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  1. Last week
  2. Ask me in a week, Ben! Difficult to tell weight yet as the wings are still to be made. The fuselage seems light enough even with the three MG996 metal gear standard servos installed. I nipped over to Robs this morning to collect the usual nick-nacks needed ie control horns, engine mount, poppers for press fit inter-plane struts, ball links for aileron push rods and a nice second hand ali spinner. That has rubbed up very nicely. The model is a great traditional build with loads of stringers and a fair amount of block work to shape. Its very rewarding to see it all coming together so quickly. I have a good feeling about this model and I`m confident it will fly very nicely. Emma and I joked that this model is a "James model". As we know, he loves the vintage stuff. I took a shine to his Fly-Baby bi-plane some time back. I`ve not yet found a plan for one yet but would love to build one. I found a Balsa USA kit for $365 plus shipping, import VAT and extra delivery charges this end. Obviously this was impossible to justify, hence the building of this Bi-stormer at a rather less dramatic price. More on this build when I have some further progress made and images taken. Mike
  3. That looks very smart Mike! Do you know yet what the rough AUW could be?
  4. My latest build. This is the 60" Bi-stormer from the late David Boddingtons` drawing board. Essentially the model is a Barnstormer with two wings. The design is about fifty years old and is much loved as a medium sized, soft floater for balmy summer evening flying. Images below show progress made to date. A 72" version is also available but is a little too big for my storage and transport convenience. Build costs also escalate the bigger a model is. I found that out to my cost during the Midwest Extra build. I bought the DB Sport and Scale kit last week direct from the makers in Wales. The kit is very much a "short" production type at £110 delivered. Delivery/production took about a week. DB Sport has changed hands several times since the late David Boddington sold it on. The kit is not really a true kit when compared to modern offerings. Much of it is "missing". You get a plan, dural landing gear and cabane struts, pre-cut sheet balsa fuselage sides, a few ply bulkheads, two wing rib packs and a few other assorted air-frame parts. It is all very basic indeed but what do you expect for the money after the producer has made some profit? The traditional construction of the model is sticks, twigs, sheet and the odd bit of ply. Building the kit is rather like constructing a Keil Craft Super 60. To complete the model it is necessary to purchase wing sheeting, leading and trailing edge material and balsa square section for the fuselage longitudinal members together with control horns and snakes, wheels, collects, coverings, etc. By the time you have all the parts together, you are looking at about £240 as a finished model. Price wise, a pre-covered ARTF makes better financial sense but I wanted a nice model to scratch (or nearly scratch) build so obtaining a near ready to fly model wasn`t an issue or was value for money much of a consideration. Perhaps price wise as a kit, its probable value is little more than £70. The extra £40 can be regarded as the makers slender profit for getting it into a box and flinging it in the post! This type of cottage industry produced kit will always be quirky and relatively basic. It is what it is and it ain`t what it ain`t! So you accept what it is and get on with the build. The build is quick and easy once you have rounded up all the extra required timber scantlings. The majority of construction has been done with Screwfix CA adhesive or Toolstation 4 minute epoxy. Both products are as cheap as it gets and have become my favoured adhesives. I don`t use much alaphatic white glue but when I do, I`ve used Gorilla Glue which seems to set up quickly and is water resistant. I usually do between eight and ten hours building each day. The fuselage and tail feathers have therefore taken about seventy hours work. It is not so much the volume building that takes the time but the attention to detail. That said the experience of building this model to date is very pleasing. It is a pretty little bi-plane which is known to fly extremely well. I now have to build the wings and cover the whole model. I envisage about another one hundred hours needed for that. If all goes well, the model should be capable of flying within the next three weeks subject to all continuing to progress well. Elevators and rudder are a little larger than standard. Many builders have said the larger elevators help when it comes to three pointing the model when landing. The top wing will loose its dihedral in favour of a flat wing. Ailerons are also described as a little non reactive so I expect to increase size slightly and perhaps to include ailerons on both wings. Advice will be sought from Rob Newman today when I go over to Bromley for further building supplies. Colour scheme? Not really thought about yet but the model has strong likenesses to the Stearman. I do quite fancy a silver machine with white and red checker and RAF markings. Pre-war the University Air Squadron operated Tiger Moths and Hawker bi-planes at airshows of the period. Essentially those guys were the forerunners of the Red Arrows. If you know the Shuttleworth Tiger Moth, then you will have some idea of what I have in mind. Power will come from the auction sourced £4 SC.61 which is now in fine order having had its carburetor cleaned out and a missing needle valve spring replaced. Compression is excellent and it is quite clear this motor hasn`t seen much action. It is the right size and "shape" for this model but if power is marginal, then I have a brand new ASP.75 which has identical external sized components to the SC.61. Both motors were built in the same Chinese factory but are just badge engineered as an SC or an ASP. The dead Dynam Hurricane pilot has been resuscitated and lives to fight another day in this model. Harry Hawker flies again! The remains of his air-frame have donated a bullet-proof windshield which fits the top deck to perfection. More on this model as it progresses. Mike.
