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PERIGEE Prototype Kit Build

Old 07-26-2007, 04:52 PM
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BobHH
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Default PERIGEE Prototype Kit Build

OK Guys, I've been contacted by several people about when Tom Brett's Perigee kit will be available from Early RC and how will it compare to the original. Well just received the prototype laser cutting today and as promised will start this build thread showing how it compares to the original. I must confess that I have an original DeBolt kit and am quite surprised with the poor quality of wood and die-cutting. It must have been one of the last kits made because most of the Demeco kits were quite good.

Now Dan at Early RC Models does not have any kits yet because I will build this kit, make any changes observed to plans and laser cutting, comprise an assembly manual, finalize the plans then turn it over to him. He is comprising a waiting list for a run as soon as I finish this build so if you want one or may be interested in a full kit give him a call and get on the list. I am not sure if he will be keeping kits in stock or will make small production runs as needed.

Anyway, here are some pictures of the laser parts as I got them out of the box. NOTE: The fuselage sides on this prototype show a zig-zag joint at the rear. This was requested by me to get a kit in house and started sooner instead of waiting on a balsa order. The final kit will have a one piece fuselage. Now note the 2 piece shown below is from the original kit. Look closely and you can see the saw marks in the balsa!!

The large plywood sheet show has the main wing ribs for the wing at landing gear location, and the 3/32 plywood wing spars. The original had 3/32 BALSA spars. The only crash I witnessed on a Perigee was a wing folding at the bottom of a loop!.

Keep tuned in as I hope to post build pictures of this model. Please let me know if you have any questions as we go along.

Bob Harris
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Old 07-27-2007, 12:00 AM
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Default RE: PERIGEE Prototype Kit Build

Looks to be some kit. US folk really lucky to get stuff like this, and the airplane is a honey too.
Evan, W.B. #12.
Old 07-27-2007, 10:36 AM
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CoosBayLumber
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Default RE: PERIGEE Prototype Kit Build

Been flying the new Perigee for nearly three years now. Got design off of A.M. plan and the original that resulted from sale of DMECO. This A/C as presented either way is not suited to be built as per kit, especially when mixing modern gear and original parts. It then becomes too tail heavy when using modern radio gear and modern glow power. I had to essentially re-design the whole A/C (for a third time) in order to get the C.G. back up to the front without adding penalty ballast. It looks to me that the big Bonner servos as shown on the originals are part of the imbalance problem. For once they are omitted, the tail then is too heavy, and needs 1-2 ounces removed back there.

Do not find any Z'd section on original plans here. There is however a laminated 3/32 inch balsa crutch shown, which is reinforcement to the Hoz-stab. This to be glued to the near 48 inch long one piece sides. There could have been some kits created with 36 inch long wood, creating a need for a Z'd section near the rear. Makes for a cheaper model box then.

The airfoil also may be more suited for early glow power than for modern. I flew at Calif. dry lakes, and found when doing normal landing approach, the A/c sort of falls out of sky, hitting the ground with a smack once the power is cut. Essentially as a substitute you then need to fly it in right on down low for the approach (unless the airfoil is altered). At present time, I sell these reproductions only to those persons who express some high performance experience. Contrairy to what is noted, my originals show the two main spars of balsa (not plywood) and then a few ribs of plywood. Not as mentioned. The original had homemade nose gear, the DMECO kit had used a double leg design dating back to the Viscount. Instead, I used the commercially available Fults design, plus the equally hard to locate Tatone design up front. Had a few special parts laser cut up to incorporate their mounting. No matter what is chosen, the model does not have enough pressure on to the front tire to avoid skidding when tight turns are anticipated.

Overall, the Perigee is a slow seller. It takes a hot pilot to manage one. I had sold a bunch to a fellow in New York state about two years ago. He found that most of the problem with the Perigee lies in that you must be a good flier in order to handle it. Looks simple but is not. The later Interceptor series is much more manageable for modern power and radio gear. Those same customers who purchased a Perigee sold them off, and got the more modern (and forgiving) Interceptor. After creating three laser cut prototypes I found the Perigee is a winner in name only.

Wm.
Old 07-27-2007, 11:48 AM
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Nathan King
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Default RE: PERIGEE Prototype Kit Build


ORIGINAL: CoosBayLumber

...The airfoil also may be more suited for early glow power than for modern. I flew at Calif. dry lakes, and found when doing normal landing approach, the A/c sort of falls out of sky, hitting the ground with a smack once the power is cut. Essentially as a substitute you then need to fly it in right on down low for the approach (unless the airfoil is altered). At present time, I sell these reproductions only to those persons who express some high performance experience...
Could you elaborate on the airfoil issue? I don't really understand what properties an older engine of similar output would have besides changing C.G. that would affect flight that profoundly.
Old 07-27-2007, 01:18 PM
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Default RE: PERIGEE Prototype Kit Build

I just ordered Perigee kit(s) from CoosBay Lumber. I intend to look carefully for any bit of wash-in, which would account for the plane falling out at low speeds. I am considering applying a bit of wash-out just to make sure. It will be my winter project, and I will do a build thread on it for you all, just be patient.

