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Parkzone Spit - any pre-maiden advice?

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Parkzone Spit - any pre-maiden advice?

Old 05-08-2007, 11:48 AM
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Beaufighter
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Default Parkzone Spit - any pre-maiden advice?

Hi guy's, this is my first post - so here goes!

I've just taken delivery of my PZ Spit, and I'm hoping to maiden her this weekend (wind permitting!!). I was just wondering whether anyone has any pearls of wisdom that I should know about before I fly her.

To give you some background - I've been flying a HZ Super Cub at every oportunity for about 5 months, and feel I have pretty much reached the limits of what I can learn from it. I'm by no means bored with it - it's a fantastic trainer, and did it's job very well - but I feel I'm ready for something a bit more challenging. I chose the Spit for 2 reasons; 1 - my granfather used to fly them in the late 40's, and I just love the sight of that eliptical wing in the air - nostalgia and all that!; and 2 - from hours of reading reviews and discussions on many forums, it seems that the PZ Spit is a good starting point for pilots of my level who are looking to advance a little.

I would be very grateful for any advice anyone has - it would be great to arrive home after the maiden with the plane still in one piece!

Everyone on this forum seems really helpful - hence I joined this one and not one of the many others!

Thanks in advance, and look forward to speaking with you all!
Old 05-08-2007, 03:57 PM
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Default RE: Parkzone Spit - any pre-maiden advice?

Hi Beaufighter,

There's some maiden tips on my blog here:

http://www.oz********.com/2007/03/maiden-tips.html

Have a read through them.

Get someone else to check the control throws for you (if you have the RTF it should be right, but you should spend the 3 seconds it takes to check your control deflection every single flight).

If you can get someone who knows how to hand launch to help you, that will be immensely useful. I think full throttle and throw with a *slight* upwards angle myself. I've seen so many PZ warbirds busted up becausethe thrower gave them a limp wristed chuck that didn't establish airspeed.

Finally, just to stress the point on the checklist as the plane leaves the hand it will start to try and roll/dive/climb because it wont be perfectly trimmed. Compensate for this through the TX until the plane is at a safe altitude (30 metres), then establish your cruising speed, now trim your aircraft. Don't take your fingers of the sticks to trim at low altitude.

Have you done some sim practice to familiarise yourself with the new TX layout?

Cheers,
Oz.
Old 05-08-2007, 06:04 PM
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Default RE: Parkzone Spit - any pre-maiden advice?

Hi Oz,

Thanks for the link - some really useful info!

In Answer to your questions - we get the ZX10 single stick TX here in the UK, so it's the same layout as the SC. I don't have a SIM at the moment - hoping to pick one up soon though!
Old 05-08-2007, 07:46 PM
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Default RE: Parkzone Spit - any pre-maiden advice?

The spitfire flys well (probably the best of the PZ 3 warbirds). Couple of things to also keep in mind:

- Chances are it will glide further than you expect on approach so just make sure you have plenty of room for your landings.
- Like most low wings, but perhaps a little exaggerated with the spitfire she can have a nasty inner wing stall in a corner if she doesn't have enough airspeed. Shouldn't normally come up but just be careful if you have glided in to land, realise you are running long and go into a bank without giving her some throttle.


Good luck with her.

Oz.
Old 05-08-2007, 07:55 PM
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heartofmadnes
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Default RE: Parkzone Spit - any pre-maiden advice?

I have 3 of the Parkzone warbirds and i will agree the Spit "to me flys better then my other two. I also agree it glides very well so give it some space. But here is an off the wall question for anyone, has anyone tried to upgrade the parkzones to a brushless setup?..what type of motor or electronics did you use?
Old 05-09-2007, 03:43 AM
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Default RE: Parkzone Spit - any pre-maiden advice?

Thanks again Oz, and also thanks to you heartofmadnes.

I actually maidened her this morning! - Disaster!!! My own fault for under-estimating how much room needed to fly this plane, and not enough altitude.

Launch went well - a little right aileron needed to steady her - but not as much as I was expecting. Before I knew it, the plane was 100yds away, so I made a left turn and brought her back around. On the way back, she flew beautifully - I added a small amount of up elevator trim, and she climbed very gently. Put her in to another left turn - and that's where it all went wrong!! A little to much stick input from me and she rolled too far and headed toward the deck at an alarming rate! The rest is far too ugly to describe!! I'm now the proud owner of a pile of camoflaged foam! The wing broke in two, and I only have half a fuse - I would have needed a vacuum to pick up the other half! I think the electrics are salvagable, but nothing else!

