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SE5A (Scratch Built)

Old 10-11-2007, 07:39 AM
  #1  
TVCasualty
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Default SE5A (Scratch Built)

Well I wanted to start building this one on Tuesday, but ran out of time. I ended up messing with the plans for a bit. Been sucked into foxing computers, and spent most of my time today doing that also. Homemade plans are available for this one on request, but I would prefer to wait until I actually see if it will fly first.

Goal: Foam slow flying, light power consumption, FIXED LANDING GEAR, possibly future trainer if it flies well enough.
Outcome: Time will tell.... this one isn't finished yet.

Again, thanks to everyone how posts build logs, and thanks to that sparky guy who wrote the building with foam book as I use many techniques found in there.

I got lazy on this one and didn't take too many assembly pictures but have a few pics of it almost all together.

Last edited by TVCasualty; 10-13-2007 at 03:47 PM.
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Old 10-11-2007, 08:15 AM
  #2  
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Hey Tvcasualty,
Welcome to Wattflyer.. Sounds like you've got your build in process. Can't wait to see those photos of it.. Good luck.
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Old 10-12-2007, 05:11 PM
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My weekend was about a buck short of time. Got started a day late and ran into issues with the landing gear again and had to re-design em. The plane went together in no-time, tedious process cutting out the parts, this was most of them time in building the airframe. Took 5 min to roll the fuse and then entire airframe was assembled in less then 4 hours, using both hot glue and gorilla glue. I took some more time to insert the torque arms to the ailerons. Ended up going to the hobby store and buying some stop collars to use, instead of the original bend and solder idea, re-inserted the ailerons torque armsÖ Then I installed more of that great elastic EPP foam into a battery bay. I seem to be getting a bit better in making these things to fit nicely. I spent the rest of day two messing with the landing gear carriage.

The original idea was to use spring steel wire to make some triangles to support the wheels, but ended up with no way to properly attach them to the fuse, that would last through any landing anyhow. The revised idea was to use some stock aluminum, bent into an A frame and cut to make scale-esk and to save on some weight. I canít wait to see how this will affect reception of the Spektrum TX, but looks like itíll work on landing!

Last thing before I called it quits for the night, I put it on the scale just to see how many oz over 20 I was at this pointÖ The airframe was 9 OZ!! the undercarriage and battery added another 7, seems like I got a wiener.

Got a few more pics, but Iím back at work without the cameraÖ
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Old 10-13-2007, 01:23 AM
  #4  
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Pics!!
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Old 10-14-2007, 04:30 PM
  #5  
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Default Mine Crashed

Looks good there TVC, hope she flys good for ya.
Mine crashed but i did save a picture of it and maybe i will build another one someday.My landing gear is on one of the formers(made of thin ply) and is of .062 wire. It works pretty good.

Last edited by Crashalott; 10-14-2007 at 04:41 PM. Reason: incomplete
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Old 10-14-2007, 07:41 PM
  #6  
TVCasualty
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cute littly bugger. Musta been a featherweight, I take it didn't fly too well?

I like it though, do you remember what it weighed?
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Old 10-15-2007, 12:08 AM
  #7  
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Originally Posted by TVCasualty View Post
cute littly bugger. Musta been a featherweight, I take it didn't fly too well?

I like it though, do you remember what it weighed?
Yes it weighed 14oz without the Batt.
I am sure it would have flown ok but she wasn't trimmed good enough to get it up where i could tweak it.
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Old 10-15-2007, 01:26 AM
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I should have talked to you first...
I seem to be having the same problem, pulls too hard to the left. Managed to bring it in in one piece but, it needs repair to fly again.
I'm currently debating to let it die or rebuild it, trying to figure out what went wrong where.
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Old 10-16-2007, 02:48 AM
  #9  
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Update!
I decided to keep it, and I'm glad I did. Seems things always go better on the second test flight. I rebuilt the wing supports, using masking tape to re-enforce them along the leading and trailing edge. Added carbon fiber to the lower wing leading edge for stiffening and tided the wings together with fishing line and wire anchors effectively preloading the dihedral. As it is now the wings are locked together at the same angle, and it does add some support.

This plane is a strange flyer after learning on a low wing. I have to use the rudder to make it turn properly. Using an 8.4V NiMh battery pack, and the little red 400T from milehighrc this plane flies very slowly and tends to hang in the air. First successful takeoff for me, and I brought it down safely twice today. Gotta fix the thrust angle, and tweak the now induced by heat gun airfoil, and a few other minor things but I think I've got another winner here. Will post some painted pics and hopefully some airborne shots later in the week if weather permits. This thing can NOT take a breeze.
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Old 10-16-2007, 01:13 PM
  #10  
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WTG there TV, some of my best flying planes are Biplanes. One of the very best is the Ultimate Bipe.
You just have to hang in there and tweak um and hot glue um until they are flyin good.
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Old 10-21-2007, 03:25 PM
  #11  
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I had a great time flying last night, but before that I went through more after thought R&D... We took it out for another naked flight and seen that the wings just were not sturdy enough. I had to support the bottom wing with a carbon fiber rod, moving the thin stuff to the top wing, this adding a bit more weight to the plane and getting rid of some of that crazy dihedral, as it was so bad the plane would not get on it's side. Also attributing to that was the fact that my torque arms going to the ailerons we just too skimpy. So I replaced those as well with thicker wire.

