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  1. #1701
    knucklebutt's Avatar
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    RE: Top Flite Staggerwing

    Jim

    Here's a way to check "nose/Tail heavy. full throttle from straight and level, pull up into a 45 deg up line and let go of the controls, tail heave and it will climb above the 45 deg: Nose heavy and it will start a descent.




    of course that means you will have to fly it again !

    Denis

  2. #1702
    Staggerflyer's Avatar
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    RE: Top Flite Staggerwing

    Double check your thrust line on the engine. If you added any downthrust beyond what the firewall already has built in, it will do this, also.

    I agree, though, it sounds nose heavy, by quite a bit.

    Since you are in the ballpark now, tho', you can start removing the nose weight, a small amount at a time, till it flies like you want. On mine, the elevator is nuetral, and it is not pitch sensetive.

    Don

  3. #1703
    sbrackets's Avatar
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    RE: Top Flite Staggerwing

    OK thanks Don.
    I will start removing one lead strip at a time till she flies straight and level with a neutral elevator.

    Thanks, Jim

  4. #1704
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    RE: Top Flite Staggerwing

    I had to add a lot of nose weight on my staggerwing with my OS 160FX I think it was about a lb or a little more. Good to hear it flew well with the S2000. That will open up my choices with my G2300.

    How much was your final weight of the plane?
    THE T.R.U.T.H

  5. #1705
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    RE: Top Flite Staggerwing


    ORIGINAL: sbrackets

    OK thanks Don.
    I will start removing one lead strip at a time till she flies straight and level with a neutral elevator.

    Thanks, Jim
    Be careful on how much you remove at a time. The break point was pretty sudden for mine. Don't know how much your strips weigh, but I would only remove an ounce or two at a time. I know, that means many test flights, but...

  6. #1706
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    RE: Top Flite Staggerwing

    Ok ! I went back and added up the stick on weights. my first number of 15oz was wrong. Was really 13.5 oz. I just removed one one partial strip of lead of 2.25oz. bring my new total added nose weight down to 11.25oz.

    Are you guys setting your elevator to the manual setting of 3/4" U & D HIGH RATE, 1/2" U & D LOW RATE? If so then I will change mine back to the manual setting, rather then adding more elevator throw. And start removing added weight in the nose a little at a time.

    Thanks, Jim

    P.S Rowdog let me get her flying correctly with the weight and I'll be glad to give you the final weight of my bird.

  7. #1707
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    RE: Top Flite Staggerwing

    I just pulled mine out of winter storage and repair, to measure it for you. My CG is at the 5.5" mark, my field finger test points might be back 1/8". Mine is electric, so the batteries can be moved slightly to adjust.

    My elevator movement is set at 3/4" up and down, 5/8 up on dual rate, but I never use it. I use 40%expo on all settings to smooth out the center, normal flying area. The only time full elevator is ever used is... I don't think I've ever used it on this plane, except when taxiing. This plane is properly flown at high speed, wide open manuevers, not full throw for anything.

    I did look closely at my elevator "center". It might be 1/32" up. Checked the centering on the transmitter, and it shows 6% up trim, so I could still be a smidgen nose heavy. But I like the way it flies there. My first flight, the maiden, I did not turn it upside down. I went straight up from the point and held it under top wing. WRONG!! It came out very tailheavy. Only my long years of experience and my R/C helicopter experience, (FAST thumbs!) allowed me to save it. It took two lbs on the firewall to balance. That was with the OS 1.60 TwinFS. With my electric setup, on 10cell lipos, I still have 8 oz on the motor mounts.

    During it's rebuild, (new wings required,) I may strip all the fuse stuff in the rear of the fuse, also. The only one required is the tailwheel mount. I use the air ram to operate it, but it's up on the servo mount rail in front. Pushrod going back.

  8. #1708
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    RE: Top Flite Staggerwing

    Got mine all done except for CG adjustments.

    Grabbed my trusty ol' Great Planes CG Machine. I've had this machine for many years and it has worked flawlessly on everything from 10 ounce foamies up to 30+ pound planes. Unfortunately, it won't work on this plane ![:@]

    It shows a cute little picture of this same machine on page 37 of my manual, but apparently nobody actually took the time to try it out on an actual TopFlite Staggerwing. The horizontal rods used to support the two CG machine bases are just too short at about 12 inches.

    Easy fix ! Went to local hobby shop and picked up a 48" length of 3/16" carbon-fiber tube. Chopped the tube in half. Machine bases will now span 24". Works great now.

    Bad news is, I had to add 1 pound 6 ounces to the nose. Good news is, even with the addition of the nose weight, my total weight was cut from its original 23 pounds down to 19 pounds 11 ounces. My StaggerWing diet has worked ! Bad news is, now I've got to wait 'til spring to get her in the air.[:'(]

    Joe M.
    Joe Mamma

    There\'s no such thing as gravity.........the earth sucks !!

