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Old 04-15-2013, 07:55 PM   #1
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Default House of Balsa P-51D Build Thread

Hi all,

I am new to this forum and just started building again (after about a 10 year hiatus). My grandfather has been building and flying for 60+ years and really got me in to this hobby.

I was looking for a plane to be my first solo build and after reading John's (Max2112) thread on the HOB P-51D kit I decided to order it.

I will update this thread later today with my first impressions and some pictures I took of the start of the build!

- Mike
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Old 04-16-2013, 04:06 AM   #2
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Mike,

Excellent! Welcome! And, good luck on your build. I will check it out... post up some photos of your progress once you get started.

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Old 04-16-2013, 05:44 AM   #3
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Thanks Forge!

So after opening the box, I found the kit to be quite complete! I think the only thing it doesn't have is a set of wheels.

The laser cut balsa pieces are amazingly precise, and much better for fit than the die cut model I built last time. It feels like putting together a puzzle, just with instructions and glue haha.

I started with the right wing and had very few problems putting it together. The color instructions are definitely useful, although I feel the pictures could be slightly bigger (but that is a very small criticism.

The only issue I have had so far is putting the aileiron servo tray in, most likely due to my error. As I have a habit of doing, I over sanded the tray to try to get it to fit, so I used a piece of leftover 1/8th balsa to use as a shim. Hopefully this won't affect things too much.

Anyway on to some pictures!


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Old 04-16-2013, 07:31 AM   #4
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Im signed up. Looks very interesting

Happy flying may your crashes be limited and if they are not limited let them be cool.
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Old 04-16-2013, 02:31 PM   #5
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This was one of the first kits I built. The parts fit was good, and probably was one of the better kits where the laser cutting thickness was properly taken into account, not under or over sizing parts. Any misalignment would have been my error back then. Still happens sometimes. The box photo also talked me into using Monokote chrome covering, which will definitely put one on the fast track to applying the more difficult iron-on coverings.
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Old 04-17-2013, 12:56 AM   #6
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Hi, Mike! Welcome to WattFlyer! It's always great to see new faces, especially builders.

Mine is still flying and she is a very dependable model.
I am looking forward to following your build. She looks great so far.

Have you decided on a color scheme?

Please call me John. I came up w/ Max2112 when I thought you were all internet predators after me Lucky Charms!!
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Old 04-17-2013, 03:48 AM   #7
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I'll be watching as well! Welcome to WattFlyer!

Steve

Growing the fleet!
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Old 04-17-2013, 05:58 AM   #8
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Thanks all!

One thing I should have mentioned in the original post is that I am using wood glue for this build so it might go a little slower than with CA (I am allergic to the smell of the CA, I might purchase some odorless soon).

I am really enjoying this build so far, no new pictures today as I haven't progressed very far.

John, I am glad to hear it's been one of your more reliable planes! I am definitely hoping that this one will last me a while. I have been looking a little bit into the color scheme, my grandpa suggested racing colors as he thinks the silver/chrome color is hard to see. Personally I would prefer to go with the war colors, but maybe with a Canadian design haha. Otherwise I will probably just go with the American decals provided in the kit, with a checkerboard cowling!


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Old 04-18-2013, 02:29 AM   #9
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I like the unique schemes like the Canadian one. The silver/red combo looks good. I got talked into the box scheme, partly due to the highly detailed decal set. The chrome or aluminum is a bit difficult to see in the evening or with overcast skies. This plane has pretty large proportions though, so I would think it should be pretty easy to track.


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Old 04-18-2013, 06:24 PM   #10
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Have u decided on the prop motor ESC ?
Could u give the specs?
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Old 04-19-2013, 03:37 AM   #11
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Originally Posted by ripacheco View Post
Have u decided on the prop motor ESC ?
Could u give the specs?
I have no idea about the prop, motor or ESC, that's where my grandpa comes in haha.

