You are on page 1of 68

6" Sq top


1/32" she
F2 et top dec
F3 k
Profile pilo
Wing rib
ply plat
Telco 3/32 x 1/16
shown, Co2 motor 1/16" Sq "
1/16" ply mounted on
plate onto
F3 FB 1/16" Sq
1/32" ply
22 Swg
wing bra
ce wire


22 Swg
Hard 1/16
" Sq lead
ing edg
3 off
off 1/8"
sheet F2 F4 F5
1/16" she F3
FB 1/16 sheet whe
" sheet els
F3 1/16
" sheet

T dec
22 Swg
wire axle
Hard 1/16
1/32" she " Sq trail
et coverin ing edg

1/16" thic g rib sectio
k wing ribs

22 Swg Front & Rea

wing sup r
Wires port wire
dihedraset to give 1°
l at wing
March 2017.
No. 958. £5.00




9 770001 923004



AERO 040.indd 1 30/01/2017 16:21

xxl! The fascinating world
of aeroplane model
05 – 09 april 2017
Messe Dortmund

The world’s largest

exhibition for model
making and model sports
AEROMODELLER 958 March 2017 – Next issue published on 16th March 2017

Doolittle Mill, Doolittle Lane, Totternhoe,

Bedfordshire LU6 1QX, England

Issue 958. March 2017

(Issue 040 since relaunch)
How to contact us:
Tel: 01525 222573
Fax: 01525 222574

Editor: Andrew Boddington
Publisher: Alan Harman
Administration Manager: Hannah McLaurie
Office Manager: Paula Gray
Advertisement Manager: Sean Leslie
Editorial Design: Peter Hutchinson
& Alex Hall

Advertisement and circulation:

Aeromodeller, Doolittle Mill, Doolittle Lane, Totternhoe,
Bedfordshire LU6 1QX, England


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Subscribe: 12 issues - UK £55, Europe £73,
Worldwide £82




AeroModeller is published monthly by Doolittle
THE VMC SOPWITH CAMEL. Media, Doolittle Mill, Doolittle Lane, Totternhoe,


Bedfordshire, LU6 1QX. Entire Contents © 2017
Doolittle Media Reproduction in part or whole of
any text, photograph or illustration without written
AVAILABLE IN GLOW AND DIESEL FROM OZ. permission from the publisher is strictly prohibited.
VERSIONS, THE 2.5CC FORA JUNIOR IS While due care is taken to ensure the content of

REVIEWED BY MARIS DISLERS. FROM THE ARMCHAIR AeroModeller is accurate, the publishers and printers
cannot accept liability for errors and omissions.
Advertisements are accepted for publication in

RAMPS UP THE SUPERCAPS. AeroModeller only upon Doolittle Media’s standard
terms of acceptance of advertising, copies of which

DAVE HIPPERSON TAKES THE REINS TO are available from the advertising sales department
of AeroModeller.
Free Plan is Mike

Watters’ Blackburn

CONTENTS 040.indd 1 30/01/2017 16:25

News, Views and Editorial

My mother Jill Boddington at the last

Old Warden with a large scale David
Boddington designed SE5a flown by the DB

Sport and Scale display team.


End of an Era - Conclusion
hen I wrote the End of an Era editorial a couple as a team – dad said that nobody else would put up with him!
of months ago, it was in the expectation that As well as being the centre of family life she could be found in
my mother Jill Boddington would be living a the aeromodelling backroom in the 1960s counting out nuts
comfortable retirement in the same village as and bolts for accessory packs in DB Models kits, or sewing
my sister. Sadly this was not to be as mum lightweight nylon ‘bags’ to cover wings on models for the
died unexpectedly on 20 January 2017, just 2 days short of her Flambards TV series in the 1970s.
83rd birthday. Old Warden model events were a family affair for 50 years,
Due to the demographics of aeromodellers, with many being with Mum helping run the transmitter pound when dad was still
over 60 years old, it is an unfortunate part of my job that I editing, and after dad died 7 years ago, she attended with me
receive regular notifications of deaths of much loved characters. to catch-up with old friends.
I always struggle to know whose obituary to run as I want to So as I and our family mourn the passing of Jill Boddington,
keep AeroModeller looking forward, and I usually focus on class I ask you to think of those people who may not get directly
leading individuals and those associated with the magazine. involved in your aeromodelling life, but who support you in your
However for once I will ‘pull rank’ and acknowledge my mother, endeavours.
who was the wife of the late David ‘Boddo’ Boddington, as she
was well known by many modellers. Regards, Andrew Boddington
My mum and dad were contrasting characters who worked

Amongst the aviation

and modelling items
I have inherited from
DO YOU KNOW my father are some
wonderfully evocative
BURT ELLIS? action paintings of
aircraft. Most of these
are by an artist who I
originally thought was
possibly of Italian
heritage as they were
signed Burtelli S, but
I eventually realised INTERMODELLBAU at Messe Westfalenhallen Dortmund in
it was the stylised Germany is the world’s largest exhibition for model-making
signature of Burt Ellis! and model sport. From 5 to 9 April 2017, over 20,000
I would like to models can be viewed in eight halls: airplanes, helicopters,
know more about model railways, RC vehicles, working models, model ships,
Burt. I’ve tried online cardboard models, figures, dioramas and much more. A wide
spectrum is covered from traditional HO railways to modern
searches and the
3D printers – the whole world of model-making and model
Guild of Aviation sport.
Artists without any For 2017, a modern high-tech event awaits visitors with,
luck, so if you know for the first time, FPV racing (FPV = First Person View) racing
of Burt, please get of Multicopters for the INTERCOPTER Cup. This will take
in touch. editor@ place in the legendary, oval event arena Westfalenhalle. But there are also many more attractions at the Dortmund
exhibition, such as flight demonstrations, presentations in a
huge water basin, RC car races, and a track for RC trucks
and Alpine vehicles.
More than 500 exhibitors take part in INTERMODELLBAU,
they come from around 20 countries and 82,000 people are
4 AeroModeller - March 2017 expected to attend.

HANGAR DOORS 040.indd 2 30/01/2017 16:26

Sunday March 19th 2017 is another of the popular Impington Indoor Meetings at Impington Village College, Cambridge CB24 9LX.
From 9.00am to 5.00pm you can fly FF indoor models all day in a large hall for £6.00, with RTP and small RC flying in a separate hall.
Competitions for peanuts (with light scale judging – minimal documentation) and Bostonians. Seminar “A conversation with Richard
Crossley.” Also this could be the last rubber powered car race unless there are at least four entrants – so get building that rubber powered
drag racing fantasy! Contact Chris Strachan telephone 01223 860498 for details or see


At what will probably be the first Fly-in of the year, Wrexham Model Aircraft Club aim to give the novice RC flyer the confidence
to go to other Fly-ins during the 2017 season. Slots will be arranged throughout the day for different ability levels. No A-cert, no
problem - Instructors on hand. Possible A tests on the day (strictly by appointment). Well kept grass flying strips and good quality
hot food both days.
Novice RC flyers who are competent but have never before attended a Fly-in are the focus. A first Fly-in can be a very intimidating
experience - too often perfectly competent flyers turn up and simply will not take their models out of the car because they are
overawed. Novices who want some degree of mentoring, either as pilots or help with their models, should say so at sign-on and
the Club will assist. Throughout both days frequent slots will be provided for Novice flyers.
Expert and experienced flyers are also welcome, come and show us your stuff! Competitions include ‘Eddi und Otto Foamy
Combat’ (search online for plans).
Please contact ‘Sideshow Bob’ Davis for further details and register for the Go/No Go weather updates 5 days and 24 hours
before the event - or 01490 413276.


John Ashmole the FF Secretary of SAM 35 has been busy setting up a series of both postal and venue based competitions for
Free Flight sports flyers who want to compete with classic, traditionally designed models. To encapsulate the ethos of many of
these events it is to ‘Have fun with a purpose’.
We will have the dates for these FF events in the AeroModeller ‘Up and Coming’ calendar and you will find full details on the
SAM 35 website. There will be a large SAM 35 presence at the FF Nationals scheduled for Barkston Heath on 27-29 May, but
before that there is the Mayfly event at Old Warden.
At Mayfly there are two FF contests on Sunday 14 May to highlight amongst the many activities: FROG Senior Duration in
two classes, one for low wingers and one class for high, and a new event Biplane Precision for both rubber and IC power.
Rules are on the SAM 35 website, but remember there are limitations to the size and weight for power jobs at Old Warden
which must be respected.
At the Old Warden Scale weekend on the Sunday 23 July, The Masefield Trophy will take place, alongside the revived Earl
Stahl event, for which the original trophies will be offered for high wing, low wing and concours.
For more information, look at the SAM 35 web site or contact John Ashmole,
telephone 01406 370188

This pretty Aries is the

kind of model expected
for the SAM 35 Biplane
Precision contest.

HANGAR DOORS 040.indd 3 30/01/2017 16:26

News, Views and Editorial 2017
Unfortunately, the Shuttleworth
Collection management have
decided to increase the gate entry
charge from £10 to £12 per day for
the ModelAir organised Old Warden
events in 2017. I know this will not be
welcome news and will impact those
on low income and pensions, but
this is something the Shuttleworth
Collection management has decided,
not ModelAir.
I hope that this increase does not
dissuade people from the popular
Old Warden model events. Children
under 16 attending with an adult
are still free, entry to the museum is
included, and the gate money does
go towards the best of causes -
keeping the Shuttleworth Collection
of old aircraft flying.
Dates for 2017 are 13-14 May
Mayfly, 22-23 July Scale Weekend,
23-24 September Festival of Flight.


Aeronautical engineer and aeromodeller Martyn Pressnell died Control line fans will best remember
on 8th January 2017. Born in Southend, Martyn was an aviation Frank Dowling, who passed away
enthusiast and keen modeller from an early age. He flew his in late 2016, as the designer of the
models with the Belfairs Club, becoming a designer for Contest Liquidator combat model. Tribute
Kits of Leigh-on-Sea at the age of eighteen. The Cresta & Squib enough is that the ‘Liquidator’ is still
were amongst his early designs. competitive in the current Oliver class,
In his professional life, Martyn gained a degree in aeronautical especially after Richard Evans made
engineering from London University and joined Handley Page some tweaks to the sound basic layout.
Ltd in 1957 as an airframe stress engineer, working initially on The Liquidator article in AeroModeller
the HP 115 delta project and latterly at the Handley Page facility, May 1969 carries a photo of Frank receiving a winner’s
Radlett where he worked on the HP Victor and other projects. kiss at a contest with the strap line “No holding these
After the sudden demise of Handley Page in 1970 Martyn found fast combat lads!”. In fact Frank was fast not only on the
employment as Head of Aerospace Engineering at the Hatfield handle and later on the transmitter box but also of thought.
Polytechnic (latterly the Hertfordshire University), lecturing on He had the ability to think on his feet and read peoples’
aircraft structures. He also became needs.
a consultant with the Engineering In the early 1960s Frank was involved in a severe motor
Data Sciences Unit, which involved cycle accident in the Isle of Man which restricted his leg
him qualifying as a CAA chief stress movement afterwards. When combat moved from diesel
engineer on airships. to glow with much higher speeds, the challenge eventually
On retirement, Martyn moved to became too much for Frank’s agility. With admirable
Lymington, Hampshire and joined adaptability he made the change to RC aerobatics and
Bournemouth MAS. He also designed quickly became one of the men to worry about during the
a range of power model propellers era of Ken Binks et al.
for RAM Ltd in 1997, utilising his To earn a ‘meagre crust’ Frank sold cars and was a prime
extensive knowledge of aerodynamics. player in setting up one of the most successful Mercedes
Martyn’s primary modelling interest agents in the North West. A range of people from many
eventually evolved into free flight backgrounds will miss Frank’s presence in their lives. He is
rubber duration models, particularly survived by his wife Jean and children Paul and Jane.
‘Golden Era’. He wrote the excellent Thanks, Frank for years of fun and friendship. “Did I ever
reference book “Model Planes - tell you about the day I sold 17 VW Beetles in one day?”
Aerofoils & Wings” published in 2015 Yes, Frank. Many times!
and contributed to AeroModeller. Jim Woodside.

6 AeroModeller - March 2017

HANGAR DOORS 040.indd 4 30/01/2017 16:26

Please note that the events listed are compiled weeks in advance of publication,

and you should check before travelling in case of change. For future inclusion of
your events, please send an email with date and details of the event in a format
similar to those shown below to

February 7 March 19 March 2 April

Waltham Chase Indoor FF, Beverley & District MAC Autumn Rat Racing Day, Barton,
19 February Community Centre, Mill Lane, Swapmeet, Tickton Village Hall, Manchester. Texas Quickie, Oliver,
Northwich Swapmeet, Memorial Wickham, PO17 5AL. 19:00 to near Beverley HU17 9RZ. 09.00 A & 1/2A Rat CL. John Bradley
Court. Chesterway, Northwich, 22:00. FF only of all sorts. to 12:00. Tables £5.00 01829 270253
Cheshire CW9 5QJ. 10:00 to Brian Jenkins
12:30. Tables must be pre- Alan Wallington 01489 895157
booked. 01565 631190 07970 959875 4 April Waltham Chase Indoor FF,
11 March Community Centre, Mill Lane,
19 February Indoor Fun Flying, High School, 19 March Wickham, PO17 5AL. 19:00 to
BMFA SW Area Indoor Flying, Brumstead Rd, Stalham, Norfolk Goodyear Day, Barton, 22:00. FF only of all sorts.
Saints Centre, St Austell PL26 NR12 9DG. 19:00 to 22:00. Manchester. British, Open & Mini
7AG. 12:00 to 16:00. FF & micro Informal FF only, beginners Goodyear CL TR. Ed Needham Alan Wallington 01489 895157
RC. David Powis 01579 362951 welcome. Flyers £5.00, Watchers 01614 855193, £2.00, U16 £1.00. Richard
Roger Bellamy 01752 257826 Crossley on 01692 407936, 8 April 25 March Indoor Fun Flying, High School,
19 February Peterborough MFC Indoor, Brumstead Rd, Stalham, Norfolk
Peterborough MFC Indoor, 11 March Bushfield Leisure Centre, PE2 NR12 9DG. 19:00 to 22:00.
Bushfield Leisure Centre, PE2 Delyn MFC Swapmeet 1, St. 5RQ. 10:00 to 13:00. FF & micro Informal FF only, beginners
5RQ. 10:00 to 13:00. FF & micro Winefride’s Primary School, RC (no rotors/shockie). Informal welcome. Flyers £5.00, Watchers
RC (no rotors/shockie). Informal Holywell CH8 7NJ. 09.00 to contests Gyminie/Hangar Rat/ £2.00, U16 £1.00. Richard
contests Gyminie/Hangar Rat/ 13.00. Mike Parry 01352 710167 Bostonian. Crossley on 01692 407936,
11-12 March 25 March 8-9 April
19 February Club Speed Weekend, Barton, Tonbridge Gassers & Rubber Club Speed Weekend, Barton,
Evesham Indoor Flying, Leisure Manchester. All Open CL Speed Fanciers Indoor, Sports Centre, Manchester. All Open CL Speed
Centre, Abbey Rd, WR11 4SU. Classes, F2A, Have-A-Go. Dick 601 Maidstone Road, Rochester Classes, F2A, Have-A-Go.
17:00 to 20:00. RC and FF. Every Hart 01387 820335 ME1 3QJ. 18:30 to 22:00. FF & Dick Hart 01387 820335
2 weeks. LW RC. Eric 01622 737814
Mark Ashworth 07710 005705 or 12 March Steve 0208 942 5000 9 April
Flitehook Indoor FF Meeting, Flitehook Indoor FF Meeting,
25 February West Totton Centre, Hazel Farm 26 March West Totton Centre, Hazel Farm
Tonbridge Gassers & Rubber Rd, Totton SO40 8WU. 10:00 to Indoor RC Scale Nationals, RAF Rd, Totton SO40 8WU. 10:00 to
Fanciers Indoor, Sports Centre, 16:00. Flyers £6, Spectators £2. Shawbury. RC indoor scale. 16:00. Flyers £6, Spectators £2.
601 Maidstone Road, Rochester John Minchell
ME1 3QJ. 18:30 to 22:00. FF & 02380 861541 02380 861541
LW RC. Eric 01622 737814 or 12 March 17 April
Steve 0208 942 5000 BMFA NW Area Indoor Fly-In, 26 March Croydon Wakefield Day plus
Springhill Centre, Turf Hill Road, OFMAC Indoor Flying, Abbey SAM 1066, Area 8, Salisbury
26 February Rochdale OL16 4QX. Slots for Centre, Furlong Green Berinsfield Plain. 10:00 to 18:00. Vintage,
OFMAC Indoor Flying, Abbey fast/slow RC & FF. OX10 7NR. 08:30 to 16:00. FF, Classic, & Modern Duration,
Centre, Furlong Green Berinsfield RC Fixed Wing, Scale. and Sports FF Meeting. Use
OX10 7NR. 08:30 to 16:00. FF, Dave Dobson 01491 837789 of DT recommended but not
RC Fixed Wing, Scale. 19 March mandatory. 02392 550809
Dave Dobson 01491 837789 Impington Indoor Meeting, Impington Village College, 26 March
Cambridge CB24 9LX. 9.00 to March Wynde SAM35 Area 23 April
March 17.00. £6 Fly FF in main hall all Postal for LW Rubber (Senator & Indoor FF Scale Nationals,
day. RTP and small RC flying in ìAnything butî) at Area Venues. University of Wolverhampton,
4 March separate hall. Competitions for Pre-entry essential £3 (juniors Walsall Sports Centre, Magdalene
Indoor Fun-Fly, Furzefield Sports Peanuts and Bostonians. Seminar free). John Ashmole Rd. WS1 3TA. 08:00 to 18:00
Centre, Mutton Lane, Potters ìA conversation with Richard As well as BMFA scale events
Bar EN6 3BW. 17:00 to 21:00. Crossleyî. Also last ever rubber includes SAM35 kit scale, glider,
Rubber, small electric <20” FF & powered car race (unless we get Air Race. Pre-entry by 15th April.
RC. Mike Quille 0208 5003549 April
4 or more). John Minchell Chris Strachan 01223 860498 1-2 April 07989 744251
5 March Hobby Corner ‘April Fool’ Fly-in,
March Wynde SAM35 Area Wrexham MAC, LL11 3BB.
19 March
Postal for LW Rubber (Senator & To give novice RC flyer the
BMFA SW Area Indoor Flying, 23 April
ìAnything butî) at Area Venues. confidence to go to other Fly-ins
Saints Centre, St Austell PL26 CL Floatplanes at Leceister MAC.
Pre-entry essential £3. during the 2017.
7AG. 12:00 to 16:00. FF & micro Andy Green
John Ashmole or
RC. David Powis 01579 362951 01490 413276., Roger Bellamy 01752 257826

Full details of BMFA events can be found at:


CALENDAR 040.indd 1 30/01/2017 16:26

Product Review

A new airbrush sized compressor from the Airbrush Company is tested by Andrew Boddington.

s a builder of flying models, where there is an airbrush one needs a ranging from a car tyre (unwieldy,
if one wants to apply a dependable air supply. I’ve been using frustrating and ‘damp’ air), propellant
paint finish but keep the airbrushes on and off for 40 years when canisters (expensive and don’t last long),
model light an airbrush a model requires a fine finish, and in and compressor units.
is the tool of choice. And that time I’ve tried various air supplies My last compressor was huge, suitable

The Sparmax ARISM

Viz Compressor
components as they
come out of the box
from the Airbrush

8 AeroModeller - March 2017

COMPRESSOR REVIEW.indd 8 30/01/2017 16:27

The front of the compressor houses the pressure meter which is marked in The supplied braided hose screws on to the outlet on the front of the
both PSI and Kg/cm². Although the numbers are small the needle is easily compressor and is terminated with the ‘Silver Bullet’ bleed valve and
tracked. moisture trap.