I'm trying to stay pretty philosophical about it though - I suppose crashes are going to happen! I'm gonna have to put it down as a lesson learned!

In answer to your question heartofmadnes - I've seen on another forum that someone fitted the BL motor from the PZ Typhoon, and that it's possible to plug a BL ESC directly into the stock RX. Not sure where I saw it, but if I can find it - I'll post the link.
Seemed fairly straight forward with just slight mod needed to bring the motor mount forward.

Thanks again guy's!
Old 05-09-2007, 07:35 AM
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Default RE: Parkzone Spit - any pre-maiden advice?

Beaufighter,

Read you maiden flight and just had to add something to emphasis.

Having only recently started the sport myself with a too advanced plane (my Xmas present) that lasted 7 seconds on Boxing day to taking a step back to the beginners (HZ Supercub) and a simulator. Just when you thought you'd cracked it and step up to the plate again with your more advanced brand new pride and joy (Ultrafly Phantom) to see it reduced to a pile of bits in a matter of seconds is totally soul destroying !!!!!!!!!!!!!!
I did go down to a club recently for my 1st time and one thing I really noticed - especially with the lesser experienced - they seemed to be flying ridiculously high and at least double probably treble the height I was and since then it's saved me from at least 2 / 3 major disasters which I know would have ended in a completely trashed plane. Also their air speed was low in comparison.
It's not just the time factor which we all know happens in an instance leaving you with that what the hell happened feeling, it's the knowing that you have that time that allows you to stand back from it with a calmer mind and correct it without going into a blind panic.
Good luck with whatever your next purchase is but sometimes it's just nice to know you're not alone, I think this is the most amasing hobby ever and I'd love to soend every waking minute flying but the flip side it's also the most frustrating with loads of downtime especially at the start !!!!!!!!!
Old 05-09-2007, 08:59 AM
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Default RE: Parkzone Spit - any pre-maiden advice?

Hi Witterings, thanks for the post - the moral support is much appreciated, and it's nice to know someone else has done similar!

The biggest mistake I made was selecting a flying field that was far too small for the plane. Because of this, I had to start manouvering the plane much sooner, and at much lower altitude than I would have liked - this became apparent very shortly after launch - a bit late really! As I said in my earlier post - I'll have to put it down to experience and a lesson learned!!

I haven't given up on the Spit though - I have a replacement airframe on order - the electrics are salvagable from the wreck, so will have it re-built as soon as possible. I must say that the 20 or so seconds that the plane was in the air were amazing - it's a beautiful plane and looks fantastic - let's hope I can preserve the good looks of the next one!

P.S. I have to agree with what you said about this hobby - it is amazing! I'm looking forward to many years of flying - and no doubt a few more wreck's along the way!!
Old 05-09-2007, 04:19 PM
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Default RE: Parkzone Spit - any pre-maiden advice?

Hi Beau,

I'm sorry to hear about your bird going in. Unfortunately none of the PZ warbirds seem to have been designed with repairability in mind (different culture I guess - just replace the airframe rather than repair it).

Listen a few thoughts based on your flight report - and please understand I am trying to be honest and direct - its not my intention to cause any offence. I also was a beginner once, and remember how someone would say "you need to do such and such" and thinking to myself "I couldn't do that because of *some other thing*".

In 100 yards with the spitfire you should have been able to establish 30 metres of altitude reasonably easily - certainly is within the plane's capabilities which suggests to me that it was probably all happening a bit too quickly for you (particularly with maiden nerves etc).

Also, something which is different about rudder only and aileron planes. Rudder only you tend to loop, or use up elevator, to escape from trouble. With Aileron planes you tend to roll out of trouble, then use elevator to escape. It's an important difference.

In the flight, did you get a chance to reduce the throttle at all, or where you still WOT when you did your turn and came back?

Also, do you have FMS? Have you tried flying some of the planes in there?

