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Top Flite SE5 cg

Old 01-29-2012, 02:52 PM
  #101  
Keithy
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Default RE: Top Flite SE5 cg

The guy from whom I bought the kit almost 40 years ago had glued the beech engine bearers onto the fuelage sides. This was the only work that he did on the kit. Even though I adapted my model for electric power, I decided to leave the engine bearers in place as they add some strength to the front end and also a bit of weight to compensate for the lightness of the electric motor. The motor is a 4250 outrunner and is maounted to the front former of the fuselage. I mnade a new former from 1/4" marine ply, with the same breathng holes as the original former. With the radiators and fairing in place, the motor shaft is just long enough to give the prop clearance. About 1/8" is all there is. I am swinging a 13 X5 prop, which gives lots pull without too much aircraft speed. Although the motor is a little too powerful for the model, I am sure that the extra power came in handy when I last flew and almost stacked the thing into the deck. Getting the nose up and heading for the sky may not lookveryscale but handy to be able to do it.
I have been using the inclement weather to sort out a few things with the model. I re-measured incidences and relative incidences between top and bototm wings and found that there was a tad of wash in on the right upper wing. That is now heat gunned out and also replaced an iffy servo, so I am sure that when the weather comes good andthe floods abate ( our model airfield is currently under about three inches of water), I will have a much better outing next time.
Good luck with yours and I look forward to reading your report on it.
From a soggy and miserable Sout East Queensland, this is Keithy twiddling his thumbs for want of anything better to do
Old 01-29-2012, 04:29 PM
  #102  
Keithy
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Default RE: Top Flite SE5 cg

Hiya guys,
I have already tried twice to reply and each time, my post refused to go. Last try.
The guy from whom I bought my SE5 kit from almost 40years ago had glued the beech engine bearers to the fuselage sides. This was the only work that he did on the kit. Although I decided to adapt for electric motor, I decided to keep the two engine bearers as they add some strength to the front end and also a little weight to compensate for the lighter electric motor. I made a new front fuselage former from 1/4" marine ply and the outrunner motor is mounted on that. I put the same air holes in the former in order to get plenty of cooling for the ESC and the motor. By the time the radiators and fairings were applied, there was barely enough motor shaft out front to hold the prop. However, it is just enough and gives about 1/8" clearance to the prop from the radiators. I'm swinging a 13 X 5 prop, which gives a lot of pull but not too much speed.
We have had atrocious weather here for the last two weeks and our airfield is currently under several inches of water, so no flying. This has given me time and incentive to investigate the problems with the large amount of right Aileron trim that I required last time out. Did all the measurements again and discovered that there was a tad of wash in on the top right wing. A small amount but over a fairly large area, so probably the cause of the trouble. I have unwarped that courtesy the hot air gun and now hope for a sedate flight when we get out to the field again.
Keithy, from a soggy South East Queensland.[&:]
Old 02-05-2012, 06:12 PM
  #103  
Jaybird
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Default RE: Top Flite SE5 cg

I've been working on adding the Lewis gun and mount to my SE5 and just about finished. I made the parts out of plywood, basswood, brass screws and hardware. The curved track is mounted to the Aldis gun sight and slips into the back of the roller carriage when you mount the wing. I think it came out pretty good. Now to paint it and it will be ready for the Owls Head model festival. The gun will be mounted with a through bolt as well. The brass hardware is fun, but really expensive at the hobby shop.

Jaybird
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Old 02-06-2012, 02:41 PM
  #104  
Keithy
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Default RE: Top Flite SE5 cg



Nice job jaybird. It really looks good.
Well, the rain stopped on Thursday last week and by late friday, the flood had drained away, so our field officer was able to jump on the tractor and mow the runways. I went out on Sunday with the SE5A and the Spitfire. Spitfire is now a pile of pieces in my dugout but I think I can fix it. A long term project!!! Pilot error, I'm afraid, with a too low turn and a tip stall into the deck very hard.
The SE5A was a totally different kettle of fish. It took off as straight as a die and required no aileron trim. I also added 3oz. of lead to the nose and that has made for a lot more stability, especially in turns. I had several flights, which were highly enjoyable. One of the members had his digital video camera and he took some footage of my flying efforts. I'm afraid he captured the one bad take off but got some nice footage of a gallery pass and of a very nice landing. He wants me to take it back for the Wednesday session so that he can get some more. Hopefully, he'll come good on his word and I'll have some movie pix to enjoy long after the SE5A is retired. We have many 1/4 and 1/3 scale models in our club and they all look terrific in the air. For some reason, in the air the SE5A looks larger than it really is.
Happy flying,
Keithy

Old 02-07-2012, 05:49 AM
  #105  
Jaybird
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Default RE: Top Flite SE5 cg

Hi Keith,

Sorry to hear about the Spitfire. It sounds like you have a plan to rebuild so that's good. The SE5a flights sound like great fun, I'm envious! The video would be great and I hope to see it available soon.

