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  1. #1
    Mustang Fever's Avatar
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    Great Planes DR-1 ARF

    Flew my Great Planes Fokker DR-1 ARF for the first time today. What a kitty cat. Stable and easy to fly with the CG about 1/4" ahead of recommended. It was very complete and easy to build, too.

    Some suggestions I would make to anyone contemplating this one:

    1. Put a big, heavy, powerful engine in it, or you'll be adding a lot of lead to the nose. I used an OS 65 LA with a Zinger 14x4 prop, and it is the perfect combination. Lots of punch, but not a lot of speed, which is just right for this bird, and with the Pitts muffler it doesn't sound like a 2 stroke glow engine, and leaves a lovely smoke trail. I also mounted a 1600 mAh battery way up front, right against the firewall. Consequently, I only had to use about 1/2 oz of lead to balance it.

    2. This is not a crosswind aircraft. Land and takeoff into the wind. You can't fight it with this one, it's a giant weathervane, and with the narrow landing gear it will tip over at the slightest provocation.

    3. Use the throttle to control altitude during approach, and don't go to idle until you are close to the ground, then FLARE. Try to touch down with as little ground speed as is safely possible, otherwise it'll nose over.

    4. Rudder is needed to keep it tracking through turns, but I'm finding that opposite aileron is needed to keep it from overbanking and snapping out. It does really nice, huge loops from level flight when the throttle is properly modulated, as it's thrust exceeds its weight by about 2 pounds. I haven't fully explored the envelope, yet, but it seems as if it will literally turn on a dime and give back change.

    5. Not a first or second airplane. Anyone wanting to do this one should have some time on a bird with no dihedral or built in roll stability. I wouldn't put it in the same category as "tail draggers", though. This one needs to be walked out to the TO point, then shutdown after landing and carried back to the line. I suppose one could taxi it around if it had a tailwheel, but all the film clips I've seen of WWI flight operations indicate that ground crew assisted heavily with launch and recovery, so that's good enough for me.

    If you have some experience and are looking for something really FUN as well as relaxing to fly, this may be the one for you.
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    Bob Hunt

    \"Progress is marked by great smoking holes in the ground.\"
    -Gen. Chuck Yeager

  2. #2

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    RE: Great Planes DR-1 ARF

    Nice looking plane. A guy in my club had a giant scale DR1 scratch built from Ziroli plans, powered with a 35cc quadra. The cowl was made from a cooking pot, but you would never guess by looking at it. It behaved nice when airborne, but had a real high "pucker factor" during T.O. and landing. It was a joy to watch it in action.

  3. #3
    Mustang Fever's Avatar
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    RE: Great Planes DR-1 ARF

    Now that you mention it, the cowl does look like a cooking pot. Also, when it comes by on a low pass, it kinda looks like a stack of dinner plates flying through the sky. I get the giggles while flying it. Didn't realize it was going to be so much fun.
    Bob Hunt

    \"Progress is marked by great smoking holes in the ground.\"
    -Gen. Chuck Yeager

  4. #4
    Sturtz's Avatar
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    RE: Great Planes DR-1 ARF

    Nice looking tripe !!! Good job on the build.
    What does one of these tri-planes set you back -$-??
    Kurt
    AMA# 794291
    Saito Club #121



    \"There is a very fine line between \"hobby\" and \"mental illness.\"

  5. #5
    Mustang Fever's Avatar
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    RE: Great Planes DR-1 ARF

    They're going for $250 from Tower. They have a combo with the 65 LA for $345. That saves you about $15 on the engine, if you don't have one already.

    Just had some bad luck, which is mostly what I have. I was just flaring for landing today and the wind sheared 90 deg. and gusted. Flipped it over so fast I didn't even know what was happening. I'll have to replace the lower wing ($53) but the rest of the damage is quite minor, and I'll have it repaired today.

