View Full Version : Easy Glider Electric - with floats

11-18-2007, 11:14 PM
Well, it's nearly finished and I have no idea if it will fly. On the other hand, I have no idea if it will float. I plan on making it a hand launcher/water lander. On the maiden, it might drop like a rock and sink like one too!

All in the name of trial and error. I still need to reinforce the joints but it's pretty much done. The fuselage has two holes poked through it. Other than that the plane is easily reversed back to thermal seeker...if it doesn't sink. :rolleyes:

Don Sims
11-19-2007, 12:42 AM
Good luck with it! Hope it flies for you!

11-19-2007, 04:05 AM
how'd it work out? I've been thinking of doing something similar.

11-19-2007, 05:16 AM
It sits on the workbench with a purposeful stance. I might get to toss it into the lake during Thanksgiving break, depending on the weather.

Don, thanks for the luck...I surely will need it.

11-22-2007, 05:34 AM
OK I maidened it sort of. It was really foggy and dusk by the time I got to the lake. Visibility was about 100 feet out over the water. There was no way it was going to fly but I wanted to see if it floated. I placed it in the water at the shoreline and it floated nicely! The floats are a bit small but it floats nice and level and stable. I gave it some throttle and it started to head out into the water about eight feet. Here's where I realize my stupidity. Can I steer it? All it does is go straight? I give full rudder and throttle....now it goes about 30 feet out into the fog. Uh oh. What do I do now? I go full right aileron and full right rudder and see of it will arc a large turn and maybe come ashore somewhere. Then I remember, I forgot to check the GWS floats for leaks! DAMN how stupid. At full throttle it is just crawling along the still water and carving a huge arc to the right. OK it's turning, a little. I power it full tilt for about a minute and manage to arc it back to shore after almost totally losing it in the fog. Luckily, my diligence with the epoxy created air-tight floats the first time so she made it back to shore.

It definitely does not have enough power for a water takeoff but I think it might fly with a hand launch. A water landing should be no problem. As long as I land in my direction, I can taxi it back to shore somewhere in the vicinity.

Any ideas for making it steer better in the water? I really dont want water rudders unless I can integrate it into the tail rudder somehow?

11-22-2007, 03:35 PM
For a water rudder you can drop a temporary rudder down directly from the planes rudder. Hereís how I did it on my Slow Stick. (http://www.rcgroups.com/forums/showpost.php?p=942977&postcount=3) Iím sure you could come up with workable variation of this.

For over all performance I would drop the GWS floats and go to some simple flat bottom floats made from EPS foam. They will be lighter and move faster on the water than the GWS floats.

11-22-2007, 04:47 PM
I was thinking of doing that last night. Thanks for the tip! I'll give it a try.


11-23-2007, 12:41 AM
I went over to the lake and tried the rudder extension. Unfortunatetly, the wire I used was too flexible so it didn't steer the plane. It will work if I use a larger gauge wire and a larger "flag". I then gave the plane a toss and it climbed out over the lake. I flew some figure eights, some laps back and forth, and then came in towards me to try a landing. It was coming in too high and close to shore so I throttled up and went around for another approach. This time I was again, just a little too high and had to "forward stick" it to put it into the water a little too steeply. It hit the floats, bounced and came to a splashy stop! My rear float struts popped out on the bounce so the plane pitched forward and dipped the prop into the water. Fotunately, the plane stopped about 10 feet from the shore and coasted right to my feet with the prop in the drink. I pulled it out of the water and ran the motor to dry it out. No water in the electronics. All in all, I was happy with the first flight with floats and somewhat happy with the landing.

I learned that I need to really make the float struts more permanently mounted and I need to allow more room for landing towards the shore. Three more days this weekend to redesign and test! :-)

11-23-2007, 12:59 AM
Well, It looks like you are on your way with your plane. Being as you have a maiden behind you and a few design changes to make sure sounds like your in very good shape now.. Good job...:ws:

11-25-2007, 06:40 AM
Another photo. Ready to fly tomorrow.

Don Sims
11-25-2007, 02:21 PM
Is it going to have enough power to ROW with your setup? You may have to hand toss it all the time and have anemic flights. Tell us about what motor you have and batteries...

11-25-2007, 03:42 PM
The plane is totally factory powered with the out of the box motor. I think it came with a Multiplex Brushed 400. It is definitely weak but it was my trainer plane and serves that purpose well. With the floats it flies slower but I can still keep it level in the air with about 50-60% throttle. My plan is to hand launch it out over the lakes and get some AP footage when I learn to water land confidently. If it dunks, I will put in a more powerful brushless upgrade.

I'm going out to blow leaves and then going to head to the lake for some air-time. The winds are dead calm and the temperature should get up to about 47F today.


Don Sims
11-25-2007, 04:22 PM
Enjoy the flights Dave! It's an interesting project.

11-25-2007, 11:07 PM
I got about 40 minutes of flights in, and four landings. Of the landings, one was a really good landing and one, a really bad landing. First of all, the plane flew very well but it definitely needs more power. On one of the landings, I managed to touch it down very softly into the water on a hydroplane. I gave it a little throttle as it touched and hydroplaned it right to shore. The last landing, the fourth, was tricky because the wind picked up suddenly. It caught the plane from cross-tailwind and it dipped its wing which resulted in a semi-sideways landing. The force snapped the main float strut in half and the plane just floated in to shore with one wing tip in the water and supported on one float. No water damage and a fairly easy repair. I will replace the wooden dowel with a fiberglass or carbon rod for next time.

I had a couple of people use my video camera to attempt to take some video of the flights. For some reason people can't seem to film RC planes. I got terrible footage and no landings were captures so I deleted the videos.