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30'ish year old Ugly Stik restoration

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Old 02-19-2013, 11:59 PM
  #1
dabigboy
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Default 30'ish year old Ugly Stik restoration

Some of you may recall my post many months ago about a pile of R/C gear I got on the cheap....a fellow had apparently bought out the leftovers of an old-timer's collection with the intention of getting into RC himself, but never did. I bought everything he had for $50.

I got a lot of odds and ends (a field box not yet completed, new iron, heat gun, starter, etc), two Fox .40s in good clean running shape, a never-run NIB Enya .45 (woohoo!), an old, complete Kaos kit, a partially completed Sky Tiger kit (forerunner of the Goldberg Tiger 2), and a partially complete Super Sportster. A good score, to be sure...I was a happy fellow!

I also got a "junk" Ugly Stik of some sort. The seller even suggested just throwing that plane away, which is something I considered when I first saw it. But, I hate dumping a potentially good airplane, and I love fixing up old/wrecked models and seeing them fly again.

As you may recall from my old post, I did patch up the Stik and flew it....and I LOVED the way it flew. I think it has to do with the fact that it looks to be about a .20-sized kit but has a peppy Fox .40 in it. Very straight, zippy, responsive, FAST little flyer. But by the time my test flight was over, I had lost several pieces of the plane, most notably:

- Nose wheel assembly

- Muffler

- Rudder

- Elevator was hanging on loosely by one hinge....oh my!

After looking closer at some of the stuff in the lot, I found some AMA literature from the late 1970s, and the paperwork on a couple of the engines is from the 1980s. I'm guessing the Stik was built around that time, it looks VERY old. The old CA hinges on the tail surfaces were definitely shot. Also, the covering scheme was hideous...when my wife saw it, her opinion was summed up with a sympathetic "Poor thing!" It was dark red and metallic green...a Christmas tree, basically.

Observe: http://www.flickr.com/photos/alfamat...n/photostream/ (It looks better here than it did in person...)

Well needless to say I was eager to go through this plane completely to bring it up to safe flying condition and make it not QUITE so "ugly". Hitting the web for ideas, it seems I am hard-pressed to find a "pretty" Ugly Stik.

How to make something pretty that is ugly by design? Darn it, I am determined to try!

Pics below.........I still have a lot of stuff to add (mostly "racing" logos/numbers, and a racing checkerboard pattern), but you can see where I'm going. The side stripe was really a last-minute idea while trying to figure out a way to dress up the fuse with more than just stickers. I'm pleased with it so far. I also surprised myself and pulled off the wingtip covering job just fine!

I still don't know what specific kit this is, doesn't seem to match any of the Stiks out there now. Wingspan is right at 48".
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Old 02-20-2013, 06:03 AM
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karolh
 
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Default RE: 30'ish year old Ugly Stik restoration

Nice job in bringing yours back to life. The Stiks are a far cry from being things of beauty at the best of times but are such nice fliers that several folks have modded theirs to add some sparkle to them, so do a search in Kit Building and see that it turns up. Here is a picture of my modded GP Big Stik 60
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Old 02-21-2013, 04:47 PM
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red head
 
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Default RE: 30'ish year old Ugly Stik restoration

It looks a lot like the old "Midwest " 25 size stick. It's been awhile since I had one and the ones I had I modified a lot so the pictures are a bit hard to compare . ENJOY !!! RED
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Old 02-21-2013, 08:56 PM
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heggen
 
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Default RE: 30'ish year old Ugly Stik restoration

Being able to look past the ugly to see the potential is a gift. Nice job on the redo of the Stik.
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Old 04-27-2013, 10:18 AM
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AA5BY
 
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Default RE: 30'ish year old Ugly Stik restoration

Or it could be the Sweet Stick. Didn't Midwest models produce both the Little and Sweet Sticks? Trying to recall if the Little stick was trike or tail wheel... know the Sweet Stick was trike. A .40 would have been huge for the Little Stick where as .40 was standard size on the Sweet Stick.
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Old 06-21-2013, 10:13 AM
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Default RE: 30'ish year old Ugly Stik restoration

Very cool, and nice job. I also believe it's the Midwest.
I'm redoing a Goldberg Falcon 56 that I got at the swaps.
I have a N.I.B. AeroSport .20 kit that is the same thing you
have with a different Fin/rudder, I really should build it.

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Old 10-10-2013, 10:32 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by AA5BY View Post
Or it could be the Sweet Stick. Didn't Midwest models produce both the Little and Sweet Sticks? Trying to recall if the Little stick was trike or tail wheel... know the Sweet Stick was trike. A .40 would have been huge for the Little Stick where as .40 was standard size on the Sweet Stick.
I had a Midwest "Das Little Stick" in the late 70's. It had a nose gear and an aluminum main gear that mounted to the belly with dowels and rubber bands. I had an O.S. .25 on it.
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Old 10-12-2013, 09:49 AM
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In a world where people just throw away anything not quite perfect, it's nice to see a few people willing to breath new life into a plane that might have been destroyed, expecially older kits that are very much worth restoring. Losing a good plane is like losing my little dog, it'd kill me.
I use to go to a few fly-ins where these guys would throw a plane away if it got scratched. After dark I'd go by the trash barrels and pull these out of the trash, take them home, spend 30 minutes fixing them, add my radio gear and an engine, then flew them for years. Some of you may laugh, but I had a young family and almost no money for my hbbby.
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Old 10-12-2013, 04:12 PM
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I have always enjoyed keeping my planes for years on end. I still have the first plane I "built", it was an Ace Grasshopper.....almost 20 years ago. It's in rough shape but mostly complete, it's a future project. In 2009 I restored my second build, a CG Gentle Lady I built when I was 15. It is motorized now, and is now one of my favorite park flyers!

The Stik has been further refined as I have tuned the motor and fixed the weight and balance, it is finally flying just the way I want....except the old Fox muffler cracked, so I have to find a replacement.

I guess one of the reasons I like fixing up old planes is that I kinda like doing Monokote. You can take a junky looking plane, strip it, take care of any structural or design mods you wish to do, and re-cover to get a whole new look. I have a PT-40 that was all red when I got it. I re-covered it with black and white and red trim, now it looks more like an original Tower Trainer (my first full-house aircraft). It almost looks like a different aircraft design.

I still miss my junky, poorly built, damaged/fix/damaged-again Butterfly....actually I think it was the model that preceded the Butterfly. Anyway, I loved that old plane. Unfortunately when we moved from Indiana in 2000, we had no room for the giant one-piece wing (my dad and I modified it after having trouble with the wings coming apart). In the near future I hope to build up a Butterfly and hang my old plane's OS .20FP on it.

Matt
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