I have adjusted my wings as well hoping to eleimate the out of position trim, but that will have to wait until spring. We don't have a lot of snow, but it's much more that what wheels could manage. Unfortunately it's been too cold and windy here to do anything, hence the gun detail work. It just needs to be painted and it will be ready for the show.

I had the chance to pick up a mostly built Proctor 1/5 scale Nieuport 11 Bebe with a new OS 70 four stroke for $300 through the hobby shop. It came in from an estate sale and they thought it would be a project I would like. I looked it over and it would be a fun challange, but it's missing the cabane struts, interplane struts, tailskid assembly, aluminum landing gear assembly and aluminum cowl. The good news is that they can all be purchased through Proctor Enterprises. The bad news it would be almost $200 worth of parts from a $398 new kit. So, I decided to pass. It would have been fun to have the French Nieuport join my British Se5a and German Fokker DVII>

Jaybird
Old 02-07-2012, 03:09 PM
  #106  
Keithy
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Default RE: Top Flite SE5 cg

Hiya jaybird and all,
Whoopeee! Just returned from the Wednesday session and some more video recording. The flying went very well until just on the down-wind leg towards landing, the SE5 suddenly veered sharply to the right. Way too much turn in it to correct with trims, so I had to use a lot of left aileron. Managed to land without damage but it was not a picture perfect landing. On taxiing in, I could see that the left ailrons were stuck and not in a neutral position, so I was flying with a marked bias and with only one set of ailerons working. Anyway, any accident that does not cause any damage is a good lesson. The lesson in this for me is that this is the third time that I have had one of these servos fail on me, I'm going to have to bite the bullet and get them replaced. Sad to have to cut into the wings to do it but as needs, must.
Shame about the Nieuport, but as you said, building from spare parts is an expensive proposition. What size is your Fokker DV11?
More happy days,
Keithy
Old 02-07-2012, 03:25 PM
  #107  
Jaybird
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Default RE: Top Flite SE5 cg

Yikes! Sounds a little too exciting! Glad it worked okay for you and the plane. I have a very hard time spending money on servos...which when you really think about it is poor money management. I've recently changed the JR Sport servos I had in this SE5 because they would not come back to center on the elevator and ailerons. I swapped them out for JR standard digital servos and now I can count on those surfaces coming right back to center each time (less a little bell crank slop in the ailerons). They are about twice as expensive as their "Sport" line but in this case it's worht it.

The DVII is the 1/6 scale one from Horizon. Very nice flyer with an OS 61 two stroke.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Ro_pU...9&feature=plcp

Jaybird

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Old 02-07-2012, 06:08 PM
  #108  
Keithy
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Default RE: Top Flite SE5 cg

That's a nice looking model and the clip of one flying is also very nice. Thanks for that
Yes, you are so right about servos. We spend a lot of time, effort and money on these model planes and to wreck one for the sake of a few extra dollars on servos just does not make sense. I am going to buy in a whole bag of better ones for my entire hangar (seven planes). Have not yet taken the faulty one out as it entails cutting into the Koverall and removing some balsa fairing. I'll have to get the Spitty wreckage into some kind of order first, as my space is limited. When I get the footage of the SE5 flying, I'll post it for all to see, if I can figure out how to do that
Cheers,
Keithy
Old 02-13-2012, 04:48 AM
  #109  
Jaybird
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Default RE: Top Flite SE5 cg

I finished up the painting of the Foster mount and Lewis gun this weekend. I tried a little bit of "dry brush" weathering, but it came out a little heavy so I may reapply the olive drab and tone it down a bit. I think it will work well and finishes off the model nicely.

