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Ultrafly P40 Build

Old 02-18-2007, 10:39 PM
  #101  
alienx
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Well, no work to report, but I am ready to dig in again. Florida was cold as can be, but fun nonetheless!

I got one flight on my J3 Cub. It was also a chance for me to do a ROG. We got permission (like the others in my Dad's club can) to fly on a closed golf course. It was great. Nobody else was there, and the access road was right down the wind-line. Nothing but cow pasture on one side and golf course on the other.

I am unhappy to report that my poor Father drove his E-starter into the fairway after a short but successful take-off. He said it stopped responding, but I fear that he froze at the controls.

So I took my Cub out and buttoned it all up and was going to hand launch but couldn't resist the opportunity to test my ground skills (I have none!). But I powered up slowly and the plane tracked like an arrow. As soon as the tail came up, I eased a little more throttle in and did a very beautiful roll-out. I'm pretty sure I didn't giv eit any input, the plane just lifted off and maintained a very scale climb-out. It was great! I flew for a while enjoying the scale power and then tried a touch-and-go. It looked good but I realized that my cracker-jack axle sleeve solution to too large wheel hubs had failed. One of the wheels had fallen off someplace. So I flew until I felt like the battery was done and tried to stall the landing. It didn't work very well, but there wasn't any damage on the nose-over. That was the end of the flying for this trip.

So we went to an electric fly-in up in Ocala. That was cool. The guy that runs my Dad's LHS was demo'ing what I think was a Sniper??? It was a tiny ducted fan jet that did about 160 mph on the low passes. So obviously, I am done with warbirds now. I'll be over in the EDF section if anyone needs me for anything!

Here's an odd picture or too for posterity.

I hope to get that battery in and get the plane maiden-ready tomorrow.

Stay tuned.

Andy
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Old 02-19-2007, 06:04 AM
  #102  
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The EDF bug has bit me too...LOL. Got me a GWS ME-262, A-10 and also an EJF F-14 now.
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Old 02-19-2007, 09:06 PM
  #103  
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I bit the bullet today and committed to a battery mod. I've got the battery located and I think I made enough room to get the ESC tucked up under the ceiling in the nose. It took a lot of sawing, sanding, and carving of foam in a lot of different spots to get it to work, but I think it will be a good mod.

I still can't believe how far forward the battery has to be to get this darned plane to sit level. But so be it. CARVE IT OUT BEFORE YOU GLUE THE FUSE TOGETHER!!!!!

Here are a bunch of pics that kind of show the before and after. I really couldn't get away from the idea of flying this plane at about 20.5 oz. So I am planning on using the smaller 1350 mah packs. I think the balance will still be pretty good with the other 2200 mah's, but I might have to put a foam plug in the nose to move the battery back about half an inch. That is, if I ever want to go with the larger battery (or cook the smaller ones).

I originally tried to carve some foam forward of the battery tray. You can see a couple shots of that and the intitial location of the battery. It was nearly 1.5" forward of stock, but it hardly made a dent in the balance problem. So instead of carving any more and taking my chances, I decided to rubber band the battery to the outside of the plane to see just how much further forward I would have to move it. You can see that someplace above. It turned out I had to pass the motor mount with the battery just to get it balanced. This obviously wasn't going to be possible. So I decided I needed to get the butt of the battery up under the motor. Ultimately, I carved the needed space to push the battery all the way forward on a downward angle. It sits neatly between the walls of the nose. I just need to put in some rails and a stop of sorts to hold a constant position each time you load a new battery. I was going to do this with balsa but it weighs so much more than the foam. But I am out of scrap foam, so I will have to wait to finish.

Oh, thanks for the hacksaw idea. It was a very useful tool. I ended up cutting one blade to about 3/4 length to keep it from destroying the servos in the tail while I worked in the nose. I also put a sharp point on the cut end to help it poke forward as well as cut. It turned out to be a very useful tool, which I will keep handy for other builds.

Anyway, here are a bunch of pics. Anything with the battery up under the roof of the nose is the original attempt to fix the problem. The rest of the shots are various stages in the "shaping." I envision glueing a small foam ramp to the bottom of the nose, which matches the angle of the battery opening and the small grooves I sanded in the forward part of the nose. I think I am going to carve some balsa "L" stops to glue up front to catch the nose. The butt of the battery is right in front of the cowl opening so I want to be able to push the battery back out into the cockpit without having to pull it out by the leads all the time. The Dean's plug will be just far enough into the cockpit to allow me to pinch it while I plug in the ESC. That's how far that battery had to be moved forward. The other is longer, so not as difficult to get in and out, but I am hopeful that the smaller pack will hold up to the 15 amps or so I will be drawing. If it would have flown well at 23 oz, it will fly better at 20.5 oz.

This is really it. I know already that the plane will balance now. So i really just have to finish putting in the supporting battery foam, and she should be good to go. Oh, incidentally, I had to shave (saw) about 3/8" of foam out of the top of the nose to get the ESC tucked out of the way enough to slide the battery in. I also had to flatten the angle of the ramp that was already in the bottom forward part of the battery tray. There was almost an inch of foam there though, so not a problem. Lastly, I just dug the manual out of my GWS Spitfire box to check it out and see what I am up against. It is amazing how much lighter the GWS is than the P40. Just thinner foam.