One more thing, before you attempt the spit again just be confident that you have addressed whatever it is that went wrong. If it's lack of flying space then so be it. If it that the model is a bit fast for your current experience then figure out how you are going to address that. Maybe another plane is needed between the Cub and the spitfire, or maybe you just need to reduce the rates on the spitfire so you don't have as much roll authority.

Cheers,
Oz.
Old 05-09-2007, 06:46 PM
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Default RE: Parkzone Spit - any pre-maiden advice?

Hi Oz,

Thanks for the observations - you touched on something there that until now I had't noticed - so I went and checked the TX, and sure enough it's set on high rates. To be honest, amid the excitement and nerves before launch, I had't thought to check. I'm not about to blame the equipment for my lack of talent, but it probably didn't help! I think the space issue was the biggest factor - my local field is an old rugby ground with houses on 2 sides. I find this is comfortably big enough for the SC, but the Spit - being faster than I was anticipating - made that space feel half the size. I'll need to find a much bigger flying field before I attempt it again!

Thanks for the tip on avoiding trouble - that's something that hadn't entered my head - but it does make a lot of sense. Up elevator is your best friend with the SC, but I can see how it could potentially be your worst enemy with an aileron plane. I also agree with you that a SIM would be a wise next purchase. What is FMS? - sorry, rookie question I know!


Thanks again OZ

Beau.

Old 05-09-2007, 07:28 PM
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Default RE: Parkzone Spit - any pre-maiden advice?

ORIGINAL: Beaufighter
Thanks for the observations - you touched on something there that until now I had't noticed - so I went and checked the TX, and sure enough it's set on high rates.
Oh - that will have made it quite a bit harder. By itself that accounts for about 70% of your difficulties.

but the Spit - being faster than I was anticipating - made that space feel half the size. I'll need to find a much bigger flying field before I attempt it again!
If you can find four football fields arranged in a 2x2 rectangle that is the most space you could use really - any bigger and you will fly the plane out of visual range - another risk with warbirds in particular is letting them get too far away from you. There camo makes them blend into the background. Of course, at distance your ability to percieve any colour drops off and the model will just become gray.

The other thing is getting to altitude, and then setting that throttle at 2/3rds or 3/4 and just dialing it back step by step from there until you have a speed as low as possibly but the plane is comfortably flying and banking.

I also agree with you that a SIM would be a wise next purchase. What is FMS? - sorry, rookie question I know!
FMS is Free Model Simulator - you can download it here for free (use the latest alpha):

http://n.ethz.ch/student/mmoeller/fms/index_e.html

Get the PZ FW190 and P51D Models from here:

http://gunnerson.homestead.com/files/fms_models.htm

You'll need some sort of input device - usng the keyboard wont help you build the memory associations you need to. A play station style controller for your PC, or even a joystick (given your spit flys on one stick) using the keyboard for throttle might be okay.

The physics in FMS isn't great, but it will help you get your head around orientation, speed, and planning issues. Try using one of the more cluttered backgrounds to challenge your mind on the planning front.

Spend a few hours with this and you will be much better prepared for the next flight.

Cheers,
Oz.
Old 05-10-2007, 07:21 PM
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Default RE: Parkzone Spit - any pre-maiden advice?

I have been there as well, Sorry about your plane dude. I learned the hard way being stubborn years ago and saying "who needs a stinkin instructor or flight sim" My P51 lasted about 3 minutes.. Time went on I went back to basics then next thing I know, I CAN FLY<<<I CAN FLY... Been a couple years now, and the fun just started..I fly a Red Arrow at my local park and Im basically dodging Soccer nets...Pretty fun.. But I remember the years of needed a 800 yard long field with nobody watching me Its all in good fun.
Old 05-11-2007, 12:42 PM
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Default RE: Parkzone Spit - any pre-maiden advice?

Hi Oz, thanks for the reply and the links!!

I've been practising a fair amount with the Mustang on FMS (great program considering it's free!) and I think it will help lot! I definatley need to get hold of a TX to link to the PC though. Having said that - even controling with the keyboard, it's already taught me a lot about how the planes behave in the air. I think this will be a very useful program, so thanks for pointing me in the right direction!

Also - thanks heartofmadnes for the post - I do feel a lot better knowing I'm not the only one to have burried their brand new pride and joy in a matter of seconds!! your right in what you say - as gutted as I was/am to have killed the spit - it is all part of the fun - now I just have to make my bank manager see it that way!!!