    I still can't believe how pretty the takeoffs are. Gotta get a telltale for my Tx antenna. Only way to keep track of the wind that matters.
    Bob Hunt

    \"Progress is marked by great smoking holes in the ground.\"
    -Gen. Chuck Yeager

  6. #6
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    RE: Great Planes DR-1 ARF

    Enjoyed watching you maiden your Fokker, Bob. It sure looks cool in the air.
    Tom C

    Sig Brotherhood # 120

  7. #7
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    RE: Great Planes DR-1 ARF

    I have had mine for almost 3 years now. Many different coverings. Love it, and hate it at the same time. But it gets people talking at the field everytime I bring it out. Most people think that if you can land this plane, you can land anything. But I did not think it was so bad.
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    If its not a warbird, Its just a target.
    Balsa USA brotherhood #29

  8. #8

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    RE: Great Planes DR-1 ARF

    My only concern with this plane is that it tajkes 1/2h to prepare at the field....
    flies great on an electrioc setup
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  9. #9
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    RE: Great Planes DR-1 ARF


    ORIGINAL: Mustang Fever

    Just had some bad luck, which is mostly what I have. I was just flaring for landing today and the wind sheared 90 deg. and gusted. Flipped it over so fast I didn't even know what was happening. I'll have to replace the lower wing ($53) but the rest of the damage is quite minor, and I'll have it repaired today.

    I still can't believe how pretty the takeoffs are. Gotta get a telltale for my Tx antenna. Only way to keep track of the wind that matters.
    Bob,

    Don't throw your old wing away - this is a common fail point on the Tripe, and regardless of how bad it looks, you probably can repair it.

    Just flew mine again for the first time this year, after trashing the lower wing on a blown takeoff attempt last fall. For the third time I've repaired the bottom wing, but this time, I got agressive.

    I inlaid two new spar reinforcements braces. The main brace is a 1/4" full depth plywood dihedral brace (I know, the wing has no dihedral, but hang with me here), extending out two panels past the center section sheeting. The rear spar is doubled by a 1/8" doubler, out one bay past the sheeting. I also tried as best as possible to reinforce the leading edge, but there ain't a lot to hang onto there.

    Anyhoo - the first landing in, naturally, a nice crosswind went as you'd expect - bounced and upended off of a wingtip - very much like my avatar actually. the real good news is that the repaired and reinforced wing held up just fine!!!

    I had been dreading that first flight, but very quickly remembered just how much fun this plane is in the air. After three flights on Saturday in windy (albeit not gusting, thank goodness), I was enjoying triplanes again And yes, the second two landings went just fine, thank you!

    I'm just gonna haf to keep this thing around for another season!!!

    'til later,

    Lee McDuffee
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    Lee McDuffee - R/C Event Director - Dawn Patrol Rendezvous 2014
    Balsa USA brother #78

  10. #10

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    RE: Great Planes DR-1 ARF

    I haven't assembled mine yet, but I have an 80 fs lined up for it.

    I have a Global Fokker Dr.VII which flies like an old dog ...it's nice and slow...a real Sunday flier, but can't evade any Sopwith Pups...Can this Triplane do rolls atleast ?

    Just curious before I build it or put it up for sale.

    Any landing you can walk away from is a good one.

  11. #11

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    RE: Great Planes DR-1 ARF

    mine does not roll but loops...however mine is really underpowered (nice and slow, as origin)

  12. #12
    WinterHawke's Avatar
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    RE: Great Planes DR-1 ARF


    ORIGINAL: NoFlaps

    I haven't assembled mine yet, but I have an 80 fs lined up for it.

    I have a Global Fokker Dr.VII which flies like an old dog ...it's nice and slow...a real Sunday flier, but can't evade any Sopwith Pups...Can this Triplane do rolls atleast ?

    Just curious before I build it or put it up for sale.

    NoFlaps,

    Yes, you should easily be able to do rolls - I routinely do loops, rolls, stall turns, and my favorite maneuver, spins.

    My triplane (as previously mentioned in another thread) is essentially stock, with a somewhat tired O.S. 70 for muscle, the throws and CG much as the manual says (a bit more rudder - personnal preference). I don't find it a bit lacking in aerobatics - scale aerobatics that is. I don't do any of that 3-D Schtuff, 'cause neither did they in 1918!!! [:'(]

    One cool maneuver with the tripe is the famous "Fokker Flat Turn" - rudder only turns showing the quick yaw. This is the maneuver described by McCudden in the epic Voss dogfight, and really is fun.

