The flying monkeys got me...

Helis and fixed wing

AMA 957918
IRCHA 4345
AMA Intro Pilot Instructor

Tuesday, June 19, 2018

Recovery of the Sukhoi Complete

The muffler came in from Valley View RC. Fired up the Sukhoi and... Nothing. It took about 20 min but I figured out the plug was bad, replaced it and she ran perfectly. I stopped by my local RC hobby shop, ABC Hobbies today and picked up a Master Airscrew Scimitar 13x6, and installed her. Tuned the engine and got over 10,000 rpm! I am not clear in the benefits of the Scinitae over MA regular shaped props, but they are a natural transition from curved APC Props and I have used them for a few years. I'll check out their website. Painting the tips and will install it tonight with a red spinner.

Installed! Looks small, have to remind myself its a screw...

Nice wide view of the left half if my workshop, cats included! Charging the packs on the Sukhoi and the Stik, planning to take them out tomorrow as I think the winds will allow.

Friday, June 15, 2018

Hacker MX2 Wing done...

The center box trued up and the wing went together nicely, easily in fact. The CA and kicker worked well. The graphite stingers that run across the top and bottom of the wing went in easily. I left it upside down on the table with weights to make sure the top stays flat. I won't get back to it for 3 days here,  and then I will install the servos.

I noticed that the Hacker MX2 is listed on Tower Hobbies as "Discontinued"... I must have gotten one of the last ones.

Thursday, June 14, 2018

Sloppiest work ever

Did some of my sloppiest wood work ever putting the frame of the Hacker MX2 together this morning. I dry fit all the pieces together, making sure to know what had to go in when and how, and then proceeded to ignore all that and had to crack the frame back open to put in the landing gear hardpoint and the piece at the other end on the underside of the back. And then the whole thing is not true. This took less than an hour to screw up. Its fine, really, but seriously inelegantly done. Stopping because my head is clearly not in the game.

Its fine...

Just slightly not true...

Wednesday, June 13, 2018

Challenge Accepted

"Almost Unbreakable".
Chalenge accepted.

Tonorrow I start the build. I have deconstructed the ill fated Hobby King Sbach EPP, and wil use allmbut one failed servo and the elctronics on the Hacker MX2. She is a popular plane and quite a good flier! 

Return of the Sukhoi

The Sukhoi had a rough day, in part winds, in part poor pilotage. She landed unseen and hard, but belly down. Her landing gear were torn off, and they struck and dented the port horizontal stabilizer, and crushed parts of the underbelly framework. She's a good flier, and worth putting back together, and none of the damage was deadly. A few hours of work and she is back to near new.

I don't know how I did it, but as she disappeared over the ridge, I managed to get her wings level, nose at least level. The damage was surprisingly light.

The engine looks good. 

The muffler pipe broke off. The prop and cone are fine. I am thinking of returning to the two blade Master Airscrew Scimitar 14x8 as opposed to the triple blade 13x8 for no particular reason.

Internals look good up front.

Some frame buckling braced and fixed. In the foreground a cross member is missing, just aft of the battery pack. I put one in to stiffen the frame. 

Looking at the aft belly of the fuse, airframe on its port side. The frame here was broken up, cross frames gone and frames cracked. I would fix this thinking I could rejoin some of the longer stringers, but it looked like crap. Removed them and found the right wod to make it clean.

The port horizontal stab took a landing gear strut head on.

To repair this you have to cut out the busted section. I wasn't thinking about where the frame pieces were and lucked out, as there it is...

I CA in a couple of small pieces to support the cover balsa. One on top, one on the bottom.

You can see the two small supports, and a round dowl in the front. This will support balsa to make the leading edge, but itself will remain internal.

The repair patch in place and sanded smooth. I didn't curve the balsa, didn't feel like soaking it and working it. I just overbuilt it and sanded it down to shape. Works just fine.

You can see a small strip I added and sanded almost completely down to make the leading edge smooth and round.

I use a very lightweight silica spackle (plain ol' constuction spackle) to smooth it out.

Sand it smooth. Top.

Bottom of the repair. Same process as above.

Bottom finished with cote. I don't have any of the orange cote, so made the stab blak.

