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  1. #1

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    Topflite Gold kit P-47

    The purpose of this thread is to promote fliers to build a kit and get a greater understanding of how the plane works...I started model airplanes in Feb. 1970 and back in the 70's I built a couple of TF kits, They were a little tough to build for me. Mostly plans and wood back then. left alot up to the builder's knowlage..This Gold Kit Thunderbolt is the first TF kit I have bought since trying them way back when..These newer versions are real well engineered, good quality wood and good overall cutting of the parts. I think it's a great value for the dollar..We have had two weeks of very bad winter here in Mo. so I have moved along pretty good being trapped inside..RCU is my favorite RC site for info and everything it's just that my internet finds it hard to load and drops the pages quite often but we will try and load some pictures here... I am planning on installing a Thunder Tiger 91 4 stroke on the plane...any input from those of you who have this kit please chime in! Thanks Terry B.
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  2. #2

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    RE: Topflite Gold kit P-47

    nice jug. don't have any experience with it, but if i was going to do one up, it would be the razorback. is it much different than the bubble canopy, as far as building? are the formers included or did you have to buy a coversion kit like the P-51?
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  3. #3

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    RE: Topflite Gold kit P-47

    I love this kit it is a very well put together kit. This is my first kit iIhave ever built and I am plugging along at a really good pace, I have the stab and the fin done just need to hinge them (just picked up a great planes slot maching yesterday at an auction) and the upper fuselage is all ready for sheeting, just need to go pick up some thick CA. Would wood glue work good on the skins? I'm assuming you just need the thick so you have a few more seconds to get the skins in place. I will post some pics later need to find my camera and the cable. Yes crash it comes with all the stuff for the razorback, also has all formers for the bubble but need to buy the bubble seperatly.
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    RE: Topflite Gold kit P-47

    The Golds are some of the better kits still being cut today. They made it so they go together very easy. Nothing at all like some of the older kits we had. As for sheeting I too use thick or medium CA and wet the sheeting with 50/50 water and ammonia if the wood needs to take a bend. Thick CA gives you several minutes to so you have time to put it on the main structure then warp the wood sheeting over the frame. Sheeting is one of the parts of the build I really enjoy a lot. Gives the plane that finished look? I don't know why, I just really like doing it.
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    RE: Topflite Gold kit P-47

    Great Guys keep going........I have one in the box because we are about to move to NW Ohio. Keep the photos comming and talk alive so I can get a great deal more info on your project. I built a Jack Straford P-39 with core wing and lots of forming of the skin. Hoping the TF Gold Ed. is much easer to built then the P-39. This one I'm going to give to a Guy I met last month when he was telling me about hid Dad that flew then in WWII It will look great hanging somewear in his house or shop. Keep going Guys & thanks.........
    Boldly go where you have not gone before! ~Spike Schneider Sprinter4a ~ Standing in Victory Lane ~

  6. #6

    RE: Topflite Gold kit P-47

    Nice work, I just picked one up yesterday but wont start till this winter. Well diffenitly be following your build.
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  7. #7
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    RE: Topflite Gold kit P-47

    Just an idea, but when you put on your sheeting, you can use a pile of old magazines to hold it down while the glue dries instead of pins. I am also building my 3rd on and they are a great build and they are a great flying plane. With a 91 four stroke you will need to watch yourself for enough speed to fly it. The Gold Edition planes usually come out a little heavier than advertised and need a little more power. Keep the post running, we can all learn from you. Good Luck, Dave
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  8. #8
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    RE: Topflite Gold kit P-47

    Terry, looks very nice so far- looks like you are a craftsman. I will follow this one, as it is one of the kits in my stash. I recall from old posts here that it builds tail heavy, so you should plan on moving as much of your gear forward as possible.

    Goran, I like to use wood glue (Elmers Carpenters) for sheeting instead of CA, but that's just my preference. It gives sufficient working time, and is fairly easy to sand. Less expensive than CA too, and it does not go bad from sitting like CA does.

    BTW Terry, cockpit looks awesome!
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  9. #9

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    RE: Topflite Gold kit P-47

    A heads up on CA going bad. Store it in a freezer and it lasts forever. I buy it in 8 ounce bottles and just fill my 2 ounce bottle as needed during a build. It's been about 15 years sense I have had any CA harden up in the bottle. Put it in a container and tape it to the side so it doesn't tip over. That happened once. It doesn't dry/set up in the freezer but it will set up on the paper towels while you try to clean it up. That could really up set the wife!! In my case it happened in my shop freezer so a bit of paper towel glued to a shelf didn't mater at all.
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  10. #10

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    RE: Topflite Gold kit P-47

