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How much work is too much on an ARF?

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Old 11-19-2012, 03:46 AM
  #26
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Default RE: How much work is too much on an ARF?


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ORIGINAL: pkoury


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ORIGINAL: Luchnia

Work done to the plane:

4. Strengthen some areas in the hull with thinned Epoxy (I do this anyway).
How do you strengthen areas with thinned epoxy? I use thinned epoxy to seal areas exposed to fuel. I have years of experience in model building, full scale boat building and repair along with several years in UAV construction and never found that thinned epoxy alone makes anything stonger.
That is because it does not make it stronger, but it does add weight if that is what one desires.

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Old 11-19-2012, 04:23 AM
  #27
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Default RE: How much work is too much on an ARF?


Quote:
ORIGINAL: pkoury


Quote:
ORIGINAL: Luchnia

Work done to the plane:

4. Strengthen some areas in the hull with thinned Epoxy (I do this anyway).
How do you strengthen areas with thinned epoxy? I use thinned epoxy to seal areas exposed to fuel. I have years of experience in model building, full scale boat building and repair along with several years in UAV construction and never found that thinned epoxy alone makes anything stonger.
I suppose strengthening might not be the best concept for this. It does seem to assist in keeping things together in my usage and I just happen to have it more readily available. A quality wood glue would probably be a much better choice than Epoxy and is probably what I should be using. Would wood glue be much better for this? I really do two things: I put some CA in possible problem higher stress areas and use thin epoxy on areas that could get fuel or oil on them as well as some other areas.

I have found that thinned epoxy can keep a joint together if it is not a critical high stress area and it is easier to get in some of the hard to get to places than CA (at least for me). This has proved to work fine for me in my style of flying. I am reasonable aggressive, but no high end 3Der.

BTW, one of my planes that was an ARF had a mechanical failure several years ago and crashed. I used CA and Epoxy to repair the plane and it was slightly heavier. It now has very close to 600 flights on it and some have been very aggressive as this is my beater plane. I know Epoxy adds some weight, yet I don't believe the weight is a problem for me. I don't compete and am not too pressed to save every "milli" ounce of weight [8D]
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Old 11-19-2012, 04:56 AM
  #28
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Default RE: How much work is too much on an ARF?

The biggest problem I have seen in ARFs through the years has generally been bond line failures, so adding glue to a dry joint is always going to be the better way to go, however painting everything with thinned epoxy is just a waste of time and adds weight. Everyone who fly an airplane should always be concerned about weight. JMHO

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Old 11-19-2012, 05:11 AM
  #29
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Default RE: How much work is too much on an ARF?

Decals. That's the problem. I think the AMA should require all ARFs to come with the decals installed. I can't get them straight, I can't remember which way is "up" on the stars and bars. How can you tell if "USAF" on the wings should be read from the front or back? From now on, I don't but any ARF that doesn't have the decals in place. Is this asking too much? Let me spend my precious time on important structual things like wheel collars and fuel lines!!! Old F@ARTS Forever!! If we aren't flyin, we're lyin!!
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Old 11-19-2012, 07:37 AM
  #30
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Default RE: How much work is too much on an ARF?


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ORIGINAL: Gray Beard


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ORIGINAL: Granpooba

Having been a kit builder since the age of 8 and now going on 70, I find that their is always an area that can be improved upon. Whether it be a kit build or an ARF. We all like to add our personal touches, or should I say our personal improvements. Its all part of the hobby.

I have never considered that I was putting in too much time on any ARF, that I have assembled. I just felt that it was time well spent in order to have a stronger, better and longer lasting model.

With all this said, you build a kit. With an ARF, you are assembling.
I started building at 8 too but I'm only 65. My day was spent in the shop today, My wife is a sports freak so it was Football and NASCAR all day on TV. In a while I will be back out in the shop, another game just started.
Being retired young I have never look at building time as cost, it's all free time and it keeps me out of the Casino's and strip clubs. Just that is money in my pockets so if I wanted I could think of building as an income.
The model airplane hobby has never kept me out of the " Casino's ". But the strip clubs ? Now that is another question and expensive hobby !
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Old 11-19-2012, 08:26 AM
  #31
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Default RE: How much work is too much on an ARF?

Some of the cheaper ARF brands, in my experience, sometimes are better than the more expensive ones. I have had excellent experience with Phoenix and Seagull brand ARF's. I imagine VQ and BH brands would be similar. In every ARF I have ever "assembled", some piece of hardware was below par for me, with the exception of the Sig ARF's and some GP ARF's I built in the past. I assembled a CMP ARF previously, all the hardware had to be replaced. And in the end, it flew so bad that it is now a static display model.

I am assembling my first Hangar 9 ARF now and the quality and hardware is excellent. But the ARF was designed for either electric or glow. The ARFs designed for either/or have to undergo some compromise to accomodate both powertrains. In the case of this ARF, the installation of a glow engine required a lot of extra work. One step required that I "temporarily" CA the engine mounting blind nuts to my index finger so that I can poke it up to the back of the firewall!!![X(]

I still have ARF's that are 5-6 years old and I keep improving them every once in a while as I get better at knowing what each plane needs. So, every year, my planes get better and better (except the totalled ones).

