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Reaction 54 Jet Kit

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Reaction 54 Jet Kit

Old 09-21-2008, 10:48 PM
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Default RE: Reaction 54 Jet Kit

Can you guys post some pics of your strut mods?
I'm going to bring my R-54 out of retirement next summer and may want to dress it up with some struts even though the stock legs have been perfect.
Old 09-21-2008, 11:11 PM
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Default RE: Reaction 54 Jet Kit

ORIGINAL: causeitflies

Can you guys post some pics of your strut mods?
I'm going to bring my R-54 out of retirement next summer and may want to dress it up with some struts even though the stock legs have been perfect.
Sorry I can't get any pictures - I sold mine to a friend and am now waiting for the right time to maiden my composite R-54. The retaining rod through the strut sounds like a good idea, otherwise it take 3 hands to mount them.


Couldn't resist showing it off.
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Old 09-22-2008, 03:43 PM
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Default RE: Reaction 54 Jet Kit

John,
The 660 struts are easy to modify to fit the R54. What retains the spring is an inner aluminum tube which fits the inside diameter of the strut tube. As you noted, that inner tube is cut away when the strut is trimmed to fit the R54. If your R54 is heavy then the spring can be left intact. The ends of the springs (coil) are flat, that flat end will press against the trunion. This will not cause any problems. I have cut the coil and that hasn't caused any damage to the trunion. The 660 modification has been used by many, many people with great success. I think you need to take a 660 strut apart and see for yourself what is required to make it fit the R54. There are a number of ways to do the modification..you need to pick the one you are comfortable with. The strut is very strong and can handle just able any modification.

Keith
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Old 09-22-2008, 06:46 PM
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Default RE: Reaction 54 Jet Kit

I got it done guys. I cut the struts to 2 5/16" and trimmed the spring about 3/8". The struts feel stiff but not so much that they will not compress under a shock load. The biggest issue was reducing the strut diameter a few thousanths to fit into the trunion. I scrubbed them with emory cloth to get them to a snug fit in the trunion. With the clamp screw tightened there is no chance they will work their way out with the springs bottoming on the trunions.

Thanks all for the input.
Old 10-02-2008, 02:56 PM
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Default RE: Reaction 54 Jet Kit

Just out of curiosity. What is the db level with the P-60? I've only been to one jet ralley, it seems the scale jets are much more quite than planes without tail pipes? Our field has a 95 db limit. Thanks
Old 10-02-2008, 04:41 PM
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Default RE: Reaction 54 Jet Kit

Jets are quiet. Moreover the sound comes out the tail pipe. Once the plane is at flight levels they are even quieter because the sound is very constrained directionally. They frequently sound as if they have gone dead stick once at altitude. That being said many fields prohibit turbines because of the issues with fire, high speeds, distance, and altitude restrictions. A plane at 200 mph covers more ground. You need a bigger field with very few or very cooperative neighbors. You need fire resistant fields. It is easy to exceed the 400 foot restricted airspace and get into class G airspace (above 500 feet). You can't be near a general aviation airfield. Find a field that allows turbines.
Old 10-03-2008, 10:52 AM
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Default RE: Reaction 54 Jet Kit

Thanks ArtW,

Our field only has the noise restriction for jets. We have 300ft of paved runway which I'm told is enough for a Reaction 54. My only concern was the sound difference between scale jets and the sport models without tail pipes. I would think a turbine is like a two stroke vs. a four stroke. The two stroke is not as loud on the db. scale but the frequency is more offensive to the ear.
Old 10-03-2008, 12:36 PM
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Default RE: Reaction 54 Jet Kit

There is a lot of sound perception with jets.
A lot of the sound is very high frequency and does not carry very far.

My Reaction with P70 "sounds" a lot quieter in the air than ANY of my 2 stroke engines.
Standing next to it on the ground it sounds very loud.

I never measured the DB of my R54 on the ground so I have no idea what the meter would read.
It will also make a difference as to which scale they use for measurement and the distance and the method of measurement.

95 Db is pretty loud. When I raced stock cars we had an 83db limit.
Old 10-05-2008, 09:10 PM
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Default RE: Reaction 54 Jet Kit

Stock nose gear change.

