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Platt Zero Build Thread

Old 04-02-2011, 12:11 PM
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Default Platt Zero Build Thread

I just started an 80" Platt Zero, and figured I'd take pictures and ask questions as I go along. Based on some other RCU threads, the Platt kit seemed a good choice because of it's good scale presentation that's also easy to handle and fly. This is the plane Dave entered in the 1983 Scale Masters final, scoring an all-but-perfect 98.5, the highest score ever achieved in Masters competition.

I kept an eye out and was VERY happy to find [link=http://cgi.ebay.com/ws/eBayISAPI.dll?ViewItem&_trksid=p4340.l2557&rt=nc&n ma=true&item=160536259742&si=0OVKom1haluUVdOw%252B A3KGtPkAH4%253D&viewitem=&sspagename=ADME%3AB%3AEO IBSA%3AUS%3A1123]one for sale on ebay[/link]!

I haven't yet decided which version (the square-tipped A6M3 "Hamp" or the A6M5 "Zeke" ) I'm going to build, although I'm leaning toward the Hamp.

SPECIFICATIONS:

Scale 1:5.5 (2.2” = 1&rsquo. Wing span 78-3/4". Wing area 1,090 sq. ins. Weight fully equipped 14-18 lbs. Flying speed 75-90 m.p.h.

My ebay prize included a lot of great parts:
[ul][*] plans with basic instructions and a terrific cutaway drawing, [*] all the fiberglass parts (cowling, gun hood, tail cone, drop tank)[*] a canopy[*] two spinners (one for flying and one for static display with resin prop blades)[*] molded resin exhaust banks (for the Zeke)[*] a scale resin pilot[*] pneumatic retracts[*] a Dave Platt scale cockpit set and some other assorted pieces.[*] a Super Tigre S2000 Engine (new in the box)
[/ul]

All for about $400 plus shipping.

OK, first questions:

1. Before I do anything with the fiberglass parts or canopy, I'm considering making molds of them in case I need to replace any of them later. Does anyone have any recommendations on this?

2. I have a Zenoa G38 that I picked up at a recent auction for this plane. I'm pretty sure that this will be a good choice, but what does everyone else think before I make an irreversable committment?


Regards,
-Skip
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Old 04-02-2011, 08:23 PM
  #2  
Chad Veich
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Default RE: Platt Zero Build Thread

Great choice of projects Skip, I'm subscribed! As much as I like the big Super Tigers, I would definitely go with the G-38 if it all fits in the cowl nicely. The reliability of the gassers, as well as the fuel economy, makes it an easy choice for me. As for the glass parts, I'm pretty sure they are all still available from Dave (although for how long nobody knows). I think I'd just purchase a spare set of parts from Dave before I'd go to all the trouble of molding my own. One other bit of advice, paint up the Platt pilot and use him for a nice paper weight but don't stick him in your airplane! Good luck with your build. Oh, and just in case you're counting votes, mine would be for the Hamp.
Old 04-03-2011, 12:00 AM
  #3  
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Default RE: Platt Zero Build Thread

subscribed, Hey Chad, why not use the pilot?
Old 04-03-2011, 02:41 PM
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Chad Veich
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Default RE: Platt Zero Build Thread

ORIGINAL: Ram-bro
subscribed, Hey Chad, why not use the pilot?
They are VERY heavy Ram-bro.
Old 04-03-2011, 06:50 PM
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Default RE: Platt Zero Build Thread

Thanks, Chad. One vote so far... Hamp:1, Zeke:0

I'm also debating about using the cockpit kit this time maybe save it for a future build.

I agree with you on going with gas. But I'm not sure what I'll ever use the Tigre for, if anything. My G38 has a spring starter in the engine mount, but it's so easy to start, I dont think I'll ever use it. So I'm wondering if I should just remove it to save the weight.

The cowl is plenty big enough for a G38, but the plans will require some modifications. I'm attaching a picture of Dave's plans showing the glow engine setup. I'm going to have to push the fuel tank backwards a little, and I probably wont be able to get the radio battery into the cowl as shown.

Build Update:

I have completed the Stab and Elevator assembly (except for glassing). Here's some shots of the process. I was able to use my A-Justo-Jig for it so it's super straight!

Dave's hinge design is my first experience not using robart or dubro types. It was interesting cutting out the circuit-board material and getting everything lined up. But the result is really terrific the elevator rotates perfectly and it looks very scale.

I read in some other debates about glues in some other posts, so I'm using titebond mostly, reservng the CA for when I need something to set up instantly. It's been a while since I did it this way in fact it's been over 30 years! I recall building my first RC plane, a Sig Kadet back in High School - yikes, I don't feel that old. As for CA, I will probably use it when I plank the fuse (no one wants to wait and wait for those strips to stick...).






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Old 04-03-2011, 07:09 PM
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Default RE: Platt Zero Build Thread

Here's a few more shots of the stab build...

I used WorldTex to cover the elevator. This is my first time with it, and I LOVED it. Very very silk-like, and I expect it will paint up perfectly.

Dave's plan requires covering the elevator before covering the rest of the stab. I will have to use liberal amounts of masking tape when I glass the stab to keep from gluing on the elevator! I think I will be able to rotate the elevator enough to get masking tape well under the balsa overhang.

Am I having fun yet? Most definately!
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Old 04-07-2011, 09:30 PM
  #7  
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Default RE: Platt Zero Build Thread


ORIGINAL: [email protected]

Build Update:

I have completed the Stab and Elevator assembly (except for glassing). Here's some shots of the process. I was able to use my A-Justo-Jig for it so it's super straight!
How large of a wing will the A-Justo-Jig accommodate? And was there a jig included for the holes you drilled into the ribs?