    You should have no problem with those pesky Sopwiths - unless they gang up on you!!!

    'til later,

    Lee McDuffee
    the WinterHawke
    Lee McDuffee - R/C Event Director - Dawn Patrol Rendezvous 2014
    Balsa USA brother #78

  13. #13

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    RE: Great Planes DR-1 ARF

    Flew mine today! I had the engine running lean. Test stand vs cowled so the flights were short. But here are my thoughts on what I learned today.

    I had the CG set right where the plans say to put it. I have a Old (1986) Fox .74 turning a 14x6 for power, all std servos are mounted were the plans say to put them. Lateral balance required 2.5oz. in the right upper wing tip. All control movements were set to max move spelled out in the destructions book, with 30% expo on the ailerons and 20 % on the elevator.

    Taxiing was easy in straight lines, some turning was possible but not a lot. Once turned into the wind which was right down the runway. Advancing the throttle it roled maybe 30 ft in a right hand arc and we were air born at half throttle. I continued to advance the throttle to full, but all that did was increase the down elevator needed to keep the climb out shallow. At 150-200ft I leveled off and brought the throttle back to half as I turned to the field and began trimming. At the end of that pass the engine began to stumble from heat. I began turn back to the runway when the engine finally quit. I put the plane into a shallow dive (20 degrees) while turning, finally leveling the wings at about 20ft continuing the dive bringing the plane to level just above the runway and began to flair. She settled right in to a down wind landing.

    With this engine setup the high speed needle is hard to approach with the prop turning so I opened the high speed needle four clicks before starting it the next time.

    The wind had come up to 15mph at the point I advanced the throttle for the second flight and the tail came right up, along with the left wing in a sweeping right turn. I countered with rudder and the right wing lifted off. Followed by a takeoff slip like I haven’t seen before, if you can imagine as the right wheel left the ground the plane slipped / weather vaned into the wind by moving in the direction of the wings span parallel to the ground covering about two wing lengths (10ft). Is it common for these box kits to not react to rudder until airborne?

    I advanced the throttle to full this time and it died after climbing to height again. During our trip back to the runway I was treated to some of the neatest drift I’ve ever seen. I tried to use lift vectoring to keep the plane on path (with the engine out I did not want to bank to steeply) but it was like it had a mind of its own. It touched down then up on one wheel then the other when the tail came down everything settled down.

    The wind continued to increase so it was back to the WWII stuff and never got to tuning the fokker engine.


    Joe
    If it doesn't fly it wount cetch my eye.

  14. #14
    P-51B's Avatar
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    RE: Great Planes DR-1 ARF

    ORIGINAL: luc-RCU

    My only concern with this plane is that it tajkes 1/2h to prepare at the field....
    flies great on an electrioc setup

    What electric setup are you using, I was considering an axi 4130 maybe?

  15. #15

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    RE: Great Planes DR-1 ARF

    I use a HP 220/30/A3 P4 5:1 that was sitting around. If you use a 4130, you can take a 4130/16 with a large prop (around 17*10) in order to get at least 500W (or 6S with a 15*10).
    My batteries sit on top of the motor support, inside the cowl in order to achieve a good CG, w/o adding weight. Changing batteries is also quite ez.
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  16. #16

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    RE: Great Planes DR-1 ARF

    Thanks for the input all !

    this is a great forum, and is providing invaluable knowlege on this tricky bird!

    Any landing you can walk away from is a good one.

  17. #17

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    RE: Great Planes DR-1 ARF

    Hey!
    I've had so much fun with my great planes dr1 that i went out and grabbed the little 1/7th scale electric one from polk hobbies.
    all i can say is awesome. I powered it with an aon brushless motor and an eflite gearbox. With an 11/7 prop it took off in about 10 inches like a rocket. So i had to prop it down just a bit with a 10/4-7. I'm tellin you it fies just like its great planes bigger brother only without the field build time. Just set her on the ground and go. I also put in the ram machine gun sound module. Talk about the shock on peoples faces at the field when I cruise by low and slow with those machine guns blazin'...
    Too much fun!!!