Jaybird
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Old 02-13-2012, 07:06 AM
  #110  
BobH
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Default RE: Top Flite SE5 cg

Take 0000 steel wool and rub down your dry brushing. It'll look much better when you're finished.
Old 02-26-2012, 01:39 PM
  #111  
jlswan
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Default RE: Top Flite SE5 cg


Hi Guys,
Well, I think we are ready to go flying! We have a bit of a snow storm happening right now so it's going to be a while.
Plane weighed in at 3.03 Kg's. Power is a 4250-650, 4000mah 4S and 13 x 8 prop. WOT 50A 720W. COG works out to be
exactly where the plans call for, 5 inches back from leading edge of top wing. Did some experimenting and I would have to
add about 12 oz to make the recommended 90mm...??? Not sure what I should do.
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Old 02-26-2012, 03:23 PM
  #112  
Keithy
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Default RE: Top Flite SE5 cg

Nice looking job! You have exactly the same power arrangement as mine and you will find it more than adequate. However, I don't recommend trying to fly it with the CofG too far back. I started at the recommended spot but found it very difficult to fly. After adding some lead to the nose and moving the battery as far forward as possible, I got the CofG a little ahead of 90mm and fiddled with it from there. It flies like a dream now at around 90mm. Nose heavy might be a bit sluggish to fly but it's far less scary that flying tail heavy. So start a bit nosey and work your way back. Good luck,
Keithy
Old 02-28-2012, 03:11 PM
  #113  
jlswan
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Default RE: Top Flite SE5 cg

Thanks Keithy.
How much weight did you have to add to get to 90mm?
Adding 12oz would take the overall weight from 3.03kg to 3.37kg.
When I hold that 12oz of lead in my hand it sure feels like a lot!
Old 02-28-2012, 05:12 PM
  #114  
Keithy
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Default RE: Top Flite SE5 cg

I added 4oz of lead to the back of the radiator but I was also able to move my battery forward too. When I look at your photos, I can see that you may not be able to move your battery much more forward. Perhaps I am wrong.It is, of course, preferable to adding weight. I just returned from anther successful morning of flying. Perfect weather today and the airfield is now above water but still surrounded by it. We had 310mm of rain during a spectacular storm on Friday night.
Keithy
Old 03-04-2012, 09:31 AM
  #115  
Jaybird
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Default RE: Top Flite SE5 cg

jl,

In the next to last front on shot it looks like the right lower wing panel (on the left side of the picture) was a twist to it comapred to the other wing panels on the other side. It may just be an optical illusion in the photo, but it might be worth checking out if you haven't already. An incidence meter would tell you pretty quick if all four panels were where they are suppose to be.

Hate to see all that great work lost to an uncontrolled roll!

Jaybird
Old 03-07-2012, 03:32 PM
  #116  
jlswan
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Default RE: Top Flite SE5 cg

Thanks Jaybird.
Not sure what an incidence meter is, or how to use one. Would taking many measurements around the wings relative to the ground
and fuse do the same thing? I know the top wing is slightly cocked counter clockwise, about 1/8 - 1/4" at the wing tips. I can
compensate a little with the flying wires on the right side.
Old 03-07-2012, 05:41 PM
  #117  
BobH
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Default RE: Top Flite SE5 cg

An incidence meter tells when things are level and not level in degrees. The full scale SE5a had 5 degrees positive incidence on the top, bottom wings and the horizontal stab. This means that the front of the wing and stab is pointed upwards a little.

This also means that relative to the wings and stab the engine has 5 degrees of.. down thrust.

IF you had one of these incidence meters (sold by Robart) you could check of your wings and stab were at least equal.

You can also use a digital meter sold at homedepot or sears to find out the same information...
Old 03-08-2012, 06:10 AM
  #118  
Jaybird
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Default RE: Top Flite SE5 cg

Yes, an incidence meter is a great building tool and very helpful with a biplane. As you mentioned and I believe the original instruction book indicates, blocking the tail up and taking measurements around the perimeter of the wing panels and comparing them from one side to the other would be a great first step. The SE5a does have an odd "look" to it as the wings and horizontal tail have a definite upward angle to them when looked at from the side compared to the fuselage. At the very least I would take measurements and adjust the panels if you can with the rigging.

There are several manufacturers of incidence meters out there. Maybe you could even borrow one for this project from a friend or club member?

best of luck,

Jaybird
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Old 03-17-2012, 04:18 PM
  #119  
Jaybird
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Default RE: Top Flite SE5 cg

We had a gorgeous day here in central Maine and the KVMA club had a Spring Fun FLy. The SE5a got it's second test flight and the intentional upward 0.5 degree twist in the left wing panels worked great. It only needed a slight additional click or two of right aileron for level flight and the takeoff was a non-event. I did have an experienced pilot standing by to help with the trim but I was able to do it myself at altitude. Very nice flight with some aerobatics thrown in. Even did a scale landing with nose-over in the very wet and squishy grass. No harm done. Unfortunatley the club photographer was busy taking gliders up with his launch plane so no inflight pictures or video. I'm taking the plane to a show next weekend so I figured one flight was enough for now.

