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Help restoring and antique control line plane

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Old 04-25-2013, 12:39 PM
  #1
invaderk2
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Default Help restoring and antique control line plane

Hello all,

I have my grandfathers old control line plane (at least I think thats what it is). And I'd like to have it restored so I can give it to my new born son so he has a family memento. I have exactly 0 idea as to what kind it is or the best way to go about restoring it so I'm hoping the community here can give me some help. I guess the first thing to do would be to relace the engine/propeller, fuel tank, and making sure the wires on the bottom are correct. The best I can go on is providing the following pictures and taking reccomendations from you guys to get it fixed up. Thanks in advance!





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Old 04-25-2013, 01:23 PM
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Default RE: Help restoring and antique control line plane

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ORIGINAL: invaderk2 Hello all, I have my grandfathers old control line plane (at least I think thats what it is). And I'd like to have it restored so I can give it to my new born son so he has a family memento. I have exactly 0 idea as to what kind it is or the best way to go about restoring it so I'm hoping the community here can give me some help. I guess the first thing to do would be to replace the engine/propeller, fuel tank, and making sure the wires on the bottom are correct. The best I can go on is providing the following pictures and taking recommendations from you guys to get it fixed up. Thanks in advance!
For one, that Enya .29 on the front may be salvageable, believe it or not. Depends on the internals. Sometimes one can boil the assembly after partial disassembly, freeing the piston and liner from congealed Castor oil. The grunge is removed through various methods, soakin in a volatile solvent like MEK, Acetone, Lacquer Thinner, slow cooking in a crockpot with 50% antifreeze and water mix, etc. The exterior can be cleaned up by lightly sanding the aluminum to remove corrosion with very fine sandpaper, then polishing with Mother's Mag and Aluminum polish or similar. If it is not badly corroded, sometimes aluminum polish is enough to clean it. After, it might not look like a collector item, but it will look acceptable. The steel parts can be derusted with Naval Jelly or soaked in Phosphoric or Muriatic Acid.

If it needs replacing, CL engines of that era come up occasionally on E-Bay. You can probably mount anything from a .19 to .35 on the plane.

It looks like the elevator is missing on the plane. It sort of resembles a Testor Freshman trainer, but it's not that.

The plane was most likely finished in Butyrate dope. A good overall sanding using a sanding block will help to remove chipped paint and smooth the finish. If down to the bare wood, you can use spackling compound to fill in dents and low spots. If painted, autobody spot putty or Bondo can be used over the paint. You can also test spackling compound to see if it will bond. That is easier to use than the automotive stuff.

The wing if covered in silkspan can be stripped and framework sanded, recovered.

Then refinish it using the fuel proof finish of choice. If non-fuel proof, AFAIK, PolyUrethane paints are fuel proof, can be clear coated in PolyUrethane varnish. I've heard that the colored Rustoleum enamels (not metallics) are fuel proof once they cure. I am used to the traditional model plane dopes (special lacquers) but will be more familiar when I start using Rustoleum on a test case.

You have a bit of history there. Another solution may be to keep it as is, and to build something for your son to remember you after, that you patterned after your father's CL creation of that era, that he can fly and enjoy when old enough.

Good luck in your endeavor.
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Old 04-25-2013, 03:25 PM
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Default RE: Help restoring and antique control line plane

G'day Invader,

As your son is new born, you have a bit of time to decide what to do. Your grandfathers model must hold dear memories for you, and will be a terrific gift to your son. As such I think it's flying days are over.

I would make it a restoration job for static display only. As George has said the engine can be tidied up, possibly to the point of being run again. It's also possible the Enya have spares if required (Ken Enya is very helpful and offers a great service in engines and spares.) I'm a fan of boiling old engines in a crock pot, possibly for up to a week to freshen them up, then strip down, inspect for wear or damage. The reassemble with any new or rebuilt parts required.

The model - which I note has no fuel tank attached- can be stripped back and tidied up, or you can try to save as much of your grand dad's work as possible and tidy the model up and give it a clear spray to stop any further deterioration.

If you want to teach your son to fly, there are a great number of models and motors that will do that without risking a crash of an irreplaceable family treasure.

Good luck with your choice and enjoy your grand dads plane.

Greg
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Old 04-25-2013, 04:15 PM
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Default RE: Help restoring and antique control line plane

Thanks for the suggestions guys! I think my goal at this point is defintely to do a complete restore on it as the paint and the body are both in fairly rough condition. I would love to be able to get it running again but I agree Greg I don't think I'll be trying to fly this one. I'm ok with getting the engine looking as good as I can and replacing the fuel tank and possibly the fuel line but I'd rather keep the original engine even if it wont run again for sentiment sake.

I got everything mostly disasebled and I'll be tackling the engine this weekend. Should I completely take apart the engine or soak it as is? And is there a preferred method of those metioned for degunking everything as I don't have a crock pot my wife won't kill me for ruining? lol.

The only other problem I've run in to, is the wing and body are both so crusted with paint and what looks some kind of wood filler/glue that the wing wont slide out. Any suggestions for removing the two pieces without breaking either of them besides just sanding them down to where they're small enough to slide apart?


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Old 04-25-2013, 04:32 PM
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Default RE: Help restoring and antique control line plane

Is the wing solid balsa or sheet balsa covered? I'd just leave the fuselage and wing joint intact, and work from there. There should be no reason to disassemble further, I'd think.

You might be able to use a paint stripping product if it is that heavily caked in paint. I'd try a test case on a small area first.
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Old 04-25-2013, 05:07 PM
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Default RE: Help restoring and antique control line plane

It seems like its solid balsa but i suppose I could get it cleaned up suitably without taking it apart.
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Old 04-25-2013, 06:51 PM
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Default RE: Help restoring and antique control line plane

Yeah, I'd think you might make it worse by attempting disassembly of that joint. If it is glued solidly, it should stay glued after painting, which is good if you ever decide to chance it in a test flight. You might be able to replace that motor mount with a piece of 1/4" or 3/8" thick plywood. That type motor mount for upright beam mounted engine was common back then.
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Old 04-26-2013, 10:21 AM
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Default RE: Help restoring and antique control line plane

Geez, not sure what plane it is either, although it definitely has the look of one of the early Testors planes. That Enya is definitely no "throw-away", it's not all that hard to clean it back to looking good, and probably will still run just fine. I just (last week) brought one of my old Testors engines back to life (runs like it was new) and it actually looked worse than yours does now. I used MEK in a coffee can over the side burner of my gas grill - 3 hours of boiling (engine opened but not completely torn down) and a bit of delicate scrubbing on the inside pretty much did it. Worse part of the whole job was cleaning out of the needle valve area and intake - that part took awhile. Anyway, she runs pretty good now again.

If you're interested, I think I have some old 2 & 6 oz. Testors metal tanks - probably some of the old wheels too. Will look them up.

Gotta tell ya, if I'd come across her, she'd fly again - but that's me. If it's got wings I like to see it fly.

GallopingGhostler is 100% correct - I wouldn't touch that wing/fuse joint unless it absolutely MUST be fixed.

Good luck on this project - it's a good one to go with.

Dave
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