Saturday, 30 September 2017

From light Breeze to reasonable blow.

A mixed forecast was given for this mornings flying at Mill Hill. One forecast quoting blue skies and 12 mph SW winds and the BBC forecasting 5 mph SW and cloud and rain.
Arrived at Mill Hill to the later. Virtually no wind and grey cloudy skies but no rain thankfully. Met up with Ian and Rob around 9.30am. Pity no one else could make it. Twenty odd club members but only three out flying!
Rob had his DLG and I started with my lean, green, thermalling machine otherwise known as the Experience Pro but Ian went straight for his Euphoria with loads of ballast on board. Ian managed fine and conditions where soft but adequate.
Rob switched to the Zulu, but that wasn't doing well, then he and I both tried his Traceur, which performed OK in the light conditions. Rob then went off home as it was a wee bit chilly but Ian and I stayed on. The conditions went really soft with Ian now flying his Shadow and me still with the Xpro. So soft at times you could just about cruise along at 10m above the top of the slope.
Then as quick as the wind went soft it strengthened to what was a reasonable breeze. Out came the my Merlow and Ian's Jart. Good cruising lift around but not the best ever conditions.
We had a lucky miss in the car park as some old guy who had just bought a Wildthing and seemed to have no Idea flew his model right over the parked cars and towards Ian and myself. We ducked and his model came crashing down besides my car. I hope he was insured?
Anyway we had a great time with at least two hours solid flying.
Rain was on the horizon (literally) so we beat a hasty retreat all the way back to the Plough at Plumpton for a pint of Harveys.

Friday, 29 September 2017

Lots of swearing going on!

Here is an update of my Limit EX so far.
Firstly the changes...... I have made the tail approx. 15% bigger than the original plan. I read on the internet that people had experienced issues with rolling and holding the glider inverted and some had suggested making a slightly larger tail plane. Others had made the bigger tail plane and where pleased with the results, so I thought lets give it a try. I replaced my very thin (M3) plastic wing retaining bolt for an equivalent steel bolt. The head of the bolt beds down onto two small washers to help spread the load.
Now to the problem area's that have caused me some big problems..........The aileron servo! This sits immediately behind the central balsa (I want to say spar but its not it's more like a stringer) stringer and requires you to cut through the bottom balsa skin (which is very thin and cracks easily) and through the two balsa ribs that you glued together at the very start of the build process. What a pain in the arse this was. All the hard work I had gone through to finish the wing seemed to vanish in a few minutes. I carefully found the central stringer and drew around the servo onto the bottom sheeting. Then carefully started to cut through the sheeting with a scalpel blade. As I cut through the skin it started to split. (I took the easy way out and sheeted the wings with the grain running the length of the wing. Take a little longer and sheet across in stages as the wing be much stronger). Then once I had butchered the balsa skin it was time to attack the two glued ribs. For this I thought a dremmal type tool would do the trick (see lack of patience again kicker in!) Initially it was going well but a slight slip and I had punctured through the top balsa skin and left a nice hole in the top surface - DOH!. Anyway cutting a long story short it looked like I had dropped a brick on the wing. But being a very accomplished bodger Some glue, ply sheet and some filler and you would never be the wiser when looking at the covered wing. So what's the answer? Well Tim (who will be building one also just to show me hw it should be done) said that this aileron servo cutout should be done right at the beginning and cut out the bottom skin at the same time. In hindsight this would have been a good idea. Maybe even box around the servo hole to make a nice solid area. Anyway - take heed builders.
I've still got plenty to do with the elevator servo needing to be fitted and the elevator carbon rod needs the 'Y' wire fitting but its moving in the right direction.
Both Rob and I both agree the build has been a right pain and the lack of instructions (for what should be a very easy build) has been frustrating.
Has anyone else started there build yet?
UPDATE: Friday evening.
Covering finished!!

Tuesday, 26 September 2017

Limit Ex Build Part 2

Paul and I have made our models in parallel so far and this is the next update from my own experience over the last 2 days -
Primarily I was trying to find a way to attach an elevator horn as there is no detail in the plan. I had a few emails with Neil Hussey and thanks to him I got the right idea.
I decided to use cut-down servo arms as horns because they're made of nylon and very light, etc... I also made new elevators from harder balsa and had already re-made the tail from ply. The pushrod is made from carbon rod with the wire ends attached with heat shrink and cyano.
I attached the horns to the elevators with epoxy resin after sanding the surface of the elevators to 55 degrees and cutting a small piece off the ends parallel to the fuselage - as per below,

This resulted in a pretty good movement provided the pushrod ends are left straight so that the horns can slide along them for up and down elevator.
I have tested the elevators with the pushrod and servo tacked into place and it all seems to work well, there isn't a lot of movement but it only requires 4mm up / down anyway.
That process took me the best part of a day in between other things and emails and tests of different materials.