The top, nice and clean, perfect repair.

You can see the wobble in the aft belly, just before the vent at the most aft part of the fuse.  This was sloppy work, so I would remove it.

I found the right piece of wood for the underside port stringer, installed it (30 cm) and re-coted it. Looks marvelous and clean.

The new landing gear hardpoint installed. Made of 1/4 inch plywood. The back end has "teeth" embedded in the frame, the forward end is held in place with epoxy and those two screws. I thought I had pics of the hardpoint plate, but nope.  It is epoxied into place, with the teeth and the screws. This design "failed" appropriately in this crash, and works quite well.

And here she sits, waiting for the RCGF 10cc muffler from Valley View RC.
Once that is installed, I will fire her up and check the servos and electronics. She is a tough bird, this Sukhoi, and a favorite. Its nice to see her back on her feet.

Thursday, May 31, 2018

"Go fly", they said, "it'll be fun", they said...

Well, it was, and then it wasn't. I think sometimes my ADHD kicks in during a flight and I fail to be ahead of the aircraft. Today was such a day...


It was windy, standing wind about 6 mph, gusts to 8-9 mph, pretty much an 80 degree from behind me cross wind. "Meh", I thought, "I have flown in worse". Well, yeah, with a big 30cc plane... Today I took out my beloved 10cc Sukhoi 26. A good predictable flyer, sound engine. As has been the usual lately, she ran fine at home, but up on top of Mt Hudson I had to spend about 10 minutes finding a safe idle. Small problem, adjusted the endpoint on the throttle servo, added a little trim. Sweet.

Took her up, tooled around, some simple basic aerobatics with the stabilization system off, a cross wind landing with it on, very nice. Took her back up tooled around a bit, then put her into a knife edge which put the wind right on her wings all flat and sail like, and she started to descend and act the fool, more rudder, power, nope, she stalled, dropped the nose and I managed to level the wings and apply power as she disappeared behind the edge of the hill in fron of me. I killed the power as she disappeared, she was still going down. I was pretty sure she was toothpicks...

Well, that ended pretty well. Somehow as I walked over and down the hill towards her I kinda knew she would be pretty much alright. I just knew, but I prepared myself. Ah! Just a flesh wound. Lost her gear, as expected, some internal stress cracks, but nothing major. Saved the prop by killing the engine, and all the servos and electronics are intact.

Right horizontal stab took a hit from the gear as they came off. Easy fix.

Not the first time the gear have been forcibly yanked out, likely won't be the last.

Some minor cote and frame damage.

A view of the hill as I drove out. It continues to go up on the left. She landed far away, on the slope at about the middle of the pic. Quite an angle, I am surprised I didn't damge a wing.

Well, off to reset the Crash Clock. I am not in the mood to fix her today.

Thursday, May 17, 2018

Spring 2018 Begins

Beautiful mostly cloudy changing to sunny weather, no real winds to contend with, perfect condtions for first flights with the 10cc gasser Stik.

The Hobby King Sbach was never a great flier but she was a good and fun, and she only got more persnickity after a couple of crash rebuilds. I was flying her today and tossing her around. She got a little bit ahead of me and was heading over towards the guy cutting the grass, so I dumped her. Meh... i'll replace her with something similar and as fun.

Poorly framed, pre crash shot.

Flew her right to the scene of the crash.

Folded right in half.

Thats pretty much all this frame can take... its not worth rebuilding. I will strip the electronics, and put them in a nice new airframe. And with that, a reset of the crash timer!

I had spent a few days tuning the RCGF 10cc engine here at home, and she was running perfectly. At the field however nothing was right... and I spent over an hour retuning it. High end was easy, but low end was freakishly unstable.  If her run up to full throttle was smooth, her idle was too high. I had to work the low endpoints and the low needle up and down. I kept working one then the other and finally found a sweet point. I still don't think she is perfect, but she she performed quite well. I did see a bit of air in the fuel line to the carb... I hate to do it but think I need to pull the lines. I would hate to have to pull the tank and replace the clunk line...  Lastly the gas is old, last fall but with Stable. I wonder if that's playing a role? Its almost gone, will mix up some fresh soon.

And yet, still smilin'!