The ‘Silver Bullet’ is unobtrusive below the airbrush and does not interfere When the airbrush is placed in the moulded holder on top of the compressor
with the operation. The air bleed control is the knurled knob at the top, while it switches off the pump.
the water drain is a push valve at the bottom.

for spraying a full-size car, drew a full with partitions and packing to keep the pressure I need is determined by
13 amps from the socket with the risk everything secure – thus avoiding that watching the practice spray pattern and
of fusing the circuit and was so loud I sinking feeling when your item arrives in adjusting it accordingly.
needed to wear ear-defenders! It was not a squashed box! The pressure is adjusted on the bleed
what I would call handy for a modeller. As well as the ARISM Viz compressor valve which is built in to the ‘Silver
So what I needed was a compressor that unit, there is a mains power adapter, Bullet’ - this fits on the end of the air
was suitable for my existing airbrush for a 2m braided pressure hose, a ‘Silver hose underneath the airbrush. The ‘Silver
efficient spraying of small to medium Bullet Plus’ moisture trap and pressure Bullet’ also acts as a moisture filter; it
sized flying models, would be quiet adjuster, and an airbrush rest come is clear allowing any captured water
enough to allow pleasant inside use, yet ‘Smart-Stop’ (more later). The mains to be visible and then released via the
would be compact enough to be stored adapter provides the 12V supply required drain valve. So what is important about
in my workshop until next needed. by the compressor, but there is the a moisture filter? If water droplets are
When the Airbrush Company sent alternative of an optional battery pack so mixed with non-water based paints
details of the new Sparmax ARISM Viz that the compressor can be used away such as cellulose or enamel you end up
Compressor it seemed to fit my needs. from mains electricity. with tiny ‘pin-pricks’ on your paint finish
A look at the Airbrush Company website The compressor unit is of sturdy where the water evaporates.
for the details of the compressor (search construction with sheet metal sides.
on for part C-AR- There is the air outlet and a pressure There she Blows!
VIZ) confirmed that my NEO Iwata TRN2 gauge on the front, and on-off switch at Having connected everything up and
was a supported airbrush for pressure the back. The pressure gauge dial and switched on, I’m immediately struck by
and flow. numbers are relatively small making it how quiet the compressor is. No need
difficult to read exactly, but being an to wear ear defenders and I can still
What’s in the Box? analogue needle gauge this does not listen to King Crimson on the Hi-Fi! As
The Sparmax compressor arrived well matter too much as one can easily see I didn’t have a model ready to spray for
packed in first a thick-walled shipping the position of needle – I find that I this review I tested the Sparmax ARISM
carton, and inside that the retail box don’t often read the pressure gauge as Viz compressor using my own airbrush

COMPRESSOR REVIEW.indd 9 30/01/2017 16:27

Product Review
In tests the
Sparmax ARISM Viz
Compressor was
quiet and provided a
dependable airflow for
spraying paint.

loaded with water thinned acrylic to is switched off saving energy and want a paint holding cup/bottle of at
spray paint on large sheets of card – I preventing over heating - the duty least 14cc (1/2oz), and a wider spray
want to be sure the compressor has cycle of the compressor is 40 minutes pattern than for plastic models meaning
the oomph (i.e. pressure and flow) to continuous use, after which it needs to a needle of at least 0.5mm diameter. You
cope with the spray finish on the wings be switched off and allowed to cool for can use smaller airbrushes but it will take
and fuselage for a typical medium sized at least 10 minutes, but I doubt many you longer to apply the paint! If you’re a
powered model. This it did without modellers would get close to this limit large 1/6 scale modeller or equivalent,
problem, the bleed valve on the ‘Silver with normal use. My airbrush fitted you may want to go larger still with your
Bullet’ allowing adjustment of the air comfortably in the holder as well as it airbrush, and if a humongous 1/4 scaler
pressure to suit whether I wanted thin or supporting Sparmax’s own airbrushes. a paint-gun rather than airbrush may be
wide lines. The dual-action pistol trigger The Sparmax ARISM Viz compressor is more suitable. ●
on my airbrush meant that the airflow a well thought out air supply which would
could first be engaged to stabilise its make a great addition to the ‘armoury’
flow and then on full depression the paint for builders of flying models.
was released – a good even coverage Sparmax ARISM Viz
was obtained with spray width of about Choosing an Airbrush and Compressor Specifications:
1.5” (4cm) maximum. The compressor Compressor • Low maintenance, oil-less single piston air
had no problem keeping this airflow If you are new to airbrush finishing of • Working pressure from 0 psi to 50 psi (3.4
going so that I could cover the test models, the bit of advice I’d give is to bar)
• Silver Bullet Plus moisture trap
pieces. first choose your airbrush to suit your • 2M Braided hose
This compressor as with many coverage or lining requirements, and • Airbrush holder
• Pressure gauge
‘hobbyist’ products has no air tank, then choose the right compressor to • Air flow: 16 - 18 lpm (0.57 - 0.64 cfm) at
so there is a slight drop in pressure as provide the indicated pressure and open flow
• 1/8 BSP outlet on compressor
the air is released through the airbrush. flow. Remember our needs are slightly • Size: L20 x W12 x H18 cm (7.9” x 4.7” x
This is not a problem for my painting different to the small-scale plastic 7.1”)
• Weight: 2.5 kgs (5.5 lbs)
needs but if you need a smoother, modeller who requires fine detail • Noise level: 45±dB
more controllable airflow, a higher spec (perhaps closer to the area coverage
Sparmax ARISM Viz Compressor C-AR-VIZ
compressor with storage tank (to hold requirements of a spray tan salon!) A £175.00 inc VAT.
the pumped air) is the way to go. good starting point when wondering Sparmax ARISM Viz Compressor with
Battery and Charger Z-AR-VIZ-BATT-
An innovative feature of the what to buy is the Airbrush Company CHARGE £210.00 inc VAT.
compressor is that the clear moulded website, choose the ‘Info’ tab - they also
The Airbrush Company Ltd
airbrush holder comes with a ‘Smart- have knowledgeable experts on the end 79 Marlborough Road (East)
Stop’ switch. This is to be found on top of the phone. Lancing Business Park
West Sussex BN15 8UF
of the compressor, and by resting the When choosing an airbrush, keep in Tel: +44 (0)1903 767 800
airbrush in the holder, the compressor mind that for our coverage we’ll probably email:

10 AeroModeller - March 2017

COMPRESSOR REVIEW.indd 10 30/01/2017 16:27

AM040 11.indd 1 30/01/2017 14:39
How To

Repairing Damaged
Allan Voyce takes you through the steps to re-tap
threads and revive discarded engines.

12 AeroModeller - March 2017

REPAIR THREADS.indd 12 30/01/2017 16:28

ed Threads Photo 1. BA tap and split die set. These threads are used on many

British engines.

uite often we find ourselves with at least one

engine or piece of equipment we can’t use
because it has one or more damaged threads,
usually on a vital part that needs to be held
securely. As long as there is enough thickness
of material still present, most threads can be re-tapped, and
a larger screw or bolt fitted. More often than not, this can be
accomplished using basic workshop tools and equipment, and
at other times, a pillar drill will make the process much easier to
accomplish. Screws and bolts can sometimes be re-threaded to
suit various applications, as long as there is sufficient diameter Photo 2. 1mm to 2.5mm metric tap and die set for those really
miniature engines.
to ensure a full depth thread.

Tools & Equipment

Good quality taps and dies are a must to be able to carry out an
effective repair, as a sloppy thread fit can let go when put under
stress, e.g. the bolts holding the cylinder and head on a model
diesel engine. Many different threads are used in our hobby,
often depending on which country the item was manufactured
in. Photo 1 is a B.A. (British Association) tap and split die set,
and photo 2 is metric set with sizes 1mm to 2.5 mm. Apart
from the very small thread sizes, thread taps come in sets
of 3, a taper or starter tap, a second cut, and a plug tap
(Photo3). The taper tap is used to start the thread, as the
tip will fit into the drilled hole. The second and plug taps are
used when tapping a blind hole where the thread doesn’t go
all the way through the material.

Photo 3. Taper, second and plug tap set.

Photo 4. The fanbelt is locked up to use the pillar drill as a tapping

jig. Note the machine’s electric plug fastened in to prevent
accidental start up.


REPAIR THREADS.indd 13 30/01/2017 16:28

How To

A motorised drilling machine makes life are available, for our use a light vehicle
easier when a hole needs to be drilled engine oil or similar will suffice. I
bigger to suit a larger thread, and I have have found that a regular spray with
found a small pillar drill is useful for most penetrating oil gives an excellent finish
applications, except when the part is too on threads cut in aluminium. When
awkward a shape to be held safely and cutting a thread, the tap or die should
square to the hole to be drilled on the be rotated ½ a turn, then turned back
machine. ¼ turn to cut off the swarf produced as
Before a thread is tapped, the hole the material is cut. This should be done
has to be the correct size to ensure a full until the whole thread is cut, otherwise
thread depth. Drill and tap size charts the new thread could be torn out as the
Photo 5. 4mm thread tap in the drill press chuck are available on the internet or from swarf builds up on the cutting edges of
ready to be brought down to the cylinder jacket.
engineering supplies, however metric the tap or die if they are not backed off
thread sizes are easily worked out. The regularly.
thread I’ll be using on the compression
screw repair is 4mm x 0.5mm. The Stripped Diesel
diameter of the thread is 4mm, and Compression Screw
0.5mm is the thread pitch, which is I’ve had quite a few model diesel
the distance between the peaks of the engines through my hands where the
thread. The drill size will be 4mm minus compression screw has been stripped
0.5mm= 3.5mm. trying to free off a gummed up contra-
To ensure a good clean cut thread, piston. The engine I’ll be using is a DC
the tap or die should be well lubricated, Merlin .75cc. The first thing to check
or the finished thread will tear as it is is the next largest size bolt that will
cut. Although special tapping fluids comfortably be able to be used to
Photo 6. The cylinder jacket is turned by hand to
tap the thread.

Photo 8. Fitting a Photo 9. Three nuts

nut to the cap screw are locked onto the
before is cut to length screw to prevent
and a taper ground on thread damage when
the end enables the holding it in the drill
thread to be cleaned chuck.
up when the nut is

Photo 7. Testing the screw in the thread to

check for the length of thread needed to
make a tidy job.

14 AeroModeller - March 2017

REPAIR THREADS.indd 14 30/01/2017 16:28

Photo 10. A file is used to shape the compression screw Photo 11. This shape makes Photo 12. A small blow torch is used to heat the screw to red
with the drill press on low speed. for comfortable use for tight heat at the point where it is to be bent. A small spanner or tube
fitting contra pistons. keeps fingers away from the heat & provides some leverage.

accommodate a full depth thread in and bolts. This prevents the end of the on low speed, the compression screw
the cylinder jacket. I tend to use metric screw becoming mushroomed from lever section can be filed to shape. The
bolts as they are readily available. Try constant use against the contra-piston, profile I have shaped is comfortable to
passing a drill by hand through the screw and removing the thread in the cylinder use, especially for tight contra-pistons
hole, and once you have the drill size, if the screw is removed after being used (Photo 11). A lathe could be used for
you can work out which tap size can be for some time. The longer cap screws this process if you have access to one.
used by using the formula outlined in the are only threaded part of the WEAR EYE PROTECTION!
previous section. The same can be done way on the shank, and this DO NOT WEAR LOOSE
for other threads using a tapping chart makes for a tidier finished CLOTHING OR
to cross-reference the drill size against compression screw. ANY JEWELLERY
the tap that can be used. Try not to use Screw the cap screw WHILE WORKING
fine threads in aluminium, as a coarser into the cylinder WITH MOVING
thread is stronger due to the depth of the jacket (Photo 7), MACHINERY!
thread. and see how much
The drill that fitted the DC head was thread is showing
Photo 13. The
3.5mm, so it can be tapped to 4mm x above the cylinder. completed
0.5mm pitch. Sometimes you may have Remove the screw, compression screw
ready for use.
to drill the hole a little larger to fit the and cut off any excess
next size tap. To make sure the thread thread, making sure to
is tapped at right angles to the head, a leave enough thread for Due to the hardness
pillar drill can be used as a tapping jig compression adjustment. File of the allen cap screw,
by locking up the chuck using cable ties or grind a slight taper on the end of it needs to be heated until the
around the fanbelt as shown in Photo the thread, this is to take care of any section to be bent is red hot, or it will
4. NOTE THE POWER PLUG TIED IN mushrooming that may occur through crack or break at the bend. It can be
THE FANBELT IN PHOTO 4 TO AVOID constant use. Note: if you screw a nut heated using a small butane torch
ACCIDENTAL MACHINE START UP! onto the screw before cutting and filing, available from hardware shops (Photo
The thread is tapped by fitting the when you remove it, it will clean up any 12), or your local motor vehicle repair
thread tap in the drill chuck, placing the “rags” left from these operations (Photo shop or engineering shop could help
cylinder jacket on the drill press table 8). Cut the head off the screw, leaving here. Note the 3 nuts are left on the
and bringing the tap down into the hole enough shank for the length of screw screw to avoid damage when it is
in the cylinder jacket (Photo 5). The lever you want, including a small amount gripped in the vice, and a small spanner
cylinder jacket can then be turned by needed for the bend, which is described or piece of tube is used to provide
hand to cut the thread (Photo 6). further on. leverage while bending, and also to keep
Lock 3 nuts onto the screw (Photo fingers and hands clear of the heat.
Making a new ‘Comfortable’ 9), tightening them against each other Photo 13 shows the completed screw,
Compression Screw so the flats line up. This is done so the and fitted to the engine in Photo 14.
I use Allen Head cap screws to make thread is not damaged when the screw
compression screws as they are made is placed in the pillar drill chuck (Photo Tommy Bar Compression Screw
from harder material than normal screws 10). Using a file, and the drill press The cap screw is cut to length as per the


REPAIR THREADS.indd 15 30/01/2017 16:29

How To
previous compression screw, then drilled as the whole length of the thread has not
to accept the tommy bar. Note: the top been cross-threaded. Thread files are
of the screw is cut to length after drilling, readily available from tool, automotive
so there is sufficient material to hold it spares and engineering shops, in both
securely in the drill press vice. The hole metric and imperial sizes. Each file
is drilled 1.5mm, which will give a good normally has 8 thread sizes, and on each
interference fit for a piece of 1/16” spring end they have a corresponding thread
wire. A taper is ground on the end of gauge to try against the damaged thread
the spring wire before cutting it to the to locate the correct file to use. To find
required length. Place the compression the correct file, hold the thread gauge
screw on a piece of pine or similar against the thread, and check the gauge
wood, and fit the tapered end of the fits correctly along the thread, and the
Photo 14. New compression screw fitted to a spring wire in the drilled hole. The wire full depth of the thread.
DC Super Merlin ready to go.
is then driven right through the hole with Photo 17 shows a thread file with
a hammer, and the tapered end is then a bolt next to it bearing the type of
cut or ground off. Photo 15 shows a damage we would use it to repair. Place
completed compression screw, and the the bolt on the gap of a slightly open
screw and wire before final cutting and vice to work on it. This will allow the
finishing. thread to be rotated as it is filed, and will
be secure enough for the file to be kept
Thread Repair Inserts in alignment with the thread. A specific
Photo 16 shows one type of thread file may not be available for some
repair insert that is available from modelling threads, but judicious use of a
engineering or bolt suppliers. This set of needle files can sometimes be of
particular type is made of diamond- help here.
shaped wire that has been wound into
Photo 15. Two simple pieces are used to make a coil, providing an internal and external Re-threading Screws
up a tommy bar compression screw.
thread. These can be supplied in a kit Occasionally the size screw we require
containing the correct drill size for the may not be available, and we may have
insert, a special tap, a fitting tool, and to modify one to suit our purpose. Photo
some inserts. The inserts are available 18 shows a split thread die and a screw
in most thread types and sizes, but that has had the end re-threaded to 6BA.
we sometimes have to compromise if The screw in the die holder that lines
the original thread type for a particular up with the split in the die has a tapered
engine is not available. end, enabling a small adjustment of
Thread inserts are used to provide the die size. The other 2 screws are
extra strength in soft metals for a given tightened to hold the die, and close it
bolt size, or for repairing a stripped onto the tapered screw. By adjusting the
thread where the same size bolt must die size in this way, we can get the best
be used. Always check that there will be fit for a screw thread, which will ensure
Photo 16. Thread repair inserts, tap and fitting enough material left to hold the insert, maximum strength once it is tightened.
and still provide enough strength for
the intended purpose, e.g. cylinder hold Some final notes…
down bolts fastened into small lugs on If you only have one or two threads to
the crankcase on a model diesel engine. repair, buying a set of taps and dies
There are many videos on the Internet would seem to be false economy. Quite
showing thread insert fitting. Always often a local engineering company,
Photo 17. A damaged thread can often be try to view one that has been posted or indeed someone from a model
repaired using a thread file.
by the insert manufacturer, as this will engineering club will often be willing to
outline the correct fitting sequence, and help by tapping the odd thread for you.
possibly prevent disappointment if things Any threads that are regularly turned
go wrong! for adjustment purposes should always
be well lubricated to prevent excessive
Repairing an External Thread wear, and extend the life of the thread.
From time to time we come across an Many repairs often have an easy
external thread that has been damaged, solution once given a little thought, and
either by an incorrect nut being fitted, or hopefully some of those old engines will
the correct nut being cross-threaded. A once again take to the air! ●
thread file is the tool used here, as long
Photo 18. Split dies can be adjusted by the
three screws to give the best thread fit on a
screw or bolt.

