PRE-ORDER NOW for Geneseo and Muncie!

Yesterday was my birthday, and my birthday wish is that all of my customers that know what they want and plan to pick something up at the FAC Non-Nats in Geneseo or the AMA Nats in Muncie (both in July) – my wish is that you PRE-ORDER NOW.

Pre-ordering will make my life easier; yours, too.  I will pre-package and have the orders ready for you at these events.  I plan on doing MORE FLYING and less on-field selling during contest hours this year.  I like to consider myself a flyer/competitor first and a salesman second.  Last year, my flying was hampered because I was trying to be a good salesman.  The low point last year was a customer asking about product as I was removing a wound model from my stooge.  I talked with him for 10 minutes or so with the wound model in my hand.  So, help me and I will be glad to help you – pre-order.  This doesn’t mean that I won’t be selling at the flying field – just don’t expect much during flying hours – after hours, I will be on the field until late in the evening.  And at Geneseo, we will be selling Wednesday at the judging.

A note on birthdays – if you can choose the time of year to be born in, definitely choose late June, if you’re a male.  Summer is starting, the weather is getting nice.  Besides that, as you get older, it’s like a 3-week holiday – mid-June is Father’s Day, my birthday comes a week or so later – then another week later is 4th of July.  It’s a great time!

I spent yesterday packing several orders and I even built a model.  I’ve been having issues with my two current NoCals – I can’t seem to get competitive performance out of them.  SO – I decided to build another.  This was about 5 hours, start to first test flight, with plenty of breaks tossed in there (its an easy build!)  The model literally leaped from my hand and climbed to about 20 feet on 400 turns on a loop of 1/16″ rubber – NO ADJUSTMENTS.  I imagine that someone might find this someday after an OOS flight.  It’s the Cessna 210 Centurion from my laser-cut short kit.  Here’s a photo from a similar test flight this morning.

CessnaNC

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CONTEST REPORT – McCook @ Muncie – 20 June 2015

(several photos below)

This weekend, some of us braved the remnants of Tropical Storm Bill and hoped to get some flying in as Dayton McCook Field Squadron scrambled to their annual contest at the Muncie flying site.  Many decided to stay away because of the forecast.

It seems Indiana has been getting a LOT of rain.  My first indication was 45 minutes north of Muncie as I exited the highway at my normal exit and found the Wabash river over its banks blocking my way.  That delayed my arrival Friday night.  Saturday morning broke with full overcast and a 10 -15 mph wind blowing from the northeast.  Since the Sunday forecast called for 25mph winds with higher gusts, we decided to compress the two-day event into one day.

The Muncie flying site is now populated by many rain-fed lakes and all but the highest ground was squishy with water or even hiding an inch or two of standing water.  Boots were the order of the day, although sometimes, even those were useless.

We all set up on the road near the cemetery on the eastern side. This was the lake a couple hundred yards west of our base.

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That is an AMA power ship from the group that was to our north.  Unfortunately, Pat Murray and Jim Bair both laded in that puddle at least once.

The half a dozen or so of us that showed up made a valiant stand.  I had planned to fly 16 out of 19 scheduled events over two days, but that was reduced.  I only flew in 10 events and 3 of those that I declined were not flown at all.  Pat Murray and I really pressed forward and we battled our friendly battles all day long.

Here is Pat launching his 2-Bit entry to first place – Erie Daily Times.  I took second and Lee Campbell took third.

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I was first out of WWII, the fault of a too-long motor.  Here is a shot of Jim Bair’s 3rd place MiG.  Marty Richey (Focke-Wulf 190 Dora) was second and Pat Murray (Boulton Paul Defiant) took the win.

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I also took 4th in Jet Catapult, with Jim Bair and Pat Murray trailing behind Elvin Bueschle.  Elvin also placed 3rd in Jimmie Allen (in the photo), Pat Murray took second and I flew my JA Special to first place.  Elvin and Pat were flying Skokies.

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I took second in OT Stick (behind Pat Murray) and OT Fuselage (behind Pat Murray), but I only got second because Stu Cummins and Lee Campbell only put in single flights, not wanting to chase across the wet marshes of the National Flying Site.

