I am building the new Fokker DVIII kit from AerodromeRC http://www.aerodromerc.com/ and I thought I would do an actual build thread for a change. It is a really fun kit and should produce a great little model! Aerodrome kits are top notch and this one looks great.
The kit is very complete. Here are the features from the website:
Scale dihedral, includes in wing ailerons. Scale number of ribs
Flat bottomed scale like airfoil including thick airfoil with taper
Wings are partially sheeted from leading edge to first spar
Laser cut 1/16" balsa trailing edges
Front of the fuselage is balsa box, the rear is built up
Laser cut side cheeks and balsa turtle deck
Laser cut balsa for built up cowl
Dummy Spandau machine gun and pilot figure kits included
Laser cut balsa tail parts included
Balsa leading edges, included
Balsa and plywood wheel kit with Neoprene foam rubber tire material included
I have the wing about 70% done and will continue to update as I go. The attached photo is the color scheme I am thinking of.
Seems funny to say "wing" and not "wings" but this is a really different wing for this era... Fokker was looking for something a bit different with this one I think. The DRI, with its fully flying rudder could side-sweep up to 30deg allowing the pilot to fly next to and crib towards his opponent, fire and drop below. A very useful tactic. With the DVIII, Fokker designed a very thick wing that could hang just about at stall allowing the pilot to come up from below and point up toward his opponent for a surprise attack. The DVIII came into service so late in the war that its real effectiveness was never known. There were some problems with manufacturing quality control and water retention in the fully sheeted wing, which caused the glue to soften and fail. At any rate, it was an amazing an innovative aircraft.
Ok, so, on with the build...
The wing is built in three sections and then joined. It is pretty much flat across the top, but the bottom tapers up so there is effectively a dihedral to it.
Starting on the center section: I placed the center trailing edge piece over the plans and then pined in the leading edge to form a jig. Using the center rib, I located the position of the fore and aft bottom spars. There are dihedral braces and such so the rib helps with the location. Also note that it doesn't sit all the way back until you get the rear spar in. I also placed the two other trailing edge placed over the plans. Once the spars are in I started placing and gluing the ribs in. It isn't shown, but it is helpful to use the pre-cut spar webs to insure the exact location of the ribs and that they are perpendicular to the board. The webs will be glued in last once the upper spars are added after all three panels are joined. The ribs are not glued to the leading edge at this time either - it is just there as a jig piece. When the ribs were dry, I marked the location of them on the leading edge - The leading edge is upside down in the photo, but that is so that I could locate it left and right on the plans. I then glued the leading edge to the ribs making sure it was flush with the bottom of the ribs. There is a bit of overhang on the top to accept the 1/32" sheeting. Once all this was dry, I removed it from the board. The top spars will be added later.
The two outer wing panels are built pretty much the same way. I set the wing tip first and then cut the bottom spars to length and pinned them to the board. One important thing here is to note that the ribs are all angled so that when the outer panels are joined, the ribs are perpendicular. The pre-cut spar webs make this really simple. Also there is a dihedral angle template for the mating rib R2 as well. I started at the wing tip on one panel and the mating rib on the other and either works just fine. I paced a rib and then used the spar web piece to set its angle. There are also four ply wing attachment pieces to add between R2 and R3. Once all the ribs are in, I added the vertical trailing edge where the aileron mates and then the leading edge flush against the tip and flush with the bottom of the ribs as on the center section. After the outer panels were dry, I removed them and sanded the mating ribs flush for a good fit to the center section.
Mating the wing panels to the center section: There are four dihedral braces that need to be slid into the center section prior to joining. They butt together in the center. Any excess glue in attaching the ribs will cause you problems here as I found out. No biggie, but they are a tight fit. With the braces in, I test fit the panels and the alignment of the mating R2 ribs. The correct dihedral is 7/8” at the tips and I found that a 3/8” block under rib 6 was just the ticket. That also ensures the wing is joined without a warp. I used thick CA here as it won’t set without the accelerator any time soon and It gave me a bit of time to make sure everything was just so. Once I had it all glued and the panel slid in, I sighted the leading edge over the plans and pinned it down so the panel would not “gate”. After the glue was set on both panels, I added the top spars. There is a long “scarf” joint between the two center ribs. The forward spar extends a little past the tip to be cut and angled down to the tip later. Once the spars are dry, it is time to add those spar webs.
That is where I am now. Next will be the ailerons and the wing will be ready for sanding and in-wing servo installation. Here are some photos…
Actually it's the designation of one of my favorites from the old days of LeMans. It's the 924 Turbo CarreraGTS or GTSCS (Club Sport). Started with a 914, then a 924 Turbo, then a 944 Turbo and last with a '69 911T. The 911T was shipped to Germany last year, the 944 Turbo was sold, as was the 914. The 924 Turbo is part way to being a (barely) street legal track car but that's going too. Since I bought an MB I stopped driving them. Getting stodgy in my old age I suppose.
Yes, I've been reading about Aerodrome. They were beautifully designed models and a labor of love for Kay. I hope that she keeps desigining. She has a real talent for making things work well and while looking right.