I recently bought a beautiful airframe that was scratch-built by somebody else for only $100 brand new. What a jewel!!! It is heavier than a typical ARF, but tough as a tank. I hope to fly it for many years to come.

My observation about cost effectiveness. Keep whatever you build or assemble for a long time. Try not to sell it, because you will take a big monetary hit if you do. That forces us to really be choosy up front as to what to build/assemble.
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Old 11-19-2012, 01:45 PM
  #32
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Default RE: How much work is too much on an ARF?

I bought an ESM Stuka 2 years ago and it took me 2 winters to get it done (I did other projects as well). I would not get another ESM, unless they have improved a lot. I had to do a ton of work and modifications to get everything to fit and work correctly. I put a small engine on it, 125 Saito, but despite that the firewall cracked after 4 flights. Turned out the wood firewall plate was just glued to the fiberglass, it wasnt attached to the wood frame of the plane. So the fiberglass just cracked around the edges of the wood firewall.

Overall, it just wasnt worth it. Maybe I will repair the front end sometime, but for now I shelved it.
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Old 11-19-2012, 02:28 PM
  #33
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Default RE: How much work is too much on an ARF?

You get what you pay for...PERIOD! I have had several differant arf brands over the years, wasn't impressed with CMP, Lanier or great planes! World models are well built but the toughlon covering doesn't stick very well! My hanger 9 planes are high quality and fly well, but my light built but strong pilot arf's fly by far the best! If someone gave me a new CMP arf, I would try to give it away and if nobody wanted it I would take a hammer to it before I would waste any of my spare time on trash!
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Old 11-19-2012, 02:36 PM
  #34
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Default RE: How much work is too much on an ARF?

I agree, Pilot does build a pretty good airplane. So does E/F for that matter...

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Old 11-19-2012, 03:16 PM
  #35
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Default RE: How much work is too much on an ARF?


Quote:
ORIGINAL: sensei

I agree, Pilot does build a pretty good airplane. So does E/F for that matter...

Bob
So many different experiences with ARFs it is amazing. One guy will have a horrible experience and the next guy will have a fantastic experience. I have read a lot of great things about Pilot planes and have only seen one and it did look very high quality. If memory serves it was a 50cc SBach. The structure looked very well made and in ways look made better than a kit plane. I do know about EF as I have one of those and it is very nicely built. The EF I have even has aluminum built into the fuselage where the landing gear mounts and the plane can take some serious punishment.

All of my ARFs have been very nice except for the one I had to do so much work on, but since I did all the work the plane has been a lot of fun and solid so far. I hope to get this coming flying season out of it and anything after that will be considered a bonus as far as I am concerned.
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Old 11-19-2012, 03:21 PM
  #36
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Default RE: How much work is too much on an ARF?

Stretch that dollar bill one more time!!
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Old 11-19-2012, 04:31 PM
  #37
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Default RE: How much work is too much on an ARF?

if you build your own plane , you know whats inside it , you dont have to guess
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Old 11-19-2012, 05:14 PM
  #38
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Default RE: How much work is too much on an ARF?

I have a bit of news for some of you, building is not for everyone, in fact there are those that should never build at all. assembling ARFs are for these kind of people and to be real honest ARFs in large are responsible for some of the best and most creative pilots today because they spend all their time flying airplanes that they have not placed their heart and soul into so they just fly them like they stole them allowing them to continually push the envelope. Builders spend most of their time building and less time flying but when they fly; they are usually much more guarded in their flying style and that is just fine too. Remember, this is a hobby for everyone and the way they see it best for them. Just saying...

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Old 11-19-2012, 10:42 PM
  #39
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Default RE: How much work is too much on an ARF?

I like to put together a arf and the fly it till it kits itself. some of them dont get rebuilt some do.
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Old 11-20-2012, 12:03 AM
  #40
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Default RE: How much work is too much on an ARF?

How can you complain? It's already built. All you have to do is assemble the prebuilt pieces.
You are not crafting a model, you are building a Ikea airplane!

This should stir up the &#@*!!!!!
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Old 11-20-2012, 04:12 AM
  #41
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Default RE: How much work is too much on an ARF?


Quote:
ORIGINAL: WhiteRook

if you build your own plane , you know whats inside it , you dont have to guess
I understand this sentiment, yet I have some reservation about it. Knowing what is inside the plane has never really been an issue for me. It just doesn't concern me much at all. If there were an issue of pride in building excellence or something along those lines then it would have to be built by me and flown by me and I understand.

In the big scheme I have yet to even open up a wing on any of my planes to see the structure beneath, except for fixing a plane that was crashed or maybe some covering repair or other repairs/fixes that were needed. I had a fellow flyer crash an AW 260 Extra and I took it home and rebuilt it. That was the only time that I really saw the inside of ARF wings. I did have a kit plane I bought already assembled and I recoverd it and saw the inside structure. In either case it really did not have any real weight in my mind.