Here are the specs:
Wing span: 47 in.
Fuselage length: 33.5 in.
Wing area: 390sq. in.
Wt. with radio: 38oz.
Wing loading: 14 oz./sq. ft.
4 channel micro radio with 4 micro servos
Motor : Astro 803G geared 020 brushless
or geared long can speed 400

Also, I just got my wisdom teeth out today, so progress may be slow over the next few days as I recover!
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Old 04-19-2013, 10:26 AM   #12
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Originally Posted by TheEngLife View Post
I have no idea about the prop, motor or ESC, that's where my grandpa comes in haha.

Here are the specs:
Wing span: 47 in.
Fuselage length: 33.5 in.
Wing area: 390sq. in.
Wt. with radio: 38oz.
Wing loading: 14 oz./sq. ft.
4 channel micro radio with 4 micro servos
Motor : Astro 803G geared 020 brushless
or geared long can speed 400

Also, I just got my wisdom teeth out today, so progress may be slow over the next few days as I recover!
use a direct drive brushless motor, No Gear box.

this 480 motor should work well for you. with a 10 x 6 prop on 3 cells. Email Jeff at Heads up Rc for more motor info. Chellie

http://www.headsuphobby.com/Emax-GT2...otor-D-661.htm







http://www.wattflyer.com/forums/showthread.php?t=39483

I may be getting Older, But I Refuse to grow Up I am Having to much Fun to Grow Up LOL
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Old 04-19-2013, 02:18 PM   #13
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Originally Posted by TheEngLife View Post
I have no idea about the prop, motor or ESC, that's where my grandpa comes in haha.

Here are the specs:
Wing span: 47 in.
Fuselage length: 33.5 in.
Wing area: 390sq. in.
Wt. with radio: 38oz.
Wing loading: 14 oz./sq. ft.
4 channel micro radio with 4 micro servos
Motor : Astro 803G geared 020 brushless
or geared long can speed 400

Also, I just got my wisdom teeth out today, so progress may be slow over the next few days as I recover!
The original setup is definitely a bit outdated. I used an MPI gearbox and MPI 400 cobalt, which is a substantial increase in power over the stock long can 400 setup. Even with the heavy cobalt motor, I still needed several ounces of lead ballast in the nose. I wouldn't recommend this mod, but in the perfect world I'd be tempted to to move the battery bay bulkhead forward with an outrunner versus the longer stock motor, to increase the battery's contribution to nose ballast. The next firewall forward may require relocating for ideal mounting of a specific outrunner. I think that John (Max2112) may have done that. Easier done before building the fuse, than after. Given your wisdom teeth situation, you wouldn't want to add to the discomfort, trying to hack a firewall out of a fuse that is already built. That's usually the type of thing where I end up whacking a finger.


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Old 04-22-2013, 03:53 AM   #14
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Thanks for the advice all! I will definitely take it all into consideration!

I figured I hadn't posted in a while so I should put up so new shots of my progress!

I have almost finished the right wing, and am currently working on the left one at the same time. The sheeting is just killing me, as it's probably the one thing I am most terrible at. I can never seem to get the pieces to fit perfectly and always end up oversanding and having to restart.

Also, trying to get the balsa to bend on the lower part of the wing was a bit of a struggle and I ended up cracking the balsa. I didn't want to go back and redo it, so I just made a putty out of some wood glue and sawdust and hoped it would make a decent filler. I figure it will be covered with covering anyway so it won't make a huge difference as long as it's sanded smooth!

Anyway here are so more pics of the progress. Comments and suggestions are always welcome and appreciated!


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Old 04-22-2013, 04:15 AM   #15
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Originally Posted by TheEngLife View Post
Thanks for the advice all! I will definitely take it all into consideration!

I figured I hadn't posted in a while so I should put up so new shots of my progress!

I have almost finished the right wing, and am currently working on the left one at the same time. The sheeting is just killing me, as it's probably the one thing I am most terrible at. I can never seem to get the pieces to fit perfectly and always end up oversanding and having to restart.