More later after I get some scrap foam.
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Last edited by alienx; 02-19-2007 at 10:21 PM.
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Old 02-19-2007, 09:18 PM
  #104  
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Originally Posted by K CLOSE View Post
PS. That F2G Super Corsair that's my avitar started as GWS kit, with 2" off each wing tip and it's over 2 lbs. Goes like the hammers of..... With that brushless motor in that P-40 I think that, ultimately, you'll be pleased with how it flys. Just Say'n....
Holy mackerel! I just reread this. 32 oz. That must be a bullet! Any video?
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Old 02-19-2007, 10:42 PM
  #105  
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The 450 you have in the P-40 will be ok with a 1320 size 3s lipo. I have a few planes running that motor on a TP 1320. I, on the other hand, cannot go that small for a battery due to the Park 480. It will kill a 1320. AS a matter of fact, on the 480 and a 2100 lipo, I can get usually about 7 min flights(on other planes with this motor and battery). Note, though, that the other plane with this motor has a 42" wingspan and weighs 40oz....so I may get closer to 9 mins on a 25oz plane.
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Old 02-19-2007, 11:09 PM
  #106  
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Originally Posted by kahloq View Post
The 450 you have in the P-40 will be ok with a 1320 size 3s lipo. I have a few planes running that motor on a TP 1320. I, on the other hand, cannot go that small for a battery due to the Park 480. It will kill a 1320. AS a matter of fact, on the 480 and a 2100 lipo, I can get usually about 7 min flights(on other planes with this motor and battery). Note, though, that the other plane with this motor has a 42" wingspan and weighs 40oz....so I may get closer to 9 mins on a 25oz plane.
Cool. Good to know I'm not the only one. I have to believe I should be able to get near 9 or 10 minutes on this baby.
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Old 02-20-2007, 10:42 PM
  #107  
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Andy, looks like a good solution.
Looks like my Zero, upside down.

It would be nice if the manufacturers would give a better idea for the final weight.
A more realistic idea of where to mount the equipment so it will ballance OK would also help.

Looks like a nice plane, good luck on the test flight.
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Old 02-20-2007, 11:25 PM
  #108  
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Thanks!!

To do again from scratch, I would look seriously at scraping some foam from the tail and anywhere else it was too thick. But the work is almost done and then I get to fly it.

I just have to get over to HD to get some pink foam I think.

Stay tuned.
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Old 02-25-2007, 12:47 AM
  #109  
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Been quiet here for a few days. I may have a chance to get started on this plane finally. I think I may just go ahead with the Frio 10/10 motor. My plan is to build it and maiden it unpainted, then think about painting later when it warms up.
I am still considering the use of a GWS style torque rod set up. Not sure if it will save weight or not, but it will make for a cleaner looking underside. Also, I may just glue the wing directly to the fuse...

So now that I am finally ready for the build, I have a quik question: Is the glue that comes with the kit a contact cement?
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Old 02-25-2007, 04:42 AM
  #110  
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Dunno...I didnt use it. I simply used GWS glue and some foam safe ca.
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Old 02-25-2007, 05:19 AM
  #111  
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My test shows that it is in fact a contact type glue. First, I got a bag and sqiurted some glue into it. I then placed my head into it and then...just kidding.

I took some scrap foam and glued two pieces together...took two pieces and glued them together, then separated them for a few minutes and stuck them back together...an instant bond! I am able to move the other pieces around after 15 minutes.
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Old 02-25-2007, 02:30 PM
  #112  
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Sorry guys. I'm not getting my email notices anymore for some reason.

I like the torque rod idea. You should be able to save some weight I think in net. And, like you said, the biggest benefit is the clean bottom of the wing.

I tested the glue too, but after the fact. It's good to get some free "extras" in the box right!? The stickers aren't as bad as i thought stickers would be, so I will use them on a few GWS slopers too I'm sure.

I need to get over to the craft store today (I feel a little odd admitting that:o ). I couldn't find a thick enough piece of foam to do the battery mount like I was envisioning, so hopefully, the craft store has some raw foam blocks. I stopped at Lowes last week, and the only foam they had was a giant sheet of pink foam. I thought about getting it but it was so big and it cost like $35 bucks, so I opted out. I need some paints and low-temp glue too, so the craft store run should be worth the effort. Hopefully, I can bang out the battery mount today and finalize the electronics install.
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Old 02-25-2007, 02:45 PM
  #113  
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Lowes = thumbs down

Go to Home Depot
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Old 02-25-2007, 07:15 PM
  #114  
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Alienx, try Home Depot. I recently bought some blue foam that came in 2x8 sheets rather than the 4x8. I think it is 2 inches thick and notched on one side...it was only $15. I broght a utility knife with me to score the foam, and then snapped it in half so I could get it in my car.
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Old 02-25-2007, 07:31 PM
  #115  
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I have most of the major building done at this point...just need to glue the rear stab on. I have already installed the control surfaces so the torque rod set up may not happen. It looks like the angle that the rods will need to be positioned will put them right where the rear control surface servos are. I do have some Golden Rod cable, so that may be an option.
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Old 02-25-2007, 07:34 PM
  #116  
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Originally Posted by barmonkey View Post
Alienx, try Home Depot. I recently bought some blue foam that came in 2x8 sheets rather than the 4x8. I think it is 2 inches thick and nothced on one side...it was only $15. I broght a utility knife with me to score the foam, and then snapped it in half so I could get it in my car.