  9. #1709
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    RE: Top Flite Staggerwing

    Hey Joe
    I used my friends Great planes CG balancer. He had already replaced the Horizonal rods with longer ones to fit wider planes, so I was good to go.

    I did some looking on the Net tonight about nose heavy plane characteristics And my plane fits the bill. Said if a plane needs up elevator to keep level flight(which mine does) the plane is nose heavy. And feels heavy on the stick, which mine did, it's nose heavy.
    Hell, I know 3/4" up elevator wasn't enough on that maiden flight.

    I'm pretty sure mine was nose heavy. I have already given the balancer back to my buddy. But I might go get it again and do a recheck now that I removed 2.25oz of lead weight from the nose.


    Jim

  10. #1710
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    RE: Top Flite Staggerwing

    ORIGINAL: JoeMamma

    Got mine all done except for CG adjustments.

    Grabbed my trusty ol' Great Planes CG Machine. I've had this machine for many years and it has worked flawlessly on everything from 10 ounce foamies up to 30+ pound planes. Unfortunately, it won't work on this plane ![:@]

    It shows a cute little picture of this same machine on page 37 of my manual, but apparently nobody actually took the time to try it out on an actual TopFlite Staggerwing. The horizontal rods used to support the two CG machine bases are just too short at about 12 inches.

    Easy fix ! Went to local hobby shop and picked up a 48'' length of 3/16'' carbon-fiber tube. Chopped the tube in half. Machine bases will now span 24''. Works great now.

    Bad news is, I had to add 1 pound 6 ounces to the nose. Good news is, even with the addition of the nose weight, my total weight was cut from its original 23 pounds down to 19 pounds 11 ounces. My StaggerWing diet has worked ! Bad news is, now I've got to wait 'til spring to get her in the air.[:'(]

    Joe M.
    I used the Great planes CG machine on mine too when I balanced mine a few years ago...try using it on a FAT Great Planes Gee Bee
    THE T.R.U.T.H

  11. #1711
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    RE: Top Flite Staggerwing

    Mine worked jus fine on mine, other than having the tail over the edge of the table.

    Wonder if the earlier ones came with shorter rods.

  12. #1712

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    RE: Top Flite Staggerwing

    Does anyone have the plans to build a wing set for the Topflight Staggerwing? I know they are discontinued but you can still get all the other pieces from Tower. This is my dream plane and it's the perfect size I was looking for! I have seen them come up for sale but they are asking out of my budget for them. Besides if you do bust up the wings what then?

  13. #1713

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    RE: Top Flite Staggerwing

    Good luck on your quest, the Staggerwing was an ARF. There were no plans available unless someone drew them up on their own

    Skipb

  14. #1714

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    RE: Top Flite Staggerwing

    Hi To All.

    I have been away from this "thread" for sometime,great to see it is alive and well !!!

    I have been away from mt S/W project,details of which I posted some time ago............I have now finished her and just awaitng to do the maiden ( at long last !!! ).

    I have run in my Saito 200R3,pleased to report that there appears to be plenty of power + it sounds great !!! I found out that the idle mixture was too rich,it was giving me a bit of trouble with causing a plug to "go-out" at extened lowish RPM's......I have now in addition to the "mixture" fix added an "on-board" glow system............working great.

    I know that this subject has been talked about alot.........CORRECT POSITION FOR C of G !!! ........I would just like to confirm with you all that the position I have is correct by the "flying-results" you have all acheived.I have set mine to 5 1/2" from the leading edge of the lower wing.At this point she balances with a slight "nose" down attitude ( Wheels are retracted ).If I get it right,I have posted a photo of the position of the c of g.I will set about 30% expo and will increase the upper limits of the control throws to start with.

    Thanks to all for the thread.

    Cheers.............Nick (UK).

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  15. #1715
    Staggerflyer's Avatar
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    RE: Top Flite Staggerwing

    Nick, looking good.

    Take your CG measurement right on the outer rib where the wing joins to it. You should be perfect there. Your marked position looks good.

    Go easy on adding more elvaor movement, unless you have a 3 position switch, and want to add more for taxiing on grass only. Switch back to listed max movement just before starting take-off run. If you want to add a little more, 1/4-3/8 inch max. 30% expo good.

    Good luck on the maiden, hopefully you will get video.

    Don

  16. #1716
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    RE: Top Flite Staggerwing


    ORIGINAL: njmheli

    Hi To All.

    I have been away from this ''thread'' for sometime,great to see it is alive and well !!!

    I have been away from mt S/W project,details of which I posted some time ago............I have now finished her and just awaitng to do the maiden ( at long last !!! ).

    I have run in my Saito 200R3,pleased to report that there appears to be plenty of power + it sounds great !!! I found out that the idle mixture was too rich,it was giving me a bit of trouble with causing a plug to ''go-out'' at extened lowish RPM's......I have now in addition to the ''mixture'' fix added an ''on-board'' glow system............working great.