Here are two of the three Greve/Thompson Racers: my Caudron (2nd) and Jim Bair’s GeeBee (3rd).  There is no photo of Pat Murray’s Mr Smoothie whose erratic and acrobatic flight stole first from my stable flying Caudron (stole, I say!)

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I am sad to report that no one besides myself attempted flights in the McCook Watson Challenge.  In this, you can fly any plane in any manner you like as long as it is powered by the CD-provided 24″ strand of 1/8 rubber (you can even use it as a catapult) – best two out of three flights.  I powered my Pacific Ace Jr to 50-60 second flights.

I also eeked out a win over Pat Murray and Jim Bair (I think?) in Phantom Flash – that was a new and untested model that took the win.  Another brand new model from me was my “Bad Axe” embryo.  This plane put in the last three flights of the contest, finally ending at 8:10 pm.  We had switched sides of the field and we were now on the west side flying east-north-east towards more lakes.  Stu Cummins had logged a flight or two in Embryo earlier,  and I had watched Pat Murray put up some pretty good times with his Big Cat.  Rather than throw up a concessionary flight on my Sky Rocket, I decided to go for the win with the Bad Axe.  A few test flights and then a new motor.  I put in flights in the 70-second range, 80-second range, and the 90 second range – and took home first place.

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I logged 30 official flights on Saturday with an untold number of test flights.  Pat placed similarly high number, he also took home first place in Scale, NoCal, and (I think) Golden Age.  We sat around and chatted all Sunday morning under sunny skies, but ever-increasing wind.  We probably could have flown, but we had decided to fly the day before and this let us get home early.

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Next Up – Peanut Fairey Barracuda

Back in 1998, I built a little Barracuda Peanut.  The plan appeared in the Cleveland Free Flight Society’s “Crosswinds” newsletter.  It was a great flyer right off the board; my records show that I won 7 kanones with it that year, in Peanut and WWII, before it was lost OOS in Flint.

After my previous post about my Stuka and how I really should build another – better performing – WWII plane, I dug out the old plans, modified them and laser cut some parts out of 1/32″ sheet and 1/20″ sheet.  The largest dimensional wood in this model is 1/16″ square for the leading edges.

With a bit of trimming, this should be a great flyer; it already does about 3 left-hand circuits on 500 turns of a single loop of 1/16″ rubber.  With a bit of LUCK, I’ll keep it around for awhile, but I expect it will also go OOS before the end of the year.

It is 10 grams without rubber, and still needs a tail wheel and radio antenna and wire.  All color and decoration was printed onto white Esaki.  Laser cutting started on 30 May and the test flights were yesterday (but I did wait about 3 days to make a canopy).

See the full gallery here: http://volareproducts.com/?page_id=1541

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TONS of RARE TOOLS Available in the Basement!

I’ve been gathering rare Free Flight tools from several estates.  I have now uploaded them to the Basement.  There are winders, winders, and more winders.  Also rubber strippers, torque meters, CO2 motors and more.

Check them out here:  http://volareproducts.com/BUY/index.php?main_page=index&cPath=47_63

ChainGang WilderLRG Wilder20-04 Thermik Telco TanII StripperCZ Sidewinder-4 Oppegard-03 Modela27 Jones-03 GG-03 winder131 WilderTorque30 BlazF1G BlazF1B-2

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TWO NEW Volare Products KITS!

Finally, I can release two new NoCal kits that I’ve been working on.  As you might know, one of my “production requirements” is that the design must prove to be fly-able.  This is a carry-over from my days of selling plans – nothing gets sold if it can’t fly.

Within the last month, we have been able to test and fly these two NoCals:  The Cessna Centurion and the Aircraft Designs Turbo Stallion.  When I look for a subject for NoCal, I look for a few things and some of these are:  High Wing (for stability), Retract Landing Gear, and no Wing Struts (both for simplicity and weight savings).

Both the Centurion and the Turbo Stallion meet these requirements.  I’ve designed laser-cut parts for all of the “curvy” parts.  This leads to rapid construction.  And both kits have proven to be stable fliers.  They are designed for Outdoor flying – that is, they should be strong enough to take out into a little bit of a breeze.

They are $10 each; you get full sized plans, a laser cut parts sheet, and you can find them in the Basement.

