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  1. #1
    DaneMcGee's Avatar
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    New SPAD Combat Class

    In an effort to introduce new combat flyers to thrill of RC Combat, the Radio Control Combat Association created a new all SPAD Combat class featuring the SPAD GNAT

    Cheap and easy to build, durable and flies great....Perfect for beginners and club combat.

    They build very quickly for little money and are more durable than most SPADS. I built mine in the pic below in under two hours.

    You don't need building skills and could have a club build party to complete a fleet of planes.



    The basic rules are simple:
    1. Looks like a GNAT
    2. SSC motor and prop (.15 size with MA 8x3 prop)
    3. NO STICKY STUFF!!!
    4. NO weight restriction!

    They turn tight enough to cut their own streamer!



    Visit RCCombat.com for complete rules







    From This:







    To This:



    Dane "Mad Max" McGee,
    RC Combat Assoc Vice President
    Greenvile, Texas

  2. #2
    combatpigg's Avatar
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    RE: New SPAD Combat Class

    I'm looking for a "class" where the wing loading is light enough so that when planes go down into a field of chest high alfalfa, the planes never reach the ground and the engines keep running.
    A class where the action looks more like dog fighting and less like high speed jousting.
    Where you can fly all day [120 combat minutes] with no fatal mid airs..and if you do, the planes can be repaired right there on the spot with CA glue and clear packing tape.
    A class where there isn't enough kinetic energy to routinely strip out servos or do serious engine damage.
    WHO GUNNA FEED MAW KEEEIDS..???

  3. #3

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    RE: New SPAD Combat Class

    Dream on!
    Randy Shiosaki

  4. #4
    DaneMcGee's Avatar
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    RE: New SPAD Combat Class


    ORIGINAL: combatpigg

    I'm looking for a ''class'' where the wing loading is light enough so that when planes go down into a field of chest high alfalfa, the planes never reach the ground and the engines keep running.
    A class where the action looks more like dog fighting and less like high speed jousting.
    Where you can fly all day [120 combat minutes] with no fatal mid airs..and if you do, the planes can be repaired right there on the spot with CA glue and clear packing tape.
    A class where there isn't enough kinetic energy to routinely strip out servos or do serious engine damage.

    Let us know when you find that one. Until you do, give the Gnat a try and you'll laugh out loud flying these things.....they are FUN!!
    Dane "Mad Max" McGee,
    RC Combat Assoc Vice President
    Greenvile, Texas

  5. #5
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    RE: New SPAD Combat Class

    these gnats are very cool and they are the easiest spads to build, once you get the hang of it, the build time will be alot less.

    give it a try at your club, you guys will have a blast!!

    for all of you guys that think that all we do in combat is crash planes, No, thats not our desire and motive, sure, we do have the occasional mid-air but that is NOT our goal.
    there is a thrill whenever you go on the hunt and get your targets streamer. I heve been flying combat for 6 years and I still get the same addrenalin rush during an event and the same level excitment when I do get a cut.

    this plane is the perfect plane to try combat with, its cheap to build, fun to fly and easy to repair, come on!! give it a try!
    RCCA #913
    building spads since 12-2007

  6. #6
    combatpigg's Avatar
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    RE: New SPAD Combat Class

    It's a really clever looking design that has the simplest to round up bill of materials you could ask for.
    WHO GUNNA FEED MAW KEEEIDS..???

  7. #7

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    RE: New SPAD Combat Class

    What is a "SSC motor"?

  8. #8

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    RE: New SPAD Combat Class

    I figured it out. SSC = Slow Survivable Combat

    2. Engine:
    .15 cid engine available from normal retail outlets for a non-sale retail price of $85 or less, excluding taxes or
    shipping. Engine must be classified by the manufacturer for use in R/C flying model aircraft. Engine must be
    complete with carburetor and muffler. Carburetor must be fully R/C functional as intended by the manufacturer
    and servo operated. The muffler must be expansion chamber type with no internal pipe (which would effectively
    increase its length and there allow β€œtuning”). The front of the muffler must be closed and β€œflow through” mufflers
    are not allowed. The use of electric motors is acceptable as long as the aircraft meets class weight specifications
    plus 1.5 ounces with batteries in place and meets propeller and RPM restrictions

  9. #9
    combatpigg's Avatar
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    RE: New SPAD Combat Class

    AMA rulebook SSC = 2 broken OS .15 crankcases, carburetors and backplate mounted needle valve assys my first 2 weekend sessions of combat. The 40 oz minimum developes too much force at impact and both crankcases split from the cylinder trying to continue forward after the rest of the plane came to a sudden stop on really hard ground. I have taken identical planes and equipped them with PAW .15s and this really helps to limit the speed of the manuevers. The diesels don't unload like the glow engines do. The engines are also purpose built very rugged for combat, but need a line pinch or a dump valve for an engine kill. The action is held to a pace where midairs are easier to avoid since you have more time to see bad closing angles.
    They're funky, they stink, they take some learning to tune...but they are much easier for me to fly "SSC" with at my field.
    WHO GUNNA FEED MAW KEEEIDS..???