  18. #18
    Sport Flyer's Avatar
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    RE: Great Planes DR-1 ARF

    Just got my first three flights in on my GP DR1, and also managed my first damage. I've got an Enya 90 FS in mine. It was literally airborne in 5' when I powered it up. Just a bit of up and right trim was needed to get it hands off. Never really wrung it out too much as I've been more concerned with getting the old Enya running like a top.

    I damaged it on my third landing when, stupidly I tried to taxi it back to me. The moment it had the wind at about three-quarter rear it blew over rather violently, breaking the prop and pulling out the upper wing mounts. I did a Zap repair and patched it up. Should be good to go for next weekend again.
    http://www.rcsites.net/sport_flyer/
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  19. #19
    P-51B's Avatar
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    RE: Great Planes DR-1 ARF

    Thanks Luc!

    It just so happens I have a 4130-16 at the house! I will ponder this over a bit, but this plane may be in my future.

    I kind of wish GP would come out with a camel or a D-VII.

  20. #20

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    RE: Great Planes DR-1 ARF

    My vote would be for a Camel/ Pup or Bristol beuafighter
    Any landing you can walk away from is a good one.

  21. #21
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    RE: Great Planes DR-1 ARF

    Just put the 6th flight on my GP DR-1. What an awsome airplane! I totally stipped
    all the covering off of mine, recovered and painted after beefing up the spars on
    the lower wing. Installed a magnum 91 fs swinging a 16 inch prop.

    Everyone is right about not flying in a crosswind. It really weathervanes into
    the wind. Take offs and landings are easier than on realflight. What a relief!

    Always a crowd pleaser at the field.
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    If it jams. Force it! If it breaks....it needed repairing anyway.

  22. #22

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    RE: Great Planes DR-1 ARF

    Incredible covering job!
    Tim

  23. #23
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    RE: Great Planes DR-1 ARF

    ORIGINAL: IceflyerVII

    Just put the 6th flight on my GP DR-1. What an awsome airplane! I totally stipped
    all the covering off of mine, recovered and painted after beefing up the spars on
    the lower wing. Installed a magnum 91 fs swinging a 16 inch prop.
    Lookin' good!!! Great choice of color scheme [sm=thumbup.gif][sm=thumbup.gif]

    Cheers!

    Jim
    Have you flogged your crew today?

  24. #24

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    RE: Great Planes DR-1 ARF

    Well, I’ve reached the point where I’m starting to fly the plane on flight 5, Flights 1-3 were all cut short by engine trouble. With that behind me I was able to fly the plane like my VK Camel from years ago. There is a spot just above Β½ throttle that the plane is trimmed for and the plane will tool around at that throttles setting in level flight just fine. Once a turn is started I notice a definite tendency to slow then drop the nose at that throttle setting. I found bumping the throttle up to ΒΎ in the turns allows it to track normally through the turn ( horizontal turn). Loops I’ve tried the advance the throttle and hold down E until you want to start the loop then relax the E and add some up and noticed that it always corkscrews to the right or left. By far the better loop in my book is to tool in at just above Β½ throttle then add E and throttle at the same time. It’ll do a loop in 10 ft dia. With the tail pushing over the top it would be possible to do a figure 9. I tried some barrel roles but they just don’t look very pretty as small as this plane wants to do them (then I’m a ww2 warbird guy) so I think I need to remove the aileron from this barrel and that should do it. Axial roles are a misnomer but they require a lot of down elevator and rudder.

    Landings are started at about 100 ft on final at a little above Β½ throttle, I move the throttle to idle and push the nose over to a thirty to forty degree dive leveling at about six ft.. If it seams to loose speed in the dive either steepen it or add throttle. Once level to the runway let the plane settle while slightly nose down until just above the grass, then rotate as best as possible. Most importantly do not try to steer it here this is a bounce and react plane Keep the wings level. I’m still over steering the rudder but am getting there.

    Joe
    If it doesn't fly it wount cetch my eye.

  25. #25

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    RE: Great Planes DR-1 ARF

    I did a 'strengthen and re-cover' on this plane at RCScaleBuilder. I agree with the comments. I am also going to try different wheels, to see if rubber tires are less likely to grab grass than the foam wheels that come with the kit.
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