Cheers Guy's

Beau.
Old 05-14-2007, 11:17 AM
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Default RE: Parkzone Spit - any pre-maiden advice?



Use the FMS, its really helps a lot. I got the FMS and spent a few hours learning to fly. I bought the PZ Spitfire and flew for the first time last weekend. I left it on the low rate setting and it flew fantastic. It really is an easy plane to fly. I had a little trouble with my landings (i.e too fast) and had to do a few go arounds but the plane is still in one piece.

I guess I shoudln't really be giving advice but just practice on the FMS, use the low rates and don't over-control the plane. Oh and it helps to have a spotter if you get disorientated.

Good luck!!
Old 05-14-2007, 02:46 PM
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Default RE: Parkzone Spit - any pre-maiden advice?

Hey Beau,

I have a Parkzone Spitfire too. I have only flown it 3 times in nearly 2 months since buying it. Believe it or not this was my first ever plane and never received any tuition. Admittedly I did spend a few hours on FMS and then various sims since. I started off buying an Esky simulator tx just to see how I got on and ended up getting bitten by the bug. It's only about £25 and does the trick. You're on Cardiff ain't you? I'm down in Bristol. Where you fly?
Old 05-14-2007, 04:35 PM
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Default RE: Parkzone Spit - any pre-maiden advice?

Hi djtiredboy, thanks for the reply. I've seen the Esky controllers on ebay, but assumed that they weren't much good because of the price ( about £18.00 from Hong Kong ). If you say their ok though, then I might pick one up. I've found FMS a big help. Mainly with how the plane handles in the air, and it's also helped with planning ( thanks to Ozrcboy for ponting me to it! ). I haven't got the replacement airframe yet, but feel a lot more confident already about the maiden with the rebuild.

I'm actually just outside Cardiff, I live in Caerphilly. Usually fly on my local rugby club ground, but do have a couple of big parks not too far away, haven't flown at them yet though, but I think one will be far more suitable for "Maiden - take 2". How about you?, where do you fly?

Beau.
Old 05-14-2007, 04:48 PM
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Default RE: Parkzone Spit - any pre-maiden advice?

Hi schatztf, thanks for the reply and congrats on the maiden!
Old 05-26-2007, 01:40 PM
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Default RE: Parkzone Spit - any pre-maiden advice?

Wow, I am very sorry to hear about that unfortunate incident with your spitfire. Mine lasted 6 flights until I accidentally crashed into the roof of an office building. I had 3 beautiful flights yesterday and on my fourth, a nasty gust of wind was all it took to screw up my afternoon. Please dont feel too bad, I have been flying for 20 yrs and dont know a thing about electric flight only glow. I picked up the spit as a plane to have in the trunk of the car and fly anywhere. It did just that for its first flights and I was actually quite surprised at how well it flew. Unfortunately, the mistake was mine, the conditions were not favorable for flying and I was just stubborn to put in one more flight. I ordered a replacement airframe from Horizon Hobby today.
A funny thing during all of this is when my plane drifted onto the roof of the office building, I saw it crash and could not tell at the time if it was on the roof or maybe it had fallen behing the building. After circling the building I pulled on the sticks to see if maybe I could sort of tell the location by hearing the servos. I found it! and it was definately on the roof! Nobody in the building. I gave it throttle and could hear it hitting something! haha, and to my surprise, it started flying!!!! I was able to put it down near me, only to find the motor mount was cracked as well as the internal plastic frame! Damn! I felt like a pouty kid! hehe. The hobby shops around here dont carry the parts for the spit yet so i ordered a replacement airframe from horizon. Please know that the aircraft's flying characteristics are beautiful, very scale aerobatics (even graceful at half throttle). wind has to be very calm though, making it very hard for those who get very desperate to fly! a lesson i can rest assured i learned well. [&o]
Old 05-27-2007, 06:49 AM
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Default RE: Parkzone Spit - any pre-maiden advice?

Hi Guy's, sorry i've been a while getting back - had a hectic few weeks!

Received the replacement airframe on friday - "maiden - take 2" was yesterday, and I'm delighted to report that the spit flew like a dream!!

