RCU Forums - View Single Post - J3 cub, crash on take off nearly every time.
Old 10-25-2008, 07:25 AM
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Default RE: J3 cub, crash on take off nearly every time.


cubs are deceptive little things. high wing, slow flight... must be easy right? WRONG!
I have the old Hangar 9 Cub 40 with the 80" wing. I've had it now for at least 12 years. I built it using the advertised Saito 56 with a 12/6 prop.

When I first took it to our club field I had one of the pro's put it up as I always do with a new build. He said it was fine so I tried it. It seemed a bit squirrely to me and I didn't like it. I was flying tail draggers at the time but this wasn't right, not my cup of tea. I took it home and hung it up until this past summer.

This year I got back into heavy flying, war birds, sport planes, etc.. I saw a Cub flying at our field and thought how nice it looked and how well it flew. When I got home I spent the next week preparing mine for another try. I found the balance slightly tail heavy and made it a touch nose heavy. I also found the wing incidence +2 degrees but, a reference on RCU forums said this won't be a problem.

I took her to the field, fired her up, and off she went. This was a nice warm day and maybe 10 mph gusts coming right down the tube. No speed demon but it left the ground without a problem. A nice smooth realistic take off. As I'm gaining altitude I'm banking right and I'm about 50 ft. over a stand of trees. All of a sudden the plane wants to roll over and I'm going wild trying to level out. It's as if my ailerons aren't functioning. One of the best 3D pilots in our club was with me and grabs the radio. He levels it out as if nothing happened. I'm a wreck and have him bring it in without incident.

I ask him what happened, is the plane under powered? He says, " No, it's flying scale. You ran into thermals at the tree line and you have to learn to fly with rudder."

That one piece of advice has changed everything and opened a whole new flying experience for me. I now enjoy a good wind when flying my Cub. I'm not burning up the sky but it's a new challenge and it's become one of my enjoyable, relaxing aircraft.

And all this time I thought rudder was for ground handling, knife edges, and hammer heads! Flying fast is easy, flying scale is flying.

Just my $.02 of rambling.