  10. #10

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    RE: New SPAD Combat Class

    Actually, I was just looking for something that was easy on the wallet, I could hand launch, and just sport fly with. Original Gnat looks easy.

  11. #11
    combatpigg's Avatar
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    RE: New SPAD Combat Class


    ORIGINAL: Tom Nied

    Actually, I was just looking for something that was easy on the wallet, I could hand launch, and just sport fly with. Original Gnat looks easy.
    Yesiree..! I'm going to build one of these too. It's a very clever looking design.
    Dave McDonald [The God Father of all PBFs] has a coroplast fun fly plane he designed [about the size of this one] that is another one I want to try.
    WHO GUNNA FEED MAW KEEEIDS..???

  12. #12
    DaneMcGee's Avatar
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    RE: New SPAD Combat Class


    ORIGINAL: Tom Nied

    What is a ''SSC motor''?
    A SSC legal engine is a .15 size engine with MA 8x3 prop turning no greater than 17,500 rpms......a proven combination in the most popular class of combat for many years.

    SSC is a success story. It works and is fun to fly.

    I have flown hundreds and hundreds of rounds of SSC combat over the last 10 years or so and have never ruined an engine in that class. The key is non contact with terra firma.









    Yes, the Gnat is easy on the pocket book. My cost of building materials for a Gnat kit using store bought coro is about $8.50 per plane not including engine, servos, Rx, batt , etc
    I launch my Gnat on half throttle.

    Have fun!



    Dane "Mad Max" McGee,
    RC Combat Assoc Vice President
    Greenvile, Texas

  13. #13
    combatpigg's Avatar
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    RE: New SPAD Combat Class


    ORIGINAL: DaneMcGee


    ORIGINAL: Tom Nied

    What is a ''SSC motor''?
    A SSC legal engine is a .15 size engine with MA 8x3 prop turning no greater than 17,500 rpms......a proven combination in the most popular class of combat for many years.

    SSC is a success story. It works and is fun to fly.

    I have flown hundreds and hundreds of rounds of SSC combat over the last 10 years or so and have never ruined an engine in that class. The key is non contact with terra firma.
    So after 100s and 100s of SSC matches you have never totally stuffed an airplane .......?
    What do you do...run out there and catch them before they hit the ground...?
    Amazing. I've never ruined an engine [from a crash] in over 20 years of flying AMA Fast Combat, 80 MPH Combat, 1/2A Combat and British Diesel Combat until I decided to give SSC a try. Hmmm...
    The SSC success story....the post count in this forum pays tribute to that. Just above the post count of the Canadian RC forum.....
    The truth is, I've flown dozens of combat HOURS with 300+ sq inch balsa planes that weigh 12-14 ozs that peak out at 40 mph and have flown from early morning until it was too dark to continue with the same pair of planes we started the day with...many times. At worst, the last matches of the day result in brain fade, or some lack of patience and the mortality rate is at it's highest then.
    Slower and lighter trumps heavier and faster every time no matter what you want to call it.
    I'll call what we fly ReallySSC. The other stuff [AMA rules combat] is more like high speed jousting with haymakers coming from out of nowhere. What we fly can be flown in a 200x100x100 foot box by guys right off the sidewalk.
    WHO GUNNA FEED MAW KEEEIDS..???

  14. #14

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    RE: New SPAD Combat Class

    So,,,,,,you like flying combat? I never did in Controline.

  15. #15

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    RE: New SPAD Combat Class

    Hey has anybody ever tried the GWS receivers? I'm putting a list together of items needed to build a Gnat.

  16. #16
    DaneMcGee's Avatar
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    RE: New SPAD Combat Class


    ORIGINAL: combatpigg




    So after 100s and 100s of SSC matches you have never totally stuffed an airplane .......?
    What do you do...run out there and catch them before they hit the ground...?
    Amazing. I've never ruined an engine [from a crash] in over 20 years of flying AMA Fast Combat, 80 MPH Combat, 1/2A Combat and British Diesel Combat until I decided to give SSC a try. Hmmm...
    The SSC success story....the post count in this forum pays tribute to that. Just above the post count of the Canadian RC forum.....
    The truth is, I've flown dozens of combat HOURS with 300+ sq inch balsa planes that weigh 12-14 ozs that peak out at 40 mph and have flown from early morning until it was too dark to continue with the same pair of planes we started the day with...many times. At worst, the last matches of the day result in brain fade, or some lack of patience and the mortality rate is at it's highest then.
    Slower and lighter trumps heavier and faster every time no matter what you want to call it.
    I'll call what we fly ReallySSC. The other stuff [AMA rules combat] is more like high speed jousting with haymakers coming from out of nowhere. What we fly can be flown in a 200x100x100 foot box by guys right off the sidewalk.