Some of the guys I fly with are die-hard builders and once in a while you will see them fly an ARF just because they wanted a model that they did not want to take the time to build. One thing I noticed is that have commented much more about how ARFs have improved and are strong for the weight. When you see guys being extremely hard on ARFs and watching how well they stand up under the pressure that does speak for itself.

There seems to be a large chasm between builders/flyers and ARF flyers and it is odd to me. One club I fly at has predominately ARF flyers, the other club is predominately flies home built and there is not much center ground. I think the ARF guys are envious of the home builders talent at times. Some of the build guys I know can cover a plane and it looks like it was dipped in paint with baked on finish - extremely well done planes and you have to have a magnifying glass to see the lines.

I am really beginning to think there is a "best of both worlds" here and it is well worth utilizing both sides and this will lend itself to a much more enjoyable experience.

Oh, BTW, is it possible to buy a good 300 Extra or like style kit today at around 300-400 dollars and get something that is decent?
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Old 11-20-2012, 04:22 AM
  #42
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Default RE: How much work is too much on an ARF?


Quote:
ORIGINAL: Luchnia


Quote:
ORIGINAL: WhiteRook

if you build your own plane , you know whats inside it , you dont have to guess
I understand this sentiment, yet I have some reservation about it. Knowing what is inside the plane has never really been an issue for me. It just doesn't concern me much at all. If there were an issue of pride in building excellence or something along those lines then it would have to be built by me and flown by me and I understand.

In the big scheme I have yet to even open up a wing on any of my planes to see the structure beneath, except for fixing a plane that was crashed or maybe some covering repair or other repairs/fixes that were needed. I had a fellow flyer crash an AW 260 Extra and I took it home and rebuilt it. That was the only time that I really saw the inside of ARF wings. I did have a kit plane I bought already assembled and I recoverd it and saw the inside structure. In either case it really did not have any real weight in my mind.

Some of the guys I fly with are die-hard builders and once in a while you will see them fly an ARF just because they wanted a model that they did not want to take the time to build. One thing I noticed is that have commented much more about how ARFs have improved and are strong for the weight. When you see guys being extremely hard on ARFs and watching how well they stand up under the pressure that does speak for itself.

There seems to be a large chasm between builders/flyers and ARF flyers and it is odd to me. One club I fly at has predominately ARF flyers, the other club is predominately flies home built and there is not much center ground. I think the ARF guys are envious of the home builders talent at times. Some of the build guys I know can cover a plane and it looks like it was dipped in paint with baked on finish - extremely well done planes and you have to have a magnifying glass to see the lines.

I am really beginning to think there is a ''best of both worlds'' here and it is well worth utilizing both sides and this will lend itself to a much more enjoyable experience.

Oh, BTW, is it possible to buy a good 300 Extra or like style kit today at around 300-400 dollars and get something that is decent?
You are absolutely right, it is the best of both worlds. Some have building skills and some don't, some have lots of extra time to play with, and again, some don't. So this hobby has something to offer for everyone.

Bob
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Old 11-20-2012, 05:51 AM
  #43
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Default RE: How much work is too much on an ARF?

Ya Get's what's yas pays fer Ifn yas knows whats ya is buying ... The key words in your first post was "BLOWOUT SALE" chalk it up to experiance.
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Old 11-20-2012, 06:11 AM
  #44
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Default RE: How much work is too much on an ARF?

I HAVE BUILT KITS FOR 40 YRS> DOES ME GOOD TO SEE IT FLY> ALSO I CAN MAKE SURE IT IS BUILT GOOD> BUT I NOW LIVE IN A MOBILE HOME NOT MUCH ROOM TO BUILD SO I GET ARFS NOW BUT THE ONES I GOT ARE VERY NICE> SO BEING 80 IVEE COME A LONG WAY IN THE MODEL PLANES WORKED FOR 10 YRS IN WHOLESALE BEEN A SALES MEN TO HOBBY SHOPS HAD MY OWN SHOP> THEN WORKED PART TIME FOR A HOBBY SHOP FOR 15 YRS> NOW IT IS ALMOST TIME TO RETIRE FROM FLYING AND JUST GO TO THE FIELD AND WATCH WHAT A SAD DAY THAT WILL BE FOR ME>> BUT ALL GOOD THINGS DO COME TO A END SO GOOD FLYING TO ALL AND GOOD BUILDING TO WHAT EVERE YOU BUILD>>>>> ALLEN
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Old 11-20-2012, 09:19 AM
  #45
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Default RE: How much work is too much on an ARF?

I have always said "If ya can't find something ya like in this RC airplane hobby/Sport then go buy a Sail Boat, a lounge Chair, and a 6 Pack ... Then when ya Sober up go look for the Boat......

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Old 11-20-2012, 09:23 AM
  #46
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Default RE: How much work is too much on an ARF?


Quote:
ORIGINAL: HoundDog

I have always said ''If ya can't find something ya like in this RC airplane hobby/Sport then go buy a Sail Boat, a lounge Chair, and a 6 Pack ... Then when ya Sober up go look for the Boat......

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