"1/2 A" & "1/8 A" airplanes These are the small ones...more popular now than ever.

1/2A Honker

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Old 09-15-2004, 07:44 PM
  #1  
Kaos
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Default 1/2A Honker

Thought you guys might get a kick out seeing a pretty old 1/2A model. I built this Honker as a club racer back in the mid '70's. I recovered it several years ago and installed a new Hitec radio. I still fly it occassionally and it's still a lot of fun for the money!

Dave
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Old 09-15-2004, 08:26 PM
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rrragmanliam
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Default RE: 1/2A Honker

Nice Dave, I like it! Almost looks like you could land the thing on water. Might scare some of the real honkers! By the way that shop's a little to tidy or mine needs some cleaning

Darren
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Old 09-16-2004, 12:33 PM
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Default RE: 1/2A Honker

I dig those wire landing skid on the bottom! Saves the covering from grass rash. Was that on the plans, or your own idea?
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Old 09-16-2004, 01:46 PM
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Default RE: 1/2A Honker

ORIGINAL: Matt Smith

I dig those wire landing skid on the bottom! Saves the covering from grass rash. Was that on the plans, or your own idea?
A nice clear coat of packing tape works well also.
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Old 09-16-2004, 02:55 PM
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Default RE: 1/2A Honker

Yeah, I do that too--those rails just look kind of cool to me for some reason.
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Old 09-16-2004, 05:37 PM
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Kaos
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Default RE: 1/2A Honker

ORIGINAL: Matt Smith

I dig those wire landing skid on the bottom! Saves the covering from grass rash. Was that on the plans, or your own idea?

Hi Matt,

I added those little piano-wire skids because I have to land it on our asphalt airstrip. It slides along real nice!

Dave
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Old 09-16-2004, 05:41 PM
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Default RE: 1/2A Honker

ORIGINAL: rrragmanliam

By the way that shop's a little to tidy or mine needs some cleaning

I just moved 6 months ago, so my shop will have that "lived in" look in the coming months

Dave
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Old 09-16-2004, 08:33 PM
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rrragmanliam
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Default RE: 1/2A Honker

ORIGINAL: Kaos

Hi Matt,
I added those little piano-wire skids because I have to land it on our asphalt airstrip. It slides along real nice!

Dave
Just like Santa, ya have to be able to land on all surfaces!

Darren
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Old 09-16-2004, 10:35 PM
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Default RE: 1/2A Honker

I'll bet it does honk with that TD .051! How did it do as a racer?

I got the plans from RCM but never biuilt it.

George
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Old 09-17-2004, 07:31 AM
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Default RE: 1/2A Honker

Here are some pics of mine -- the plane was built in the early 80's and flew with a BW until this summer. I replaced the BW, which was getting a bit tired, with a BigMig .061 C/L using the tank mount, but added an internal tank for fuel. The NORVEL added quite a bit of pep. This plane has Futaba S133 servos and one of the later AM RXs. I still fly it regularly and with the NORVEL, it is a nice performer. This particular plane can exhibit a fairly vicious high speed snap usually followed by a flat spin -- at WOT, sometimes I can get it out and sometimes not.

Span is 36" with 252 sq. in. of area and uses a Jedelsky airfoil. The HONKER was the first of a series by Dave Thornburg, followed by the HONKER BIPE and HONKER ROCKET. The biplane uses two of the original HONKER wings and a .15 and the ROCKET dimensions are the same as the original, but has a cleaner fuselage.
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Old 09-17-2004, 08:44 AM
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Default RE: 1/2A Honker

Really nice plane !!! I can imagine a night landing with sparks coming out of the skids ... [X(] . regards

Claudio
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Old 09-17-2004, 10:22 AM
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Default RE: 1/2A Honker

ORIGINAL: gcb

I'll bet it does honk with that TD .051! How did it do as a racer?

It did great! We adopted the Honker as our standard club racer because is was economical to build and fly and was surprisingly quick when we poured 25% nitro fuel into the one ounce tank. All of our Honkers were flown with only two channels; elevator and ailerons. I managed to squeeze my Heathkit 5 channel receiver and two KPS-10 servos into the narrow fuselage. Some of the other guys were using smaller flight systems, so they had a weight advantage. Since I installed a more modern Hitec 2 channel radio with micro servos, my Honker has an empty weight of exactly 16 ounces.

After a couple of years of racing the Honkers, our club adopted the TopFlite Combat Streak (a control line model). We flew those with 3 channels; elevator, ailerons and fuel cutoff (no throttle) for the K & B .21 free flight engine. Now, that was a screaming model! I still have it and will send pictures later.

Dave
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Old 09-17-2004, 10:31 AM
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Tim Wiltse-RCU
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Default RE: 1/2A Honker

Dave,

Well I'll be darned!!! I was looking at the plans in the old RCM mags. I think i have come across the Honker, the Honker Bipe and the Honker Rocket. Now that I have seen a couple others built they look real nice. I thought they would be bricks with the solid wing but 16oz's is pretty nice!!! Great looking plane!