Also, trying to get the balsa to bend on the lower part of the wing was a bit of a struggle and I ended up cracking the balsa. I didn't want to go back and redo it, so I just made a putty out of some wood glue and sawdust and hoped it would make a decent filler. I figure it will be covered with covering anyway so it won't make a huge difference as long as it's sanded smooth!

Anyway here are so more pics of the progress. Comments and suggestions are always welcome and appreciated!
Borrow your wifes steam iron, lay a moist rag on the balsa wood, and heat and steam the balsa prior to bending, that will make it soft and easy to bend, Nice job, Take care, Chellie

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Old 04-22-2013, 03:30 PM   #16
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Nice work! I was looking that kit myself.
Let me know when you plan to maiden it when its done. I'm in Calgary myself and would love to see it in the air.

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Old 04-22-2013, 04:37 PM   #17
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Originally Posted by TheEngLife View Post
Thanks for the advice all! I will definitely take it all into consideration!

I figured I hadn't posted in a while so I should put up so new shots of my progress!

I have almost finished the right wing, and am currently working on the left one at the same time. The sheeting is just killing me, as it's probably the one thing I am most terrible at. I can never seem to get the pieces to fit perfectly and always end up oversanding and having to restart.

Also, trying to get the balsa to bend on the lower part of the wing was a bit of a struggle and I ended up cracking the balsa. I didn't want to go back and redo it, so I just made a putty out of some wood glue and sawdust and hoped it would make a decent filler. I figure it will be covered with covering anyway so it won't make a huge difference as long as it's sanded smooth!

Anyway here are so more pics of the progress. Comments and suggestions are always welcome and appreciated!
There is a glue like white glue you can put on the ribs and then use an iron over the balsa like monokote.

http://www.rcgroups.com/forums/showt...2#post20210559
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Old 04-25-2013, 05:11 PM   #18
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So just a quicky update so I don't leave you guys hanging. I finished the right wing two days ago and have been slowly working on sheeting the left wing. I should get to that tonight though! This time I took a little more time and pre-measured all the sheeting pieces, it took a while longer, but it will make assembly so much easier!


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Old 04-25-2013, 05:53 PM   #19
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Originally Posted by TheEngLife View Post
So just a quicky update so I don't leave you guys hanging. I finished the right wing two days ago and have been slowly working on sheeting the left wing. I should get to that tonight though! This time I took a little more time and pre-measured all the sheeting pieces, it took a while longer, but it will make assembly so much easier!
hopefully the sheeting got easier for you.
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Old 04-26-2013, 03:48 AM   #20
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Originally Posted by TheEngLife View Post
So just a quicky update so I don't leave you guys hanging. I finished the right wing two days ago and have been slowly working on sheeting the left wing. I should get to that tonight though! This time I took a little more time and pre-measured all the sheeting pieces, it took a while longer, but it will make assembly so much easier!
Looks GREAT Mike! The sheeting was new to me also. And the wings are the easy part. The sheeting on fuselage gets a bit trickier, more curves and such.

I would measure and cut one piece and then wet the entire outer surface of that piece with water. Not a whole lot, just dabble my fingers in a bowl of water once or twice and rub it in. wait about 20 seconds and it will be much easier to shape.

John

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Old 04-26-2013, 05:43 AM   #21
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Thanks for the advice John! My grandfather actually recommended completely soaking the balsa in water then wrapping it around something with a similar shape to get it to hold the curve, but your way sounds a little less extreme haha!

Also I found some new pictures of RCAF mustangs from WWII today, so I am thinking I may use one of the two designs for the colour scheme on this plane.

One of them is still flown today and is privately owned out of Ontario. The colour scheme is of the 442 Squadron based out of Vancouver during WWII.

The other one is from Squadron 403 based out of Calgary (my home town).

I personally prefer the camo version, but we'll see how I feel when it comes time to complete the plane!


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Old 04-26-2013, 06:17 AM   #22
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Since it looks like I am in time...

