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Simple Mustang - Scratch build

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Simple Mustang - Scratch build

Old 09-19-2018, 10:10 AM
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Jaime_Arenas
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Default Simple Mustang - Scratch build

Hi all,

I've been thinking about building smaller airplanes now that I don't own an SUV. I've had my eye on the Simple Series airplanes and since I've never actually owned a model of a mustang in any version I thought that would be a good place to start. A member sent me a pdf of the mustang's plans and I used that as a starting point. I decide to recreate the airplane in 3D CAD first to make sure that all my parts are going to fit. I'm about 90% finished with the CAD, which is good enough to start building. Here's a few pictures of the project thus far:

3D CAD of Mustang for .061 Norvel Engine



Showing the Internal Structure

Besides the parts that are shown on the plans I made a shelf for the fuel tank, and a mounting plate for the servos. The servo mounting plate doubles as an alignment jig to ensure that F4 and the fuselage halves are properly aligned. I also made sure that the right and left fuselage doublers also had 2-degrees of down and right thrust. The most significant change to the original design is the wing, I used a Selig airfoil rather than the original airfoil. I thought this would be a good project to test a purpose designed airfoil, an airfoil designed for model aircraft operating at very low Re numbers. The other obvious change is the addition of wing sheeting. I hope this doesn't make the wing too heavy, but it was necessary given that foam I have on hand to cut the wing cores (EPS foam insulation I bought at my local home improvement store).
Old 09-19-2018, 11:27 AM
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Jaime_Arenas
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Last Christmas I bought myself a laser cutter; using the 3D CAD files I created of the mustang I made cut files for all the various pieces except the fuselage halves, which are too long for my little laser cutter. Here is my "kit" of the mustang:



I also made templates for cutting the wing cores. The cores shown in the picture were cut using a homemade hot wire bow and the templates I laser cut.
Old 09-19-2018, 11:36 AM
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Jaime_Arenas
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The build begins:









The small mounting plate in the middle of the last image, rectangular and circular cutout, was added after I took the screen shots of the CAD. I almost forgot that the Norvel will need a throttle servo, this plate will accommodate the throttle servo.

I was about to glue in the firewall when I realized that I need the wing to be completed so I can drill the hole for the 1/8 inch retention peg. I have put the fuselage aside and will start to build the wing before proceeding any further.
Old 09-26-2018, 06:40 PM
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Jaime_Arenas
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Finally had a chance to get back to this build.



Wing panels completed and ready to join. Strip aileron set-up has been installed as well as the trailing edge



Wing is now glued together and the retention peg is dry fitted. The peg will get glued in after the wing is covered.
Old 09-26-2018, 06:48 PM
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Jaime_Arenas
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On to the fuselage build:



With the wing all sorted out I have glued in the firewall. The notch at the top is for the fuel lines to pass through. The cross mark was laser etched to help align the engine mount.




Cockpit floor installed as well as the forward fuselage sheeting. Took a little while to fit each piece, but there on there now. The stab is just resting on the fuse, it hasn't been glued yet.
Old 09-26-2018, 06:59 PM
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Jaime_Arenas
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On to the rear fuselage sheeting



Stab has been aligned and glued in place. The rear, upper fuselage sheeting is almost done.




View of the fuselage from the other side. One more piece of sheeting and I'll be ready to start the sheeting of the underside of the fuselage.




A view of the fuse with the wings and the fin. The fin is just resting there, it will be glued on after the fuselage is covered. It's starting to look like an airplane.


The next thing I have to figure out how to do is the canopy. I haven't made up my mind yet how I will tackle that. I may have to build a "dummy" fuselage to build a canopy plug and then form a canopy from PET or some other clear plastic. Or i might just carve a "canopy" from a block of foam and paint it blue. We'll see.
Old 09-27-2018, 06:35 AM
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You should try to go plastic on the canopy, shape the wood form and pull a plastic bottle section over the form with a heat gun.
What engine are you going with and what did you use to glue down the wing sheeting?
Looking great thank you for sharing here, hope to see a flying vid.
Old 09-27-2018, 04:12 PM
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Jaime_Arenas
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Hi Pond Skipper,

I'll definitely look into doing the canopy from a plastic bottle.

My mustang will be powered with a Norvel .061 that I've had in my engine drawer for a few years. It's brand new and only my second Norvel engine ever. The first Norvel is mounted to my 1/2A SST, the plane flies very well on that engine from what I remember, I haven't flown that plane in a long time; I really should refurbish that little plane and fly it again.
The wing sheeting is glued down with 3M 77 spray adhesive. I would have used the water based contact cement from carl goldberg, but my supply of that stuff is long gone and I din't want to buy a new bottle for this little wing. I also ran a bead of foam safe, medium ca near the leading and trailing edges to make sure they wouldn't lift.

Regards,
Jaime
Old 11-01-2020, 10:57 AM
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Nice wood work..!
My thoughts....
I would mount the engine as low on the firewall as you can.
Sheeted foam wings for models this size tend to be heavier than they need to be. An alternative is to take the foam wing panel, slice it up in sections so that you can trace that "section" to balsa wood...then cut out some balsa ribs. You can build a hollow wood wing that is fully sheeted on both sides this way and it will be lighter than sheeted foam.
Another approach is to take your foam wing panels and "core out" a bunch of little holes to eliminate 50% of the foam, then sheet with balsa. I know a guy who made a hexagonal "cookie cutter" out of thin tin, then he used it to cut out a "honeycomb" style lattice work into the foam wing panels It looked pretty cool at this stage. I think he used a foam friendly contact adhesive to bond the balsa skins to the hogged out foam core. This ended up being the lightest .60 sized Pattern Plane I ever saw and it flew like it too.
Great project Jaime...I thought you lived in Argentina...?

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