I feel really stupid lately. Just a lot of little things. I would never have thought about bringing a knife with me. I was trying to figure if I was going to be able to get anyone at the store to cut it for me. That is half the reason I gave up and left.

Case in point, I just glued the "floor" in my battery cage in the P40. I put the glue on the slide-in piece instead of the plane. So obviously, I got glue all over the place when I tried to put the piece in. Fortunately I used gorilla glue, so at least the excess glue on the inside of the plane and my floor and hands will grow to 4 times its current size!

Not much to show, but here are some pics of the battery floor I am installing. I got some true styrofoam at the craft store (along with 16 bottles of acrylic paint and some wood and low-temp glue sticks). The foam is very brittle and makes a lot of granular dust, but shapes very well. I almost threw it out when I unwrapped it because I didn't want to work with something so brittle. But it seems like it will be pretty firm once in place, and it is light, so I am going to try it.

I shaped a block to make the ramp shape I wanted. Then I just glued it in with gorilla glue. It is very pourous, so it will be interesting to see if all the glue just ends up inside the ramp of foam. It's drying now. You can't really tell from the pics but the ramp makes a virtually flat transition from the ramp carved into the fuse under the cocpit. The battery should slide right down the ramp into its resting spot.

Then I just need to build some balsa stops and maybe some rails for the top of the battey. I have to wait for the gorilla glue to dry first though.
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Old 02-26-2007, 01:51 AM
  #117  
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The glue is dry. It worked out pretty well. I'll start the rest of the work later in the week. More snow tonight and this week, so no real hurry.
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Old 02-26-2007, 01:56 AM
  #118  
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OK, I now have one complete P-40 airframe. The motor was mounted to the firewall before I glued the fuse together. I made some plaster casts of the cowling and canopy, and as soon as they dry a bit more I will cut them out.

I used the kits hinges for the control surfaces. Used thick foam safe CA and they seem solid enough. One thing I like about these hinges is that they are stiff. This aided in aligning the control surfaces to the main wing and rear stabilizer.
What I did: Installed the hinges to the control surface...and then aligned them with the main wing. Then I just applied some pressure to the aileron, which left an indentation exactly where I needed to make the cut to install the hinge. Not a huge revelation I know. But it made it easy for me.
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Old 02-26-2007, 02:13 AM
  #119  
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That's a cool trick. I guess an Xacto blade might work too (if you are careful.
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Old 02-26-2007, 02:19 AM
  #120  
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I used the Xacto to make the actual cut...just used the hinges themselves to make marks to cut. I have tried different things with my GWS birds...but sometimes I get things off kilter a bit.

Now if I could just get that mold to let loose of my cowl...
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Old 02-26-2007, 02:40 AM
  #121  
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What are you going to do with the molds? Some type of vacuum formed parts?
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Old 02-26-2007, 02:50 AM
  #122  
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It thought it might be a good idea to have some back-ups..Probably won't be necessary...I really don't see the canopy cracking, and the cowl is supported by a lot of foam. I may be able to use the canopy on another project sometime...or maybe experiment with an open canopy...who knows.
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Old 02-26-2007, 04:31 PM
  #123  
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Originally Posted by barmonkey View Post
I am still considering the use of a GWS style torque rod set up.
I used some flex rods for my ailerons, it puts the servo right near the front of the wing, just a little north of the CG...should help to lighten up how much dead weight the wing would have, wonder if this will make it more agile, any thoughts anyone? I'm fiberglassing the whole plane, so I'm trying to shed weight anywhere I can.
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Old 02-26-2007, 05:13 PM
  #124  
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Originally Posted by The Bandit View Post
I used some flex rods for my ailerons, it puts the servo right near the front of the wing, just a little north of the CG...should help to lighten up how much dead weight the wing would have, wonder if this will make it more agile, any thoughts anyone? I'm fiberglassing the whole plane, so I'm trying to shed weight anywhere I can.
That certainly can't hurt. That glass scares me though (from a balancing standpoint).

The only thing I would stress to anyone doing this build is to locate the battery flush with the tip of the nose while the fuse is apart. Build whatever mount you like. You can always add some foam stops in the mount afterward if you need to shift the battery back a little. I am still trying to finish mine two weeks later because it is incredibly difficult to build anything in the nose after the halves are together and the motor firewall is in. This would have been about a 20 minute juob with the halves apart.

Good luck.
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Old 02-27-2007, 05:21 AM
  #125  
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Bandit...could you post some pics of your flex rod set-up.
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