Nic
Old 07-27-2007, 05:31 PM
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BobHH
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Default RE: PERIGEE Prototype Kit Build

Well, William the zig-zag joint I mentioned shows up only on my prototype fuselage sides pictured. Instead of waiting for a full sheet I just pieced one up for the prototype build. As for being tail heavy that is a good possibility as many of the older models had the heavier gear. I do share your thoughts on the airfoil design. The original kit, if built per the die-cutting can put positive ( as much as 2 degrees below rib centerline at rear) washout on the wing. This may account for some of the notorious snaps mentioned on landings.

I am leaning toward a OS 32 for power on this prototype but have a K&B Greenhead 45 stored away for my personal model for the VRCS. Much too fast for my reed system (my thumbs!!) but may put one of my older systems in it for nostalgic purposes!

I too have redesigned quite a bit on this model mostly to be easier for the average modeler to build as well as to decrease the overall weight of the finished model. The spars on my design are 3/32 plywood. Unfortunately Hal used balsa spars in many of his designs back then. This brought on the reputation of his designs having weak wings. When I redesigned the Champ for early RC a few years before his death I also went with plywood spars. Hal thought this was a good idea. Even though he had never experienced a wing failure on any of his prototypes.

I agree the original nose gear arrangement was a bit strange and cumbersome. Show in this picture is the modification made to use a standard Sig nose gear assembly but located in the original position. The mounting block is laser cut for quick assembly. Not show here but on the final plans is just mounting the nose gear conventionally. Easier and less time consuming. I also placed the original nose gear from the kit. I believe it was a Tatone product.

Again I welcome any comments on this build. I am not sure how well the Perigee will sell for Early RC. I just enjoy doing the design work on some of the vintage models for them. I agree it was not the most popular design for that era and had a bad reputation for slow speed handling. I personally liked the overall looks and hopefully have tamed some of her wild habits for todays fliers!

Bob Harris
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Old 07-27-2007, 10:09 PM
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Default RE: PERIGEE Prototype Kit Build

Bob, I'll be following this thread. It's definitely one of the most elegant designs of its time.

On your plans it appears as if you intend to use a fiberglass cowl (no wood blocks are draw in). Are you? It would be a nice feature at any rate.

Do you have a projected target weight in mind?

David
Old 07-27-2007, 10:23 PM
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Default RE: PERIGEE Prototype Kit Build

Really? I built mine from the original A.M drawings and had trouble getting the c.g. far enough back... and thats with an LA .46 up front. As for the glide, well you can cut the power up high and do the full schedule on the glide. Yes, the thing will snap roll, but it needs a deliberate abuse of the controls to do so. As for the airfoil, it has a little camber, but then so does Orion, Taurus, Hog, just about all of the contempories... Landing , well you have to get the idle real low or it will just keep going, sounds like Wm has had a rearward cg, cause it's actually hard to fault the model...
Evan, W.B. #12.
Old 07-27-2007, 11:00 PM
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Default RE: PERIGEE Prototype Kit Build

Dave, I actually omitted the balsa blocks to just show the nose gear orietation. I have drawn in the balsa blocks to carve out the nose. A fiberglass cowl would be nice but one would need to use a motor mount like a Dave Brown mount for engine installation. That would be a lot less work. Good idea! I will ponder it. As for projected weight I am aiming at around 3-1/2 to 4 lbs. The original was 5 to 6 lbs with the plans stating model weight at 55 oz. I have all of the bonner servos and flight gear to compare. The original carried a little over 23 oz of radio gear. Now I know I can reduce that. The OS is about the same weight as the K&B so that's a swap. I think using a good selection of wood and eliminating some of the unecessary items the overall projected weight could be reached. I plan to finish this one in plastic film but my other will be silk and dope. Still, if applied well I should be able to get close to my desired weight.

Pimmnz, I agree. If built correctly it should fly well. Just think, Tom won the world champs with this model on reeds. If you ever flown reeds you can appreciate the skill! Servos with the speed of a modern retract servo. 5 buttons with only elevator trim!!

Should have some fuselage pictures tomorrow.

Bob Harris
Old 07-31-2007, 07:55 AM
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Default RE: PERIGEE Prototype Kit Build

ORIGINAL: CoosBayLumber

Been flying the new Perigee for nearly three years now....

Essentially as a substitute you then need to fly it in right on down low for the approach (unless the airfoil is altered). At present time, I sell these reproductions only to those persons who express some high performance experience.

