favor one over the other choices for specific uses. From what is true already, supplies are becoming difficult to procure, and all signs suggest this trend will get worse.