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Thread: Designs


  1. #1

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    Designs

    What programs can you use to try different designs?

  2. #2
    Moderator BMatthews's Avatar
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    XFLR5 is great for testing some aspects of a design. It's probably the most effective and proven program you can get for free or at low cost.

    Some of the flight simulators are reported to calculate and model the flight response of a design. But not knowing the math used and extent of how deeply the analysis goes on these programs it's tough to say just how good the results are. These also don't tell you how well the model will fly. It uses the analysis to model the control response and to some extent the stall and other flight changes in response to control inputs. That's all I know since I have not tried any of them. Just know what others have written.

    Possibly XFLR5 to predict performance and stability along with one of these better flight sims to evaluate some aspects of in flight handling would be a good combination of software options.
    Witty saying to be plagarized shortly.....

  3. #3

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    I guess I should clarify a bit. I am looking for any programs to see what a particular covering design looks like on a plane.

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    Quote Originally Posted by sideoftheroad View Post
    I guess I should clarify a bit. I am looking for any programs to see what a particular covering design looks like on a plane.
    My personal preference is for Adobe Illustrator. I've been using it for a long time and am comfortable with it. I prefer a vector graphics program over a raster graphics editor like Photoshop. Depending on the airframe I usually draw a quick top/side/bottom view and work filling them in with my designs. The vector files also provide me with the ability to dump some elements or graphics to my plotter or make a full size template to cut covering.

    Illustrator is kind of pricy so you may want to look for a cheaper alternative. Older versions of Corel Draw can usually be found reasonable and an open source alternative is Inkscape. Good Luck with you designs.

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    I usually draw my own outline for scale. No 3d modelling or anything that elaborate. I may start with a photo of a framed up plane or even a picture of the plans. I put them in the background and draw a simplified airframe. I usually work at 1:1 scale or I trace a photo then scale the drawing to size. Works with arf's too. T,he attached drawing is for a paint job but could easily be used for any kind of covering. Since they are vectors they are easily rescaled or dumped to a plotter to make templates, cut covering or vinyl.
    Attached Thumbnails Attached Thumbnails Click image for larger version. 

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    Bullseye,
    Is that what you created with Illustrator? My idea was to take a picture of the framed up plane and virtually cover it to try out different designs. I didn't think about making an outline of the plane.

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    I downloaded a trial version of illustrator. I don't know how to get rid of the background or the box in the middle of the picture but here's something I came up with. What do you think?Click image for larger version. 

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  8. #8

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    Yes it was created in Illustrator. Your method would work just as well. The reason I usually draw outlines to some sort of known scale is so I can used my finished drawing to make templates or send to a plotter. The choice of tool may be more of a function of what you want to use the final files for. I prefer vector graphics programs for my final use. If you just to to paint on an existing airframe one could also use a raster image editor like photoshop or the open-source GIMP program. You could snap a photo then paint directly on a layer over the photo and paint on you scheme.

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    In Illustrator is there a way to get rid of that box in the middle of the picture as well as the background just leaving the plane?

  10. #10

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    Not sure what your seeing but when you place a photo on a page there is box around the photo with an x in it. This is used for placement purposes and will not appear in printing or exporting. I don't work on the bleeding edge so I'm a couple of revisions behind so it's possible they made some changes. Layers are your friend. Do a google search and there's a lot of tuts on using Illy. I'd put the photo on a layer and lock it then draw everything else on top.


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