Thanks,

Bob I.
Old 04-08-2011, 10:05 AM
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Default RE: Platt Zero Build Thread

Glad to see another A-Justo-Jig user. I love using mine. Takes a minute to set things up but once set up it's great.
Old 04-10-2011, 07:42 PM
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Default RE: Platt Zero Build Thread

Got the top half of the fuse planked.
I'll post some photos tomorrow eve.

Old 05-03-2011, 02:23 PM
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Default RE: Platt Zero Build Thread

hey skip im building the zero as well except mine is from plans if u build molds let me know and i will buy some moldings from u...
Old 05-11-2011, 04:30 PM
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Default RE: Platt Zero Build Thread

Hi Bryan. I did make molds for the tailcone and gunhood so far. I'll post pics of them (hopefully this evening). My new epoxy just arrived so I'm going to use them and see how well they work out hopefully by this weekend.

I still have to make molds of the nosecone, canopy and drop tanks.

I intend to use my molded versions on this plane and save the ones I got with the kit for later rebuilds.

-Skip

Old 05-11-2011, 04:36 PM
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Default RE: Platt Zero Build Thread

I've nearly finished the fuse. I planked it as Dave's instructions recommend. Used a stripper with a slightly "bent" blade to get the edges slightly angled to work around the fuse.

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Old 05-12-2011, 04:33 AM
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Default RE: Platt Zero Build Thread

Skip,

So far, so good with your build............. I have what may be a dumb question for you regarding your stripper. How did you make opposing angles on each strip for the fuse. I'm sure there's a simple explanation, but I cannot get my brain around it.

Thanks and keep up the great work...............

David
Old 05-12-2011, 05:44 PM
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Default RE: Platt Zero Build Thread

Hrcflyer,
To get opposing angles on the strips, I cut a strip and then flipped the board before cutting the next strip, that way I alternated whether I was cutting from the "top" or the "bottom" of the board to get strips that were beveled correctly. Does this make sense? I'm not sure if I can sow it in a picture.
-Skip
Old 05-12-2011, 05:48 PM
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Here's some more pix as I built the fuse. I'm sorry not to post more frequently I have to chose how to spend my limited time, and "building" usually wins (grin)!
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Old 05-12-2011, 05:50 PM
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Default RE: Platt Zero Build Thread

And a few more... (at least I'm taking the pix as I go, right?). Wait til you see the problem I had with the rudder horn interfering with the tail wheel retracts! Argh!!!
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Old 05-12-2011, 05:53 PM
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Default RE: Platt Zero Build Thread

And...
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Old 05-12-2011, 05:56 PM
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Default RE: Platt Zero Build Thread

And finally...

I seriously considered wetting down a 1/8" sheet with windex rather than strip covering, but there's a place just before the rudder where the angles seemed too compound to work right. As I did the planing this proved true. In the end, Dave's guidance is spot on (as usual).

I used titebond instead of zap. It took longer, and I kept running out of pins and clamps, but the result seems really strong and feels "traditionally" good in a self-satisfying way.
Old 05-15-2011, 05:25 PM
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Default RE: Platt Zero Build Thread

Did some more fuse work today, but I wanted to share the rudder control horn problem I had with using the robart retract tailwheel...

First of all, I decided to do pull-pull for the rudder instead of the plan's control horn. Then I realized the in either case, the horn would interfere with the retract (when up)... so I redid a new control horn with a big "U" in the middle... I hope the pictures make it clear...

It's all installed now, and the linkage is solid.

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Old 05-15-2011, 05:36 PM
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Default RE: Platt Zero Build Thread

And here's a couple showing it with the linkage...

For the retract, I had to bend a control horn to move the "throw" from the plan to just above the retract assembly... This very nearly conflicted with the elevator horn... ugh! Anyway, by off-setting it a couple mils, it worked out fine. A little threadlocker on the clevis screw and we're all set!
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Old 05-18-2011, 05:39 PM
  #21  
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Default RE: Platt Zero Build Thread

Subscribe[8D]
Old 05-19-2011, 02:30 AM
  #22  
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Default RE: Platt Zero Build Thread

I modified the plans for the Platt retract unit so that it could be constructed out of PC board but operate just as the original, it works great and is very light weight. I see you are going a different route, but this could be useful for others looking through this thread at a later time. I scaled it for the CMP 71" Zero, but it would be easy to enlarge slightly for the Platt Zero.
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Old 05-22-2011, 04:15 PM
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Default RE: Platt Zero Build Thread

That is a sweet looking tailwheel! Wish I had seen it sooner.
-Skip
Old 10-04-2011, 07:08 PM
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Default RE: Platt Zero Build Thread

Here's some more photos as I build this puppy!

These are:

1. Cutting the slot in the the canopy slides.
2. Installing 1/2" gun ports in the gun hood
3. Installing the tail-cone. Including fairing it to the elevator...
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Old 10-04-2011, 07:27 PM
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Default RE: Platt Zero Build Thread

Here's work on mounting my Zenoah G38. This bird should be well powered.

As you can see from earlier in the build thread, I also have a Super Tigre engine that Ron sold me with the kit, but I really wanted to have a smoke capability so we could simulate some "dogfights"... so gas seemed the way to go.

But... since this is my first gasser, I nearly had a catastrophe... important safety tip for all us glow guys... DO NOT presurize the gas tank from the muffler!!! I'm lucky I didn't have a fire on my test bench. The more you know....

-Skip
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