Here is a brief summary of the three planes I built in two weeks and was able to fly yesterday.
This flies – or will fly. I only gave it limited testing because I forgot to design and build a stooge attachment. The best stooge for this is a human stooge and my flying partner (son Jack) stayed home. I did borrow Winn Moore and Chris Boehm for stooging duties, but didn’t take a lot of their time, so I got about 4 test flights.
It is very stable and required nose weight and thrust adjustments, but I left it flying in the 30-40 second range, still needing trim, as it was stalling all over the place.
It’s no secret that I like this little OT Stick. My old one would fly for 30+ seconds – without any predictability. This one is very stable, flying a left-left on a loop of 1/8″ with about 1500 turns. It repeated 60 second +/- flights every time. I need to do some slight adjustments to trim the glide a little better, but this is just for fun anyway. I don’t know why these photos didn’t come out better.
This has been a fun project. I’ve built three of these (first one flew into the woods, never to be seen again) and Jack has built one. This is a design by Harrison Knapp. He built his as a tribute: he flew choppers in Viet Nam and said he often called on the F-4s to provide support.
I am not sure that these will ever be top performers in JetCat – think 15-20 seconds. This event is really being stretched by experts building light high-wings capable of easy thermalling. This is just like the real thing – heavy and fast. But it is lots of fun and in the initial climb-out and banking turn to the left, it really does look like an F-4. I managed to snap some in-flight photos – it is very hard to launch and then spot/focus/shoot, but I got some shots.
I know many of you are looking for this – it will be a kit in a month or so. I lightend up the pieces and trimmed 25% of the weight for the black one. I also made some ribs that I tacked onto the sheet wings and covered with tissue. And I made the tail surfaces a bit smaller, setting the h-stab to a lower incidence. – It flies a little better than the yellow one, but stalls out when the speed comes off – I think the tips need washout or something.
Guillows #905 P-51D
I don’t have any flight shots of this, but I want to report that this is a very stable flyer. I eventually got up to about 1500 turns on a loop of 3/16″ rubber. When it came time for WWII, after the first round (five participants), I imagined I could get 2nd place. Going into the 3rd and final round, Winn Moore broke a motor and surrendered 1st place to my Mustang. I am not a Guillows fanboy, in fact, I don’t build them – EXCEPT I wanted to prove an assumption of mine – that the 900 Series planes (the Mustang, the Chipmunk, and maybe the Trojan) are viable entry-level kits that can fly with no real modifications, other than the noseblock (and replace the nose, nose bearing, prop, and rubber).