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  1. #1

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    Scale Line Models Great Lakes Trainer Build

    My mother bought this Scale Line Models Great Lakes Trainer kit as a gift for my father in 1962. It's been in the rafters since, and he asked me to build it for him, probably mostly for sentimental reasons.

    I didn't want to mess up the kit, so I'm using the plans as a guide, updating a few construction techniques, and converting to electric. I shooting for an Eflite Power 32 on 3S, I figure that should be fine if I keep the weight around 5 to 6 pounds. It's mostly framed up and I need to finish up the wings, do all the alignments, and final stuff.

    Some of the changes I've made are: re-engineered the firewall for electric, added 3 degrees downthrust, reduced dihedral to a more-scale 3.5 degrees, redesigned the empenage structure. Speaking of empanage, the tail is about 10% bigger than scale, as was standard practice back in the day. If I was doing it over, I'd cut it to scale size, but it's too late for that now.

    I redesigned the interplant strut attachment. And the wings were designed to be attached with rubber-bands so I redesigned for bolts. I'm using 50 pound test spiderwire to attach all the music wire to the fuse.

    I plan to cover with orange solartex with black paint. Oh, and my mother planned ahead enough to buy an optional fiberglass cowl for it. Who would have thought she knew about such things back then……
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  2. #2

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    RE: Scale Line Models Great Lakes Trainer Build

    Nice.

  3. #3
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    RE: Scale Line Models Great Lakes Trainer Build


    ORIGINAL: ampeater

    My mother bought this Scale Line Models Great Lakes Trainer kit as a gift for my father in 1962. It's been in the rafters since, and he asked me to build it for him, probably mostly for sentimental reasons. ... I plan to cover with orange solartex with black paint. Oh, and my mother planned ahead enough to buy an optional fiberglass cowl for it. Who would have thought she knew about such things back then……
    Not a half-bad plane at all - found one myself a couple years ago in a yard-sale, in pretty sad shape. Took her apart and put her back together, painted in the scheme of the full-size NC-840H, a 2T-1B model.

    Among other things, during the restoration I contacted John Dunham, owner/president/CEO of the Great Lakes Aircraft Company which is now located in Colorado. He put me in contact with Harvey Swack (company historian and info guru). Mr Dunham gave permission to use the GLAC logo and Mr Swack sent me a copy of the original company 3-view drawings.

    I covered mine with SIG Koverall & Stixit, painted with SIG dopes. You can see a bit of what I went through on the website - http://www.wanderings-ds.com/whs/52-2t1a.html

    I'm including a copy of the logo and some of the other stuff they sent here, along with a couple pics of my bird - and the full-size bird that I based the paint job on.

    Good luck with yours!!!!

    ANDTHANKYOURMOTHERFORSTILLHAVINGIT!!!!!!!!!!!!

    Dave

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    Dave W. TSgt, USAF/ESC (Retired, 1968-1990)
    AMA #94881, VRCS #208; "Old-school" R/C & C/L Sport Flier, instructor
    SIG Kadet Brotherhood #69, SIG Brotherhood #109, Cub B'hood #198, Glowhead B'hood #51

    FLYING is the 2nd greatest thrill known to man. LANDING is the 1st
    To a tree, balsa tastes just like chicken

  4. #4

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    RE: Scale Line Models Great Lakes Trainer Build

    Dave,

    You did a great job restoring yours, she looks great! That is the same scheme I was thinking of, but I also have an old picture that I might go with, still undecided. I was thinking of using Koverall/dope but decided to stick with the simpler iron-on covering. I read your site, sounds like the .40 didn't work out for you, you had to put in a .60? I'm shooting for a .35 equivalent, so I hope it works out.

    Sounds like you also had to add some tail weight, was it because of the bigger engine? My motor is a heck of a lot lighter up front, and I should be able to slide the batteries back and forth to balance. I was thinking of putting the rudder and elev servos as far forward as I can, but if it's gonna be nose heavy, I might keep them per plan.

  5. #5
    skylark-flier's Avatar
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    RE: Scale Line Models Great Lakes Trainer Build


    ORIGINAL: ampeater

    Dave,

    You did a great job restoring yours, she looks great! That is the same scheme I was thinking of, but I also have an old picture that I might go with, still undecided. I was thinking of using Koverall/dope but decided to stick with the simpler iron-on covering. I read your site, sounds like the .40 didn't work out for you, you had to put in a .60? I'm shooting for a .35 equivalent, so I hope it works out.