Did get a nice shot of my 1/6 scale Concept Fleet though.

Jaybird
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Old 03-17-2012, 05:57 PM
  #120  
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Default RE: Top Flite SE5 cg

Make wheel landings instead of three pointers. There is not enough elevator to keep the tail down when the plane is slow. it rolls over. With the wheel landing, the last command will be to pul the tail down before it has no control.
Old 03-20-2012, 04:51 AM
  #121  
Jaybird
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Default RE: Top Flite SE5 cg

Yes, I forgot about that at the time. I make three point landings with my Fleet and it settles in nicely but my Hangar 9 Fokker DVII behaves much better with a wheel landing. I find the little foamy ParkZone SE5a (which is great flying airplane by the way) will nose over if I get it too slow and forget to keep some power on. Of course the small wheels are a problem on grass anyway but if I time it just right I can get it to stay on it's wheels. The day of the test flight the field was very wet and the ground was quite soft so I was concentrating on avoiding the water hazards. We have a narrow paved strip in the middle of the grass runway area that runs north and south but the wind was out of the east that day and I ended up touching down before the runway on the west side and hoped over the paved runway to the east side where it nosed over. Luckily the ground was soft so the only thing hurt was my pride.

This plane will be a challenge until I get some more time with it but it will be fun.

Jaybird
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Old 03-24-2012, 05:12 PM
  #122  
Jaybird
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Default RE: Top Flite SE5 cg

Had a great time at the Owls Head museum Model Festival today. The weather was brisk compared to earlier in the week but there was a great turnout of exhibitors and patrons. There were several areas set up for kids to build plastic models as well as foam gliders. I had a large display with my three planes on the table, Skybolt plans on a easle behind and the SE5a plans on a cardboard display in front.

Now I can try flying it again!

Jaybird
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Old 04-03-2012, 01:47 PM
  #123  
Jaybird
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Default RE: Top Flite SE5 cg

Here is a set of videos that show the variety of craftsmen and women who were displaying their work and some of the demontrations.

Part 1 - http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ycTjeSaaPu8

Part 2 - http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=VRC1G...feature=relmfu

Part 3 - http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=IkdoW...feature=relmfu

Part 4 - http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=bq9bP...feature=relmfu

Jaybird
Old 04-03-2012, 05:24 PM
  #124  
jlswan
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Default RE: Top Flite SE5 cg

Totally enjoyed the videos! Thanks Jaybird.
Old 02-26-2024, 06:29 AM
  #125  
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Default Re Jaybird's Top Flite SE5a

Originally Posted by Jaybird
Started the radio gear installation today. The rudder and elevator servos are all hooked up and so are the twin aileron servos. The builder of this plane used two servos side by side to the ailerons instead of tying the two sides together. Also statred looking at the motor mounting for the Saito 80 4-stroke. I had tried to fly this particular model before with a Saito 50 four-stroke but is didn't work out well. I had powered the first one I built with a Saito 80 and found it flew very well and since I have the same engine available I figured I would use it. I also have a Magnum 91 four-stroke which is about the same physical size, but the layout of the pushrods and cover along with the short distance from the crank case to the thrust plate make it so it doesn't fit.

I have a question for those flying this plane....what control throws are you using? I can't seem to find any specs on the plans or in the manual...other than "the radio equipment must be working perfectly"...which is good advise, but not too specific. I have full rudder deflection set up, but I'm not sure how much up and down elevator to start with and aileron travel. Maybe it's in there and I just missed it.

Jaybird

Hi there Jaybird! It's been a long time since you last posted on your SE5a. I was wondering how you got on and if you ever flew it successfully? I have just started to build one myself, and am starting to find out how limited it is for interior space! I was going to fit a 12 oz tank instead of the 10 but that seems to mean that the servos would have to go just behind the c of g which would not be a good plan to be making...so one question for you if you see this is how much flying time did you get with your engine (4 stroke?) on a 10 oz tank? Thanks for posting your rigging photos...I am now just starting to plan ahead and am desperately looking for some small clevices...2.56 seems to be the smallest out there...I think you used one larger, 4-40 size(?) as well as dispensing with the nylon ball and plate attachments...

Would be great to hear from you if you see this after all the years!

Best,
Michael

Ps, I must have missed the page turn and concluded a bit to early that you had not flow yet, but having 'turned the page' I can at least see that you did fly the model so well done and glad to hear that. Still would be interested to hear from you on the above points and for any progress since the initial flights!

Last edited by Mikemeh; 02-26-2024 at 09:07 AM.

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