I'm must apologize first off for my obsessive compulsiveness, but I'm not happy with the stock nose gear setup. With the nose gear retract unit mounted along the centerline of the fuselage and the electro-magnetic nose brake installed the wheel's centerline is offset to the left by about 1/2 inch. I know this doesn't effect the operation of the airplane, but it isn't in the center. I've done some calculation with using a 660 strut and a the nose gear brake, but the wheel's centerline is still a little bit offset. So I need an opinion or two, I'm thinking of installing the the nose gear without the brake using a 660 strut (thus centering the nose wheel with the fuselage) and then installing two electro-magnetic brakes on the main gear with 660 struts. What do you guys think?
Old 10-05-2008, 09:22 PM
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Default RE: Reaction 54 Jet Kit

GB,

If you are looking for a nice "on-center" NG solution for the R54, check out the Dreamworks trailing link nosegear .. the small one. Basically, you cut off the existing wire gear leg just above the coil, and install the Dreamworks gear. You do need to make up a sleeve (I used aluminum) that adapts the wire gear diameter to the larger hole in the Dreamworks gear. It uses the BVM 2.25" dia nosewheel.

Dave
Old 10-05-2008, 09:34 PM
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Default RE: Reaction 54 Jet Kit

Somewhere in this thread and also on Bruce's site is a tip for mounting the brake on the other side of the wheel, thus centering the wheel.
It's absolutely not necessary as the plane handles well on the ground and you will probably forget that it's not centered.

Just think of it as an A-10 Warthog nose gear
Old 10-06-2008, 10:00 AM
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Default RE: Reaction 54 Jet Kit

Gutboy17, a little OCD is a good thing! Here's a link to info on mounting the Kavan brake on the outside end of the axle (go to page 4)

http://www.btemodels.com/Downloads/R54Updt6.pdf

If you have your heart set on switching over to spring struts, you might as well go with a pneumatic brake system on the mains. This has been covered pretty well in this thread. To save time searching, refer to my thread index:

http://www.btemodels.com/r54threadindex.html
Old 10-06-2008, 01:28 PM
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Default RE: Reaction 54 Jet Kit

Bruce, just wanted to drop a note and let you know the Reaction 54 of Bud's here in Kentucky made the journey south to Georgia Jets. Our current log is putting us up to the 90+ flights on the plane, and probably 50 different pilots. It has become a training ground for anyone in our club interested in turbines. And so far about 4 people have used it to achieve their turbine waiver. Needless to say we wear out the buddy box on it!! I have to admit, its a tough lander for me, but once you can master it i think you can land anything.

Actually had a reaction landing contest this past weekend here in KY..... everyone but 1 bounced once..... Randy Moore kicked our bum's on that. made a great landing, a lil long, but then fumbled on the transmitter grabbing the brakes, and hogged a bit on the elevator and had to ride it out!! Haha. Its all in great fun, and we sure do enjoy the REaction54. I kinda wish someone in our area had a composite version so i could fly it and see if there are any differences in flight charafteristics to notice.

Also, we struggle getting the plane to land in low/no wind, seems to want to keep flying forever..... anyone putting crow in to stop the lift and cause more drag???
Old 10-06-2008, 01:39 PM
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Default RE: Reaction 54 Jet Kit

Most people have trouble landing the R54 because they just can't believe how slow it will land. I try to land mine at close to a "fast" Kadet Senior landing speed with full flap.
Old 10-08-2008, 01:40 AM
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Default RE: Reaction 54 Jet Kit

For those of you using struts I thought I’d pass this along.

Back in April of this year I loaned my R54 out for a bud to get his waiver done. All went ok but during the session winds were not very cooperative and the airplane sustained a hard landing. There was a moderate amount of cosmetic damage done with some cracks showing up on the top wing sheeting over the gear area. After a couple of hours of checking everything and doing a little repair work on the hairline cracks on the sheeting, we went on to fly the airplane and my buddy got his waiver. Back at the house I did a little more work and re-primed the airframe. For those that don’t know this airplane, I finished the mechanical part of the build in May of 2007 and due to divorce was unable to complete the ship into paint, so it flew in grey primer for most of it’s life up till now. The airplane has many flights since this time but what has plagued it ever since is the hairline cracks kept showing up, even with smooth landings. I had the pleasure of Bruce Tharpe and his dad coming to our local fun fly in July and after discussing the issue with Bruce he felt sure there still had to be a damaged rib over the gear plate in the wing. I went home determined to find whatever it was that kept allowing these cracks to show up, after all you can’t pain the thing if you keep getting cracks. I looked into the wing with bright light, mirrors but saw nothing. I then took some alcohol and rubbed on the ribs over the gear plate area and the liquid illuminated my crack where I couldn’t see it before. The crack ran vertically and allowed enough rib flex to keep cracking the top sheeting. This has been fixed and to date there have been no more cracks.
With Bruce’s help we’ve determined that the original stock wire gear absorbs gear loading for and aft but not in the vertical. Those of us using Robart Struts our gear absorbs energy vertically but not for and aft. It was this aft energy loading that kept opening up the cracks. If anyone else runs across this while using robo struts this is the place to look, the rib right over the gear plate. If you plan on having a heavy R54, glassed, paint, struts, it might be worthwhile to add a layer of glass in this area.