    I know that this subject has been talked about alot.........CORRECT POSITION FOR C of G !!! ........I would just like to confirm with you all that the position I have is correct by the ''flying-results'' you have all acheived.I have set mine to 5 1/2'' from the leading edge of the lower wing.At this point she balances with a slight ''nose'' down attitude ( Wheels are retracted ).If I get it right,I have posted a photo of the position of the c of g.I will set about 30% expo and will increase the upper limits of the control throws to start with.

    Thanks to all for the thread.

    Cheers.............Nick (UK).

    Looks "good"
    ...and then the unthinkable happened!

  17. #1717

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    RE: Top Flite Staggerwing

    Hi Don / "Gageebees".

    Thanks for your response to my "question",much appreciated..............thought I had got it right !!!

    Was up the strip today,having a good fly,my club members are eager for me to maidend my S/W...............so yes,all things in place will be very soon and I hope to get the vid posted.

    Thanks again.

    Nick...............(UK).

  18. #1718

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    RE: Top Flite Staggerwing

    Hi Guys.

    Staggerwing c of g checked,should be ready to go for the maiden now,just waiting for the weather !! Have "widened" my GP balancer..........works great.It is" slight" nose down at 5 1/2" as photo in other thread.
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  19. #1719
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    RE: Top Flite Staggerwing

    I'D say it's too nose heavy per the photo. And will use a lot of runway to take off. And will need up trim for level flight. Just like mine.
    If I were you I would remove some weight in the nose till she's perfectly level.
    But that's just me speeking.

    Jim

  20. #1720
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    RE: Top Flite Staggerwing


    ORIGINAL: sbrackets

    I'D say it's too nose heavy per the photo. And will use a lot of runway to take off. And will need up trim for level flight. Just like mine.
    If I were you I would remove some weight in the nose till she's perfectly level.
    But that's just me speeking.

    Jim
    I agree, it is too nose heavy, however, personally, for first flight, I would remove enough to get it ALMOST level. Only SLIGHTLY nose down. Just for the first flight, so it won't be to pitch sensetive. Mine tended to tip stall far to quickly until I returned to slight nose down.
    Just my 2 cents

    Don

  21. #1721

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    RE: Top Flite Staggerwing

    Hi Don / Jim.

    Many thanks for your advice.....funny,in the photo,I agree it does look too nose "heavy", but in "real-life" it didn't look as much as that !!!I have to change out one of the batteries at the "firewall",so will do that first and then see what weight I can remove to get her SLIGHTLY nose down.

    I have re-checked all the control throws and they are as the "high" rates as stated in the manual + 1/4"max,I 've added to them.Expo is set at 30%.......so hope that will be good.

    Thank you again for your advice,all very much appreciated.......watch this space for anothe c of g pic !!!!

    Cheers............Nick (UK).

  22. #1722
    Staggerflyer's Avatar
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    RE: Top Flite Staggerwing


    ORIGINAL: njmheli

    Hi Don / Jim.

    Many thanks for your advice.....funny,in the photo,I agree it does look too nose ''heavy'', but in ''real-life'' it didn't look as much as that !!!I have to change out one of the batteries at the ''firewall'',so will do that first and then see what weight I can remove to get her SLIGHTLY nose down.

    I have re-checked all the control throws and they are as the ''high'' rates as stated in the manual + 1/4''max,I 've added to them.Expo is set at 30%.......so hope that will be good.

    Thank you again for your advice,all very much appreciated.......watch this space for anothe c of g pic !!!!

    Cheers............Nick (UK).
    Sounding good.

    use the horizontal stab as the "level" point.

    Your movements and expo should give you a nice flight. Enjoy.

  23. #1723
    GaGeeBees's Avatar
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    RE: Top Flite Staggerwing


    ORIGINAL: njmheli

    Hi Don / Jim.

    Many thanks for your advice.....funny,in the photo,I agree it does look too nose ''heavy'', but in ''real-life'' it didn't look as much as that !!!I have to change out one of the batteries at the ''firewall'',so will do that first and then see what weight I can remove to get her SLIGHTLY nose down.

    I have re-checked all the control throws and they are as the ''high'' rates as stated in the manual + 1/4''max,I 've added to them.Expo is set at 30%.......so hope that will be good.

    Thank you again for your advice,all very much appreciated.......watch this space for anothe c of g pic !!!!

    Cheers............Nick (UK).
    Looks "fine" to me.
    ...and then the unthinkable happened!

  24. #1724

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    RE: Top Flite Staggerwing

    I have one for sale, new/unassembled w/ retracts. It's posted here on RCU if anyone's interested.
    Al
    MobyAl

  25. #1725
    Staggerflyer's Avatar
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    RE: Top Flite Staggerwing


    ORIGINAL: mobyal

    I have one for sale, new/unassembled w/ retracts. It's posted here on RCU if anyone's interested.
    Al

    AAARRRRGGGHH and I'm on layoff right now. [&o]


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