I made the wing tips from 1/2" balsa and sanded them to shape and made the static part of the TE from 1/4" balsa and the ailerons from 3/8" TE that I found at home. All to be sanded yet.

I made the aileron torque rods from piano wire and ran them in some aluminium tubing for easy movement.
In order to hinge the torque rods to the servo Tim came up with the idea of pushrod connectors as per the below picture - ideal solution really ---

That's about it for now.


Saturday, 23 September 2017

So how is the mass Limit Ex Mk 3 build getting along?

Hello to all our mass builders and mass watchers of the mass builders!!
I started my Limit Mk3 in the middle of last week and Rob had already started his one. My first impressions of the kit (which has to be said it was just the short kit - just the bare bones of the kit) was not fantastic. No Instructions, No proper plan and what seemed like very thin balsa cut parts.
The plans are sent by email to buyers of the kit and care has to be exercised when printing them as they can end up the wrong size depending on your print options.
Neil Hussey (the kit supplier) kindly supplied Rob and me with a lot of help with the printing.
Rob kindly went to SMC and got us both the additional balsa  needed to complete the kit and away I went.
As I have said before, I am not a builder. No patience, you see, but instant Cyano glue has helped get stuff done and fast when needed. The first job was to set up and glue the ribs to the main cross member (Web) - not sure what you call it as its not a spar. The kit parts went together very well and the wing ribs / spar can be built over the paper plan easily.
The you add the LE and TE pieces (not supplied) to make a rigid structure.
Then I glued two sheets of balsa together (not supplied) to make a larger piece that would span the whole top and bottom surface (not 1/32 as per the plans, but a slightly thicker metric equivalent).
Below is a picture of the ribs etc glued to the bottom skin.

The next big problem I had was cutting and gluing the top skin on. This proved very difficult and fiddly and having to bend the balsa in all sorts of directions.

Rob overcame this by sheeting the top in 2 halves -  left and right halves - making the job a little easier -

After this nightmare I moved on to the far easier fuselage. This was fairly straightforward except the very poor quality formers (F1, F2, F3). Rob and I both broke F2 & F3 trying to bring together the fuselage halves with the required curve - which resulted in us making two completely new formers which where up to the job.
Rob has contacted Neil and he will make them from Lite ply in future.

The fuselage was pretty easy and came along fast.

The tailplane is way too flimsy (the plan says use hard balsa, but that isn't what is supplied) and I expect the first landing in the rough or a small cartwheel and the tail plane will be off or broken. I know Rob has made a new tail plane out of ply - as below -

 I imagine that will be much stronger.
Anyway, then came a bit of sheeting the fuselage top and bottom and sticking on  and shaping the nose cone. That brings me pretty much up to date. So this is where I am now:
I have had to order some trailing edge from an online store because I couldn't get this from SMC. I can't do much more until I get the TE to make the ailerons and TE proper.

Beware that some of the dimensions and measurements on the plans have to be modified to suit the wood available to you. Rob has made his own LE and TE to fit the wing.

Remember to fit your battery in the nose before you glue the front top section on. We have used a AAA 800mah Eneloop RX - or on eBay this battery fits in just perfectly as the space is not very big.

For those guys building their own models at the moment please share your experiences with us all on the blog and this will help others -  but is also a good insight into how you are getting along.
Rob has sent updates to the 5 people who are building the Limit Ex so that they can avoid the problems that we have encountered.

Overall, so far, we have both found it enjoyable, not too difficult and the kit kind of does what it says in the advert ! Also, Neil Hussey has been a real help to us and a great guy to do business with - (he's registered on the ShoutBox if you want to contact him).


Saturday, 16 September 2017

My new toy!

A big thanks to Tim for setting up the 'Beast' or to give it its correct name the Valenta Carbonara. I bought this a week back from a guy in Kings Lynn. The model has had just one flight. The wingspan is 4m and it weighs in around 5Kgs.
Its bloody massive!

Friday, 15 September 2017

Omega ~ Progress Report #5

After ironing on the last of the Solartex it's time for the customary garden photo of the finished model.
With R.C. equpment installed and ballast added to achieve the required C of G the all up weight is 37oz (1048g), so with a six foot wingspan the wing loading comes in at around 11.7oz per square foot which is pretty average for a slope soarer I think.
The wing section is semi-symmetrical at the root graduating to fully symmetrical at the tip which should allow a for a reasonable inverted performance.
Considering it's a 45-year-old design I think it looks quite trendy!
Happy landings
Russell H

Horsham Club Indoor Flying

Myself and Rob plus others have attended the indoor flying arranged and hosted by those nice people of the Horsham model flying club. These nights have proven to be an excellent opportunity to get some well earned time on the sticks with slow and lightweight electric models that will happily fly around inside a gym hall based at Farlington School just outside Horsham.
The evening is very well run with dedicated times for many types of indoor planes, helicopters and drones (hmmmm!).