REPAIR THREADS.indd 16 30/01/2017 16:29

AM040 P17.indd 1 30/01/2017 15:41
Free Flight Scale

Scale Matters
Bill Dennis builds another winning release from the Vintage Model Company and surveys the
coming year for FF Scale.

VMC Sopwith Camel captures the essence of the Camel whims. The most important is to add
The output of small scale models from perfectly, with correct wingtips (often working rigging, which I did recently for
the Vintage Model Company is gathering portrayed with straight edges), the the first time on the Avetek Tiger Moth. It
pace, such that it is becoming difficult right wing gap and the characteristic adds greatly to the strength and I would
to keep up. The latest is the Sopwith Camel ‘sit’. The tail is enlarged but say it is essential. While these kits are
Camel, forming an ideal partner for that is a concession to make the thing a huge improvement over the KK ones
the previous SE5a. This series of kits fly. With everything basically accurate, of yore, the one area where I prefer the
is designed by Andrew Darby and is the opportunity is there, for those so original is the centre section struts
intended to be a modern take on the Keil inclined, to embellish it to their which used to run right
Kraft and Veron designs. I was lucky hearts’ content. down to the bottom
enough to get one of the first Camels I made a very few of the
and have just completed it. alterations, just
Again, the level of detail on the to suit my
plan and the accuracy of the fits are own
extraordinary, and the wood selection
superb. Once assembled, the model

the new VMC Sopwith Camel. It is

the same size as the much-loved
Keil Kraft design but somewhat
more sophisticated!

18 AeroModeller - March 2017

SCALE MATTERS 040.indd 18 30/01/2017 16:30

Your columnist’s Earl Stahl Curtiss SOC3-1 after four days’ work. Yes, the The Curtiss almost ready to go, just awaiting the arrival of a Dave Banks pilot
notches mostly line up. before the front canopy is added.

fuselage where they were firmly some Williams cylinders of the correct being admired.
anchored. Without some bracing, these size. These are easily split in half with a Next up from VMC is a Corsair.
struts could easily break away and the Stanley knife down the moulding seam.
model would be very difficult to repair. I made a mess of the paper ‘plywood’ Stahl Curtiss Seagull
I know this after my toolbox wandered panelling around the front fuselage. I have never built an Earl Stahl design,
about in the car on the way back from My first attempt with brown paint was only because hitherto I have built few
Oxford and did a bit of squashing on horrible; next time round I printed some rubber models. Nevertheless I have
the SE5! Rigging is easily done: use wood grain off the internet. This was always been aware of the esteem in
‘bait bayonets’ from the fishing shop much too bright but a couple of coats of which his designs are held and they
(£1.99 for 20) poked in and cyanoed as pine woodstain improved things. certainly have a deserved reputation as
anchor points, and 2lb brown fishing Flight tests await but the fact that fine-flying machines. The many plans
line, pulled tight and held with short the model flies well can be seen on are well-drawn and practical, looking
pieces of crimped aluminium tube. Just Youtube (search ‘VMC Sopwith Camel’). surprisingly modern structurally.
be careful not to accidentally cross the To maximise performance, My interest was stimulated
landing and flying wires when doing this one could lighten the by photos online of a
– I understand there are people foolish tail surfaces quite a very nice Stahl Waco
enough to do this, and more than once… biplane, but while
Having covered the model, I used a Paul Briggs has
looking for
different brand of non-shrinking dope built this very the plans on
to my usual, which led to a tiny amount nice Waterman
Racer from
Outerzone I
of curved dihedral on the top wing. All Aeromodeller came across
NSD shrinks a little, but I find HMG does December
this Curtiss
1984. Only
so the least. However, a Camel with a one of this SO3C-1
perfectly flat top wing can look droopy machine which was
was built,
and sad; my Camel looks perkier without and there kitted by
being noticeable, so don’t worry if a little are only Flyline, and
two photos,
curvature creeps in. but it makes I changed
You are probably aware that I prefer a up into a course.
very cute and
painted finish, and I sprayed a thin coat fine-flying little Between having
of my usual Flair/Spectrum PC10. I have model. the plan printed
got used to the paper markings and I and what you see
used them here, except for the rudder bit, and also shave here uncovered is
and upper wing, which I knew I would be away some of the rear four days. It is a long time
unable to do neatly; these were painted. fuselage. The model will also since I have built a model using
The markings in the kit do not include need a lot of down and sidethrust; at the keel and stringer fuselage, and it
fuselage roundels, but these are easily least 6 degrees. This will be somewhat has opened up a whole new world of
found on the internet and re-sized. disfiguring so you may wish to make up mistakes to be made. Nevertheless, the
Rather than mess about with dowel a dummy noseplug and scale prop for model went together quickly and easily.
and thread for the engine, I found I had when the model is just sitting on the TV Most of the fuselage notches lined up


SCALE MATTERS 040.indd 19 30/01/2017 16:30

Free Flight Scale

Here are the basic parts for the

Lewis gun on the Strutter. It
should be possible to produce
something special from this basic

This is how far the Strutter had progressed by the Christmas break. Note
the representation of the delicate ‘latticework’ around the nose, and scale
undercarriage. The potentially troublesome rigging of the CS struts is rendered
simple by the use of jigs. The rear rubber anchorage will be beefed up.

pretty well but I made a big mistake with Lodge, along with a large contingent of pay. A combined event with like-minded
the upper keel by using separate pieces SAM35 members, the purpose being to modellers is more practical and SAM35
(as on the plan) and leaving a gap where assess its suitability for our activities. have booked October 1st for a meeting
the rear cabin is. Inevitably this led to the The field is about the same area as Old and invited us along.
structure twisting and I had to rescue Warden but it is a much more convenient
the situation by glueing a bridging strip shape and will work with different wind Strutter kit
across the keels to straighten things directions. Better still, the surrounding You may remember the recent Tiger
up. When it was all done, I took a piece land is all part of the same estate and Moth kit from Avetek in New Zealand,
of half-inch dowel, wrapped coarse retrieving errant models should not be a which was reviewed here last year.
sandpaper round it and scalloped the problem. They now have a new release in the
formers between the stringers. I think this It will not be feasible to run a scale- form of a 28” Sopwith 1½ Strutter and
is worth doing; a stringered fuselage on only meeting because we do not have I was delighted to receive one of the
a metal aircraft is already a compromise, sufficient active modellers to make it first kits through the post. To say it is a
made worse by formers sticking through
the covering like ribs on a ‘supermodel’.
The only change I made was to add
a cross-brace inside the fuselage at the
point of the TE; this is where the fuselage
will collapse on a one piece model when
the wing gets knocked back. There
is nothing to be said about the wings
and tail, other than they were easy and
well-designed. Finish is Humbrol enamel
over Esaki tissue, with paper markings.
Unusually for a rubber model, it naturally
balances where it should.

BMFA flying site

I recently visited the new BMFA National
Two views of the prototype of Avetek’s Strutter kit. The dummy engine and guns provide a sound basis
Centre and flying site at Buckminster for as much extra detailing as you wish.

20 AeroModeller - March 2017

SCALE MATTERS 040.indd 20 30/01/2017 16:30

quantum leap forward in kit design the control surfaces are separate and I an hour and a half – so give it some
is an understatement. I have, in fact, am sure many builders will be installing consideration.
watched the model’s gestation over the lightweight radio.
months and so had a good idea of what I shall not be building this quickly but Auster
to expect. Like the Tiger, many aspects shall report on progress as I go on. Let The very nice looking silver Auster is
of the construction are innovative, with me give one example of the attention to by Derek Knight, from an April 1944
extensive use of jigs. detail. The wing section is scale which AeroModeller plan. If you have one
The first thing to say is that it makes means that at the aileron hinge line, of the old Plans Handbooks, it will be
up into a very accurate replica, which the ribs are off the board. This normally there in the rubber section, alongside a
will suit the most exacting competition means some accurate and fiddly packing number of designs from the same era,
modeller as well as those who just want is needed; here the wing and aileron ribs many represented by photos evidently
their models to look ‘right’. Just about are provided with little tabs to rest on the of the full-size! I wasn’t around at the
everything you will need is in the kit; you board and to be removed later. Clever. time, of course, but this period of rubber
will not be scrounging straws for guns Postscript; I strongly advise that scale modelling in the UK was brief,
or winding engine cylinders with thread you tackle the build in the order things beginning in the war and ending with the
around balsa dowel. appear in the instructions. Thus far appearance of the ED Bee and Mills 75
The photo shows the kit contents. I have assembled the fuselage, tail round about 1947
Again, there is no box; the kit arrived and undercarriage; the latter is a very The model is reduced a little from the
stoutly-wrapped in its plastic bag, all accurate representation of the original, original 36”, and thus it is eligible for the
the laser-cut sheets sandwiched safely which went together in 20 minutes! AeroModeller/Model Aircraft designs
between four thick sheets of initially Finally, today I received separately the event at the May Nationals (10% re-
incomprehensible jigs which make parts for the guns and Scarff rings, sizing either way is permitted). The blurb
construction easy and accurate. If you which I hope Avetek will make available says that ‘construction closely follows
look carefully, you will see the jigs, no separately, maybe even at a larger scale. the original’ and Derek confirms that it is
fewer than 16 sheets of high-quality laser One-twelfth would suit me nicely! rather more complex than is necessary!
cut balsa and ply, carbon tube spars,
vacform cowling and wheels, tissue and International Indoor Fly-in, 2017 Finally...
even a 3D printed basis for a dummy We have already had advance notification Confirmation that the official "August
engine on which you can go to town. of this event, more commonly-known in Nationals" FF Scale Trophy events
Conveniently, the plans are printed on the UK as ‘Nijmegen’. If you look at the will again be held at the FF Nationals
a number of A3 sheets which are much website you well get an idea at Barkston Heath, over the late May
more manageable than one big one. of the events on offer. Bank Holiday. This is alongside the
Unusually there are no instructions in the Dates for the next Interscale are 10 usual Flying Only (including the event
bag; I can vouch that these are very long – 12th November 2017, with the Friday for AeroModeller and Model Aircraft
and comprehensive and as such will be being added for those who want some designs old and new) and Outdoor Kit
supplied via email, although they will be trimming or non-contest flying. We had Scale Classes. If you are not already on
provided separately if needed. such an enjoyable time at Interscale in the FF scale emailing list and want to get
The prototype models were free-flight 2015 that we intend to go again this year information about this and other events,
rubber but electric conversion would if at all possible. Getting there is easy contact me at ●
be an alternative. Unlike the Tiger, all from the ferry port of Rotterdam – just

Derek Knight’s Auster will be eligible for the AM/MA contest at the FF Nats in This is a photo from April 1944 AM of the original uncovered
late May. Have you got your model ready yet? Auster model.


SCALE MATTERS 040.indd 21 30/01/2017 16:30

Power Trip

Fora Junior 2016

Maris Dislers tests the revised Fora Junior 2.5cc which is available in glow and diesel versions.

egular readers will recall our Team Racing. However, as we pointed through a magnifying glass, does not
report on the Fora Junior out in our earlier report, when pushed have the obvious crystals that are
2.5cc (0.15 ci) engine from to maximum performance potential, a inevitable with high silicon casting alloys.
issue 933, February 2015. couple of structural weaknesses That ought to mean the new piston
Since then, a dedicated RC became evident. and cylinder are less prone to thermal
glow Junior has become available and distortion and cracking. Wrist pin is a
we believe that this new version will Development light interference fit in the piston bosses
also become the regular fixed-choke The new version has been significantly and at 11.5mm long, sits somewhat short
diesel/glow Junior. We’ll call it the 2016 modified, such that only a few minor of the retaining circlips. A new conrod
Junior. While looking little different at first parts are carried over. The earlier 14mm design has a rectangular cross section,
glance, it contains significant revisions. and 16mm bore-stroke arrangement is not circular.
Enough for us to take a closer look. replaced by 14.5mm bore and 14.9mm The original crankcase is retained,
Recapping, the Junior is intended as stroke. The new, slightly shorter cylinder but has a larger groove on the exhaust
a sport engine and as an introduction has one less cooling fin and is machined side to clear the wider conrod. The new
to competition work, but is priced from bar stock, not the earlier casting. one-piece hardened steel crankshaft
significantly lower than true competition The new piston is also from bar stock will of course overcome any potential
engines. They have proven popular in and has a 5.9mm diameter window on wandering crankpin problems. Less
Club competitions and for Classic FAI the boost port side. And when viewed obvious is the move away from slit

New cylinder (right) is machined from solid, has revised port angles, larger bore and is shorter than the earlier Junior type (left).

22 AeroModeller - March 2017

POWER TRIP 040.indd 22 30/01/2017 16:31

ABOVE: New piston (right) is machined from
solid, not a casting. Has large window aligning
with boost passage/port. Revised conrod design
adds strength, has additional lubrication hole to
top of big end bearing enters obliquely from the
RIGHT: Earlier crankshaft had pressed-in
crankpin. New crankshaft (right) is in one piece,
hardened. Generous valve port aids high speed
running in glow mode. Feeds 7mm diameter gas

spraybar end to a synthetic rubber gland classes, but maybe an option if the older lowering RPM. Recovery from this
clamped by the dome nut against the piston/cylinder sets are discontinued as condition, when opening the needle
spraybar tip, to seal against air leaks and spares. Port timing then becomes milder setting, was not rapid. Therefore, this
hold the desired needle position. – around 142 degrees exhaust and 118 engine is best operated with a slightly
As before, our engine came with the degrees transfers and the head would rich mixture setting, where it runs quite
head button for a long reach normal need to be shimmed higher for the extra steadily. And at this size, the carburettor
glow plug, if the owner wishes to run stroke. Or a suitable spacer between would not be well suited for aerobatics or
it that way, along with an alternative cylinder and crankcase could also combat work, where a more consistent
F2D style venturi insert. Its 4mm choke be used. fuel supply is required.
point is very near the top, then diverges Compression adjustment is quite
to almost 6mm diameter, before the Diesel mode insensitive, especially if you are
steep conical taper of the lower section. With that easy cylinder to crankcase accustomed to a contra piston with
Four jet holes are set somewhat below fit, it was no surprise that normal finger full cylinder bore diameter. That means
the 6mm position, clearly with the choking did not draw fuel from the fuel one eighth or a quarter turn to make
expectation that some form of pressure tank. We found that measuring around any noticeable difference. This engine
fuel feed method is used – probably a six drops of fuel into the carburettor tolerates an over-compressed setting,
latex bladder. The regular venturi insert adequately primed the engine for not by overheating and reduced RPM,
for suction feed has a steep conical taper starting and the engine seemed to run but by a rough exhaust note and only
to the 3.9mm diameter choke point, with perfectly happily. As an experiment, slight loss in RPM. That tolerance is
four peripheral jet holes immediately we temporarily added a packing shim good in a way, but puts much more
below, in the steeply divergent around the cylinder’s exhaust port area strain on the internals and should be
lower section. (made from aluminium drink can, held in avoided. As always, go with the minimum
One final observation was an place with balsa cement) to better seal compression setting before performance
unusually generous radial clearance against crankcase pressure/vacuum loss. drops off.
of approximately 0.08mm (0.003 While not a perfect solution, that allowed Generally, the Junior 2016’s
in.) between the lower cylinder and us to finger choke the engine in the usual performance curves are very similar
crankcase. This area containing the ports way, but seemed to have no measurable to the earlier version, although torque
and crankcase passages is usually fitted effect on performance. at lower speeds is significantly less.
quite snugly to avoid loss of crankcase General handling in diesel mode was Maximum torque occurs between 13,000
pressure to atmosphere. A simple very good. We noted that the carburettor RPM and 15,000 RPM, so it was no
pressure test confirmed this potential design was perhaps chosen for its good surprise that the engine was not very
leak path on our particular engine. pressure drop at the fuel delivery point. comfortable when loaded to lower
Incidentally, this engine could be In practice, optimum mixture setting speeds. Power peaks around 17,500
assembled with the earlier crankshaft, for best power output was unreliable. A RPM where it delivers 0.47 BHP, but
which would increase swept volume momentary change in flow could then you’ll get most of that across 16,000
to 2.64cc. Oversize for competition have it misfiring, with less fuel delivered, - 19,000 RPM. At even higher speeds,


POWER TRIP 040.indd 23 30/01/2017 16:31

Power Trip

which lacks the diesel button’s 0.25mm

Technical data
Cylinder bore 14.5 mm (.571 in.) step, giving that much more clearance at
Stroke 14.9 mm (.586 in.) top dead centre. Venturi inserts were also
Swept volume 2.46 cc (.150 cu. in.) swapped over. Although effective choke
Weight (diesel mode) 143.2g (5.05 oz.) area is almost the same, the glow venturi
Exhaust duration 146 degrees
is specifically designed for maximum
Transfer duration 119 degrees
Boost duration 117 degrees air mass flow rate for that size, as in
Intake opens 36 deg. ABDC F2D competition engines. We tested
Intake closes 57 deg. ATDC with F2D combat fuel containing 10%
Intake duration 201 degrees nitro methane, 20% castor oil and 70%
Suction venturi choke diameter/area 3.9mm (.154 in.) / 11.9 sq. mm (.0185 sq. in.)
Pressure venturi choke diameter/area 4.0 mm (.157 in.) / 12.6 sq. mm (.0195 sq. in.)
Mounting hole spacing 13 x 35 mm (.512 x 1.5 in.) While needle adjustment in diesel
mode was a little vague, not so with high
pressure fuel feed from a latex bladder,
vibration increases significantly. satisfactory using JXF 7x6, Techno where the fineness of adjustment was
Our test fuel contained 20% castor Hobby Diesel Combat prop or trimmed more suitable. We had almost a quarter
oil, 30% ether, 50% Jet A-1 kerosene APC 7x7. We were impressed by turn leeway near the peak setting, before
and 1.5% EHN ignition improver. how this engine maintained operating going too rich or lean. Running was very
We tried the same mix with 2% EHN, temperature during pit stops. Restarts consistent and hand starting was almost
hoping for a clearer indication of with correct priming were rapid. instantaneous with the correct priming
optimum compression setting, but procedure. No need to bounce the
with no significant effect. Flight tests Glow mode propeller backwards, so that it swings
in a Goodyear racing model were quite We installed the supplied head button, over on the misfire. Just flick as normal.

