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2 P40 Warhawk Scratch Builds

Old 07-16-2007, 01:27 PM
  #1  
Saucerguy2
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Default 2 P40 Warhawk Scratch Builds

I'm building a couple of foamie Warhawks, one with a dihedral, one without. I figure since I'm setting up the jigs, might as well bust out two at once because the foam cutting element is not going to take that much extra time. It's also nice to be able to see if the dihedral affects the overall performance of it in the air, I'll ditch it on future planes with this set up if it's not significant since it's something that's making what's now turning out to be a kit, harder to incorporate without having to add even more jigs into the equasion.

The wings were done in 4 pieces each, this is the easy part, I'm working on the fuse jigs now, it looks like it's going to be 8 pieces plus the cowl and canopy, but once that's over, the tail feathers are going to be cake and I should have a couple of new P40's ready to maiden.

I still have a decent amount of sanding to do on the wings, just wanted you guys to see the progress so far, I'm going to be using strapping tape instead of carbon fiber or balsa to get them and the rest of the plane to stiffen up, wish me luck.
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Old 07-17-2007, 11:25 AM
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Default And this is yet another build log I talk to myself about...

I set up the fuse, it did end up being 10 pieces, I have to make the tail feathers next, but you can see, the hanger is now expanded upon with their presence.

Aileron sections will be cut out of the wing and I have alot of sanding to do next in what's put together so far. I just painters taped the wings into the saddles for photo purposes
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Old 07-17-2007, 11:30 AM
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Old 07-17-2007, 11:51 AM
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You are not alone, I'm sure I am not the only person lurking around this thread.

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Old 07-17-2007, 10:37 PM
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Saucerguy's threads are always worth subscribing to. Always good stuff with easy to understand information.

I can't wait to get my hands on the new GWS P40. It will be my first war bird. I want to do a scale competition finish on it and have been kicking around the idea of building a simple one first to get the hang of flying it.

What does the jig look like and are those solid pieces of foam making up the fuze?
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Old 07-18-2007, 12:24 AM
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Thanks smoke, there are several jigs for the fuse, the aft section being the largest pieces and the hardest to wire cut, as I build more, I'll refine the process to require less sanding and for better accuracy. It's all solid core, I can hollow out the center on future planes prior to assembling the pieces, for now, I'm just wanting to get them airborn quickly while keeping the strength of the fuse in tact. I'll just strap on the gear to the outside.for now and fly them around while I tinker with the build process for the next two of the squaderan.
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Old 07-19-2007, 04:48 AM
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Originally Posted by SaucerGuy View Post
Thanks smoke, there are several jigs for the fuse, the aft section being the largest pieces and the hardest to wire cut, as I build more, I'll refine the process to require less sanding and for better accuracy. It's all solid core, I can hollow out the center on future planes prior to assembling the pieces, for now, I'm just wanting to get them airborn quickly while keeping the strength of the fuse in tact. I'll just strap on the gear to the outside.for now and fly them around while I tinker with the build process for the next two of the squaderan.

Those planes are really looking NICE, great job Brian with the foam board, after you draw and cut out your foam pieces, sand the paper with some 60 to 100 grit sand paper, just to get the shine off, so the water can soak through, soak the pieces in the tub, for a few hours, peel the paper off, hold the foam under water and use a wash towl to rub off any remaining paper/glue, its not that bad, I have become a Expert in getting the paper and glue off of foam board, best to let soak overnight if possible, keep up the great work Brian Chellie
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Old 07-19-2007, 04:55 AM
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Just a thought Brian, do you think it would be a good idea to use some rounded balsa leading edge on the wing, and some balsa trailing edge on the rear, also great for ailerons, that way you have braced the wing, with out having to add any support in the middle of the wing, Just an idea, Take care, Chellie
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Old 07-19-2007, 12:55 PM
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I soaked the foam board for an hour, it peeled off nicely, I didn't even sand off the shine.. It's good material to work with, much better then I expected but it hates CA and Krylon htO as well, go figure.

It has merit as a usable element with my warbirds, or all planes in my fleet for now when it comes to repair time, just gotta work around it's tendacies. It's hot glue compliant which is the bottom line as to it's usability.

Photo's show the latest revisions, looks like there are two new pieces in place now, the wing saddle/wing joiner area and the front 1/8" light ply for mounting the motor. I'm holding off on the cowl for now until she/they maiden, the canopy as well, one of the planes I retrofitted in a stock, off the shelf LHS one just since I had it around. I'll go off to fiberglass, vaccume forming land on these if I cannot come up with a nice foam equivelant.

I'm getting close to popping in gear in these test birds, going this far with it jig wise, I'll have their replacements set up in no time at all, always love the second generation birds. !