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CessnaNC01

TSnc

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24 Days Later…

No, this isn’t a zombie story…or maybe…

Back in Mid April, I wrote about my Peanut Tailwind that got caught in a tree.  Near the end of the long post, I said: “At least I can go visit its final resting place.”  Indeed, I went by the tree nearly every day.  We’ve had violent winds, thunderstorms, beautiful days, and even an earthquake (yes, in Michigan!) – and the plane remained stuck in the tree (except for one wing panel which had blown down about a week after).

Well, today, I dragged my dogs out there and looked up – the plane was not there!  So I started looking on the pine-needle covered ground…nothing.  It took a couple minutes, but then I saw it – it was now about 10 feet up and just sitting on a branch.  I got a stick and coaxed it loose and it fell right to the ground.  Another quick search located the noseblock and prop.

The model is really iin pretty good shape – the tissue suffered the most.  Red Esaki is notorious (to me) for fading.  Well 3-plus weeks of sun and rain really drained the color.  There are also loose and missing patches of tissue.

Now…what to do.  Well, for me, the choice is clear:  repair and recover.  This wouldn’t be too hard of a job if it weren’t for those tissue stripes – AND the gold letters.  ~sigh~  Those letters were a pain to install.  I am not good at lettering and these were particularly troublesome the first time around.  So, do I leave as much of the original tissue as I can and recolor it – or do I strip it completely and start fresh, including new stripes and letters?

Stay tuned…

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A Busy Time

It’s been a busy week or two.  With the trip to Kent behind us, I had to catch up on orders; by customers and by me for re-stocking.  Kent also resulted in repairs to most of the planes I took (one reason I dislike Indoor flying).

While repairing one, we had the idea to create a How-To on repairing and re-covering.  That will come later.

I’ve got a few new short kits in process, but an event has put a halt to many things around here.  No, it wasn’t the 4.2 earthquake that happened about 10 miles from here yesterday (that was a surprise – they don’t happen in Michigan!)  Six months or more ago, my printer for mailing labels went out.  I have been printing labels on my large-format printer.  This has been no issue, except it is upstairs and the packages are packed downstairs (consider it exercise).

Well, yesterday, my main printer stopped working.  That puts a LOT of things to a halt around here.  I think both early ends were due to corners I cut in the ink supply area, but I cannot be sure.  So, yesterday, I ordered a new large format printer and purchased a new small one for labels.  With the large printer out of commission, so are things like plan testing, plan printing, and other aspects of my business.  Oh well, the new one is on the way and will be here soon enough.

While this is a hiccup and unplanned and a distraction, I am not too worried.  There are other things to life.  For one, the sun is shining today and it is beautiful outside – I thank Mother Nature and appreciate every day.

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200 Friends and Model Eating Trees

We reached a milestone yesterday, 15 April 2015:  200 Facebook Likes for our Volare Products Facebook Page.  That’s something small, but it made me ponder a bit – 200 different people, all with some degree of interest in Model Airplanes, have decided that I offer something significant enough that they would like to follow my posts.  200 isn’t many, but at the same time, it is a lot of people.  Thank you everyone; I hope I continue to live up to your expectations.

Coincidentally, here is a little story.  The other day, Tuesday I think, I was trying to test fly a new model without much success.  I tried in my small side yard for roughly an hour.  The little Peanut shows “some” promise, but has provided more frustration than promise at this point in time.  More on that plane another day – maybe.  After this length of frustration, I wanted to partake in what my friend, Chris Boehm, has called “evening therapy” – just get some flights in with something that flies.  I didn’t want to get one of my contest models out, I just wanted to have some fun in my larger back yard with a model that wasn’t important and hasn’t shown much capability.

The model I chose was my Occhipinti’s Tailwind Peanut.  This was the first model I drew up and built after my 10+ year layoff from the hobby.  I was seeing if I could “still” draw and build; an attempt to get back into the groove.  The model turned out nicely, but it never really flew well.  In fact, I doubt I hit a minute on it ever – and a high wing, retract gear, light weight Peanut should be able to do a minute!  So this model was often dragged around to contests for 3 years, but rarely flown.  I have better flying Peanuts.  But it would be good for an evening of tossing something around in the back yard.