Despite almost the same effective choke area, the short “suction” venturi View of pressure venturi from below. Shows shallow divergent taper from
(right) is designed for maximum pressure drop at the fuel feed area. Taller choke point at top, to maintain smooth laminar air flow, before fuel is
design (left) for pressure feed aims for maximum air mass flow rate. injected through four jet holes below.

24 AeroModeller - March 2017

POWER TRIP 040.indd 24 30/01/2017 16:31

New F2D style pressure-feed carburettor, makes
the multi-purpose Junior a willing option for F2D
Combat training. Optional exhaust manifold and
muffler is available separately.

Looking almost like its predecessor, the

2016 Fora Junior is significantly revamped,
but in diesel mode has very similar
performance. Detail changes should make
this one more durable.

Even when inadvertently flooded, the unscathed in our tests, suggesting

Junior was not a finger biter. further potential by removing one or
In glow mode, this engine doesn’t even more shims.
get out of bed unless allowed to turn at
least 16,000 RPM, which corresponds to All Rounder
maximum torque delivery of 29 oz-in (the Time will tell whether the latest changes
same level as in diesel mode). Thereafter, to the Junior engine translate into the
power climbs to a respectable peak of Spartan toughness that goes with
0.6 BHP around 22,500 RPM. Power an engine expected to do intensive
drops significantly beyond this speed, training work, before giving its best in
meaning the glow Junior will not reach competitions. After fairly lengthy testing,
the much higher operating RPM of a ours feels as good as new. If you want to
true F2D Combat engine. And fitting compare our reported performance from
the optional muffler would probably dull the older model, remember that different Moulded plastic back plate can accommodate
down power at the top of its practical venturi sizes and types were used. That a crankcase pressure nipple in the centre, if
desired. This comes standard on the RC Glow
RPM scale. There’s no point in fitting a makes it unclear whether this latest version. Also note the stiffening web at the
slender F2D Combat propeller, when this version is more potent. No matter. That’s crankcase rear. Engine looks chunky, but does
not rely on bulk for rigidity.
one is better suited to a good modern not the point. If you want more power,
7x4 propeller from APC, JXF or Master there’s a little potential from the usual
Airscrew. Or perhaps the APC 6.3x4 prop tweaks, or buy a better, more expensive Mark Greenwood
if you like your engine to over-rev in engine. The Junior does very well for
level flight. the money. Ukrainian or Russian customers
We found the McCoy MC-9 (medium Customers in Western countries can purchase via the website at
hot) or Glo Bee flat-coil plug suited our can more easily buy the Fora Junior which also
engine better than a Fireball Yellow engine from TechnoHobby West, run lists their full range of Fora and other
(Medium). Head and plug remained from the UK by Mike Crossman and products in English. ●


POWER TRIP 040.indd 25 30/01/2017 16:31

Model Science

Part 30

Dave Hipperson looks at the personal actions that lead to success on the flying field.

omeone once said that when models of the correct design. So now continue writing.
we fail we do it a little bit we can attend to the small details. This The following steps are preparing for
at a time. In other words article should take you up to the moment the fray or going into battle. Success
we let the tiny details slip you launch the first comp flight of the planning should be a little like a military
and eventually it all comes day. In future months I will endeavour to exercise, and as with all plans there
crashing down. If you have read what explain some tricks which help getting should always be a ‘B’ and if not at least
has gone before in John O’Donnell’s it back. The ideas below are born out the willingness to adjust tactics in the
columns over the past months we can of fifty years of my own competition face of the unexpected. Tactics you
presume you are interested in flying experience but mostly originated by notice, not strategy. Strategy comes first
well and winning, or at least competing the man I hope I am only temporarily and that’s deciding what you want to
competently and hence enjoying deputising while he considers whether to achieve – tactics are the tricks you use
yourself. Furthermore if you have taken
notice of what he has been saying you
should have well-built, strong, straight

RIGHT: Gliders are some of the most complex

of free flight competition models now. This one
has flaps!

BELOW: There is plenty to maintain on a power

duration model. This is Pete Watson’s Dixy which
boasts an RCDT and Texas Timer modified to
shut off the engine. Condition of that squeezable
tube is vital both to running and stopping.

26 AeroModeller - March 2017

BETTER PART 30.indd 26 30/01/2017 16:31

T34 Slow Open Power model fuselage. Lots of dependence on rubber bands here. You could be mistaken for thinking this is an RC model. It’s an F1Q (electric
They can peruish so must be changed regularly. The engine timer is a Tatone, duration) belonging to Chris Redrup. Plenty of batteries to double check.
with rearward facing levers allowing two different delay settings on the DT.

Ian Davitt’s model box. Keep everything in the box all the time and it is less The modern F1A towhook has come a long way since someone stuck a pin
likely that you will arrive without your tail planes. (Photo by Sue Hipperson) in the bottom of a model and hooked up a piece of string. All this equipment
has to be regularly maintained.

on the field to achieve it. to be checked and talked to nicely so slightly less than pretty temporary repairs
There is a competition coming. There they work the next time. Repairing and you might have made during the contest.
are classes in it for which you have making up new rubber motors was Now electricity has inveigled its
models. Is there one event that you always most therapeutic for me – like way into free flight it is necessary that
wish to win particularly or think you can, cutting out wing ribs. I loved it. I know you check batteries constantly. Have
or are you perhaps hoping to do fairly most of you don’t – I understand but it a routine. Radio DTs are a wonderful
well in a couple with thoughts towards has to be done. convenience but not so effective if
Championship, or Plugge Points, or Power models take a pounding from the batteries are flat or disconnected!
whatever? Decide this clearly before you vibrations that you might not notice. Your transmitters and your lap tops all
go. Decide your priorities, your strategy. Always check the timers and engine have these too. Checking and testing
bolts etc. and wash out any motors that is essential if you have RCDT and/or
Repairs have been in the dirt. Whilst lovingly electronic timers.
Your preparation should have begun cleaning them you can check for damage
immediately you came home from the to the airframe. Gliders are subjected to The Models
last contest, in as much as there is likely enormous loads. Check nothing nasty I have had people mention that they
or not some repair work to do, no matter has happened to structures in the wing never saw me make a trim flight at a
how minor. I always liked to do this as root that may not be immediately visible. contest. This is pretty much correct.
soon as possible whilst it was fresh in Lines, knots, nicks, frays and even, have I wouldn’t say I never got out an
my memory, particularly in the case you brought all the components home? untrimmed model at a contest but it
of rubber where open models always Back at home all airframes can of course was rare. Time is invariably tight and if
sustain some damage and motors need be patched neatly, replacing those it isn’t then the more time you have in


BETTER PART 30.indd 27 30/01/2017 16:33

The end of the
Hipperson home's
integral garage. These
Model Science nine boxes are all full,
plus another twoat
the other end of the
garage - 63 airframes
in all. It speeded
packing but I always
checked I had what it
said on the lid!

With planning it’s possible to get a great deal into a small space. Saves weight A neat compact model box is useful. This one belonged to the master of the art
and room in the car. This example is Phil Ball’s box of F1Bs. the late Anselmo Zeri. Half a dozen Wakefields in here. Not even heavy. I built
one similar, but it weighed twice as much.

hand, and the better you can use the classes in different boxes then double before you fly again. Check fuselages
conditions, eventually the higher you will check that all the necessary components are straight and undamaged, any auto
place. My trimming was done ‘at home’. are in there. I have a good friend in the rudders work, and timers operate
(If only!) Actually for the last fifteen years Midlands that thinks I am now going as they should - tensioning devices,
my local site was just over 30 miles to tell you the tale of the time he went especially if elastic bands, are prone
away. I would expect to go there 15-20 abroad and forgot all his Wakefield tail to perish (even if slowly). I appreciate
times in a typical season or well over planes. It’s OK Russell, I am not going to that the most modern airframes require
1000 miles driving per year just to trim. mention it. somewhat more than a visual inspection
Additionally the trimming of some small Are they trimmed, when did you last and condition of contacts and batteries
classes` (Cd’H, CO2 and Mini Vintage fly them, what happened? It’s useful are important as well. Complicated glider
Rubber) could be accommodated on a if you keep notes on each one. I keep hooks can gum up just as easily as
very local field if the weather was perfect. little cards in the appropriate boxes motors, check they are free. In the case
Try to take trimmed models with you – telling me when I flew each model last of power models carefully check the
there should not be time for test flights and how it was. (Not it’s contest record plumbing, especially the loose neoprene
and if you think there is you are only – that’s unnecessary – just whether it or silicone bits. Things that give the most
risking the models as the environment was behaving itself or not.) If you fly just trouble on rubber models are usually the
at a contest is usually rather unfriendly one class this may not be absolutely prop blades not folding. Mine had a habit
particularly if it’s an aerodrome. Too necessary but if you fly many it most of stiffening up occasionally, check they
many hard things to hit. certainly is. Are all the flying surfaces are free and oiled along with the prop
The night before the competition at flat, or if not, warped in the right places? shafts. Prop blades not folding correctly
the latest, check the models even if only Flat is easy, but so as to be able to still wreck more flights than sophisticated
to be sure you have the models you quickly check for changes by eye, I electronic timers malfunctioning!
thought you did in the box(es) you are write the warps on the trailing edges,
planning to take. Don’t laugh – it’s been tips and dihedral breaks. This is also Back Up Equipment
done, turning up with the wrong models. useful if a model receives damage or Without all your ancillary equipment, or
If you are lucky enough to have sufficient gets very wet during the day. You have even without one tiny crucial bit of it,
storage space to keep your different a visual way of checking the warps your day can be made uncomfortable

28 AeroModeller - December 2016

BETTER PART 30.indd 28 30/01/2017 16:34

before you start. A list covering all the Props, glow heads, nuts and bolts even vehicles are useful and becoming more
disciplines would be enormous but if complete spare engines and especially popular. They are not essential but they
you simply go through what you do to timers - have them with you. No time to can help. However what tends to happen
fly then that should involve all the stuff repair such things on the field. is the more space you have the more
you require. The frightfully well organised Nowadays there is thermal detection stuff you bring which can get a bit silly
Stafford Screen had a very strict check equipment, sometimes simple, more and lengthen the unpacking procedure
list. I worry about those a bit as they often complex. Even leaving your when you’ve returned home tired in the
don’t encourage you to think and it’s favourite wind direction indicator at home evening.
still possible to misread something and can disturb a day’s concentration. Check We could actually wind a Cd’H indoors
hence forget it. Try to store things at everything. Possibly just as important in our van, but the down side was that
home in the same place all the time and is retrieval gear but I will deal with that it could create its own local turbulence
develop a routine for unpacking and in more detail in a later issue, but if you so launching from behind could never
re-packing the vehicle. I had a friend that use them, check your bike is working be done safely, unlike the classic ‘hatch
used to religiously arrange it all on their and doesn’t need tyres blowing up when back parked into wind’ arrangement.
billiard table in the games room the night you arrive on the field as that wastes Early on at one of the Rissington
before, so nothing could be forgotten. precious time. Southern Galas, flying from too close to
Good system. (I’m sure any table would Your mode of transport is important. my huge Kontiki ruined a Senator flight
do! Editor) It will probably be a car or van, club when maxes were like shooting ducks
Gliders require towlines – more coaches are sadly no longer seen. To in a barrel. Local turbulence stalled the
different lengths than ever now. Rubber my knowledge no one has ever flown initial climb – it never recovered and
model motors should be plentiful, tinned, in yet although JOD & I did investigate dropped the simple 2 minute max. This
bagged and labelled clearly for speedy the possibilities of travelling to the Paris memory wouldn’t have imbedded itself
selection and use. Remember winders, Coupe d’Hiver that way but customs/ so firmly had it not been the fourth event
torque meters, winding jigs, winding immigration issues in France made it I had flown that day (O/R, CO2, Cd’H
tubes and wind breaks. Rubber always prohibitively expensive. It would have being the others in which I had maxed
was fiddly. Power is just a bit smelly but been very cool indeed – I wish we had out.) I never again got that close to
some of us like that. Fuel, including some been able to do it. Using the same making four fly-offs on one day.
brand new un-opened cans (particularly vehicle helps you to get into a packing I digress. Have a packing routine – not
for diesel where the ether can evaporate) routine which helps with remembering a check list. Try to imagine what you
in case the supply you are currently stuff and also knowing where things are. are going to do when you arrive and
using gives trouble. Also remember No use having everything with you if you that should trigger the memory of what
the obligatory dirty brown tool box that cant find it quickly when it’s needed. you will require. You really must ensure
sits by you all day and amongst other Many of you will appreciate that for the you bring everything with you. That
things reminds you where you are flying last twenty years or so I came in vans everything includes the right clothes
from - it usually includes a starter motor of various sizes. Finally it was a motor which I will cover in the next issue, along
which most people use now. Make sure home. When doing that I was able to with what to do at the contest. ●
the battery that powers it is charged as say with all honesty that I had actually
well as the one to activate glow plugs. brought the kitchen sink with me. Huge

The Hipperson Kontiki Swift Motor Home circa 1999 here after spending the night on the Tidy example of the ‘hatch back parked into wind’ form of
side of the field awaiting next days Paris Cd’H event. Can cause its own weather problems preparation protection. Here Pete Watson prepares power
but useful if you want to bring absolutely everything. Usually has a ladder on the roof too. model on Salisbury Plain. Note most things safely in tidy boxes.


BETTER PART 30.indd 29 30/01/2017 16:34

Free Plan

30 AeroModeller - March 2017

BLACKBURN FREE PLAN.indd 30 30/01/2017 16:35

The early Passenger Type Blackburn with tapered wing is modelled
by Mike Watters for Free Flight electric or CO2.

or many years I have attended article stated that at some point in
indoor model flying meetings. the aircraft’s short existence, it did
One particular model I often have tapered wings, whereas, all other
saw being flown was an early Blackburn designs had constant chord
design from the Blackburn wings. This is not a true scale model,
Aircraft Company that predated the but as a slow flying indoor design, and
Blackburn Monoplane (Foggin’s Flyer) it works well.
that can be seen at Old Warden. This Once acquired the model languished
model belonged to Derek Hardman of for some time untouched in a box.
Solarfilm fame. The Blackburn was a Then with inspiration resumed, the
test model for the new material he was model was resurrected for a new indoor
developing at the time – Litespan. season. It did need a bit more repair
The Blackburn could be seen at than I originally thought. Looking at the
each meeting, slowly flying around and model again, I realised that the only
with no apparent trim changes, being salvageable part was the fuselage. So
powered by a reliable Brown B-100 I did a re-build, and as I knew it was
CO2 motor. a design that flew very well indoors,
Events happen and Derek gave up I measured up the model and did a
indoor flying after becoming unwell. drawing with a few constructional
Sometime later, I heard that Derek’s changes.
models and some items were being What follows is my re-interpretation
offered for sale. I was particularly of the late Derek Hardman’s original
interested in the CO2 motors. I was design. With a bit of extra work you
surprised to find that his original could change areas of the nose or
Blackburn model was still there, substitute a constant chord wing to
although in a somewhat distressed model other variants of the Blackburn
state. A deal was struck for items, Mercury with their respective engines
along with the Blackburn. People who (Renault, Isaacson, Gnome or Anzani).
knew this model could not tell me I continued to use a Brown CO2 motor
which or what particular Blackburn it in my re-build, but the little Blackburn
was. An internet search brought up would be suitable for an electric power
an article that described it as more train and would even take conversion
than likely being a Blackburn Mercury from FF to Micro RC. Primarily the
III (or possibly IV depending on how Blackburn Mercury has been designed
you number them) circa 1911. The as an indoor model but it would also


BLACKBURN FREE PLAN.indd 31 30/01/2017 16:35

3/32 x 1/16" 22 Swg
aluminium tubes

3/32 x 1/16"

22 Swg
aluminium tubes

Hard 1/16" Sq skid


F2 F3 Tail from 3/

22 Swg
aluminium tubes

KP01 motor installation

22 Swg wire undercarrage


BLACKBURN FREE PLAN.indd 36 30/01/2017 16:36

Free Plan

If you’re looking for a model of the later

Blackburn Monoplane, there was an
Aerographics kit version – this will be available
again as a laser cut kit from the Vintage Model
Co. Your editor converted the FF rubber design to
RC with small diesel!

be suitable for outdoor flying on one of

those few windless evenings that grace
the summer.