    Sounds like you also had to add some tail weight, was it because of the bigger engine? My motor is a heck of a lot lighter up front, and I should be able to slide the batteries back and forth to balance. I was thinking of putting the rudder and elev servos as far forward as I can, but if it's gonna be nose heavy, I might keep them per plan.
    I thank you kindly for the good words - yeah, she's very much a favorite when she's on the field. As far as "paint jobs" go, most of the original planes came in 2 fairly simple color patterns. The first is like mine, solid fuse and fins with the tear-drop that matched the wings, and the other is the centered paint stripe down the side. Got some pics of that one below too.

    The modern planes, coming out of the factory today, are all over the landscape as far as color scheme goes - I don't think any 2 are the same, with the exception of 5 that one guy out West has - all are identical, all are powered with a turboprop engine. From what I've been able to find out, they do precision aerobatics at rather high speeds and the planes are capable of in excess of 350 knots. That's truly MOVING for a 2T.

    Yeah, no doubt about it - the .40 didn't work out so well. I went to a .45 with 11X6 prop that was a bit better (she could get higher than 10 feet with that one) but she really came to life when I put the OS FSa.56 4-stroke with 12X6 prop and Dubro motor mount into her.

    IMHO, you're going about your build absolutely perfectly - stay with your thoughts, keep her LIGHT. Mine was apparently built in the 60's and 1960's methods were used. The entire nose was CARVED from balsa blocks, hardwood engine mounts, a huge amount of ply behind the firewall and in the wing-mount area. When I put the .56 into her I rebuilt the entire nose section (sure wish I'd had access to your fibreglass nose), narrowing it down a bit to a more "scale" appearance (also cut a lot of drag) and cut many many lightening holes into the plywood. Shaved a lot of other things up-front too.

    One thing I'll never be able to prove, but I suspect strongly, was that mine originally had an ignition engine. The entire area ahead of the firewall was cut for a large (size-wise) engine but the area just behind the firewall had a spot for a rather small fuel tank - I'm guessing 4 oz. or so.

    Anyway, during the final set-up I moved the radio battery and receiver into the rear of the fuse, first bay behind the lower wing, and all the servos are right there ahead of that bulkhead, right under the rear cockpit. Fuel tank (8 oz and I use 15% nitro fuel) takes up the rest of the space under the front cockpit. Never did put any weight in the tail, fortunately. CG, today, is right at the LE of the lower wing and she flies pretty decently - she's certainly no aerobat but she can loop, roll and do all the basic maneuvers that folks like to see.

    Got a link here to a whole bunch (couple hundred) of pics of 2Ts as they're flying today. http://www.russellw.com/photoalbum/p...?qModel=e2T-1A You'll see #841 (not 840 as I said before) and a BUNCH of others, including some 2T-1C's (radial engines with round cowls) that must be awesome to fly.

    Pic below - the other main "old time" color pattern.

    Dave

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    Dave W. TSgt, USAF/ESC (Retired, 1968-1990)
    AMA #94881, VRCS #208; "Old-school" R/C & C/L Sport Flier, instructor
    SIG Kadet Brotherhood #69, SIG Brotherhood #109, Cub B'hood #198, Glowhead B'hood #51

    FLYING is the 2nd greatest thrill known to man. LANDING is the 1st
    To a tree, balsa tastes just like chicken

  6. #6
    skylark-flier's Avatar
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    RE: Scale Line Models Great Lakes Trainer Build

    OOPS - will look it up again.
    Dave W. TSgt, USAF/ESC (Retired, 1968-1990)
    AMA #94881, VRCS #208; "Old-school" R/C & C/L Sport Flier, instructor
    SIG Kadet Brotherhood #69, SIG Brotherhood #109, Cub B'hood #198, Glowhead B'hood #51

    FLYING is the 2nd greatest thrill known to man. LANDING is the 1st
    To a tree, balsa tastes just like chicken

  7. #7

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    RE: Scale Line Models Great Lakes Trainer Build

    Ahhh, the Great Lakes Trainer 2T-1A is one of my favorite planes of all time. I have the Sterling control line version hanging on the wall next to me right now. I also have the FlyLine .25 size kit down the basement. I wish someone would come out with a .60-.90 size kit or ARF.

