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TailTwister Ultimate 30

2379 Views 17 Replies 4 Participants Last post by  TailTwister
Well, I got started, and quickly had a fuselage. Before I remembered that I wanted a picture of the skeleton, I had it all sheeted, so here is a picture of the fuselage, using sunlight to show a bit of the inside.

The fuselage is just under a half inch wide, and was built using the "TLAR" (That Looks About Right) layout technique. First went in the stick for the motor mount, and I built out from there.
Here is another view of the fuselage and tail.

Work time at this point was minimal, however Depron does not cut quite as easily as I had imagined.
All gluing is foam safe CA ($10/ounce). I did use accelerator, and if used sparingly would not eat the foam. When sprayed heavily on a test scrap, it all but vaporized the foam.
For hinges, I'm using a small pin type on hinge. They are heavier than tape, but this whole project is an experiment anyway...
Next up, more cutting of pieces.
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Gee Frank, how did you get the name 'TailTwister'?"

I have no idea...
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I cut out my wings. This is the top wing. I went with a simplified Hangar 9 color scheme.

Yellow marker doesn't always show up good, so mine is a metallic gold color.
The bottom wing won't have these colors, unless I get really interested in it. The coloring was actually kinda' hard. My hands shake a bit when I grip a marker or pen, so it took a lot of time. The bottom of the bottom wing will probably have some black stripes to help me see it when the belly is towards me. I'll match the tail to the top wing.
Next up, fit the wings to the struts and the fuselage.
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It's really starting to look like something now. I put it together, and hated the solid white wing on bottom. It looked really cheap and lazy, so I colored it too.

The test fit looks good, as nothing was a pain to line up. I was trying to not use a carbon fiber wing rod, but it will now be there. Even fully assembled, it was down right floppy. I added a rod on to one wing, and it made a huge difference in stiffness.
Next up, decide equipment placement, and design a fuselage color scheme that works.

Sorry for the crummy pictures, but it's a $20 camera that belongs to my 7 year old daughter. It's the only digital we have...
See ya'
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Wow, that's friggin awesome looking! As strange as it sounds, the inside of a floppy disc makes a great CA hinge for these little planes. The main drawback is..they are a dark brown and will show thru the Depron.

So what does the airframe weigh?? Nosey bastiges want to know!!
I remember that you had said that, but I was going to give these pinned ones a try. I'll try thr floppy hinges on my next bird.
You could try some 1mm carbon flying wire. It works pretty good. I built a 30" ultimate with 3mm depron and eps foam, using carbon flying wire. It held up great for indoor flying, but outdoors the wings would flex during highspeed stuff and the ailerons would bind. I want to try some shock flyer type carbon reinforcement on the trailing edge to prevent that.
I didn't want to, but I put 3mm carbon rods under both wings right at where the CG goes. I'll add wires to the tail, as it is pretty floppy with the 3mm Depron. I tend to do lots of snaps, walls, and othet tail snappin thoings.

For the floppy disk hinges, are they done like regular CA hinges, or what?

Anybody have input on CG placement with this plane. I've had two other versions of the Ultimate, and both were good with the CG aft of what most people would call reasonable. Can I move this one back a bit, maybe 1/4 of an inch back from where it's indicated on the plans?

My next foam plane will be a monoplane, and I'll try the carbon strip wrap around like the shock flyers. I'll also have mostly 6mm components. With the inherent strength of the biplane and a built up fuselage, I figured 3mm would work here. In retrospect, the fuselage is good this way, but the wings could have been 6mm.

Like I said, this is an experiment plane. After learning a bit, the next one is hopefully a "keeper". I'll probably just go out to the garage and measure the Sledge. I'll scale it down to 300ish squares and go for it.
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I just make little CA hinges from the floppy..Maybe 5/8" X 1"" or so.

Gordo will be the one to ask about the CG, I think his was way noseheavy.
Well after a bit of distraction by other projects (PA-11 Super Cub and finishing the Mini 3D engine mods), I picked up on the Ultimate again today.

It's all done, and awaiting a test flight, when the wind is good.

The all up weight is 14 ounces even. That's with the GWS wire landing gear on it too. I'd guess that gear is an ounce, and with another go, I bet I could build almost another ounce out of it.

After it meets it's almost guaranteed end, I'll build a monoplane next.

I'd like to build a Chuck Flyer version of the Seduction Freestyle... Or maybe the 3D Turbo Raven... Or an Edge 540T... Or Yak...

So many planes, so little Depron...
The peanut gallery anxiously awaits news of the test flight!! :D
The Kokam is on the charger...

Damn near Fucking Disaster!

I checked everything over, and figured I was good to go. Elevator was set at an inch of throw with 25% expo. Ailerons set to 3/4 of an inch with the same. Rudder was set lock to lock. The Kokam charged for a while, until it was at peek.