Start by laying down the two top side
longerons, over the plan top view. Add
the two triangular formers FB and then,
what is the 1/16”sq. bottom longeron.
Position the 1/16”sq. spacers, building
Derek Hardman was the founder of Solarfilm and a keen indoor flyer, always willing to experiment with up the fuselage into its triangular shape.
new ideas. Then insert the diagonal strips between
the spacers. The structure can now be
handled and the top formers F4 & F5
added. Former F3 will be dependent
upon which power source you are using.
Continue by building up the nose block

Recommended Reading

Blackburn Aircraft Since 1909

(Putnam Aeronautical Books) by A. J.
Jackson, ISBN 13: 9780870210242
Jackson’s book on Blackburn Aircraft
Since 1909 includes a photo of the ill-
fated taper wing Mercury. The Blackburn Aircraft Company,
The Archive Photographs Series,
compiled by Malcolm Hall. ISBN

BLACKBURN FREE PLAN.indd 32 31/01/2017 10:50

1/16" Sq top spar
1/32" sheet top deck
Profile pilot
F2 F3 F4 F5


ply plate FB FB

Telco Co2 motor

shown, mounted on 22 Swg wing brace wires
1/16" ply plate onto F3

1/32" ply skid

22 Swg Undercarrage

Acetate sheet wheels
F1 F2 F4 F5
3 off 1/8" sheet 1/16" sheet
FB 1/16" sheet F3 1/16" sheet

22 Swg wire axle
Top decking 1/32" sheet covering


Typical wing
1/16" thick

BLACKBURN FREE PLAN.indd 34 30/01/2017 16:36

3/32 x 1/16"
Wing rib temperate
Profile pilot

1/16" Sq
1/16" Sq

Hard 1/16" Sq leading edge


Hard 1/16" Sq trailing edge

t covering Cockpit cut-out

Front & Rear

Typical wing rib section 22 Swg wing support wire 2-off
1/16" thick wing ribs Wires set to give 1°
dihedral at wing tips

BLACKBURN FREE PLAN.indd 35 30/01/2017 16:36

and cover over the top decking with soft
1/32” sheet. Form the two undercarriage
wires and glue them to the cross pieces
on the top longerons. The skids are cut
from 1/32” ply, or laminate them from
hard balsa. The original wheels were
cut from thin acetate sheet, but balsa or
vac. formed ones can be used. Bend to
shape and glue the 22swg wing wires in
position on the body. And that just about
completes the fuselage. I used clear
sheet acetate disks with painted tyres for
the wheels – simple but effective. Construction of the fuselage commences upside down with triangular formers added to the top

These are very lightweight structures.
Start by cutting 28 balsa ribs, from 1/16”
sheet, using the template shape shown.
The template may be made from very
hard balsa or plastic card. The ribs are
formed by simply cutting along the rib
template outline, then offsetting the
template 1/16” at the leading and trailing
edges and repeating the process. The
leading and trailing edges are strips
of hard 1/16”sq balsa. Add each rib in
place as shown on the drawing, cutting
down each one to size. With each wing
complete, turn them over and cyano the
1mm diameter carbon rods spars to the
ribs. Check and adjust the alignment of
the wing support wire tubes against the
wires protruding from the fuselage and
then also cyano the tubes in to place on
the wing.
The top nose decking has been simplified on this semi-scale model but you could go to town
Tail and Fin with an dummy exposed engine.

These, as can be seen from the drawing,

are simple balsa strip structures, and
should offer no complications.

As this is a lightweight model, it only
requires a lightweight covering material.
On my model I decided to keep with
the model’s original intention and
used Antique Litespan from Solarfilm,
shrinking with minimal heat.

Assembly and Flying

Simply glue the tailplane onto the rear
of the fuselage, along with the top and
bottom fin/rudder assembly. Do check
that these are square to each other and
the fuselage. Fitting the wings onto
the wires in the fuselage, just about
completes the model. As ever you have
to check the balance position which

A simple wire undercarriage together with thin ply skids and clear plastic wheels hint at the
scale structure.

BLACKBURN FREE PLAN.indd 33 31/01/2017 10:51

All wing ribs from 1/16" sheet

Soft wire hinges

1mm carbon rod spar

Tail from 3/16" x 1/16" strip

Undercarriage skid

All woods are balsa unless otherwise stated

BLACKBURN FREE PLAN.indd 37 30/01/2017 16:37

Free Plan

Cut successive ribs by moving the template down by 1/16” each time. The carbon rod spars are cyanoed to the bottom of the ribs. When finished
the wing only requires covering on the top surface.

The wing supporting tubes are best checked against the wires from the The fin and tailplane should cause no concern for the average builder.
fuselage before cyanoing!

When assembling the tailplane,

fin and rudders, make sure that
everything is nicely square. You
could save weight at the back end
by only covering the upper surface
of the tailplane.

BLACKBURN FREE PLAN.indd 38 30/01/2017 16:37

Build the model light and you will
be rewarded with a slow flying
scale model from the earliest
days of British flying.

should be about 25 to 30% of the wing

chord at the root. This can be adjusted
by moving the position of the CO2 tank
or batteries. Weight may still have to
be added to the nose (or unlikely to the
tail.) As always, check over the model
for any warps that may be present and
correct them before flying. Before any
power flying, test the model’s glide
characteristics, ideally outside on a very
calm day over something more forgiving
than a sports hall floor. The glide will
be quite slow, but correct any diving or
zooming with small elevator changes.
As I have no experience in using
electric power in this model, I can only
say how it works with CO2 power. Initially
give a small gas charge only (charging
canister nozzle up). The model should fly
in large left hand circuits. Adjust the turn
with small rudder adjustments. When
happy, increase the power and duration
with longer charges and let it fly. Further
adjustments may be needed as power is
increased. Make them a little at a time.
The total weight of this model came out
at 40grams (1.4 oz). Good flying. ●


BLACKBURN FREE PLAN.indd 39 30/01/2017 16:37

Competitive Control Line

or me, it was one through it. A few minutes later was 22 years ago, at which limited to 26 seconds for 10
Saturday afternoon I closed it and went to put point Vintage Combat had laps but I cannot remember
in York when I it back when I saw a word I been alive and thriving for anyone actually achieving this
strolled into WH hadn’t seen for years - Ruter- some 5 years; today it’s the speed. The governing body
Smith to sneak a ess! It was the August 1994 healthiest it’s ever been. is called the Combat Flyers
crafty browse through the copy of AeroModeller, Frank As a quick overview, Association, who usually
car magazines while the wife Smart’s article on the famous Vintage Combat uses the CL organise and run about 8 or
was in River Island… you model was highlighted on the combat designs from the 60’s 9 competitions, including the
know how it is. I found the front of the magazine. I picked and 70’s with diesel engines. Nats, throughout the season
latest mag and started leafing it up and started reading. That Vintage Combat is speed which lasts from April to

A Piranha and Supermonger fight it out. It could be

you competing in 2017?

40 AeroModeller - March 2017

START VINTAGE COMBAT PART 1.indd 40 30/01/2017 16:38

Enjoyment of Vintage Combat is as much about the people as the flying. Participants at the Loctite sponsored The CFA (Combat Flyers
Darley Moor event in 2015. Association) is easy and free to join.

October. The competitions and huge fun. control line combat flyers in of people near to you, so
are held at such venues as Mick Lewis wrote an the United Kingdom. If you you can arrange to meet
Old Warden in Oxfordshire, introductory article in the are new or wish to become up, practice etc. Secondly
Darley Moor Racetrack near 934 March 2015 issue of involved in this exhilarating there are often supplies of
Ashbourne, RAF Scampton AeroModeller. The main sport then you will find plenty materials and equipment
in Lincolnshire, Berkeley near purpose of this article is to of advice and information posted which never see the
Gloucester and hopefully the further encourage those here” says it all really. Once light of day anywhere else,
new BMFA National Centre thinking of taking up Vintage you’ve had a read through, and thirdly you can ask
and once again Barkston Combat, give more detail and email Mick Lewis and ask questions and get pretty
Heath. There are prizes at check out some of the many to join the CFA - its free and much immediate answers.
every competition and there’s resources available to the you will be added to his Varied and contradictory
an annual league so you can newcomer. email list for regular Updates answers admittedly, but
check your progress. and Newsletters with offers, answers nonetheless. It’s
These days we usually get Do Your Research which is invaluable. A browse great for current news,
somewhere between 25 to 40 There are a lot of active through the archive of the combat gossip and chat, and
entries at most competitions; combat flyers spread Newsletters will give you a keeping in touch with other
along with the stalwarts and throughout the UK and taste of what happens. Also flyers. Perhaps not so great
famous names from the past, combat is much better as a join the national body the as a reference tool because
this will include newcomers social activity. So one of the BMFA because you need to the time line keeps rolling,
joining the ranks throughout first steps I would take is to have insurance cover, and the pushing earlier subjects
the season - mostly returnees try to find other flyers local to BMFA hold the rule book for further down.
who ‘had a go’ years ago where I live. No matter what Vintage Combat along with The Barton Forum
when they had long hair you read there is no substitute other national classes. a
(or even hair) but also the for having a root round Facebook www.facebook. longstanding mecca for
occasional cross over from someone’s workshop, picking com ‘Fraid so! Search for Control Line enthusiasts, it
another discipline, having things up, looking in detail the group ‘UK Control Line has a Combat section which
wondered what all the fuss is and asking questions. The Combat' and send a joining goes back years and is easy
about. Don’t get me wrong, best place to start looking request. This is a very active to search, so if you have a
we do have a few youngsters, for these people is online. If group with almost 400 basic question you can bet it’s
mainly sons and daughters you are not a PC user then members, to which the vast been covered on this forum at
of existing flyers but in the at least give me a call and I’ll majority of UK (and some some time. It also has a very
main the average age is 60 find local contacts. Here are overseas) flyers contribute. interesting article on how to
plus. Vintage combat is a 3 places to look online: There is usually something win at combat, which I really
lovely class, we are blessed Combat Flyers Association going on every day to keep must read again.
with a supportive organisation website www.combatflyers. us all interested, many people
and competitions have the Start here as the share their views, skills and Combat Community
added attraction of being very mission statement “We are opinions freely so it’s useful in The one thing I will say - every
friendly gatherings as well as dedicated to promoting many ways. Firstly, when you person flying combat today
being exciting, hard fought and providing support to all join you can see the locations will be very keen to help you


START VINTAGE COMBAT PART 1.indd 41 30/01/2017 16:38

Competitive Control Line

1 2

1: From the left the Parra T4,

Tom Ridley Oliver JO.19 and
Rothwell 320 are all popular feet, spend a lot of money There are 2 classes that are that good used competition
with the top pilots. on engines and equipment grouped as vintage combat: equipment changes hands
2 & 3: The PAW.19 Plain only to find that they couldn’t Vintage Combat (original) within the flying community
Bearing and Single Ballrace actually fly their models like uses 3.2cc (0.19ci) TBR (Twin at very sensible prices, rather
versions are still good for
beginner’s and practice they used to. My suggestion Ball Race) motors, and Oliver than the eye watering prices
models. is to start at the beginning, Tiger Combat essentially the often associated with eBay.
4: A JO.19 by the late Tom which is to track down your same but uses Oliver Tiger The main (only) motor used
Ridley. It is good to know local combat converts online (2.5cc) engines or clones - for many years in Vintage
that the production will
continue. and have a fly. I’m pretty there are subtle differences Combat was the Plain Bearing
sure that you would be able which you can find out about .19 PAW. It outclassed all
to do this without spending in the rule book. Vintage the listed twin ballrace 2.5cc
get started. So I strongly a penny as someone will let Combat is the main event, engines at the time and
suggest using Facebook to you have a go with their gear, Oliver is a lovely class totally dominated the class
find those local to yourself if this isn’t the case, read on because it’s a bit steadier and until Rothwell 320’s and JO
because they will most because you don’t have to a bit more accurate but there Oliver .19’s were introduced.
probably have a combat spend a great deal in the first are usually only 3 comps The reason that most people
friendly flying field that will be instance. through the year, and one of now use the Rothwell/JO.19/
available to you. When I say If you do want to get those is at the Nats. So most Parra twin ball race motors
local, it may be 30-40 or more involved then you’ll need folk get set up for the original is because they are generally
miles, but pretty reasonable to start getting your gear Vintage Combat class first. easier to handle and faster.
with today’s roads. From my together but whilst you are But not that much faster, a
own viewpoint, I live in North doing that, I would strongly Diesel Engine Choice reasonable Plain Bearing PAW
Lincolnshire and fly with pals advise turning up to a It’s like anything really, if will be 3 or 4 seconds for 10
from Rotherham, Lincoln, competition and having a you want to win you need to laps behind the very best
Sheffield and Nottingham, we look. Check the dates and equip yourself with the very motors on the day - this is no
have about 4 different sites locations on the CFA website best gear available, but if bad thing. It’s much better to
available to us. There are to find out where we are. Turn you want to ‘have a go’ or fly something a little slower
similar groups throughout the up, bring your gear have a ‘see what the fuss is about’ that you are in control of in
UK. fly, ask questions, stand by then you have other less your first few bouts, rather
Okay, so if you are now the scorers to see how things expensive options. Now I’m than something that is right
interested/keen/confused, work, but don’t talk to them not suggesting that you tip on the edge of your ability.
what’s the next step? If you when I’m flying! up at a competition with a You can buy PAWs new
haven’t flown control line tired AM25 and a fifty-year- (plain or ball race, straight or
for a long time or ever for Bits and Pieces old Dominator, but equipment tuned,
that matter, then my first So, getting started means that will get you into the fray or there are lots of these used
suggestion is to dip a toe and accumulating all the models, for not very much money at motors within the UK combat
see how it feels. I have seen a gear and equipment; here we all is available if you go about fraternity, the best way to
few people jump in with both go, in no particular order. it the right way. It’s a fact go about getting them is to

42 AeroModeller - March 2017

START VINTAGE COMBAT PART 1.indd 42 30/01/2017 16:38

3 4

ask either in the Facebook than Matthew carrying out aware the Parra, Rothwell play and not have to change
group or at competitions. these wishes and keeping and JO.19 have hard chrome the engine under pressure.
Additionally, in the second the Oliver Engines alive. The bores, they last for ages, and You don’t really need 6
part of this article, we’ll talk JO.19 based on the Oliver the more you run them the though!
about combat practice and Mark 4 crankcase has been better. So initially, I’d get one
the motor you buy for your a popular choice since its and after running it in, use it Models: Design and
early competitions will make introduction and is a used by as often as you can - you’ll Number
an ideal practice motor. many flyers. benefit by getting used to If you’re intending to enter
As you become more Also made in the UK is its handling characteristics many competitions, then
involved, if you turn up at any the PAW 19 TBR. The best and it won’t deteriorate. The I would advise turning up
combat event and look at the thing to do here is give Tony early Rothwell 320’s are now to your first with at least 4
hardware in use, you will see Eifflaender a call and tell him coming up to 6 years old and properly trimmed models that
that there are a lot of Rothwell that you want it for Vintage still going strong. So bear this have been previously test
320’s in use, followed closely Combat. Available from PAW in mind when paying for them; flown. As these break or just
by JO.19’s and Parra T4’s in Macclesfield +44 (0)1625 £250 for 6 years hard work die of old age, keep adding
and a small number of very 423891. isn’t a lot is it? It is handy to this number. Models do
special, hilariously fast The Australian Rothwell to have a couple because if get broken - fact of life – but
PAW.19’s. With regard to 320, used by many top flyers, you get a refly after a midair there aren’t so many that
availability, this is the current is still in limited production, collision that damages your end up totally destroyed first
state of play: but there is a long waiting list. model, then you can bring or second time out; most
Following Tom Ridley’s sad If you want one then get your model/engine number 2 into models broken in a bout
passing production of Oliver name down early as it will
ceased, however having been be a while before your motor
in touch with Tom’s wife Julia, arrives.
I am delighted with the fact And the Parra T4, available
that production will continue. from Club Tamaran in Gran
Here are Julia’s words “Matt, Canaria (www.control-line.
our son, intends to continue eu) and made in the Ukraine.
the Oliver Engines in line with There was a waiting list at the
Tom's wishes. Tom had been time of writing but the motors
coaching him for the past should be in stock by the time
few months and wanted the this article goes to print.
original Olivers to be available These engines are all
in memory of J Oliver senior, about the same price, just
and JSO. I shall continue to shy of £250 and all similar
help Matt as I have always performance. How many do
done with Tom.” you need? Well, obviously
What better tribute to Tom at least one, two is ideal. Be Liquidator XL's and Shoguns under construction by Tim Hobbins.


START VINTAGE COMBAT PART 1.indd 43 30/01/2017 16:38

Competitive Control Line

are repairable but there are specs; admittedly the Keil

exceptions. Kraft Talon was a nice looking
You can accumulate a small model in its day but you’d be
fleet of competition models in hopelessly outclassed against
different ways. Buy a plan and the larger models currently in
build from scratch, you can use. The CFA website has a
buy a kit from a number of gallery of pictures that really
specialist suppliers or if you illustrate what most people
wish you can buy ready to fly use today but I will repeat
models, bolt in your engine some advice from Mick Lewis
and go and fly. Generally, who suggested that while
The Finale can be very competitive in the right hands.
the kits available are ‘short some models are undoubtedly
kits’ so you will also need to more manoeuvrable than If you want a pointer for a and quick to build. Very little
provide spars, leading edges, others (Piranha XL, Finale, first model that’s easy to fly, has changed over the 50
tanks and hardware, although Supermonger etc.) this isn’t I’d suggest an Ironmonger years (yes 50!) since the first
some kits are complete. It’s necessarily a great thing in 69, a Liquidator XL or a Dominators and Warlords flew,
best to email the seller and your early bouts. You need Squig. The Ironmonger 69 apart from the fact that some
get a list of what’s available. to be comfortable with the was the Free pull-out plan of us now use ¼” spruce
Similarly, there is a selection model because flying solo in 940 September 2015 trailing edges and glass fibre
of RTF (Ready To Fly) models is one thing, flying a bout is AeroModeller. All of these fuel tanks. So, if you decide
available from myself - send something else entirely. It’s are very competitive without to build your models from
me an email for a detailed list. far better in your early bouts being neurotic drama queens. scratch then you will need
There are hundreds of to get maximum airtime Most of the flyers build from to sort out such things as
models on the plans list, than crash after 30 seconds scratch. This is obviously bellcranks, tanks, covering,
some are great, some not because you didn’t know the cheapest method and etc. I’ll go through them in
so great and some useless. where your model was or to be fair, combat models a bit of detail in the second
Don’t rely on your rose-tinted what it was doing. are designed to be simple thrilling instalment… ●

Resource sites
The Ironmonger 69 is one to consider when starting Vintage Combat.
This one is built by its designer, Richard Evans.
Combat Flyers Association

Barton Forum

search for ‘UK Control Line Combat’

Simon Miller

Mike Waller
Nick Stowe
Mick Lewis

RTF Competition or Practice Models

Tim Hobbins

Oliver Engines JO.19

Club Tamaran, Parra T4

PAW .19 TBR CT4 01625 423891

Rothwell R320
44 AeroModeller - March 2017

START VINTAGE COMBAT PART 1.indd 44 30/01/2017 16:38

VintageLimited Edition Prints

visit: for the full range

Vintage AeroModeller A3 Cover Artwork - Limited Edition Prints

AM039 19.indd 1 30/01/2017 15:43

Inside Track



he Bowden is one of the which have failed to score in one or both are like myself of the older generation
few competitions in the Free rounds. and all are experienced modellers - I
Flight Nationals, other than I do not consider myself an expert in hope this article doesn't come over too
the scale, that has spectator this competition by any means, having much like 'teaching your grandmother to
appeal - and it also attracts failed to score at my first attempt and suck eggs' as it is certainly not intended
one of the largest entries. It is also a only achieving 4th place in my second. that way. If it helps somebody then I will
good first competition class to introduce There is no magic formula for winning be pleased, and it would also be great
beginners to competitive power flying. this competition, as in any other if we could introduce the competition to
Having acted as CD (Contest Director) competition an element of luck on the younger people.
of the Bowden Trophy Competition day is a big help. However, there is no
for three years running, I have been substitute for good preparation. Where to Start?
disappointed with the number of entries Most of the entrants in the competition It must be stressed that the first

David Leeding with his timer equipped KK Outlaw with which he managed a fourth
place in the year prior to taking on the CD mantel.