I threw on some paint and turned out in my opinion a very nice looking model. It flew GREAT!! Much faster with the extra ounce of weight, and very agile. I may need to tweak the CG as it does exhibit some signs of bing unstable, but it's difficult to pinpoint as there is just so much wing to contend with. As a breeze will send it climbing or diving rapidly depending on the AOA.

I plan on posting some plans as soon as I update them with all the hindsight design features.
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Last edited by TVCasualty; 10-21-2007 at 05:31 PM. Reason: added more detail
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Old 10-21-2007, 08:48 PM
  #12  
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WTG there TV, she's lookin good.
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Old 12-01-2007, 02:29 PM
  #13  
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Originally Posted by TVCasualty View Post
I had a great time flying last night, but before that I went through more after thought R&D... We took it out for another naked flight and seen that the wings just were not sturdy enough. I had to support the bottom wing with a carbon fiber rod, moving the thin stuff to the top wing, this adding a bit more weight to the plane and getting rid of some of that crazy dihedral, as it was so bad the plane would not get on it's side. Also attributing to that was the fact that my torque arms going to the ailerons we just too skimpy. So I replaced those as well with thicker wire.

I threw on some paint and turned out in my opinion a very nice looking model. It flew GREAT!! Much faster with the extra ounce of weight, and very agile. I may need to tweak the CG as it does exhibit some signs of bing unstable, but it's difficult to pinpoint as there is just so much wing to contend with. As a breeze will send it climbing or diving rapidly depending on the AOA.

I plan on posting some plans as soon as I update them with all the hindsight design features.
I like it. Have you completed the final plans yet?

SJ
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Old 12-02-2007, 04:16 PM
  #14  
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The plans are basically ready to go, however on the last few flights I had with the plane the COG seemed to be WAY off. I don't have a lot of experience with flying bi-planes however I couldn't ignore the way it climbed or dove. I took another look at the design and found the wings were set about 1 1/2 inches too far forward. I've updated everything but await calm weather and time off so that I can try it out again, and I would much rather post plans that I KNOW will fly right.
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Old 12-02-2007, 04:32 PM
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I'll wait till your happy with everything and have it all updated. I have more than enough to do in the mean time.

Thanks,
SJ
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Old 12-02-2007, 05:19 PM
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wow, looks brilliant TV.. good job I especially like the pilot there..nice!
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Old 03-20-2008, 04:11 AM
  #17  
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Just a quick update on this bird...
Tried a radical new idea to keep the supports intact today... Used magnets to hold the wings together and on. It ended in a spectacular total failure at about 30 feet. But the plane only suffered minor damage and was repaired in about an hour, taking time to rework the method of failure. Weather permitting I will fly it again tomorrow hopefully with better results. The VPX a123s look to be very promising as it took off from pavement in less then 5 foot!

Also I redesigned the landing gear, less to scale, much more to durability and what a weight bonus. I also moved back the wings. During the 30 second flight today the COG problem seemed to be sorted out. Fingers crossed.

Seems like everything I build crashes at least one good time. Good thing everything flies better with more tape.
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Old 03-20-2008, 11:12 PM
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Looks really good!!! You might want to enter the world of rigging, it really helps to hold the wings in tact. My SAE5 I did, initially I didn't put much effort in that area so had to go back over it after a few flights, mainly reinforcing the support strut mounts. Here is a photo of it, I'll build another, just use the plans this time and I'll likely blow them up a tad for that. Take note, zero dihedral, this is something that helps when you are flying in the wind.
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Old 03-23-2008, 07:48 PM
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Happy Easter! I finally got to really test this thing out today. It remains true that any wind makes this a very challenging bird to fly. That being said the COG problem is resolved; setting the wing about an inch aft did do the trick. As far as the wind goes, you just have to endure the battery and go with the flow. Also, if anyone chooses to build this I highly recommend putting SOME kind of an airfoil into the wings. There is such a high drag ratio on this that it seems to me that the airplane should not stall out as it does, and as soon as it does, especially on turns, relying solely on motor power alone to pull it out... Again this could be due to the headwind it was facing today. This issue also could be attributed to myself overdriving the controls.

Some doís and doníts.
  • Try to airfoil the wing, if building out of FFF rolling it after itís cut should be fine.
  • Use rare earth magnets to hold the wings and struts together, this helps absorb energy on crashes.
  • Use some lighter weight wheels then I have. These things suck on this airplane.
  • Keep everything under 22oz (ready to fly batteries included).
  • Buy some spring steel to make the control linkages out of and use it for the landing gear in a traditional manner.
  • Donít give up after a bad test flight, it takes time to iron out some details and learn to fly it.
Here are some pics of it in the air today thanks again to my duddy.
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Old 03-23-2008, 08:30 PM
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Plans:

Note: my current version of the plane uses carbon fiber arrow shafts to support the wing, has no dihedral, and has innards mounted to that spongy pool toy type EPP foam. There is always room for improvement in this design, and I've only used my spongy motor mount idea to keep the motor in place. It would not be hard to work in a stick mount design. Just get crafty. COG balance point is about 2 inches from leading edge of bottom wing. Also if building a dihedral, I originally designed the smaller brace for that type of wing, with out the dihedral you will need to craft up your own on the spot as I did.

Also if you choose to hold your wings on with strong magnets, remember they will slide off (and apart) under drag, so build some type of stop to keep them in place and your wings will be fine.
Attached Files
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SE5A Elevator.pdf (6.7 KB, 251 views)
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SE5A Fuse 2.pdf (16.9 KB, 290 views)
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Old 03-23-2008, 08:44 PM
  #21  
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Wow that Biplane looks wicked! Nice job!
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