    Bruce
    Bruce L. AMA# 54227
    Ultra Sport Brotherhood #15

  8. #8
    skylark-flier's Avatar
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    RE: Scale Line Models Great Lakes Trainer Build

    Was just looking at the Cleveland plans this morning for one. They've got plans for 10" wing up to what would be a .90 or so size. cleveland.com I think. Will check... Yeah, go to http://www.clevelandairline.com/ASP/PRODUCT.asp and when you get there click on Great Lakes as the manufacturer, and pick the 2T-1E - plenty of sizes there.
    Dave W. TSgt, USAF/ESC (Retired, 1968-1990)
    AMA #94881, VRCS #208; "Old-school" R/C & C/L Sport Flier, instructor
    SIG Kadet Brotherhood #69, SIG Brotherhood #109, Cub B'hood #198, Glowhead B'hood #51

    FLYING is the 2nd greatest thrill known to man. LANDING is the 1st
    To a tree, balsa tastes just like chicken

  9. #9

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    RE: Scale Line Models Great Lakes Trainer Build

    Dave, thanks for all the ref material, I'm sure it'll come in handy. The orange with the black pinstripe was my second choice, but I'm leaning to the way you did yours.

    Here are a couple pics of how I modified the front end. Plans call for a 1/4" ply firewall with a bunch of 1/8 ply layers to capture the front gear wires along with a big 1/4 ply engine bearer. I'm still using the 1/8 gear layers, but went to a 1/8 firewall and changed out the engine bearers for a 1/8 ply motor/battery box. The rear gear wires are supported by a v-shaped ply former which was a handy place to connect the back end of the battery box. The battery box should be plenty long to move the batteries for balance. I'll add some tri-stock to the box to reinforce it.

    You can see the kevlar spiderwire I used to tie the cabanes to the fuse. Also, I soldered some clips to the rear cabane and front gear wire for the rigging.

    I also found this logo (I think from the great lakes web site) a while ago that I was going to attempt to make a decal of.
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  10. #10
    skylark-flier's Avatar
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    RE: Scale Line Models Great Lakes Trainer Build

    Yeah, definitely looking good, I like your use of the spiderwire. Gotta tell ya, your solder jobs look GREAT!!I'm no great shakes with a soldering iron - was lucky that every one of my solder joints was a good one as they were originally. You're doing GREAT with the "mass" aspect - mine had enough mass in that frontal area to give the loggers a day off, I dumped THATMUCH balsa, spruce & hardwood out of the front end.

    When you get to it, I got my cockpit combing from Tower - worked just great. Also, not sure of just how the cockpit-hatch connects PROPERLY (mine was truly messed up when I got it) but I used bicycle spokes to hold mine down - cowl top too (but you won't have to worry about that, having the fibreglass cowl available).

    Tell me if I'm wrong - you're building yours with the crank at the top of the cowl, ya? That would be the original "E" model, as I understand how they were labeled at that time. EVERYTHING coming out of the factory today is listed as "E" - - 2T-1E.

    Another small tidbit of trivia - the WACO people just bought rights to build new Great Lakes planes too. I guess this has been just in the past couple weeks. They're planning to build a couple dozen planes this year and they're aiming for 100 planes/year after that.

    Yup - your logo is the exact same one I got from the website - I just used the center portion because the guys in the full-size birds seem to change the style of the words as they please and the particular bird I modeled after had the name tiny-printed underneath. Hey, if you're not comfy with doing your own decals just let me know. I've got the paper and spray right here - won't take a minute to print them out and send them to you. Just let me know how tall you want - happy to do it.

    Dave
    Dave W. TSgt, USAF/ESC (Retired, 1968-1990)
    AMA #94881, VRCS #208; "Old-school" R/C & C/L Sport Flier, instructor
    SIG Kadet Brotherhood #69, SIG Brotherhood #109, Cub B'hood #198, Glowhead B'hood #51

    FLYING is the 2nd greatest thrill known to man. LANDING is the 1st
    To a tree, balsa tastes just like chicken

  11. #11

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    RE: Scale Line Models Great Lakes Trainer Build

    Dave,

    I'm making mine with the crank at the bottom. I posted a 3-view at the first post. I don't know if you can make it out, but it shows the crank at the bottom is a 2T-1A and the crank at the top as a 2T-1E. So I'm going with the "A" like yours.