BOWDEN ARTICLE.indd 46 30/01/2017 16:39

Bowden officials at the 2015 Nationals - Ken Norton (Whipper up), Diane Terry Aydon’s impressive Veron Aeronca Sedan did well on style
Hibbert (timing), Ian Hibbert (timing), David Leeding (CD), Dave Causer points in 2016.
(‘Style’ Points).

requirement before entering any the event. The Tomboy is a good flier, but - it should balance level or in a slightly
competition is to READ THE RULES! it was designed by Vic Smeed to be an nose down attitude.
The BMFA Contest Rules, Section 3 easy to build and fly model for relative Test flying should first be carried out
Free Flight (Outdoor & Indoor) book is beginners to powered free flight - in without power to achieve a satisfactory
available from the BMFA office and can this it has excelled. However, with its glide, if the glide is too steep then
also be viewed on the BMFA website at slab sided fuselage, straight wings and packing should be placed under the The appropriate section tail it is not the most attractive model rear edge of the tailplane starting with
is found from para 3.47 thro' paras and it is marked down accordingly 1/64" (preferably plywood to prevent
3.53.5. - The Bowden Class. when compared with, for instance, the crushing) increasing in thickness after
It is worth quoting the objective of curvaceous and beautifully finished each test glide until a nice flat glide is
the competition 'This trophy is intended Aeronca Sedan entered last year. It is achieved. If the model is stalling then it
to encourage the design and flying of also worth mentioning that the winner may be necessary to pack up the leading
Sports Models with cabins or cockpits of the 2016 competition and the runner edge of the tailplane to achieve the flat
able to hold an imaginary pilot. The flying up were both flying own designs, not glide required. With the glide sorted
of these models in a controlled manner necessarily the best looking and finished then commence short low powered
is an exacting competition of Precision, models, but the good flight scores and flights, these may well require the glide
Flight Stability and Appearance'. characteristics together with reasonable trim to be changed but the first change
In brief the competition is flown in two deductions meant they scored enough to consider is the thrust line of the
rounds with each having a target flight points to win. engine (plate mounted engines make
time of 45seconds (from the release Be aware that we have tightened up adjusting both side and downthrust a
of the model to the completion of the the scrutiny of models against the rules, lot easier). It is a trial and error iterative
landing). Each competitor starts with 100 and in particular it should be noted that process until the optimum compromise
points in each round and the objective is rule 3.47.2 states ‘The model shall have between power and glide performance
to finish with the maximum total number a cabin with clear glazing or a cockpit is achieved. Ideally the model should be
of points for the two rounds. Points are with a suitably sized aperture and a clear flown in different wind conditions (when
deducted for failings as detailed in the windscreen.’ the Bowden is held at Barkston in May, it
BMFA rules referenced above. Whatever model is chosen, it is is rarely not blowing a gale!)
important that it is built accurately Finally one should practice ROGs
The Model to the plan with the incidence angles (Rise Off Ground), not easily done as
Having familiarised oneself with the rules, correct. When rigged with the wings there are so few opportunities to fly free
the would-be competitor must decide and tailplane, look to ensure they are flight from a hard standing. Remember
what model to enter. This is one of the level and in line. On completion the the undercarriage position on vintage
most important decisions as design and most important first step is to check designs may owe more to protecting
appearance can result in the loss of a the balance, the CG (Centre of Gravity) the wooden prop, rather than directional
large number of points. It is not good is usually shown on the plan. If not ground control. So, select your model
enough to dust off an ancient Tomboy, then a ‘rule of thumb’ is to balance the design with thought for the take off. But
patch a few holes and squirt a drop of completed model ready to fly without fuel be aware that the class rules also state
diesel into the ports to free the engine with a finger tip under each wing near the ‘…in adverse conditions at the discretion
the day before the competition, not if you fuselage at about 25 to 33 percent of the of the CD the flying requirements and
would like the best chance of winning chord measured from the leading edge associated scoring may be appropriately


BOWDEN ARTICLE.indd 47 30/01/2017 16:39

Inside Track

modified prior to the commencement of at home, not quite as essential if using

lying. Any such modification(s) must then a timer but very important when the
apply throughout the contest.” This has fuel level is used to control the engine
occasionally meant that hand launches run. Some competitors do not achieve
were acceptable in bad weather. smooth running and release the model
Timers may be used to cut the with the engine missing due to being
fuel supply to the engine after a under compressed and hence the model
predetermined time. If a timer is not can be underpowered - not a good idea
available then the model should have if there is a strong breeze. If the model
a test tube type tank (available from cannot handle the power then the engine
Flitehook) fitted to the side of the choice is suspect. All engines (and
Terry Aydon is a regular Bowden competitor, here
is his 2014 entry the stylish Wasp Major. fuselage/cowling, which can be viewed owners) can have a bad day, failure to
from the side before release. Most of start at the launch point followed by back
the successful contestants fit (and use) to the pits when a few flicks and off it
engine timers - do not try to time the goes… I've been there!
flight using a tank fitted to the engine as
this will not be sufficiently accurate! DTs Release and Take Off
(DeThermalisers) of any type cannot be The requirement is for a nice straight
used to terminate the glide within the take off run of no longer than 10 seconds
required 60 second maximum flight time, from release to lift off with wings
as this would result in disqualification. level; zooming up into the ether or a
Once the model has been satisfactorily sharp banking turn after lift-off will be
trimmed, I find that small location blocks penalised. Quite a number of competitors
fitted to the wing and tail plane ensure are prone to pushing the model! This will
John Kay was the 2016 Bowden winner with the
Sunbeam 48 (his own design scaled up from the that they are held in the same place invoke immediate disqualification from
36” original in an old AeroModeller.) every time the model is assembled, they the round, the model MUST be released
only need to be 1/16"to1/8" thick balsa which means the model is restrained at
depending on the size of the model, and the tail end of the fuselage or somewhere
in the event of a hard landing most break suitable, one hand is best if possible, and
away without causing much damage. when ready the competitor merely lets
go. The hand or hands being withdrawn
Engine Start back or sidewards clearly showing the
Start and take off is a minefield for many judge or CD that there was no hint of
competitors; two minutes are allowed pushing.
for this from the CD’s command to Although it goes without saying, the
commence, up to the point of model model should be pointing into wind,
release. however in the tension or excitement of
The correct choice of engine for the the moment some entrants forget this
model is very important, enough power important aspect of the release which
but not too much and the engine must may cause the model to have an erratic
be a reliable starter and runner. Diesels liftoff and climb out - this will lose points.
(particularly PAW and Mills) are the Some models are launched slightly to the
David Mandley used a streamer on the end of engines of choice, although glows and left or right of the wind to counteract a
an old aerial to indicate wind direction when spark ignition are allowed. An inverted natural swing, and if this is the case then
releasing his Junior 60.
engine may give the model smarter this is acceptable if the ensuing climb
lines, but it is more prone to flooding at out is good. If the take off is aborted, the
times of competitive stress. The starting model may be retrieved and a further
routine should be well practised - many attempt made within the two minutes
competitors clearly have not achieved allowed for engine start, another good
this before appearing at the launch point reason for easy starting!
as they are unable to start in the time As a straight take off run is required
allowed - this means a disqualification there are a number of points to look at
from the round. here. Some models go into a ground
Some adjustment of the compression loop careering all over the take off area,
lever is invariably required when starting others require too long a run so the
a diesel engine, but unless absolutely correct engine/model combination must
Maurice Doyle won the Bowden in 2015 with his
KK Bandit modified for a tricycle undercarriage
essential the needle valve should be left be questioned as well as the power
and powered by Mills 1.3 – a good clean release. where it was when last run in the pits or from the engine. The geometry of the

48 AeroModeller - March 2017

BOWDEN ARTICLE.indd 48 30/01/2017 16:39

David Leeding
undercarriage is a major factor, and the recommends
wire used in the construction must be this screw
adjustment to
stiff enough to prevent unnecessary set the rudder
flexing - if this is occurring then a thicker trim tab.
gauge should be used. If a tail wheel is
fitted then it must be tested to ensure
that the model runs true when given a
push on a level surface. After a landing
the undercarriage should be checked for
alignment as even a moderate landing
on grass can distort it. In some models
the undercarriage position relative to the
CG may be incorrect which may mean
major surgery to fix. The wheels must be
a sensible size for the model (if they look
right then they probably are), and some
toe in can also help with the tracking of
the model.
have found an infinitely adjustable rudder however
Power Flight is useful for fine tuning the turn once the some
Having got the engine started and torque is under control. If power stalling models
running well, followed by a good take off is a problem, and assuming that the glide like the
we can relax - what else could possibly engine is not too powerful for the model, proverbial brick!
go wrong?! Plenty unfortunately. Tight then downthrust should be applied using A fast glide can be
spiral turns are too frequently seen, often the appropriate packing until the required beneficial in achieving the
resulting in cartwheels into terra firma downthrust is achieved. target time, however if it resembles a
with considerable damage to the model, crash then points will be lost.
even if the model manages to stay in the Glide and Landing All the above is well known to most
air, style points will be lost. Power stalling Smooth transition to the glide is modellers but if just one point jogs the
is another fault that will result in points important, a sudden loss of height memory then it is worth my writing of this
being deducted. will result in points deduction. Again article. The Bowden is good fun which
If the model was previously well a smooth running engine without the for me is what our wonderful hobby is
trimmed, several things should be looked model being overpowered is helpful here, about, so let's look forward to 2017 FF
at in the case of tight spirals - starting as is nice wide gentle turns. If the turn Nationals and another bumper Bowden
with checking for warps in the flying under power is controlled as previously entry with more competitors doing well.
surfaces and remembering if the prop suggested then a nice glide should Safe Flying! ●
pitch/diameter/make has changed? I follow if the model is trimmed correctly,

Steve Glass had an interesting own design low winger in 2016 powered by a PAW 1.49. Let’s see something other than Tomboys in 2017!


BOWDEN ARTICLE.indd 49 30/01/2017 16:39

FF Competition

A Guide
to the
A contest winning F1Q ‘Quiet’ model by Ian Kaynes.

Part Four -
In previous instalments Mike Evatt covered the main Glider, Rubber
and IC Power classes in outdoor Free Flight. For this last article he
introduces those classes which don’t directly fit into these groupings.

Rules, rules and still more rules… of HLG is the magnet steered F1E. This difficult for the rule makers to keep
Models Powered by Hand, latter class is hand launched from high pace with developments in motor and
Catapult, Electricity, and Carbon ground and maintains its course upwind battery technologies. The most recent
Dioxide! by a magnet steered forward fin. F1E has class is E36 which originated in the
In the glider category, we have Hand been quite popular in Eastern Europe USA and was lately rebadged as F1S
Launched Gliders (HLGs) which includes since the 1950’s although recently it has almost unchanged by the FAI. It is fast
the traditional chuck glider, the more become more widespread and more becoming a popular class with beginners
recent ‘discus’ launched glider and the sophisticated. Although most still use and experts alike.
less physically demanding ‘Catapult’ magnets for steering there is increased Finally, there are a couple of classes
Launched Glider (CLG). experimentation with electronic for models driven by CO2. These motors
However perhaps the top of the range compasses and electronic timers with were powered by the metered release of
features such as rudder timing, radio CO2 from a tank previously filled from a
dethermalization and bunt assist launch. ‘Sparklets’ bulb. Twenty years ago, there
Although Electric Powered models were a number of manufacturers like
have also been around for a long time Telco (UK), Brown (USA) and Gasparin
it has been comparatively recently that (Czech). Sadly, these all had stopped
the classes have become widespread production by the early 2000’s although
and popular for competition. It could be there is still a thriving second-hand
said that the introduction of brushless market on eBay. Both of the CO2 classes
motors and LiPo batteries was a are similar and give sedate long-run
big game changer. It has been quite climbs.

A plan of Ivan Treger’s 2008 Euro Champs winning F1E magnet steered model.

50 AeroModeller March 2017

FF CLASSES PART 4.indd 50 30/01/2017 16:40

The FAI (CIAM) Classes

■ F1E GLIDERS WITH AUTOMATIC STEERING stopping the motor if it is still running. Any malfunction or
Model aircraft not provided with a propulsion device and unintended operation of these functions is entirely at the risk of
in which lift is generated by aerodynamic forces acting on the competitor.
surfaces that remain fixed in flight, except for changes of This class is something of a dinosaur but it has its adherents.
incidence. Variable geometry or area is not allowed. It is very sedate class to fly and suffers in that no one appears
The glider can be equipped with a steering device, which to be manufacturing motors these days. However, many pre-
may use a direction sensor and measurement of flight time. The owned motors are available on-line.
steering device must not use any measurement of geographical
location and must not be controlled remotely during the flight. ■ F1Q ELECTRIC POWER MODEL AIRCRAFT
Model aircraft which is powered by (an) electric motor(s)
Characteristics of F1E Model and in which lift is generated by aerodynamic forces acting
Maximum surface area (St) .........................................150 dm2 on surfaces remaining fixed in flight, except for changes of
Maximum loading ........................................................100 g/dm2 incidence. Models with variable area (e.g. folding wings) are not
Maximum flying weight ............................................... 5 kg permitted.

F1E models may use radio control only for irreversible actions Characteristics of F1Q Model
to control dethermalisation of the model. Any malfunction or Nickel Metal Hydride (NiMH) and Lithium (Li) batteries can
unintended operation of these functions is entirely at the risk of be used.
the competitor. External Battery packs are required to have a safety tether to
This is an interesting class which appears to be gaining the fuselage.
popularity. This is possibly because it does not need large Safety locks must be used to prevent unintentional restarting
relatively flat areas required by most other disciplines. The of motor(s) after motor(s) have been stopped.
rather generous area and weight rules rarely cause problems The motor run time will be determined by a maximum
as most models are much smaller and lighter although a energy amount. In addition, motor runs of over 40 seconds
significant amount of ballast is sometimes used to aid up-wind are regarded as overruns. The energy budget of each model is
penetration. 3 joules per gram of the total weight (2017 rules). For energy
Although a hand-launched class, the advent of bunt launches calculations, weight exceeding 500 grams is to be ignored.
and GPS aided recovery seemed to have breathed new life into Models must have provision for connecting a Static Energy
the discipline. Test (SET) device between the battery and the model’s system.
Energy limitation will be by an energy limiter or by a motor run
■ F1K MODEL AIRCRAFT WITH CO2 MOTORS limit related to measured power.
For models with energy limiters. The allowed energy amount
Definition starts to be calculated with the release of the start button and
A model aircraft which is powered by CO2 gas motor and finishes when the ESC has stopped supplying energy to the
in which lift is generated by the aerodynamic forces acting motor.
on surfaces remaining fixed in flight, except for changes of For models without energy limiters the motor run will be
incidence. Variable geometry or area is not allowed. controlled by a timer. The motor run is calculated as the
allowed energy divided by the measured power and rounded
Characteristics down to the nearest whole second below.
Minimum weight (without CO2) ...................................... 75 g F1Q models may use radio control only for irreversible
Maximum surface area (St) .........................................12 dm2 actions to control dethermalisation of the model. This may
Maximum volume of the CO2 tank(s) ............2 cm (connecting include stopping the motor if it is still running. Any malfunction
tubes count only if their outer diameter is over 2 mm). or unintended operation of these functions is entirely at the risk
of the competitor.
F1K models may use radio control only for irreversible actions I have précised this section as it is very detailed. For
to control dethermalisation of the model. This may include the complete picture please consult the original FAI class


Peter Buchwald
with his very
fast F1S ‘Small’
Electric model.

Pascal Ceres
flies a fine F1S.

Ray Elliot with

a mini Satellite


FF CLASSES PART 4.indd 51 30/01/2017 16:40

FF Competition
documentation. Maximum duration of motor run...10 seconds during the regular flights.
There are no surface area, weight or motor/battery Minimum weight .................................................................120 g
restrictions in this class which allows differing approaches to Maximum wing span ..................................91.44 cm (36 inches)
be used. Models can be large or small and have a short/fast
climb or a slow ascent taking a maximum of 40 seconds. The motor run must be timed either in flight or statically before
A number of fliers use F1S/E36 models in F1Q competition the launch. The battery can be replaced after a pre-fight
although they are unlikely to be as competitive at the purpose verification.
designed model. F1S models may use radio control only for irreversible
actions to control dethermalisation of the model. This may
■ F1S SMALL ELECTRIC POWER MODEL include stopping the motor if it is still running. Any malfunction
Model aircraft which is powered by an electric motor(s) and or unintended operation of these functions is entirely at the risk
in which lift is generated by aerodynamic forces acting on of the competitor.
surfaces that remain fixed in flight except to dethermalise. This discipline is increasing in popularity. With a ready supply
of motors, batteries, electronic timers, and some good plans
Characteristics of F1S around it is quite easy to get started. With the requirements
Nickel Cadmium (NiCad), Nickel Metal Hydrate (NiMH) and specifying ‘gadget free’, many models from the golden age of
Lithium (Li) batteries can be used. Only 2 cell Lithium batteries IC Power modelling can be scaled down and flown effectively.
or up to 6 cell Nickel cells can be used. Models like the Ramrod, Satellite and the Nog family have been
seen. A ‘fun to fly’ class!

The BMFA Classes

■ BMFA Electric
A BMFA Electric
Power model
Maximum weight of batteries in the capable
hands of Trevor
Ni Based..................................................................... 120 grams Grey.
Li based........................................................................ 90 grams

Motor run, maximum time from launch:

For Brushed motors (no functions) ...........................15 seconds
For Brushed motors (with functions) ........................ 12 seconds
For Brushless motors (no functions) ........................ 12 seconds
For Brushless motors (with Functions) .................... 10 seconds

No camber changes to wings or tails, surface area changes or

bunt functions are permitted.
Safety locks must be used to prevent unintentional restarting of
motor(s) after the motor(s) have been stopped.
The Rules are rather complex in terms of motor run to enable
many different configurations to compete together.