I set the plane down to do a ROG take off. I pushed to full, and added a hint of right rudder. In a blink, the Ultimate was on it's back, as the GWS landing gear had ripped off. It was held on temporarily with a gob of CA, and I intended to take it off soon anyway. The black gear on the prop shaft had been slid off of the pinion. I threw the landing gear aside, and pushed the black gear back in line with the pinion. A power up said I was good to go with a hand launch. (STUPID!)

I pushed into the power until I felt a very slight pull upwards. Another click or two, and I released the plane into a gentle climb. I guess I was at about 2/3 throttle, and going straight up and torquing like mad. At about 10 feet, I pushed a bit of down to get into flight. The plane bolted forward and level, so I pushed hard left aileron to turn back around and throttled back. There was all but no response from the roll input. At full stick, the roll was very slow. I added rudder and elevator, and the plane completed the turn. I was now nose into the wind, and flying backwards. I powered up and the plane jumped back to vertical and in an instant was over the roof tops, where the wind was blowing much harder than I felt it was on the ground. The controls, except the non-existent ailerons, were very touchy. I struggled to keep the plane pointed at me, and added power when I was pointed home, and dropped to half when pointed away. Moments later, I realized that damage control was in order, and started to chase the plane, as even when pointed at me was flying away. (If you think you are a good pilot, try and fly at a dead run!) Soon, the plane was all but a dot, and over the next neighborhood and moving out fast. I gave up, held the TX nice and high, and put the sticks in the bottom right corners to try and put it in before it got any further.

In the truck, I drove for probably 30 minutes through a neighborhood I'd never been to, with my 2 year old asking me did I crash the plane. A thousand times he must have asked, and he was all but crying as I told him, a thousand times, yes Daddy crashed. He's a pilot in the making for sure. I was easily a quarter mile from home when I found it.

I was lucky that the neighborhood had lots of construction going on, and several workers were able to point me in the right direction.

I found the plane, twitching and quivering, in someone's front yard. Thank God, it wans't a hundred feet up in a tree, or sticking out of someones window. The plane broke into about 10 pieces, and is for sure a loss. After I quit banging my head on the counter, I'll check all of the electronics. There is no dirt on the plane to indicate how it went in, and I think it hit pretty soft, as the prop is fine, and the tape and velcro attachments are still holding.

Post mortem makes me think that losing the gear made the plane super tailheavy, and probably not in the range of flyability. I should have thought of that. (Please imagine the sound of a head banging on the counter.) Secondly, I should have put huge throws and more expo considering the wind. (More bangs.)

Oh yes, I also ran over my landing gear as I pulled out to go look for the plane. That was a real "capper" for my flight.

So, how much are Chuck Flyers going for these days???
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TailTwister said:
Gee Frank, how did you get the name 'TailTwister'?"

I have no idea...

I just glued in the horiz stab on my 3dX glow powered experiment -- I need some help with attaching the elevator. The joining wire method just seems wimpy to me, so I was going to use the carbon rod like you did. Did you glue the rod to one side of the elevator, then feed it through the fuse, and then glue the other side on? that's how I'm going to try it that way, unless theres some trick that I'm missing.
I glued both halves on the rod first, so that I could keep it dead on flat. I cut a small slit in the fuselage and installed the elevator as a whole unit. I then glued the slit back in.

Your way is good too, as long as you end up with a flat elevator.
I was going to use a few pieces of cut up yardstick on top and bottom of the pre-glued half to hold that half and the rod level.

I had thught about cutting section and regluing like you mentioned though. Your fuse is a wooden layup , and mine's solid foam -- I don't wanna weaken anything.

I also don't wanna risk gluing the rod or the elevator to the fuse using my method -- I'll have to think about it some more. thanks for the response though - I'll post some pics tonight.
Well, nothing like a little excitement!!

I wonder why it wouldn't roll..You'd think you would have a little roll control even on lower throws.

Also, Gordo said he had trouble with finding the CG on his Ultimate, so a CG issue might have been the culprit. At least contributing.

Hate to hear about the bipe, she was a beaut! Don't let this first venture into the electrics put you off, they are not nearly that exciting (most of the time) normally. :wink:
The roll may have been wind, or just a crappy set up. I dunno. At this point, I don't care. There were a few problems at work. Poor choice of days to fly, tail heavy, and no roll control. It was doomed from the moment I let go of it.

As for giving in, I'm not done yet. I probably will buy the next plane from someone, Chuck, Jeff, or 3D Foamy, as the time spent is what bothers me.

The electronics look like they are fine, so all I lost is the foam and the work. I think I can even sandpaper the CA off of the carbon rods and use then where necessary on the next attempt.
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