I bought the Esky transmiter for FMS, and spent quite a few hours practising with the PZ Mustang. It was time well spent - as this time, I felt like I'd already been flying this plane for ages. I felt like I had a lot more time to plan what I was doing, and I had no nasty surprises from the plane - even managed a couple of nice victory rolls! Awesome!!

I'd like to thank all of you for your help and advice - especially Oz for pointing me to FMS and all the other guidance you offered - it's been very, very helpfull!

I'm now in the middle of giving the Spit some invasion stripes - I think these will be a big help with orientation at distance. I've included a photo below - what do you think?

Thanks again guy's

Beau
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Old 05-27-2007, 12:37 PM
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Default RE: Parkzone Spit - any pre-maiden advice?

I dig the stripes!!

I just got back from flying mine, I did my first roll in it today. It handled great!! I did several rolls until I heard a weird noise coming from the plane. I landed it and there were black plastic shavings everywhere inside. Guess I toasted the gearbox.

Again, good job on the stripes!!
Old 05-27-2007, 05:37 PM
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Default RE: Parkzone Spit - any pre-maiden advice?

ORIGINAL: Beaufighter
Received the replacement airframe on friday - "maiden - take 2" was yesterday, and I'm delighted to report that the spit flew like a dream!!

I'm now in the middle of giving the Spit some invasion stripes - I think these will be a big help with orientation at distance. I've included a photo below - what do you think?
Hi Beau,

Fantastic to hear you had a good re-maiden and that everything felt good as you were flying. Awesome.

W.r.t to your invasion stripes if you are adding them for asthetics (she looks nicer) then go for it. However, my belief is they wont do a whole lot to help orientation. Here's why I think that:

When a plane is close enough for you to see details on it like invasion stripes, it is close enough for your brain to figure out the orientation of the plane. From memory the spit's underwing is gray or some such, which is a nice high contrast to the rest of her airframe. There are enough visiual cues there to figure out orientation IMO.

As the plane gets further away our eyes stop being able to tell us as much about the model. One of the first things that goes is colour detail - you may be able to distringuish the camo side of the model from the underwing, but you wont be able to see markings - they are too small and too far away now. If the plane is against a suitable backdrop - like trees, at this stage you may lose sight of her. If you keep on flying the model away you will shortly lose the colour entirely and the model becomes a gray or black silohette. So, the bad news is that exactly when you need the visual cues, your eyes are no longer capable of delivering them.

This means that if you lose orientation on the plane at distance you really only have two things to help you recover. Your memory of what she was doing last time you saw her, and your ability to see how the silohette is flying, and how it is affected by controls.

Maybe try seeing this for yourself. Lay your model on the ground and walk 50, then 100, then 150 metres away.

Cheers,
Oz.
Old 05-27-2007, 08:30 PM
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Default RE: Parkzone Spit - any pre-maiden advice?

Hi Oz and Schatztf, thanks for the comments guy's.

I see what you mean about colour perception at distance Oz. Maybe the stripes won't help much after all - still, they look Killer!!! I'll post some more pictures when she's finished!

Cheers guy's

Beau.
Old 05-28-2007, 05:34 AM
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Default RE: Parkzone Spit - any pre-maiden advice?

Congrats on your re-maiden mate! All this talk is seriously tempting me to buy one of these.

The stripes make the plane look very nice also, not a big fan of invasion stripes, but those do look good.
Old 05-28-2007, 08:17 AM
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Default RE: Parkzone Spit - any pre-maiden advice?

db - I assumed you had a spitfire based on your avatar. I've been thinking about getting on of the SBRC ones, but my mate DJ has had nothing but grief with his. My other flying mate had the wings on his PZ Spit fold in a routine manuveur...

I'm thinking maybe the alpha models one.
Old 05-28-2007, 08:37 AM
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Default RE: Parkzone Spit - any pre-maiden advice?

Hi drunkenbushman, thanks for the comments!!

I've now finished the stripes, the pictures are below as promised. I've also added a tail wheel, and the "bee sting" type aerial for a bit more scale detail. Next job is to make some new roundels for the underside of the wing. The stock decals are way too big, and in the wrong place. I did toy with the idea of guns, but thought there's potential for them to catch the undergrowth on landing, and cause some damage to the wing.

Let me know what you guy's think!

Beau.
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