■ E36 Electric

Model specification
Maximum projected wing span................................. 36 inches
Minimum total weight (ready to fly) ................. 120 g (4.24 oz)
Maximum cells permitted...... Lithium - 2 cells; Nickel - 6 cells

Any type of motor, gearbox and propeller is permitted.

No timed moving surfaces, apart from dethermalisers, are
See my comments regarding F1S as E36 is the same/similar in
many respects.

52 AeroModeller March 2017 Trevor Grey’s BMFA E30

Electric Model.

FF CLASSES PART 4.indd 52 30/01/2017 16:40


A pristine BMFA
CO2 powered
model by John

Mark Benns with

a typical ‘discus’
launch HLG.

Bill College ready

to launch in
Catapult Glider.

■ E.30 Electric competitor must launch the glider themselves with the catapult
held in one hand and the glider in the other.
Model Specification A good class for those lacking the shoulder power for HLG
Maximum projected span ..........................................30 inches although a little more difficult to trim.
Maximum overall length ............................................30 inches
Maximum propeller diameter ........................ .............6 inches A Young Persons Guide…
Minimum weight........................................................100 Grams These class specifications are somewhat of a mixed bag but
Maximum battery size................3 x 50 mAh Nickel based cells provide a number of possibilities for fun and competition flying.
or................................................. 1 x 70 mAh Lithium based cell Hand Launched Gliders and Catapult Launched Gliders
are still a good introduction to aeromodelling and model
Models shall have no moving surfaces other than for DT. aeronautics. They can teach a great deal about model
The Maximum motor run from launch of the model shall be trimming. Balsawood models tend to be superior to their foam
60 seconds. counterparts.
F1E slope soaring is fascinating class that has many
This the ‘electric’ version of P.30 still has some followers but international competitions and is becoming more popular and
has been rather overtaken by F1S/E36. technically sophisticated. Probably the largest models in the
free flight portfolio.
Combined Electric Class Contests The Electric Classes offer a good deal of the fun of flying an
Combined Classes are a way of making the most of a flying IC Power model, but with much less noise and cleaner hands.
site and the competition organisation. A Combined Electric E36/F1S is a very good starting point for anyone wanting to
event might include a combination of three classes: F1Q, BMFA make a start in Electric Power positioned as it is between the
Electric and E36 Electric. smaller E30 and the more technically advanced BMFA Electric
When E36 models are flown in Combined Electric contests and F1Q classes.
the motor run will be 15 seconds for all flights including any The CO2 classes are interesting, quite difficult to fly in windy
fly-off. weather and rather reliant on pre-owned motors.
I hope that this series of articles has served to unravel some
■ BMFA CO2 Duration of the mysteries of the outdoor free flight classes and has
The combined capacity of the Carbon Dioxide tank and piping inspired some at least to try new aeromodelling challenges.
system shall not be greater than 3.25 cm 3. Remember this is a highly-abridged version of the rules which
Very similar to the FAI F1K class but with a larger tank and no focusses on the model specifications and hardly touches on
other restrictions. the operational rules of competition flying. However, full details
may be found on the FAI and BMFA websites listed below. ●
■ BMFA Hand Launched Glider
The glider must be launched by hand without mechanical aids.
The launch must be from within a ‘box’ 25 m. square
designated by the CD. All flights made within this box must be
recorded as counting i.e. official flights. FAI International Regulations
A delightfully simple specification embracing the simple
’Chuck Glider’ to the usually larger ‘Discus launched’ model. BMFA UK Domestic Regulations
■ BMFA Catapult Glider
Belair Traditional Kits, Laser Cut
The glider must be launched by means of a catapult, powered
only by rubber.
The maximum weight of rubber allowed is 2 grams and Mike Woodhouse Plans and materials etc.
can be made up into any number of strands of any width and
may be attached to a handle no longer than 6 inches. The Super Pearl E36 Plans and information

FF CLASSES PART 4.indd 53 30/01/2017 16:40



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AERO SUBS DEC 16 NEW.indd 33 20/12/2016 15:52

Vintage Perspective from OZ

For Old
Times’ Sake
A look at pioneering models and modellers by Don Howie.

Interesting Models and Engines flown by Chris Birch (N.S.W.) and won throttle, finished with cream vintage
This is a combination of models taken the inaugural David Owen free flight Solartex and red trim. The model was
in 2015 at Middle Wallop S.A.M. 1066 trophy, presented by his wife Celia and flown from the RC area and used 3
Champs and recent photos taken son Sam. channels (rudder, elevator, motor).
in Australia. The heading photo is Mike Phillips always has a variety Another model of note by Mike was
a 42 inch span FF ‘Apex’, climbing of interesting models and he is shown the 48 inch span ‘Diamond Demon’,
away at the August 2016 Oily Hand with his 64 inch span ‘Alpha Corsair’. a 1940 kit by Consolidated Model
Weekend, at Cowra M.F.C. in New This 1938 Joe Beshar design from Engineering , New York. The most
South Wales, Australia. The model was the U.S.A. has a P.A.W. 19 diesel with interesting bit was the 1947 Clan .8cc

42 inch span ‘Apex’ with MP Jet Classic diesel

by Chris Birch, climbs away. The Cowra FF field
was on the top of a hill.

56 AeroModeller - March 2017

FOR OLD TIMES SAKE 040.indd 56 30/01/2017 16:40

Mike Phillips holds his Alpha Corsair at Middle Wallop, August 2015. 1947 Clan 0.8cc diesel replica (made by Derek Collin) in Mike Phillips
Diamond Demon.

Rare and recent Polednik 1.25cc 4-stroke diesel in small ‘Scram’ Brian Martin with his 64 inch span T.D. Coupe (a 1936 design) at
by Mike Phillips. Middle Wallop.

replica diesel made by Derek Collin, who Brian Martin from Cornwall is another balsa parts. The Falcon series from 1962
must be the outstanding maker of replica great vintage modeller, who builds a lot used two inserted spars in the wings and
engines in the U.K. at the present time. of great designs. His 64 inch span ‘T.D. one in the tailplane.
The original Clan 0.8cc was made by Coupe’ is a Dykzeul Design, published The 37 inch span ‘Jr. Falcon’ is shown
Clan Models Ltd., 24 First Ave., Glasgow in Model Airplane News, October 1936. and was released in 1963 for the Cox
and used a movable eccentric crankshaft The original would have used a 6cc Baby .049 reed valve engines and single
bearing (note the arm) for compression Cyclone spark engine, but Brian has channel radio, that by then had a low
adjustment. Only a small number were fitted an E.D. Comp. Special 2cc diesel voltage transistor receiver and used
produced in 1947 and they soon revised for power in this interesting FF design. an escapement fitted in the fuselage,
the design for the far better known Clan It uses Diatex full size aircraft covering near the trailing edge of the wing. The
0.9cc engine with a conventional on the wings and fuselage with Spectre leading and trailing edges of the wing
contra piston. orange paint trim. were shaped and notched for the ribs,
The most intriguing small diesel in Carl Goldberg liked inserted spars, the spars slid in easily and the wing
recent times is the Polednik 1.25cc starting with the Comet Zipper pylon took minutes to build. My first 4-channel
four-stroke made in the Czech Republic. model from 1939 which used up to multi proportional model in 1968 was
Flitehook imported a small number of four spars to make an uninterrupted a 69 inch span ‘Sr. Falcon’ for the new
these expensive engines several years surface for the Goldberg G-5 airfoil; this Taipan 61 RC Glo engine, using the same
ago. I had previously seen one running was mentioned in a recent article by construction.
at the U.S. S.A.M. Champs about 10 John O’Donnell. The Goldberg designs The ‘Jr. Falcon’ shown was built
years ago, but Mike Phillips’ is the first were quite difficult to build and the kits about 1965 and the wing was recently
one I have seen flown in a model. The included print wood, which involved re-covered with Chinese silk. A servo
small Scram has a single channel rudder tedious cutting of balsa. When he started is mounted vertically and connected to
control, as one would not like to lose Carl Goldberg Models Inc. in 1956, Carl the original balsa control rod to rotate
this engine. made his designs simpler with die-cut like the original escapement with Futaba


FOR OLD TIMES SAKE 040.indd 57 30/01/2017 16:41

Vintage Perspective from OZ

Jr. Falcon with Cox .049 reed valve glo, top single channel model by Carl Rear of 37 inch span Jr. Falcon shows round plug in fuselage (in front of L.E.) for
Goldberg Models Inc. winding rubber motor for the escapement, and original rudder control linkage.

single channel radio. I fly the model each sports flying using the smaller engines Dislers in April 2016, AeroModeller.
year at the Constellation Club’s retro day. up to 1.5cc capacity, but flies fine with The model was covered with Aerospan
engines like the Mills .75 or D-C Merlin. polyester tissue and the blue and red
Apex The plan is available on the Outerzone colour and silver trim on the wings
This was the model featured at the Oily website at finished it nicely.
Hand Weekend in August 2016, with 23 The simple box fuselage is easy to
examples of different sizes (free flight construct and the three square spars in Mite .099 Diesel
and radio assist) taking part. They used the top and bottom of the wing make it Being among the very first American
diesel engines from .25cc to 1cc and the strong and warp proof. The tailplane has diesels, I think the Mite diesel engine
models did fly very well. One gets the geodetic construction to keep it free of merits testing in my articles. It was
impression that O.F.W. (Peter) Fisher may warps and the three fins give it stability designed by Howard Manderville.
have flown in a Lockheed Constellation under power, when flying with a wide left Possibly based on the French Jide
airliner about 1957, perhaps across turn. The nose seems very solid and the 8 fixed compression diesel of 1.7cc
the Atlantic, as he was then inspired to model should have a long life. capacity, made in a suburban Paris
design a free flight model with three fins. I was impressed with the 82% version cottage. A substantial number of these
Peter Fisher deigned the ‘Apex’ for by Peter Lloyd, using one of the .44cc were sold to U.S. servicemen during late
Performance Kits at 42 inch span for PAL Pesky diesels, as tested by Maris 1944 and 1945.

82% ‘Apex’ held by Peter

Lloyd in Oz. Normal FF
field has canola crop, so
flying was in an adjacent
58 AeroModeller - March 2017

FOR OLD TIMES SAKE 040.indd 58 30/01/2017 16:41

Howard Manderville combined with
Walt Schroeder (who in the 1950’s
became editor of Model Airplane News)
and production was set up in Brooklyn,
New York, in early 1947. During 1947,
when diesels became popular in the
U.S.A., nearly 5000 Mite engines
were produced. Ray Arden’s glo plug,
introduced in November 1947, diverted
the change away from spark ignition in
the American market in that direction. In
1948, the Mite also switched, becoming
the Glo-Mite.
The Mite of 1.6cc capacity has a
0.500 inch bore and stoke, and weighs
only 2.6 ounces including the Lucite
fuel tank, due partly to its magnesium
crankcase and cylinder head. It uses
rotary crankshaft induction, a fixed
compression ratio of 13.5 to 1, a ball
and socket joint in the lightweight 4130
alloy steel piston and reverse flow
porting consisting of opposed transfer
ports perpendicular to twin exhausts – with 9 x 4 APC propeller. Plan of the Peter Fisher designed ‘Apex’, featured
model at the 2016 Oily Hand Weekend.
an arrangement commonly associated Not good results, so Maris Dislers
with the later Cox engines. An unusual tested my new Mite diesel engine with
air bleed lever at the bottom of the more suitable fuel. Its piston to cylinder While there was slight pre-ignition
crankcase (shown open in the photo) fit was fine by petrol engine standards with the larger props, this fuel worked
must be vertically down when running, and seemed very happy when running, well with the smaller ones, the engine
but can be moved slightly to adjust but made starting difficult. That required running quite smoothly and giving quite
running speed or pulled back to cut the priming the piston with oil and then impressive revs. Considering this 1.6cc
engine. Alan Ortlof’s 1947 test of the Mite adding a few drops of fuel onto the diesel of 1947 vintage works effectively
in Air Trails gave 7,000 RPM on a 9x4 piston crown for starting. We used a fuel at such high speeds, producing around
prop. He could throttle the engine down mix containing 30% ether, 30% castor 0.1 BHP (with perhaps more to come
to 1,800 RPM with the lever. oil, 40% kerosene and 1.5% added with even lighter loads) I am prepared
One of the problems with diesels in ignition improver to give the following to call it the first modern ‘high speed’
1947 was the fairly basic fuel mixtures results; model diesel. A pity that this very good
then in use, such as equal parts ether engine’s true potential was ahead of
and SAE 20 mineral oil specified for the model diesel fuel developments, and
Mite. The pictured engine, owned by Bill Propeller RPM perhaps hints at why glowplug ignition
Britcher was run at his place on basic 9 x 4 APC 7,800 was better suited at that time to the
3-part fuel containing ether, kerosene 8 x 5 Graupner Super 8,700 rapidly advancing American model
and synthetic oil. It was misfiring when 8 ½ x 4 Bolly Clubman 9,400 engine design trends. ●
running and recorded 5,600 RPM with an 8 x 4 APC 10,000
8 ½ x 4 Bolly Clubman and 5,300 RPM

PAL Pesky .44cc diesel in 82% - a great sports diesel Original Mite .099 fixed head diesel, made in Mite diesel running at the home of Bill Britcher,
- in FF ‘Apex’, a 1957 Performance Kits design. Brooklyn, New York, in 1947. separate fuel tank used.


FOR OLD TIMES SAKE 040.indd 59 30/01/2017 16:41

Aerodynamics, Books & More!

From the Armchair…

PART 19: Stuart ‘Supercool’ Sherlock pushes Supercaps to the limit.

he subject of Supercaps for use in were to be wealthy, who would get the
place of batteries has been covered work done?
by Gareth Evans (AM No.949, June In the ‘Supercool Way’, the axioms are much
2016) and Duncan Pepper (AM more fun, such as “act first, think afterwards”,
No. 955, December 2016). While “leap before you look”, and most importantly,
excellent and informative, these articles lack the “ignore the advice of the experts”.
muddle and confusion which is ever-present in So the works of Evans and Pepper were
the ‘Supercool Way’. nothing short of a challenge to my cupidity.
You see, there are societies where confused, Among my impressions were the following:
bewildered and downright insane individuals
are held in high esteem, to the point of their ● The models must be ridiculously light, made
being leaders. These societies are called of old styrofoam coffee cups and flown nearly
Duncan Pepper used the twin
‘parliamentary democracies’. Their economic always indoors.
KP00 motor unit geared to 4.75:1 model is called ‘capitalism’, wherein large ● The Supercaps charge almost
which is available from KP Aero
numbers of poor people are needed to provide instantaneously.
comfort for the wealthy. After all, if everyone ● They deliver a high current and can be

Duncan Pepper’s methodical approach to testing Super Capacitors can be

found in December 2016 AeroModeller 955.

60 AeroModeller - March 2017

ARMCHAIR PART 19.indd 60 30/01/2017 16:41

Initial optimistic test board. Far left is the flying Test board Mk2. Rotors on the left are from a drone, Mounting board for the rotor system. Dual motors
robot rotor system, potential as co-axial contra- which permitted shortening of the rotor shafts. can be run in series or parallel with the DPDT
rotating propellers. Three of the faulty 120 F caps Centre rear are two 100 F caps of sound provenance. switch connections shown. Rotors are a tight
in place at rear of the board. 1K pot to the right Leads to the rear of the caps loop across to the brown press-fit on the shafts.
of the board was a ridiculous choice, 10 ohms coloured break-out board, then to the MaxiMite
maximum would have done (if there exists such computer sitting on top the power supply. A bypass
a pot). switch sits on the lower right of the main board,
bypasses the 1K pot minimum resistance of 2.8 ohms.

matched to cheap DC motors. pot would regulate the rate of charge/ the motors sprang limply into life as
● They produce their power at 2.7 volts discharge, and some banana connectors though blown by the wind. This was not
but can be connected in series to get led to the twin DC motors I had exhumed going well.
higher voltages. from a recently dead (murdered) flying toy Now with things not following the
● Two motors are better than one. robot. These latter motors, complete with script, I realised I needed to see what was
● Gutless little 20 Farad caps are the way their rotors, I gave their own board, where happening. In the good-old government
to go. a cunningly-wired dual-throw, dual-pole funded days, I used systems voltmeters
● Suitable DC (brush) motors are to switch could connect the motors in either on the IEEE 488 data bus. This data bus
be had. series, parallel or not at all. allowed the voltmeter readings to be
Now here is the design philosophy. By displayed graphically on my computer
None of this was of use to impetuous placing four of the Supercaps in series, screen, as volts versus time. You would
me. I crush foam coffee cups in my bare with the rotary switch selecting them in have thought that in 2016, 40 years
hands, instant charge is too slow for me, series of one, two, three or even four, I later, in the age of WiFi, you could have
I want smoke coming out of the motors, could get voltages to the motors of 2.7, picked these up for $10 in the local
but mostly, I want to control the power 5.4, 8.1 or 10.8. Now in the flying robot, ‘Electronicery’, but no.
flow using an ESC (Electronic speed the motors were connected to each other So I had to resurrect my MaxiMite Geoff
Controller). So it was onto the internet in series, using a 3.7 volt LiPo, speed Graham kit-build computer, which has 10
where I found I could buy six 120 Farad control being achieved by chopping up analog inputs. With the voltage across the
Supercaps ready to go, mounted on a the DC voltage into pulses of varying cap(s) now being read into the computer
board, for zilch dollars. length. With the un-chopped voltages on every 400 ms, I could plot the voltage on
the caps as listed above, I should surely the screen and hopefully track down my
Profound Idiocy be able to get some smoke signals from gremlins.
That was where my studied ignorance the motors. No way. Nothing on the screen made
started to pay off. I couldn't get the caps However, rather than toast the motors sense. After sleeping on these problems
off the board. Seems that these days too soon in the testing phase, the 1K pot for a few nights, it occurred to me that I
you need an oxy-acetylene torch to melt was there to limit both the charge and hadn't tested the caps before I put them
solder, the lead content being decreased discharge rates of the caps. Then some on the board. After all, it was strange that
to stop global warming. Fortunately I multimeters were hung off to monitor the they came already soldered into their own
have a variable-power soldering iron: they volts off the power supply and on the board, complete with SMD's. Well, three
came off with more trickery than heat. caps; also the current flowing into the of them simply would not charge, and the
Next I needed a circuit with a power motors. The power supply had its own other 3 were leaky. None the less, you
supply, switches, some multimeters, a current indicator. have to go with what you have got.
variable resistance (1K potentiometer, or With Ohms law the governing concern,
‘pot’), and a rotary switch. I picked up no inductors, IC's, transistors or other Results at Last
a 30V, 3A power supply which was on confusing devices, how could I go wrong? With one-only working (and leaky) cap
special at $100, and the rather expensive mounted on the board, I was able to
rotary switch ($16) with 12 positions, Testing, Testing… observe the charging characteristic for
when I only needed 4. All these items, With everything connected, expecting to a 2.7 volt 120 Farad Supercap, weight
including the 4 caps plus some test see the rotors whiz around, I switched 14g. Now get this clear. Supercaps are
points and switches were thrown into a the power on. Nothing. Not even smoke. not like the regular electrolytic caps. The
hat, shuffled around and soldered as they That's where 240 volts are more fun. You Supercap can hold a charge five orders
came out, onto a ready-tracked PC board. don't just get smoke, you get a loud bang of magnitude greater than your regular
In theory, I could now throw switches as the hook-up wire vaporises. Careful electrolytics. That is enormous. The first
which would allow charge/dis-charge/ scrutiny of the mother board revealed thing I found was that this Supercap did
open circuit of any selection from four that the switch mountings were shorting NOT charge rapidly, did NOT discharge
serially-connected Supercaps. The across the PCB tracks. With that fixed, rapidly and leaked charge away