Anyway, this year I was hoping to get some of the large collection of indoor planes dusted off and take them over to the Indoor evening meets and get some flying in.
I am assuming the indoor flying will be taking place and I need to double check this with Pete Glover but I really wanted to give you guys a heads up and maybe the opportunity to get involved with some Indoor flying.
Its great fun and you can sit around nattering to other modellers about RC flying in general.
Let me know if you would be interested in either trying out indoor flying or would like to come along?
Hi All, Rob here,
just to say that it only costs about £3 per night, it runs every 2nd week starting from 17th Oct
Here's their website   -
I have small electric indoor planes and helis that people can borrow to fly and it's good fun.

Slope Soaring Sussex 'Mass Build'

Well maybe 'mass build' is a little optimistic but four of us have purchased the 22'' short kit called 'Limit EX' from eBay for £17 delivered.
It's tiny but watching the video's it does seem to motor when you want it to.
This offer of a short kit for just £17 is only around for another 10 hours or so. If you are interested in having a go at our 'mass build' then here is the link:

Wednesday, 13 September 2017

Slope Soaring Sussex Plan Built Gliders

Having seen Russell's kit built models fly on Sunday and given my lack of ability to be able to make kit models I thought it might be a nice idea to see if others are interested in building from plan either one type of model (mass build) or a selection of plan / kit models so we can enjoy each others builds along the way.
There seemed to be a little interest at the time when we spoke about this on Sunday morning except Russell has just or is coming to the end of his home built models.
I have a huge scale Vulcan (6' span and 6' long) which is just siting in a box waiting to be built. It comes with as a short kit (all difficult ribs etc all ready laser cut but some additional balsa will be needed to complete the kit). It comes with all the plastic cowls and clear canopy. I would love to build this stunning PSS glider kit but I think I lack the knowledge to complete it.
Anyway if you would be interested in building a kit from plan but just don't know how to or would like to give it a go, what sort of glider would you build?
Lets have some idea's and see where the idea takes us.............
Here are just a few I have found on eBay for a reasonable price:

What do you think?

UPDATE: Rob , Scott, Russell & I have purchased a Limit EX each for just over £17.00 delivered.
Here is one flying and a build blog. That's 4 for the mass build ..... any more ... ?

Sunday, 10 September 2017

Ian's travels in Cumbria

So it's not just me who takes a model on his hols and spends time searching for a new slope to fly on. Here is Ian with his Starjet on his holiday in the Lake District. Apparently it was blowing 30knts which gave him an Interesting 20 minute flight with an even more Interesting landing. Looks like a decent bit of hill there in the background.
We look forward to the next Instalment of Ian's Cumbrian adventures.

Itford - Enjoyable and succesful session

We had a very pleasant session at Itford yesterday morning. Wind on the hill for most of the time and warm enough you didn't need a jacket. I was joined by a good crowd including Tony, Scott, Russell and Dick (who wants to join the club) plus Lauren who I think met Scott on a previous visit who joined us from Kent.
Tony was officially solo with him flying for all the session with no assistance or help and was doing really well plus all the walking did him lots of good. Russell brought along three lovely gliders and enjoyed the smooth lift and pleasant conditions plus went home with all three still intact. Good to see you Russell.
Poor old Scott, he got pestered and challenged by me for most of the time. Getting him to fly in all those places he was most uncomfortable to fly but all designed to sharpen up the skills and help get more control on landing. He did very well and really improved today after a long break. Well done Scott.
Dick is a local man and Itford is his local slope. He flew his Dreamflight Weasel and a very nice mouldy that I didn't get the name off. Hope to see you on the slopes again soon.
And finally a big welcome to Lauren. She has been flying since the age of 13 and from the looks of things is very handy on the sticks. You are always welcome to come and join us Lauren just keep an eye on the blog to see where we are and come along.
Thanks Tim for lending me your Phase 6. Enjoyed flying something different for a change.

Thursday, 7 September 2017

Anyone want to fly this weekend?

Hello all.
After a few weeks of light winds and me being away enjoying Welsh Wales, this weekend actually looks like it might offer some well deserved slope soaring. Saturday is the best day for me and for the weather.
So who would like to meet me at Itford Hill at 9.30am on Saturday morning?
I know Scott & Rob will be coming out to play - anyone else?

PS. Both myself and Ian have been travelling the country (literally) to buy ourselves some new toys to play with. Ian has bought himself a X-Models Stingray and I have just picked up a nearly new Valenta Carbonara.

My new Carbonara (above) and a picture of a Stingray (not the exact one but same colour) of Ian's Stingray. Lots of fun coming for those windier days.