Overall, the Perigee is a slow seller...... It takes a hot pilot to manage one..... He found that most of the problem with the Perigee lies in that you must be a good flier in order to handle it.....After creating three laser cut prototypes I found the Perigee is a winner in name only.

Wm.
I am not in the habit of making negative comments on RCU threads, and I've heard some good comments about William and his kits from people I respect, but I don't understand the motivation for making the comments he made--what is he trying to accomplish? It also is disturbing that he chooses Bob's kit announcement thread to point out every negative facet about the plane he can think of.

I find the comment about the plane being a "slow seller" to be amusing. I have tried to buy a Perigee from William on more than one occasion--it was a difficult process. He insists on selling three kits at once becaise of problems packaging an individual kit. When I asked for a price for three kits, he didn't respond, so I finally gave up on William.

I have a good knowledge of the Perigee, both of its good points and bad. It IS a "hot" plane, and isn't terribly forgiving if "horsed around". It MUST be built light or it is prone to tipstall. I know all that, but for my own reasons that I've discussed elsewhere, I want to build one anyway.

It is interesting that now that there is another outlet for obtaining the Perigee, Wm takes the announcement of the new kit and a possible build on RCU as an opportunity to "trash" the design, which is very poor taste in my opinion.

I am confident that Bob and Wing/Early models will produce the very best kit possible, with the lightest wood available, and I for one wish him the very best with the kit. I'll be delighted to be close to the top of the waiting list for the plane when it comes out.

Duane
Old 07-31-2007, 08:14 AM
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Default RE: PERIGEE Prototype Kit Build


ORIGINAL: BobHH

Dave, I actually omitted the balsa blocks to just show the nose gear orietation. I have drawn in the balsa blocks to carve out the nose. A fiberglass cowl would be nice but one would need to use a motor mount like a Dave Brown mount for engine installation. That would be a lot less work. Good idea! I will ponder it. As for projected weight I am aiming at around 3-1/2 to 4 lbs. The original was 5 to 6 lbs with the plans stating model weight at 55 oz.

Bob Harris

Bob;

Everything I've learned about the Perigee is that if kept around 5lbs, the negative aspects of the design are kept to a minumum. The DeBolt kits of the Perigee commonly had poor quality wood, and the die cutting was more like "die crunching". The poor quality wood, (ie heavy wood) led to heavy Perigees, which led to all the reputation problems associated with the plane. Light wood is a must.

I would favor a fiberglass cowl, (the original either had a plastic or fiberglass top piece), and use of a Dave Brown mount. Those interested in a true replication of the original with all wood blocks and engine rails can always go that route if they choose to.

Thanks
Old 08-01-2007, 09:47 AM
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BobHH
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Default RE: PERIGEE Prototype Kit Build

Ok guys, some more pictures showing the build. Fuselage sides as well as bulkheads. Note the use of laser cut 1/16 light plywood fuselage stiffeners instead of the 3/32 balsa stacked pieces. I also modified Former 1 (Bulkhead #4 on the original plans) to accommodate a Sullivan 8 oz fuel tank that can be slid in from the back.

I eliminate bulkhead #3 on the original plans as I see no structural benefit for it and it appears to be only used for the old Bonner servo mount.

I extended Former 2 (Bulkhead #2 on original plans) to allow for more lateral strength on the fuselage sides and also accommodate mounting blocks for an alternative bolt on wing instead of the rubber banded design of the original.

Also shown is the nose gear block arrangement that will allow you to use a standard Sig steerable nose gear kit and will locate the nose gear and wheel at the original location per the plans. Please excuse the epoxy mess. I used a slow dry epoxy and really coated the parts. I have not sanded off the excess yet!

Duane, as you can see from the pictures I put a Dave brown .40 engine mount at the same location as the engine beam mounts. Fits great and put the engine at the same location. Just don't punch out the beam mounting holes.

The original kit had a small vacuum formed plastic cover to cover the top of the engine bay. The fiberglass cowl idea would work great (Less weight) and I will investigate it.

I will finish sheeting the top of the fuselage tonight. Then its time to sand (Carve!!) to shape. All in all one should be able to assembly the fuselage in a few evenings.

More pictures coming!!

Bob Harris

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Old 08-02-2007, 11:38 AM
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Default RE: PERIGEE Prototype Kit Build

Bob,

Sand (carve) the cowl? LOL. I thought thats what they made a Dremel tool with a sanding drum for. Keep up the good work and keep the pics coming.

Does anyone have a picture of a finished plane?

Fly safe and have fun!!
David
Old 08-02-2007, 11:58 AM
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Default RE: PERIGEE Prototype Kit Build

ORIGINAL: hrrcflyer


Does anyone have a picture of a finished plane?