Soak the wood to be bent around the fuselage in appx 5% ammonia/95% water for about 5 minutes then pull in place. Pin/tape and let dry overnight without glue. (do not clamp or use rubber bands or you'll get deep marks from that)

Ammonia softens a "binding agent" in wood allowing it to bend almost like rubber.

Next day you can pull the skin off, apply glue and tape it back on.
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Old 04-27-2013, 02:22 AM   #23
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Originally Posted by TheEngLife View Post
Thanks all!

One thing I should have mentioned in the original post is that I am using wood glue for this build so it might go a little slower than with CA (I am allergic to the smell of the CA, I might purchase some odorless soon).

I am really enjoying this build so far, no new pictures today as I haven't progressed very far.

John, I am glad to hear it's been one of your more reliable planes! I am definitely hoping that this one will last me a while. I have been looking a little bit into the color scheme, my grandpa suggested racing colors as he thinks the silver/chrome color is hard to see. Personally I would prefer to go with the war colors, but maybe with a Canadian design haha. Otherwise I will probably just go with the American decals provided in the kit, with a checkerboard cowling!
I use foam safe ZAP CA. Absolutely odorless, however, $11.99 a bottle at Hobbytown, a little pricey but probably the best CA in all thicknesses I've ever used. I've not used it on any of my balsa builds so I don't know how well it will wick into joints but on foam it is very nice and no smell. I mainly use LocTite professional CA, blue bottle, I get at WalMart that has very little smell, if any, and I've used many bottles of it. Just about to finish a Great Planes Slo-Poke which took a number of bottles.


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Old 04-29-2013, 04:32 AM   #24
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So I have made quite a bit of progress since my last post.

Swimmer, it's funny you should mention the Zap Odorless CA. I just went out and bought myself the exact same bottle a couple days before you posted that! The building is going much faster now, although I have come close to gluing my fingers together once or twice haha.

The sheeting on the bottom of the wing went much faster thanks to all your advice. I will epoxy the wings together next time I am at my grandpa's house, so I should have a complete wing by next weekend.

In the meantime I am going to start on the fuse. One criticism about this kit that I do have is that the laser cut parts don't always match up with the plans, which gets a little confusing.

Also, as a question for the group, I currently have all the parts for the fuselage pinned down, so could I just run the CA down the seems? Or should I take apart the pieces, put CA down them, then pin them again? With wood glue I would for sure have to do the latter, but CA seems to soak in between the pieces pretty well.

Here are some much pictures to enjoy! I also am now pretty set on the 442 squadron colour scheme, but if anyone has any other suggestions please let me know!

Mike


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Old 04-29-2013, 06:15 AM   #25
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Originally Posted by TheEngLife View Post
So I have made quite a bit of progress since my last post.

Swimmer, it's funny you should mention the Zap Odorless CA. I just went out and bought myself the exact same bottle a couple days before you posted that! The building is going much faster now, although I have come close to gluing my fingers together once or twice haha.

The sheeting on the bottom of the wing went much faster thanks to all your advice. I will epoxy the wings together next time I am at my grandpa's house, so I should have a complete wing by next weekend.

In the meantime I am going to start on the fuse. One criticism about this kit that I do have is that the laser cut parts don't always match up with the plans, which gets a little confusing.

Also, as a question for the group, I currently have all the parts for the fuselage pinned down, so could I just run the CA down the seems? Or should I take apart the pieces, put CA down them, then pin them again? With wood glue I would for sure have to do the latter, but CA seems to soak in between the pieces pretty well.

Here are some much pictures to enjoy! I also am now pretty set on the 442 squadron colour scheme, but if anyone has any other suggestions please let me know!

Mike
Hi Mike, Use Thin set odor free CA to glue the Fuselage together with being pinned down,, the MED/Thick CA Might not wick down Far enough

http://www.caglue.com/CA-Glue_c_10.html


I may be getting Older, But I Refuse to grow Up I am Having to much Fun to Grow Up LOL
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