Chellie, I did one of them in balsa aileron stock, the one with the dihedral, the other I did in craftsboard stock, anybody could do them GWS style just by cutting out the raw eps for those. The tail feathers, well since the span was so small, it didn't seem to need reinforcement, the stock caftsboard seemed adequet. I'm also trying to keep costs down so being able to use some strapping tape rather then buy bala saves money. So far, I'm into each plane "less the LHS bought canopy" around $3.50 per plane, I want to keep it under $5.00, hehe.
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Old 07-19-2007, 03:09 PM
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Nice job on the planes. I will have to reference off of this when i build my F4F wildcat. I do love P40's though. For your electronics are you going to hollow out or cut out sections inside the fuselage for them or are you going to keep them outside like you said.

Great Job Keep It Up.
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Old 07-19-2007, 03:58 PM
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Old 07-19-2007, 04:10 PM
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Originally Posted by GreenAce92 View Post
Nice job on the planes. I will have to reference off of this when i build my F4F wildcat. I do love P40's though. For your electronics are you going to hollow out or cut out sections inside the fuselage for them or are you going to keep them outside like you said.

Great Job Keep It Up.
Hey GreenAce92,
This should help you a lot for what you asked on the 3D views. Sorry I didn't get back to you but this will be a way better answer than any I could have given to you I believe. You can laminate the sheets like you were asking but it could prove to be way too heavy for the equipment you plan on using.

Good Luck & Have Fun,
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Old 07-19-2007, 04:20 PM
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Well thanks for the info. Umm i think i will use Elmers Foamboard for my wings later and Home Depot's Insulation foam for the body. The electronics will come from my once i crash SD PIper Cub.

Hey SaucerGuy,

Is your tail feathers thinner than the wings? I thought they were in your picture and also what is your fuselage made out of like what kind of foam. And remember to take video of your flight i would like to see your creation in action.

Good Luck on the build.
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Old 07-19-2007, 05:40 PM
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Hey SaucerGuy,

I have another question for ya. On a flat wing where does the lift come from? And also i am going to scrap the F4F idea for now because someone told me in RCU that its not a good transfer to build a low wing from a High wing plane's electronics because of the incidence and other things so i will probably try a beaver.

Good luck on your build.
Hope it all works out.
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Old 07-20-2007, 12:42 AM
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Green, the tail feathers are the flat stock from the foam board with the paper removed, the wings are set up with a traditional airfoil, so thinner in some areas, thicker in others since it's tapered.

Along your gear, if it's standard electronics, there is no reason it can't be used in a low wing plane, I'm still keeping mine on the outside of the plane, these are simple test beds. The system I'm using allows you to hollow out relavent sections of the fuse as you go along, so no need to do this afterwards, you just gotta decide prior to construction.

Symmetrical and flat airfoils technically do no create any noticable form of lift, the incidence they are at is what you are relying upon to gain altitude. The reason you go with a symmetrical airfoil is similar to climbing between two walls, where you are pushing against the air in both directions making your flights more precise. Flat airfoils operate in a similar manner on some levels, but they tend to slice through the air, which is good for tight acrobatics and the reduced profile helps with cutting through the winds.

The foam is 1.5" and 2" EPS foam you'll find in the insulation department. I have a bunch of this stuff, so prefer to use it.

I still have to build a canopy for the other one, I just threw on an off the shelf one with one of the planes, I may not leave it, I also have to build the cowls, luckily the plugs I have to build for those can double for creating the molds from should I opt to build them out of fiberglass or vaccume formed equally, but I gotta mount the motor's before doing that so I'll have the proper clearances. The dihedral route didn't pose to be any extra effort to incorporate, all I had to do was a little sanding between the joints to set the angle, and sand where there met along the bottom a little bit, making it flat enough to mount the belly pan.

One revision I did put in place was ditching the wingflaps and expanding the size of the ailerons, this should give me the control I prefer. The scale ones seemed a little small to me.

There will be more along these planes I'll build, creating the jigs and establishing the procedures and cutlist is the hard part, final assembly isn't too bad at all, just there is some sanding involved since they are hand wire cut, not injected through a mold.
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Old 07-20-2007, 01:15 AM
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Nice to know your build is going ok. About the electronics going into the low wing warbird, i thought that it was very possible. I think i will still try it. Also where do you get your bubble canopies i heard you build em. Also will the pink insulation work for this? Like from home depot and also is your plane going to be direct drive, brushed/brushless and will it have wheels. Cant wait till it all comes together. I remember when i first started with rc planes. I built a p40 and used a car's electronics with skies. It actually taxied but that was it.

Hope you get the bugs worked out.
Good luck on the build and keep it up i will build mine soon too.
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Old 07-20-2007, 01:21 AM
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Those look cool SG. I was looking to see what size they are. Did I miss it somewhere?
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Old 07-20-2007, 01:25 AM
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That particular canopy was picked up at the LHS months ago for no actual purpose, just an impulse buy, I believe it was around $2.50, it looks kind of odd as it sits with that plane, so it's likely coming off. Along building my own, I'm good with fiberglass having a background as a yacht builder so know how to make proper molds to duplicate pieces from. I see alot of plane builders doing it backwards, where they are setting up a few layers on top of each other and having to do a ton of finish work because the top coat is of course, rough, when you use a mold, the process is reversed so your inner most layer is the rough side, which never get's seen, and if the mold is smooth, that's the top layer.