Don’t have a heart attack Bruce, but she’s going into paint right now. Here are a few teaser shots of the wing before the clear coat gets applied. PPG paint in Cobalt blue with Diamond Dust, Candy Red, Candy Orange, Blue tint Pearl White. Still a ton of work to do and as for the rest, well... You guys will just have to wait till it's done. It’s only been a year! LOL
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Old 10-08-2008, 07:00 AM
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Default RE: Reaction 54 Jet Kit

Beautiful paint job.
Old 10-14-2008, 09:38 PM
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Default RE: Reaction 54 Jet Kit

It is with some sadness to report the demise of my Reaction. It was from the original batch of kits from Bruce. It was built in Holland and shipped back to the states several years ago. After more than 160 flights it was struck from behind by another jet (faster) and both planes plunged into a cotton field. The airframe was totaled except for the wing, which can be repaired and used again. The turbine has some damage and will be sent back to the factory for repair. The fuel tank, UAT, batteries, and the fuel pump could not be found.

I ordered another Reaction. It is (or was) my Sunday flyer. I will miss it. In the meanwhile, I have a Cermark F-16 to fly...but that is another story.

Speedbrake

Fly high, fly fast, and stay away from faster jets!
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Old 10-15-2008, 07:41 AM
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Default RE: Reaction 54 Jet Kit

There is a rumor going around that there is an expiration date hidden in all of our airplanes, Sorry yours has come up. I'm hoping my date is way off in the future.
Old 10-15-2008, 10:04 AM
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Default RE: Reaction 54 Jet Kit

Speedbrake, I am really sorry to hear about this! I've written a few eulogies for those who have flown under radio link for me in the past, and it is always sad to see. John is right, there is always an expiration date written down somewhere.

At least you didn't dumb thumb it! A bird strike from the rear is hard to take but it's better than feeding in the wrong rudder in a knife edge pass at a rally, like one popular youtube video shows.
Old 11-01-2008, 05:15 AM
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Default RE: Reaction 54 Jet Kit

I found a nice wing bag for the Reaction 54 wing. Got it from Hobby-Pak. Item# WBS04, 85"x 24.5", $59.99.

http://www.hobby-pak.com/

It fits the Reaction 54 balsa wing, and should also fit the ARF wing.

Chris Shaker
Old 11-03-2008, 01:44 PM
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Default RE: Reaction 54 Jet Kit

Are these kits that popular that when they come back in stock they just as quickly go? I have not seen them in stock this year. Is there some kind of list that we can get on for one of these? Christmas is coming and I have some money that are burning a hole in my pocket.
Old 11-03-2008, 02:36 PM
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Default RE: Reaction 54 Jet Kit

Hi Maxvertical, when you get the chance please post a pic of your glossed and beautiful R54 on the ramp ready for flight. The colors look great and the completed product must be gratifying for you
Old 11-03-2008, 02:43 PM
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Default RE: Reaction 54 Jet Kit


ORIGINAL: CiprianGugu

Are these kits that popular that when they come back in stock they just as quickly go? I have not seen them in stock this year. Is there some kind of list that we can get on for one of these? Christmas is coming and I have some money that are burning a hole in my pocket.

Give Bruce a call at 1-800-557-4470 and see what his plans are for re-stocking the kit. He has different projects on the burner all the time and can give you an idea of when he can put a new batch of kits into production. Besides, he is a great guy to talk with.

Roy
Old 11-05-2008, 11:39 AM
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Default RE: Reaction 54 Jet Kit

I sure will. Yes, the whole project has been very gratifying but to now be getting close to a finished product is amazing. I can't tell you how good this airplane flies, the added weight just makes the thing settle in the groove amazingly well. Bruce has seen this thing fly several times so hope he doesn't have a heart attack now that it's painted. There has been a slight delay getting everything finished out. Weather not cooperating, graphics, small paint issues, but it should be finished later this month.
The actual build took just under 5 mo. Lot's of extra's, and has been worth every bit of the road to get here.
Thanks for the compliments, will post pictures of the finished ship as soon as she's ready.

MaxV
Old 11-08-2008, 04:17 AM
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Default RE: Reaction 54 Jet Kit

I built my Reaction54 fuselage with the Retract Air Tank installed and now that my construction is complete I want to break-down my hardware mockup so to paint and finsih my airplane. I want to finish the interior of my fuselage with a nice white paint job, but I'm having issues with removing the Air Tank between F4 and F5. It seems the distance between those frames is just a little bit shorter than the Air Tank's length and I can't get it out. Is there a trick to the Air Tank installation or did I build the fuselage in error. Thanks.

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