    Hi guys, thanks for the kind words...No telling how many kits I have been lucky enough to build across the years...... I have always loved to build..I think if you are going to build one of these gold kits, I would try and buy one soon as money allows....I'm not sure how long we are all going to be able to find kits of any brand....I hope to buy the TF P-51 kit this summer since they still offer them...(Just my two cents worth)
    Back to the p-47....the Razorback version you see in the picts is the way the kit comes. If you wanted the Bubble canopy version, TF sells a conversion kit to change it over..( around $29.00 for the coversion I think) As far as the plane being heavy,..as with everything you build, Take a minute and make the joints tight and use less glue when possiable.. I like to tack things with thin and medium CA and then where needed, I use the Sig Bond (My favorite resin glue) The Great planes version is good but much thinner seems to wicks alot so not sure if it is as good for me as the Sig Bond.... I use a pocket screw driver to apply the Resin glue in the joint so not to get too much and add as little weight as possiable. I put just a drop on the end of the screw driver and that keeps the waist down! If your local Hobby store does not have Sig Bond, Our Hobby Lobby craft Stores have Sig Bond in their glue section..(3.99) So far I have used 4 liquid ounces of ca and one two ounce bottle of Sig bond to get it nearly complete.
    On the Skins.. Match two sheets up the way you like em ( some need sanding, some need cutting) and then put masking tape all the way down the seam long ways. This makes a hing to open the skins up with. Apply as little of a bead of Aliphatic Resin glue as you can get right on the edge of the wood (One side) and then lay them Tape down on your table.. I take a credit card edge and wipe away the extra glue that comes out of the seam. I try and find something heavy to lay on each seam to keep them flat...Till they dry..
    Applying the Skins: I apply Resin (Sig or GP) on the ribs This gives you all the time you need and strenth too, then as I press the sheeting down on the LE and TE, wick some thin ca where the sheeting touches the TE or LE. Work from the middle out both directions. Make sure everything is lined up first. Alot of times I use masking tape from front to rear to hold Sheeting down tight in place when possiable...)Apply over the bulk head or rib to keep from making a low spot in the finished sheeting...No pin holes this way.
    When it comes to bending the Sheeting I like half rubbing alch and half weak soapy water... Yesterday I was brushing this solution on with a flux brush as I pulled it down slowly with masking tape..( This was on the fus and one edge of the sheeting was glued down permently) After I got the sheeting pulled down into place, I let the wet skin dry (20-30 minutes) then I went back and raised it just a little to glue the whole contact surface down with Resin glue against the bulk heads and used Clothes pins and tape to make the top edge of the skin contact the next stringer everywhere.
    If you use CA glue to appy skins as most manuals advise you to use,,,it Dries to quick to allow you a good job of aligning everything...
    I will get some newer pictures up soon...Thanks for the interest!

  11. #11

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    RE: Topflite Gold kit P-47

    Here's my scratch built Stearman (2009) and kit built Pete-n-poke (2005)
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  12. #12
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    RE: Topflite Gold kit P-47

    Looks real good Terry, I'm on my 2nd one and was planning to do my own thread. I will be using a DLE 20 gas engine on mine, excellent engine with lots of power and the best part no mess to clean up after flying My previous one had a 26cc gas engine in it and balanced perfectly with no added lead. Flys like it's on rails and with the flaps down will land nice and easy. I'll be doing lot's of mods on this one, retractable tail wheel, relocating the main gear to the scale location, scale hinging, hidden control horns, operating canopy, fiberglass and paint finish. I'll post some pictures of my progress here if you don't mind. Here is a picture of the previous one(shot down[&o])
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  13. #13

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    RE: Topflite Gold kit P-47

    Raptureboy, Very nice. Please do add photos.. The more the merrier.. We will leave this as one thread untill It gets to big to fast load...I like your colors. would you please show me some photos of the front cowling... I am gonna work on the dummy motor this weekend and how to baffell it...
    Thanks for mentioning the DLE 20 gas motor,... I have also considered that for a replacement motor....Looks like a nice motor...
    Thanks again for chiming in !

  14. #14

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    RE: Topflite Gold kit P-47

    When you apply the sheeting on the fus.. I like to trace the pattern on a paper that I am trying to fit. work with that until it's like you want it then transfer that to the balsa... I like the MAS wood plane to final fit the joint nice and tight.. A knife takes off too much. Glue the first joint good and tight, hold with tape, let it dry before you wet and shape the new sheeting added.. Before you close up any area, make sure you dont need back in there like for the cable ancors (Bomb release or what ever)
    After you wet and bend the new added sheet and it is dry, you can adjust the closing seam with your wood plane A LITTLE at a time until it fits Just rite before you glue it closed...take your time here....less filler, nicer seam.
    Right now the model assembled with flaps laying on the scales, motor mount and wire gear in place... the plane weights 4lbs..5.3 ounces...Not sure how that compares but that's what I got..We'll cover flaps and set up next time... Thanks Guys!
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  15. #15

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    RE: Topflite Gold kit P-47

    Raptureboy, what did your plane weigh finished???

  16. #16

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    RE: Topflite Gold kit P-47

    Hi Terry! I can vouch for the finished quality of Terry's planes. Terry is a pro! I will be keeping tabs on your build here.