Later,
Tim
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Old 09-17-2004, 10:37 AM
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Default RE: 1/2A Honker

What plan # is the Honker Bipe?
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Old 09-17-2004, 11:49 AM
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Default RE: 1/2A Honker

ORIGINAL: mr_leffe

What plan # is the Honker Bipe?
HONKER -- #529
HONKER BIPE -- #552
HONKER ROCKET -- #832

$7.00 USD each from RCM

Tim --

I don't know the weight of mine, but it glides surprisingly well. The original and Rocket version are amazingly easy to build (like the Simple Series), and very inexpensive.

the "other" andrew
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Old 09-18-2004, 09:07 AM
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Default RE: 1/2A Honker

I chose the honker after struggling with a 40 size plane and jamming a 72" wing inside my pickup. I wanted a cheap, sporty, "pocket plane" that I could carry to the pits in one trip and keep in my truck for spur of the moment flying.

I started with a Cox .049 Dragonfly but found it underpowered. It lacked any climbout on launch but after it got up a head of steam it performed nicely. After a series of hard manouvers and loss of speed though it again struggled. I am running 4 channel and overall weight (with engine, micros & electronics) is already at 24 oz. Still glides nice though... I tried all manner of props, 5-3, 5.5-4.5, 6-4, and finally settling on the 6-3.

Soooooo.... I am looking at the Norvel .061 (or maybe the .074, muahhaha!). What do you guys think would be the best engine / prop combo?

Any help is greatly appreciated,
-Mike
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Old 09-18-2004, 10:13 AM
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Default RE: 1/2A Honker

If It's at 24 oz I'd go with the 074 because your going to have to add a tank. If the dragonfly is flying the thing now the .061 will also be a big improvement.

.061 - APC 5.7X3 or cox 6 x 3, 1oz. tank or DB's film canister tank (very light)
.074 - APC 7x3 2oz. tank

Just my opinion

Rrragman
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Old 10-12-2004, 04:14 PM
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Default RE: 1/2A Honker

First of all thanks to rrragmanliam and Andrew for their help. Ok, here's the update... Ordered the Norvel .074 and a 7x3 APC. Installed it. Love it. I removed the Cox Dragonfly and added the Dave Brown engine mount, Dubro 2oz fuel tank, and fuel line. All in all the swap gained me only 1 oz total weight. Re-balancing the plane only involved moving the RX rearward 2" and it was good to go. The first flight was wild. It strained to be set free and then climbed like a rocket unitl it was vertical and instantly at 70'. Was able to throttle back apply down trim and fly on 1/2 throttle but any application of power and it was immediately skyward. I ended up adding two washers behind the mount for 3-4 degrees more downthrust. Now climbs are effortless, and has amazing vertical performance on only 10% nitro. Glides aren't too bad, wing loading 15.5oz. But it is is so fast and so small that it gets hard to see very quickly. Mine was really overweight before the switch. Specs say the plane should weigh 22 oz max. I'm at 26 due to 4 channel and purposely built heavy for durability. I've started a second one with a concentration on weight.
I did determine:
1. I now have more power than I ever need.
2. Its 'spooky' fast.
3. Always bring a change of underwear.

I might recommend the Norvel .061 as a better design fit for the airframe but I'm not complaining. I now have a plane that will keep up with the big boys for less than a quarter of their price! Plus I fly all day on a pint of fuel.
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Old 10-12-2004, 05:28 PM
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Default RE: 1/2A Honker

ORIGINAL: dieFluggeister
1. I now have more power than I ever need.
2. Its 'spooky' fast.
3. Always bring a change of underwear.

I might recommend the Norvel .061 as a better design fit for the airframe but I'm not complaining. I now have a plane that will keep up with the big boys for less than a quarter of their price! Plus I fly all day on a pint of fuel.
Moving from a Dragonfly to the .074 must be like moving from a moped to a Harley -- can't imagine how it must have felt hanging on before launch. Glad to hear all worked out and you're pleased with the result. Build your next one light, use a .061 W/O throttle, use a FUJI tank and set it up as A/E only -- you'll have a ball. BTW, keep the color scheme (with the exception of the logo) -- I've attached one you can use. [8D]
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Old 10-12-2004, 09:03 PM
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Default RE: 1/2A Honker

Thanks Andrew, Already gotcha covered!
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Old 10-13-2004, 01:05 PM
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Default RE: 1/2A Honker

Is there a chance one of you could post a sketch of the fuse with some dimensions? I still have the wing and the tail from mine from the 70ds but I don't have the fuse shape or dimensions to make it fly again. Thanks for any help I can get along those lines.
Alvin
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Old 10-13-2004, 01:37 PM
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Default RE: 1/2A Honker

Alvin,

PM me your address and I'll make a copy of the plans; You will have to blow them up though.

Later,
Tim
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Old 10-13-2004, 06:40 PM
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Default RE: 1/2A Honker

I had one in the '70s, mine had a Blue Max homebuilt radio, which weighed 16 oz without the plane! Mine struggled, but flew.

My friend still has a Honker Sailplane, it had two Honker wings end to end for a 72in span, he calls it the Spruce Goose, but I don't know what Thornburg named it, it flew pretty welll with a .049 on a pod.
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Old 10-14-2004, 09:29 AM
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Default RE: 1/2A Honker

ORIGINAL: soarrich
I had one in the '70s, mine had a Blue Max homebuilt radio, which weighed 16 oz without the plane! Mine struggled, but flew.
I built the four channel, which did you build?

Mine is on 27.195 and still works but I can't use it since it was the old wider bands.


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Old 10-14-2004, 03:03 PM
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Default RE: 1/2A Honker

Mine was the 3+1 four channel, why it was called that I don't remember. I used to go to the local hobby store and buyout all the S-5 servo geartrains, I don't think a weekend went by that I didn't have to fix a servo.
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