Fly safe and have fun!!
David
The second picture I edited to see what it would look like w/ retracts
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Old 08-02-2007, 12:12 PM
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Default RE: PERIGEE Prototype Kit Build

I was going to include my picture of the Perigee, but looks like someone already put it up there---fast work
Old 08-02-2007, 08:40 PM
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JeffH
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Default RE: PERIGEE Prototype Kit Build

HRRC....Dave. I have a NIB Perigee kit. If I knew you were interested, I would have brought it to the club meeting tonight to view. No it is not for sale.

Jeff
Old 08-03-2007, 06:49 AM
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Default RE: PERIGEE Prototype Kit Build

WEDJ,
Thanks for the pics.

Thats alright Jeff,
I see now why you don't want to sell it. It's a real beauty. I can't wait to see yours when you get it together. Besides, if it flies anything like your Phoenix, it will be a real winner.

Fly safe and have fun!!
David
Old 08-03-2007, 07:33 AM
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Default RE: PERIGEE Prototype Kit Build

ORIGINAL: hrrcflyer

.... if it flies anything like your Phoenix, it will be a real winner.
Which version of the Phoenix is it. I scratch-built a Phoenix 1 when I was about 15 but never flew it. It got old and brittle after I got out of R/C for about 15 years. I finally gave it away to someone[], I must have been nuts but I didn't care about R/C at the time. Now I'd like to build one again to complete the circle.

I have heard a lot of so-so things about the Phoenix 1, (some attributed as coming from Don Lowe), but I still want to see it anyway. I've had a special foam wing cut already, just need the time and determination to finish it.

Duane
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Old 08-03-2007, 08:33 AM
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Default RE: PERIGEE Prototype Kit Build

For the fear of getting off of Perigee talk, I will keep this short about the Phoenix. It is a 5 model. It flies very very well with an HB.61 and Rhom retracts. The only complaint that I have is that it really winds up in a snap. It takes real practice to get it to stop where you want. Rolling maneuvers are awesome!
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Old 08-03-2007, 08:39 AM
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Default RE: PERIGEE Prototype Kit Build

Nice-looking model(s). Your little girl is a "natural" in front of the camera, (photography is my other hobby). I had to study the pictures a little to see they were not the same picture.

FYI--I once asked Don Lowe which of the series was his favorite, and he said the 5.
Old 08-05-2007, 05:51 PM
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Default RE: PERIGEE Prototype Kit Build

OK, added all the top and bottom sheeting as well as the nose blocks. Now it is time for some carving and sanding. NOTE: I added the 1/16 plywood nose ring to insure that I get the taper for the spinner correct. I place my dummy engine in this case an old OS .32 crankcase with spinner mounted. I space out 1/16 from back of spinner and glued into place.

I included the 2 degrees of right thrust as per the original. The kit is supplied with 2 each 1/4 hard plywood engine beams that are glued toghether to make a 1/2 inch engine beam. These are designed to give 0 degree offsett but can be adjusted for the 2 degrees I installed.

Top fuselage sheeting is 1/4 balsa run perpendicular to the fuselage sides for strength. The bottom sheeting 3/32. Feels a little heavy but I have a lot of balsa to remove. I still like the fiberglass cowl idea. I will tell you how much more I like it after all this shaping!!!!

Bob Harris
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Old 08-18-2007, 11:10 PM
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BobHH
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Default RE: PERIGEE Prototype Kit Build

OK guys, I've kind of backed off the Perigee build because its been over 100 degrees in the shop lately. Us fat boys tend to sweat!! Well, I got out this morning and did some rough sanding on the fuselage. Here are the pics. Notice the nose gear is at the original location as per the original.

I have not finished carving our the engine area as I've not quite decided on a power plant. I had been leaning toward the OS 32 but have a older OS 40FSR that I may use. Boy there is a lot of sanding to get her to this point and some more needed to get her to final stages. I elected not to use the vacumn formed cowl top and filled it with balsa. Most likely Dan will offer it with the cover as he will pull from my original. Now to the tail......

Bob Harris
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Old 08-19-2007, 07:25 PM
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Default RE: PERIGEE Prototype Kit Build

Schweet looking!
Old 08-19-2007, 11:47 PM
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Default RE: PERIGEE Prototype Kit Build

I thought Toms original had a F/glass engine - tank cowl top piece? The AAM photos show one so it wouldn't be out of place to make one...
Evan.
Old 08-20-2007, 04:20 AM
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Default RE: PERIGEE Prototype Kit Build

I thought Toms original had a F/glass engine - tank cowl top piece?
The tank hatch was balsa but the little hatch around the engine itself was f/glass. These scans from the Perigee plan/article in January/February 1963 American Modeler hopefully show Tom's original set up.

Ray
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