ARMCHAIR PART 19.indd 61 30/01/2017 16:41

Aerodynamics, Books & More!

profusely. circuit. This made the situation worse! never make smoke! Switching from series,
At this point I gave up on these internet Unbelievably, the resistance of the shunt as used in the robot, to parallel motor
caps, going instead to my local supplier was 6 ohms! This was a commercial item, connection, I was rewarded with another
for three 100 Farad/2.7 volt items. but not a very good one. The crocodile jump in rotor speed.
Mounting just one, I was rewarded to find clips at each end were secured to the For test flying a model, a pot of lower
the charging rate was OK, the leakage wire lead by crimping, the crimp including minimum resistance would be a good
was minimal , and the rotors at last some of the wire insulation! With the feature, limiting the power burst for initial
started to spin in a healthy way. But not connections remade using good old flights. However, a better approach with
nearly healthy enough. There were still solder, I was rewarded with a good RPM radio assist/servo-tester is to use an ESC
problems to sort out. increase in the rotors. as a throttle: for this reason I chose the
At the time of laying out my test circuit, On a roll now, I re-read Pepper's article, option of capacitors in series, as many
I had not appreciated just how tricky it is wherein he connected twin motors in ESC's won't work off 2.7 volts. The
to draw charge out of the Supercaps. If parallel and also doubled the capacitors. voltage output of capacitors in series is
you want high power, you have to draw This seemed a bit bizarre, until I realised just the sum of the voltages on each cap.
a high current. It is true that Supercaps that this trick lowered the resistance The little robot motors ran well for me
can be discharged rapidly, but not in of the motors. The resistance of each up to 7 volts. I hesitated going to higher
the circuit I had built. The 1K pot I had motor was about 1 ohm. Connected in voltages to preserve the motors for more
installed for controlling the discharge rate series, the total resistance of the motors tests. Usually my tests-to-destruction
worked alright, but I soon found that the was 2 ohms. But connected in parallel, occur earlier in the proceedings, but with
lowest resistance available from the pot the resistance was only 1 ohm. It at first all the problems so far I was feeling a little
was 2.8 ohms. This was way too much, seemed that bothering with such low cautious.
even though it was the smallest resistance values of resistance was a nonsense, but
I have ever used. the facts proved otherwise. Weird Charging
The trick with getting a good flow of I cunningly connected the motors to a Now I have been skirting around the
energy from the Supercap into the motors double-pole, double-throw (DPDT) switch. charging problem. Clearly I wanted to
is to have a very low ohmic resistance This gave me 3 settings, series, parallel use the caps in series to give the rotors
in the circuit, so I placed a shunt across and open circuit, all from the one device. a good spin. But charging the caps
the pot to remove its resistance from the Incidentally, I don't like open circuits, they in series can be fraught. So, like the
motors, I arranged two caps (giving a
nominal 200 Farads!) in like manner to
the motors: i.e., a flick of the switch
changed the connection of the caps from
series to parallel and vice-versa.
This allowed for charging the caps in
parallel, then switching to series for flight.
Why bother? Why not charge in series?
Well there are two answers to that.
Firstly, and again rather weirdly, if you
charge in parallel (at 2.7 volts) you can
store more charge in the caps. That is
But secondly, if you charge in series (at
say 5.4 volts) you can damage the caps.
Recall that these Supercaps are rated
at only 2.7 volts. That is if you put more
than 2.7 volts on one of them, they can be
damaged. This is quite unlike electrolytic
caps which can in some cases be rated at
a 100 volts or more.
Imagine you put 5.4 volts across two
Supercaps in series. Each cap will have
Rather busy screen shot generated by the MaxiMite computer to log the readings. Starting at zero seconds,
the caps, connected in parallel, charge linearly as the power supply is in constant-current mode. 2.7 Volts across it, no harm done. But
The curve following on after 60 seconds shows charging with power supply in constant-voltage mode, in this not all caps are equal. If one charges
case 1.3 volts. Charging at 2.7 volts with parallel connection is permissible.
At 200 seconds, charging ceases and the caps are switched to series to give peak power. The energy stored faster than the other, then it will have
in the caps varies with the square of the voltage. Upper curve is the voltage across both caps. more than 2.7 volts across it and it will
At 250 seconds, the motors, connected in parallel fire up, drawing current from the caps. Voltage drops until
300 seconds when the motors are switched off. At 370 seconds the caps are discharged back to zero volts. suffer damage. So, if for no other reason,

62 AeroModeller - March 2017

ARMCHAIR PART 19.indd 62 30/01/2017 16:41

charging in parallel and switching to
series for flight is good practice.
You can destroy Supercaps. I was
experimenting with a 55 Farad cap when
there was a knock on the door. By the
time I got back, the cap was too hot to
touch and the end plate was bulging out.
Somehow the power supply had gotten
wound up to 10 volts. I belatedly found
the cause. The power supply gave 30
volts with a 3amp output. But if the load
drew more than 3 amps, the voltage did
not remain at the set value, but fell to 0.7
volts (constant-current mode). Then, when
charging required less than 3 amps, back
up went the voltage (constant-voltage
You can destroy multimeters as well.
While trying to measure the current flow
into the motors, I blew both fuses in
the meter. Seems one multimeter is not
enough, a second meter is needed to
check the fuses in the first one!

Power to Burn
I was now in a good position. Circuit
resistance had been minimised and it
Silverlit ( produce many small twin counter-rotating RC helicopters which could be
was time to run the motors at 2.6 volts. suitable for Supercap experiments.
Recall that these rotors from off the flying
robot were on long shafts, just as for the
toy helicopters. In other words, this was whereas 2.7 volts (yielding 5.4 volts in ● The 100 Farad Supercaps did not
a pretty rickety arrangement for a system series) would have provided a factor of charge rapidly, nor linearly with voltage,
of co-axial, contra rotating propellers. four more charge to be stored. However, but we are only talking a minute or so.
Such was the power now being the poor old robot shaft mechanism They should be charged in parallel then
delivered by the motors, the rotors would have disintegrated. switched to series for flight. The problem
wobbled badly. I replaced the rotors I am now convinced the system as was my inadequate power supply. A pack
with a couple of props from a small, described should be more than enough of nickel metal-hydride batteries would be
recently dead, drone; this also permitted to fly a reasonable-sized outdoor FF, such the way to go for charging.
shortening the drive shafts. Testing as Tomboy or Mam'selle. However, the ● High current is available, provided that
was now possible to proceed: see the co-axial counter-rotating shafts really the ohmic resistance of the whole system
accompanying photos and captions. need some engineering, in the form of is low, of the order of two or less ohms all-
Using only a 1.3 Volt charging setting, ball race supports. The friction losses up. Connecting two motors in parallel is
batteries in parallel, motors in series gave in the existing system must have been very effective in this respect.
1200 RPM at 0.12 amps. Motors switched high. Also the drone rotors were pretty ● Connecting multiple caps in series is
to parallel gave 1400 RPM at 0.32 amps. hopeless for use as tractors, the blade valid, enabling both longer motor runs
With batteries switched to series, giving angle being very low, with consequent and the use of an ESC for radio assist
2.6 Volts, motors in series gave 1000 high profile losses. throttle of servo-tester power setting.
RPM at 0.16 amps. Switching motors to ● Connecting multiple motors in parallel
parallel, RPM was 2900 at 0.58 amps. The Re’Cap’ increases the power output considerably.
length of motor run in the latter case gave To return now to my impressions of ● 20 Farads are useful for low power
these figures. Starting at 2600 RPM, 0.6 Evans and Pepper's work, I find: indoor, but 10 times that capacity is
amps went to 2100 RPM, 0.48 amps after the future.
50 seconds. ● There is considerable power available ● The tiny brush motors in toy helicopters
These figures do not represent the from 100 Farad caps for non-indoor work. and their derivatives are a good way to
highest possible figures. The battery I can speculate that Mam'selle would be go. I have hammered mine at 7 volts and
charge was at only 1.3 Volts per cell, nicely powered. still got no smoke. Must try harder! ●


ARMCHAIR PART 19.indd 63 30/01/2017 16:42

Readers Letters

Do let us know your thoughts on AeroModeller and
aeromodelling in general. We’re happy to receive post
to the Doolittle Media office address, or emails to editor@ – all are read although you may not
get a reply. Featured letters may be edited.
Regards, Andrew Boddington


Hi Andrew, Good day to you, Andrew,
December 2016 AeroModeller from the UK had a free plan of a A friend in England kindly sent me the October 2016 AeroModeller which
small autogyro included – gotta love a FREE plan! I’ve never built an carried a half page photo of Stuart Darmon’s
autogyro before and now I’m glad I did. I went to the field determined Classic Glider ‘Walkin’ Shoes’.
to fly my newly built Boddington designed twin rotor autogyro I was happy to see this, being my design
‘Byrace’. I had fitted my .5cc Alex Phinn Compish diesel which is from around 1956, published in Model
theoretically a bit powerful (plan recommends .3 - .4) but what the hell, Aircraft in 1958. I’m still flying
you can always back off the compression! I must say I think a throttle
would be more use than the elevator but I don’t have a small diesel
reduced scale versions (36” and
with one of those. 66”) in the US Classic Glider
There was a bit of a breeze and the ‘instructions’ say point it into the events, but sadly there’s no
wind, wait for the rotors to spin up, walk forward slowly and let it lift classification to permit the use
from your hand – don’t chuck it! I held it up and the rotors couldn’t be of the 88” original. Therefore it
bothered to spin so the usual watching crowd suggested ROG. was very pleasing to see that
Flight 1: I started it (it starts easily, it’s a nice little engine) put it on one such example is still in
the ground and let go. It shot forward, got an inch (2.54cms for the the air.
younger members!) off the ground and turned/rolled rapidly to the left
and finished upside down!
Regards, Jim Moseley
Flight 2: Suspecting excessive engine torque being the cause I was (Once of Enfield, Baildon,
ready to shove in a lot of right rudder on this one. Started engine, Leeds, Morley.)
released and it shot forward again. It went about 50 feet in a vaguely
straightish direction, got about 12 inches of the ground and rolled in
Flight 3 : Refilled and off it went again straight across the field

reaching an altitude of at least 3 feet! It was during this 4 second flight
that it was clear the rotors were not rotoring, it was flying using the
‘wing’ (the support for the rotors) for some lift.
Flight 4 : Hmmm, thinks, maybe it is not getting a steep enough Hi Andrew,
climb angle to the wind to get the rotors to spin, let’s try a lot of up Having read your article about twin rotor
elevator on take-off (did I mention I went wild and fitted both rudder autogyros I decided to build one for indoor flying.
and elevator!) Once again it raced across the ground at impressive
Using Depron I made one at approximately 2/3 scale of the Byrace plan for
speed. It leapt into the air and climbed steeply to about 50 feet the
rotors whirling. They were obviously providing lift like they should so electric power and three channel control. It came out at 32 grm ready to fly
I thought I’d better turn to make sure it stayed in the field. The turn and to my (and fellow flyers) surprise it flew.
started ok but rapidly tightened into a spiral dive and ended abruptly Regards, Chris Grant.
at ground level with 2 broken rotor blades.
I repaired the rotors, just superglued them back to flat and doped a Hi Chris,
piece of tissue over the join. It was clearly very sensitive to rudder I was hoping somebody would have a go at a Depron variation of the Byrace.
movement so I reduced it by about half and went back to the field. Having seen many twin rotor designs fly I’m not surprised it was a success as
Subsequent flights were better as I was ready with a bootful of right
it is stable and forgiving configuration once set up.
rudder as it went off. Fantastic! It was great, it climbed to at least 100
feet and once properly trimmed I could steer right and left. Last test Regards, Andrew
was engine cut… would it auto-rotate? YES! The rotors whirled on and
it came down fast but under some control over direction!
Most pleasant to fly now, can’t wait to get up again and try a loop or
a roll? Go build one and join the expanding group - a friend has nearly
finished his.

Mike Minty, Sydney Australia (

Hi Mike,
Glad to hear you’re having fun with the Byrace and I’m impressed you
are getting ROGs. Do make sure the blade hubs are lubricated and
spin freely.
Regards, Andrew

Mike Minty used an elevator push rod of 22 swg wire in a plastic Chris Grant’s smaller autogyro uses Depron
sleeve on his 2 channel Byrace. with carbon rods for strengthening.

LETTERS 040 6 30/01/2017 16:42

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AM040 p65 BUYERS GUIDE.indd 1 30/01/2017 15:32

Tail End Charlie
New Light through Old Airframes
Oh Dear way as a man carrying balloon. Duration wise just
In my January piece, I’m sorry to have offended under 1 1/4 hours is the longest flight I know of.
Steve Midson with my comments about not MBUK is the BMFA recognised specialist body
building and flying model hot air balloons! He and has roughly 50 members spread across the
writes: UK.”
“The January 1972 “Midair” Hot Air Balloon was If you want to know more or see these amazing
the first of what has become many thousands of creations in flight, they appear at various shows
flying models bearing that name, made by me, around the country. For example, Andy organised
youth groups, and the public. an indoor flying meet at Llangollen Festival arena
You need not worry about the environmental in March 2016 where over 20 balloons were flown
impact of the balloon design - the burner was throughout the day. They will also be flown at
designed to flame out whilst the balloon was still the Bristol Balloon Festival (10th to 13th August Children Learning about Hot Air Balloon
climbing and thus would be cool by the time it 2017). For details of other events contact Andy at Flight.
reached earth again, also the bottom ring was
made of balsa, not wire as used in the later
commercial designs which caused havoc when It IS Rocket Science!
eaten by cattle etc. Balsa would not hurt them! Unlike many I had great success with the original
The one weakness was the tissue which was Jetex. My first Jetex model was a “Barry Bucknell
easily torn by enthusiastic launchers, and current Jetex Glider.” For youngsters, Barry Bucknell
balloons are made from mylar sheet and narrow was the first TV “Mr DIY” who was on the BBC
double sided tape. practically every week in the 1950s. A versatile
For safety indoors one or two hair dryers provide man, he later went on to design the “Mirror”
sufficient heat for a trip to the ceiling. dinghy! Most people however didn’t realise that his
I regularly use these balloons as part of my hobby was Gliders even though on BBC Children’s Llangollen, Wales - with enough space you
‘science’ lectures - air expands when heated TV on Monday 16th June 1958 he did a piece on can fly these scale balloons indoors.

reducing the number of molecules in the balloon “Building a Model Aeroplane”. Sadly I’ve been
and hence it gets lighter and floats. unable to find a decent picture of his Jetex design
Kids enjoy flying them, realise how they go up but I can tell you it was 20 inch span and came
and come down as the inside air cools, and great complete with a Jetex 50 motor for the princely
fun is had by trying to stand under a descending sum of seven shillings and eight pence and flew
balloon and get your head inside - Only to be told very well.
off, as it is a plastic bag and one must not put your So when Roy Lever (Powermax) brought out
head inside a plastic bag. But it is good fun and a a “modern Jetex” in the 1980s I bought one but
slim young lady completely disappeared inside a I could never make it work properly. Recently I
balloon the other day!” came up with an idea which needs that sort of
Well that puts my mind somewhat at rest then. power and thought of using a Rapier or similar
I’ve also heard from a number of people about power unit – only to find that they are unobtainable
bigger ‘scale’ model hot air balloons including today. However, as I see similar items being used
Richard Gahan and Andy Marshall of AM Balloons, at most of the Old Warden events, someone must Rocket powered model at Peterborough
see be doing something! Is there a secret Rapier Flying Aces.
Andy said supplier who, with the right “secret handshake”
“Technology wise most of what we do mimics will sell me what I need? Or is it just that a few
man carrying balloons, high tenacity rip stop sensible people realising that Rapiers would soon
nylon, flame retardant nomex, propane fuel. disappear stocked up? Or, the final possibility – Is
Some people make and fly woven baskets, others there another mini rocket motor known only to the
build ‘cloudhopper’ air chairs often quite novel few? I don’t know, so it’s over to you dear readers
constructions to tell me! (I’m sure the readers won’t disappoint
possibly the most challenging projects are to you – the Editor.)
build small; 6m3 I think is the smallest working Finally, please send your comments,
model I’ve seen in the UK, though I’ve heard of anecdotes, complaints and suggestions to me
people flying balloons measured in litres. The UKs at or via the editorial
largest is 110m3. offices by snail mail. ●
The balloons cool quickly requiring piloting skill
to predict the fall from equilibrium, and adjust,
though we use no vent systems as the pressure is By Chris Ottewell
not sufficient to make them function in the same
Jetex 50 Rocket Motor

66 AeroModeller - March 2017

p66 TEC 040.indd 1 30/01/2017 16:42

We trade in all types of model engines ancient to modern!


0.35cc TBR MINI ETA 15

Our book the “Olivers and a Tiger” soft back still available at
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Always wanting model cars, engines and collections.

Please call and ask for Paul:

01283 713715 or email

AM040 IBC.indd 1 01/02/2017 12:29

AM040 OBC.indd 1 30/01/2017 14:36

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