    Jared (Carthage)

  17. #17
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    RE: Topflite Gold kit P-47

    Terry, thanks for the invite. I will try to post a couple of close ups of the cowl later,I'm at work now and I don't have access to my photo's. My color scheme was from a plane flown by Lt John Keiffer, the MRS K with the 56th FG 43 FS. I found it in the book P-47 in Scale and Detail by Bert Kinssy a great source of detailed photos. It was a later M version and apparently they painted their planes in some very unusal paint schemes. After I assembled all the cowl pieces per the instructions I used bondo body putty to fill the seams and then some spot putty. I used a SPE 26 gas engine whiched weighed about 34 oz. If I remember my final weight was some where about 13 1/2 lbs with no extra ballast required to balance. She flew just fine and landing was not an issue with flaps and Robart retractable gear/struts. Sadly she was shot down after only a few flights (radio interference)and now I'm on the 2nd one. I'm only at the point of sheeting the bottom of the fuse and it is slow going because of the time spent working out all the details of the retractable tail wheel and internal linkages but it will be cool when that all comes together. I'm trying to develop my scale detailing skills on this one a little more. There are a couple of threads on this plane but they all seemed to peter out I hope you can keep this going, it is a shame that all the kit makers have gone by the wayside and we have become a bunch of assemblers rather than builders. Your right, about buying kits up now while we still can, they are getting outrageous on ebay now. I remember my first kit, a CG Falcon 56 in 1970. Bought one of the first arfs in 72. Building is relaxing to me, but I love flying too so I have a few arf's to practice crashing with[&:]
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  18. #18

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    RE: Topflite Gold kit P-47

    Terry
    Are you scratch building the plane in the images?
    -Alex

  19. #19

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    RE: Topflite Gold kit P-47

    Alex, the Stearman in post #11 is a scratch build project but the p-47 that this thread is for is a TopFlite Gold kit...$169.99 from Tower and others..
    Thanks for checking in !

  20. #20

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    RE: Topflite Gold kit P-47

    Man I love the CG Falcon 56 mentioned in an above post. I remember just being amazed in 1972 when there was one hanging in the hobby store where I would visit... Back then it was Giant! I will post some Pictures of the Flap hing drilling this weekend.. It's better with a jig to assist rather than trying to hold everything by hand...
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  21. #21

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    RE: Topflite Gold kit P-47

    Oh I thought you might have been scratch building the p-47 off the plans.

  22. #22

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    RE: Topflite Gold kit P-47

    FLAPS ! TF has you build the flap and aileron surface at the same time as wing all one piece. They also do this with the rudder and fin, elevator and stab. AFter they are built, you saw/or cut the defecting surface off.. I think several designers are doing this and it works very well..Makes things match up a little better...There is a "inner" (Flap) and a outer (aileron) trailing edge on the wing and these seperate the flaps and alierons from the main wing surface..They ask you to mark your flap skins and cut them out, then apply them while everthing is still one piece, Sheet the wing and then cut the surface loose. you then add a leading edge to each flap and aileron to finish.
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  23. #23

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    RE: Topflite Gold kit P-47

    Here the flap and alieron skins are cut, then marked for rib location and glue in place to dry. Wings are built up-side down with Tabs on ribs pinned to table..note landing gear block is up.
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  24. #24

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    RE: Topflite Gold kit P-47

    Here you have both wings built, flaps and ailerons are still attached, turn the wing upside down, Use a center balsa block supplied and spacers under the tabs on each wing tips to set the proper wing dihedral. I put weights out there to keep everything square. (I used masking tape to keep tip spacers and center block still for this step... Set this up a few times with no glue..you got ONE shot at making a great wing...Take your time.. Prior to this you have fitted the center rib #1 on each wing to proper angle with their gauge, sanded the spars to match and pre-fitted the plywood center spar braces. Dont use anything but 30 or 60 minute epoxy here. You want plenty of time to get everything clamped and aligned. I put a piece of masking tape on the bottom of the #1 rib, (actually top of ribs) to keep the epoxy from dripping out and making a un-even surface.. (Apply epoxy to all pieces at the contact area.. Just a small epoxy film on each does better than alot on one part..Wipe everything down with rubbing alch. to clean up.....clamp and walk away! Keep room at 70 deg. or more for complete cureing time.
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  25. #25

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    RE: Topflite Gold kit P-47

    After wings are cured and flipped back over, you will put the wing on jigs at the tips and center section. I glued the tip and center jigs to table to make everything straight and solid for sheeting.. ( A sheet of glass on your table helps here cause it is easy to glue and remove things when done) you can sometimes get glass free from houses being remodeled, They are gonna throw the windows and doors away! mine are from a sliding glass door. Apply the LE sheeting with the Aliphatic resin glue on the ribs, push sheeting tight against LE and wick a little Thin ca glue there to hold into place.. *Again, when fitting sheeting anywhere, I use the Master Airscrew wood plane to shape contact points..takes a little at a time off*...The black circles on sheeting are Lead weights I casted to hold things down, used tape and pins to keep it in place.. *I cast these weights in a automotive Freeze plug from your parts store, cut up old tire weights from the tire stores, heat with a propane torch and WA-LA great little balancing and building weights! make all different sizes! (Single freeze plugs are pennys to buy so get three or so to speed things up) When they cool, the lead just falls out! I mark the actual weight on each with a marker and drill a 1/8" hole through the middle for a bolt if used to balance a airplane.
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