I'm not a huge fan of the pink foam, bluecore is better in that venue, I found the pink stuff to warp after I wire cut it and it's more brittle and heavier then the eps. I still have a bunch of pink foam, but I only hand carve the stuff for obvious reasons, and even then, only use it sparingly.
I'm glad you brought that up, I believe it's fiberglass resin resistant which would make good plug material.

Are you using a wire cutter, or bashing these by hand btw?

Grasshopper, the wingspan is 37".
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Old 07-20-2007, 01:28 AM
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Thanks SG. They are bigger than they look in the pictures. That's a good size.
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Old 07-20-2007, 02:17 AM
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They're looking great SG. Nice work.
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Old 07-20-2007, 05:25 AM
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Those planes are looking Super Nice, The foam board does not like CA at All, I use 5 or 30 min epoxy, or gorilla glue, I tried sumo glue but went back to gorilla glue, it just seems to hold better, I have used Krylon short cuts paints on this foam board, and works ok in lite coats, Krylon H20 paint works ok ,but in lite coats also, what motor will you be using,
a 2408-21 with a 6x6 prop. a cut down 7x6 or a 2409-12 with a 7x6 prop will make it haul buns, with a 3 cell lipo, Waiting on pins and needles to hear about your Maiden flights, Take care, Chellie
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Old 07-20-2007, 02:29 PM
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WoW you worked with Yachts before? Cool my Dad use to have a 64fter. A blue one it was nice, i dont know what ever happend to it he was a partier after all. Is your canopy going to be a dark color then like black because you said you were making them from fiberglass unless fiberglass can be clear im not sure i have never worked with fiberglass. I was thinking about learning about it so i could make hulls for my Subs. I dont know if you asked me but i use a hobby knife to cut my foam then sand it with metal sander that is like a 200 grit i think or something like that. Actually i use a vice cript with the hobby knife blade in between because i lost the handle. For your cowl will that be fiberglass?
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Old 07-20-2007, 08:10 PM
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Very impressive work!! Looking forward to more pics.
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Old 07-21-2007, 01:30 AM
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Thanks Alienx.

I used to work on 120' yachts at Christenson Motor Yachts in Vancouver Wa. The creation element was fun, but sanding 120' of area was tedius and I'd come home with majoy itchies and smelling like a glue factory. I only worked there for 6 months, probably lost 6 years of my life due to the hazzards, but gained a great deal of experience through the process. Those things are litereally homes on the ocean. It was also impressive to stand next to the giant turbine motors they were using.

Fiberglass isn't that difficult to work with as long as you follow the proper procedures and are being realistic about the component you are fabricating, making sure it's slightly tapered to allow the part to free from the mold, it's creating the plug that takes most of the work, I spent the day yesterday working on just the plug to the cowl and I still have to finish it before I can make the mold from it. I simplified it, so it's not going to show all of the detail, that can be added afterwards, I just wanted it to be easy to place various motor's and esc's stuffed into it without having to make a new cowl. The canopy, I'm still debating if I'm wanting to do it in foam or fiberglass, it's not going to be clear, fiberglass doesn't come out clear, but I suppose if one were to cut away the window panels from it and glue in some clear plastic, that would add to the scale element significantly.

Since you are what I call scratch bashing your foamies, you should be able to make the fuse in one piece and sanding the wing with an airfoil shouldn't be too difficult, if you are stuffing the gear inside, you could make it in two pieces, hollowing out the center prior to connecting them together. I used to make my planes that way before I built my wire cutter, all the cutter does is reduces the amount of sanding you have to do and get's it to the final form to eliminate the sculpting learning curve.

I'll have photo's of the progress posted later this evening, I'll be happy once these final two elements are addressed since I can start installing the gear and get them flight ready. It's been raining non stop lately and looks like it's going to be that way for a while, so I may bust out a couple more and decide what my next warbird is going to be.
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Old 07-21-2007, 03:36 AM
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>It was also impressive to stand next to the giant turbine motors they were using.

Coool...

What if you made the glass supports like on a real p40 Warhawk you see the metal frame forming the canopy and then windows are mounted in there. Or you could just make a solid black canopy that would work together. Hey how did you make you hotwire cutter? Last time i tried that with a 9 volt battery and the back end popped off smoking. Hey for your next warbird you should do like either an XP-56 or XP-55. They might be hard because they're experimental. I personally like the electronics inside foam idea because i think the parts wouldnt ripp off unless the body totaly exploded or just smashed into smitherenes. Hope you post the pics soon. I cant wait to see the finished product. When i build my F4F wildcat i will post my on thread and pics if my Camera Works.
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