As I walked out to the yard with it, I tried to recall what I need to do to get it to fly.  I know that it failed completely before, but something recently had been giving me hope (by “recently” I mean sometime last summer).  I put about 400 turns in the long loop of 3/32″ rubber and gave it a toss into the calm air.  It climbed, proving  my recent memories of potential, but was quite stall-y.  I recalled that early failure was likely due to a nose-heavy condition and I had removed all added nose weight from the model.  Now it was clearly tail heavy.  I added a pea of clay to the spinner and gave it another toss.  This one was much better, especially in the glide, but still stalling under power – shim that nose block!

So I did.  I used some of Mother Nature’s on-field shim material, in this case the stem of one of last fall’s maple leaves.  I gave it down and a little left and the same 400 winds.  Well, that did the trick, the plane climbed up and circled and got higher and higher, now it was above the height of the evergreens that surround my back yard.  No worries, there was only light drift and I had started far enough away that the plane should spiral down shortly within the yard.

Well, not quite.  The pea of clay on the nose and the long motor laying in the fuselage must have been just right…the glide slope was very flat – this was good news for the future of the model – for about 10 seconds.  As the plane circled and slowly descended, it drifted east into the evergreens.  It got stuck about 30 feet up deep within the tree.  I went to find my retrieval stick, but knowing it was too high.  When I got back to the tree, I noticed that a breeze was picking up.  I saw the model shift; it actually fell about 2 feet.  The weather forecast called for a couple of nice days with some 7 mph winds, surely the wind would bump the model out of the tree.  As of last night, the model was still stuck in the same place.  The weather is turning to rain; it has already sprinkled some today, with a projection of real rain later in the day.  At least I can go visit its final resting place.

It is strange…this model has never been a favorite.  I rarely have flown it in contests – it wasn’t competitive – in flight or as a high wing.  It should have been, but never was.  But, I want it back.  So why has this affected me more than the fly-away of my Chambermaid Dime Scale last Sunday?  That plane was a proven winner and would have continued to serve me well.  This plane…maybe it is because I can see it…maybe because I overcame the problems with it…maybe because it was its turn (having sat in the box and now ready to perform)…maybe because…   I don’t know, but that’s the hazard of Free Flight.

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start99

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Contest Report: It Was a Good Day for Volaré Products!

April 12th – Yesterday was a good day.  Spring is finally here and our contest day weather was “not too bad”  it was chilly in the morning, but it warmed up to 60+ degrees and it was sunny all day.  The wind was about 10-15 mph, so that was the down side.

Out of 7 events yesterday, brand new Volare Products planes took TWO first places!  John Jackson got a chance to put his new Chambermaid Peanut (built from our short kit) through its paces.  His plane rockets up, grabbing all kinds of altitude before power runs out.  He took first in Peanut by a large margin.  He gave up the model for lost, until we found it looking for another lost model.

My son, Jack Bredehoft, built up a prototype NoCal Cessna Centurion, finishing it the night before the contest.  He tested it on 3 flights and then started flying for officials.  On his second official flight, the little 6 gram plane caught a boomer and flew Out Of Sight.  His two flights were good enough for First Place.  As soon as I finish up the plan and make a couple wood corrections, this will be a NoCal Short Kit (maybe even a full kit later).

Here are winners John and Jack with their planes:

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It’s April 1st and There’s No Fooling Free Flighters!

April 1st, 2012 – the first official day I took over this little business.  Yesterday was the end of the 3rd year.  Today is the first day of the 4th year of operation.  I’m still happy we took over Shorty’s Basement and I’m also happy we took over Superior Props.

I want to (again) thank everyone for their continued support.  AND…I want to remind you that, as a small token of thanks, the Customer Appreciation 10% Discount is still going on (through 12 April).  Read the previous blog post for specific details, but just fill your cart, check out, and apply the special code during checkout.  The code is 4thYEAR

By the way – there are two short kits under final testing and they should be released this spring.  I am also working on a plan for the Cloudbusters.  Last of all – it’s under two weeks before we – up here in the frozen north – get back outside and onto the flying field!  I can’t wait.

–george

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