    Pig, I simply wanted to offer another perspective from an active RCCA/AMA combat contestant.
    Of course I've stuffed an airplane on occasion but not much.......never broke a .15 engine. The airplanes are built to breakaway at strategic spots to prevent damage and it works.

    This most active combat forums are at RCCombat.com. I invite you and others to be a part of it.
    Dane "Mad Max" McGee,
    RC Combat Assoc Vice President
    Greenvile, Texas

  17. #17
    DaneMcGee's Avatar
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    RE: New SPAD Combat Class


    ORIGINAL: Tom Nied

    Hey has anybody ever tried the GWS receivers? I'm putting a list together of items needed to build a Gnat.

    Tom, I have tried the GWS RX's and they work pretty darn good. Most have been on smaller electrics.

    I would feel comfortable flying a Gnat at home with a GWS Rx.....most of what I use now are the little berg stamps in SSC

    I've also used GWS servos.....Mini Standard and Mighty Micro MG. Ive had good luck with each.
    Dane "Mad Max" McGee,
    RC Combat Assoc Vice President
    Greenvile, Texas

  18. #18

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    RE: New SPAD Combat Class

    OK, that's good to know. I haven't completely gone 2.4 ghz and still have a FM radio I'd still like to use.

  19. #19
    DaneMcGee's Avatar
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    RE: New SPAD Combat Class

    Here is a pic of my newest Gnat using a different wing attatchment method. Instead of cutting the wing to allow the fuse to go thru.
    I simply lay the fuse on top of the wing and use two screws to secure it.

    This one flies as good as the first!



    Dane "Mad Max" McGee,
    RC Combat Assoc Vice President
    Greenvile, Texas

  20. #20

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    RE: New SPAD Combat Class

    Those look like standard servos for the ailerons and elevator, with a micro for the throttle? What kind of battery do you like to use?

  21. #21

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    RE: New SPAD Combat Class

    Any difference in flying characteristics with the flat wing versus the original? With the original design I kind of liked how there was a place to put the battery and RX.

  22. #22
    DaneMcGee's Avatar
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    RE: New SPAD Combat Class

    Tom, those are GWS Mini Standard servos, and a HXT 9G for the throttle.

    The Batt is a 4,8v 400 Kan nimh 2/3 AAA from cheapbatterypacks.com

    This airplane as you see it weighs less than pounds, so standard servos and a larger batt pack would work well too.



    There is some difference in flying characteristics between the two wings. The flat wing seems more stable. The other wing as I built it is at a positive angle of attack in relation to the incidence of the fuse and engine.
    With a flat wing all incidences are zero and seems to "hunt" less. But with this type of wing I'm not asking for much.....it pretty well flies on the prop anyway.

    It still flies like an election sign with a motor

    The flat wing is folded under just like the original and provides a place for RX and batt as well.




    Dane "Mad Max" McGee,
    RC Combat Assoc Vice President
    Greenvile, Texas

  23. #23

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    RE: New SPAD Combat Class

    Dane, thanks for sharing so much information on the Gnat. It looks so darn easy to put together. I built a Spad Debonair that I modified (no diehedral wing and taildragger) and flew the crap out of that, untill it just wasn't worth fixing. What I like about the Gnat design is it has the parameters I'm looking for in a simple sport flying Spad. Hand launchable, easy to build, easy on the wallet, and looks fun to fly.

    Should I refrain from adding a profile fuselage to make it a little more visible and planelike? I'd wish it had some side visibility.

  24. #24
    DaneMcGee's Avatar
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    RE: New SPAD Combat Class


    ORIGINAL: Tom Nied

    Dane, thanks for sharing so much information on the Gnat. It looks so darn easy to put together. I built a Spad Debonair that I modified (no diehedral wing and taildragger) and flew the crap out of that, untill it just wasn't worth fixing. What I like about the Gnat design is it has the parameters I'm looking for in a simple sport flying Spad. Hand launchable, easy to build, easy on the wallet, and looks fun to fly.

    Should I refrain from adding a profile fuselage to make it a little more visible and planelike? I'd wish it had some side visibility.
    Ya know, a profile fuse would look cool.[8D]

    My advice would be to build and fly without it first, then you could always add the profile later if you wanted. The vert stab provides plenty of side visibility I think.

    Keep us updated on your build!
    Dane "Mad Max" McGee,
    RC Combat Assoc Vice President
    Greenvile, Texas

  25. #25

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    RE: New SPAD Combat Class

    Oh, OK, got it. I'm going to start collecting materials today. Already printed off the plan. Thanks.


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