    Here's a pic from the plans showing that they do use a spoke to hold down the cowl, and they do the same with the cockpit hatch. Plus you can see how much balsa it took to carve the cowl. Thank goodness for fiberglass.

    Thanks for the offer on the decals, I may take you up on it, but it's something I've been wanting to experiment with, and I may have a few different ones to make. If I fail at it, I'll let you know.

    Ron
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  12. #12
    skylark-flier's Avatar
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    RE: Scale Line Models Great Lakes Trainer Build

    Amazing!When I put mine back together I had no idea they'd actually designed it for the spokes - it was simply the only thing I could see that would work over such a large GAP!

    The decals are actually rather easy to make. Just be sure to spray at least 2 coats over them to seal good. I use the transparent for some, white-backing for many. If you want solid colors (such as for the GLAClogo) I recommend white-backed. I don't think you'll have any troubles at all but lemme know if you want me to do them anyway - happy to help.
    Dave W. TSgt, USAF/ESC (Retired, 1968-1990)
    AMA #94881, VRCS #208; "Old-school" R/C & C/L Sport Flier, instructor
    SIG Kadet Brotherhood #69, SIG Brotherhood #109, Cub B'hood #198, Glowhead B'hood #51

    FLYING is the 2nd greatest thrill known to man. LANDING is the 1st
    To a tree, balsa tastes just like chicken

  13. #13

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    RE: Scale Line Models Great Lakes Trainer Build

    I made some more progress. Installed the servos and pushrods. Got the cockpit hatch done. Installing the cowl was tougher than I thought it'd be. It's a clamshell and it was tough getting the top to line up to the bottom. Last thing left is final wing alignments, the interplant struts, and a bunch of sanding. Then I can cover her.

    Weight as she sits now is 4 lb 3 oz., so final weight will probably be in the low 5 lbs. 3 cells at 40-45 amps should fly her nice. I wanted to use a small spinner per drawing, but there's no way to get a 14" prop into a 1.5" spinner.
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  14. #14
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    RE: Scale Line Models Great Lakes Trainer Build


    ORIGINAL: landeck

    Ahhh, the Great Lakes Trainer 2T-1A is one of my favorite planes of all time. I have the Sterling control line version hanging on the wall next to me right now. I also have the FlyLine .25 size kit down the basement. I wish someone would come out with a .60-.90 size kit or ARF.

    Bruce
    I have the plans for the flyline model 20 size..... I agree and plan on blowing them up to 80 or so 4 stroke size.
    Mike -
    I was born a pilot... 100 years to late.

  15. #15

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    RE: Scale Line Models Great Lakes Trainer Build

    Still a few little things to go, but I had to deliver it this weekend, so I'll finish them up later: windscreen, pilots, exhaust. But this i how she came out. 5 pounds even without the battery.
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  16. #16

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    RE: Scale Line Models Great Lakes Trainer Build

    ampeater, very nice!

    Bruce
    Bruce L. AMA# 54227
    Ultra Sport Brotherhood #15

  17. #17
    skylark-flier's Avatar
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    RE: Scale Line Models Great Lakes Trainer Build


    ORIGINAL: ampeater

    Still a few little things to go, but I had to deliver it this weekend, so I'll finish them up later: windscreen, pilots, exhaust. But this i how she came out. 5 pounds even without the battery.
    Outstanding!!! She really came out nice.

    Flying - if yours is anything like mine, she takes a bit more room than you'd think to get off the ground and you definitely don't want to land dead-stick (happens to me every once in awhile - she's certainly no glider) very often. Other than that, she's a lot of fun to fly - VERY "scale" in nearly everything she does but at slightly more than "scale" speed.

    Mine's a fair amount heavier than I think is proper (7.5+ lbs ready to fly) but she was built a long time ago. Yours is closer to what's right for this design - will probably fly a whole lot better. One day I'd love to find a NIB kit and build another - but with today's methods, like yours is.

    Well done!You're going to love her in the air.

    Dave

    Dave W. TSgt, USAF/ESC (Retired, 1968-1990)
    AMA #94881, VRCS #208; "Old-school" R/C & C/L Sport Flier, instructor
    SIG Kadet Brotherhood #69, SIG Brotherhood #109, Cub B'hood #198, Glowhead B'hood #51

    FLYING is the 2nd greatest thrill known to man. LANDING is the 1st
    To a tree, balsa tastes just like chicken


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