  5. I already have one, Ben, although it is a scratch built version! Images below. I scaled the 10cc model up by 33.3% and it made an appearance at last years model competition evening at one of the CAMFC monthly gatherings. At that time it was unfinished but I think it was the model that landed me a trophy at the February AGM. I recall I won three awards for the pile of models I brought along but can`t recall which one exactly won the trophy. That said, I`m pretty sure it was the big Ultra Stick that did it!! It is a big bruiser and probably somewhat heavier than an original kit version. It weighs in at some 14Lb with the wing and metal geared servos accounting for about 4Lb of the total all up dry flying weight. It is a tad heavy aft of CoG and I put that down to an over heavy build at the tail end plus only having an SC1.08 on the front. Lead has had to be added. I think power might be marginal so when I get back to that model again, I`ll be looking for something like a cheapo Mokki 1.40 which might help get weight and balance under better control. The genuine big 30cc model flies like a witch. There is a Youtube vid around which shows a fella called Azza flying the nuts off the thing. Although it is a big model, it seems to do everything its smaller brother does without difficulty. The most popular motors seem to be around 35cc and are petrol four stroke. There we go. Mike
  6. Congratulations on passing your A test, Mike! The Stick looks good, despite it's little skirmish with the tree. I wonder, does the Hangar 9 30cc Ultra Stick appeal?
  7. Earlier
  8. I thought it might be of some interest to others to read about my very positive experience of working towards and taking my A-test with CAMFC. Some of my modelling background here then. Back in the 1970`s, I started my modelling journey with the encouragement of my Father. We had hooked up with several other local modellers through my Fathers links with the construction industry. Two of his business contacts were keen RC flyers. Father was an architect, Geoff Swafield was a quantity surveyor and Brian Kilner was a building company director. The three of them decided to set up a new flying club based on the open and accessible games field behind the Riddlesdown Secondary School. Father became founder Hon Sec, Geoff became Chairman and Brian was Treasurer. I assume they sought permission to fly from that field from the authorities. That was back in 1972 and I was about fourteen at the time. The field was large and flat and proved ideal for the purpose. New members were quickly accumulated and we forged strong links with the Epsom Club. Seemingly the favoured model flown was the Super 60 trainer which was often powered by an HP.61 and modified to have an aileron wing with little or no dihedral. Radio gear was frequently 27Mhz Skyleader Clubman in four or six channel format and servicing, radio and spare radio parts were easily sourced from Skyleader who occupied part of the control tower at Croydon Airport. Our local model shop was in South Croydon where the lovely Ted Setterfield operated Heset Model Supplies. The second local retailer were the Hooper brothers who had a high street shop in Caterham on the Hill. The Hoopers were heavily involved with the Caterham MFC and our James remembers them well. The tenure behind the Riddlesdown school didn`t last long. Inevitably noise issues killed use of the site. A move took us south to a field behind the then Noble Lowdes(?) Insurance company playing field between Hamsey Green and Warlingham. Essentially, the field was little more than a quarter of a mile further up the road towards Warlingham from the current CAMFC meeting venue at Trenham Drive. The field was closely bordered by trees which we hoped would control noise issues. Sadly not. About a year after taking occupation, we were on the move south again to a field immediately next door to the now Knights Garden Centre. Again noise got us, a court case ensued and was lost. Off we went again. This time to another enclosed field half a mile east of "The Bull" on Chelsham Green. Within a few years the field was lost due to the local owner wishing to change its use. That was around 1979. Father and I dropped out of the modelling scene for a couple of years due to having taken on the mammoth task of building a house. I was soon to move away from the area to pursue a career in the PR, marine and aviation industries. Sadly, becoming married, having children, getting divorced and following other interests took me away from modelling for around forty four years. Father has kept his links with the Riddlesdown Club and I have indeed joined it once again. Now flying from a site below Edenbridge, the site is some sixteen miles distant from my current home at Warlingham. That journey doesn`t sound far but for me, it is a fair hike in a car which I don`t enjoy due to having a collapsed and herniated lower lumbar and raging sciatica down my right leg. Pain levels become uncomfortable and that trip to the site and back is not nice. It suits me better to be a CAMFC member which is just ten minute journey. My thanks go to Rob Newman and our wonderful Emma for roping me into CAMFC in April 2018. Problems with my ailing Father meant I didn`t do much flying in 2018. I built a 47" Mini Super with which I infrequently staggered around the Fickleshole skies re-learning basic flying techniques from forty four years ago. It has been a steep learning curve. Whilst the flying came back easily, I had to get my teeth into electric power and the advancements of 2.4Ghz radio technology. I soon learned that the hobby was far more regulated than it was forty years ago and the emphasis was on safety and the latest Dft/CAA requirements. It quickly became obvious that gaining an A-test was a vital part of modern day model flying requirements both from the legislative aspects and to ensure maximum safety at flying sites. If I wanted to progress the hobby, then I had work to do. Having satisfied the Club Committee that I could fly to BMFA and local Club rules, the A-test learning curve began in April this year and in May I piled the flights on to gain the experience necessary. In addition I boned up on the 23 BMFA oral questions together with our local club rules and also studied the BMFA handbook and the CAP658 CAA publication. As much time and effort went into that as attempting to learn what was required for the practical A-test flying examination. As far as the oral questions were concerned, committing them to memory really wasn`t difficult for me but one did have to pick out the operative information contained therein. To achieve this I read the questions on a three times daily basis for about ten days before the test, but most importantly, wrote it all out by hand on four sheets of A4 paper. This learning technique was taught to me at a CAA licensed training "agency" ie Brunel Technical College in Bristol between 1993 and 1996 where I studied for Licensed Aircraft Maintenance Engineers certification under Section A8-20 of the Air Navigation Order. (As an aside, the nick name of the didactic Head of School was "Ponchas the Pilot"!) Manually writing out all those questions by hand helps the brain absorb the material into the "Ownership and Possession" part of ones brain. Once you mentally take ownership of the material, then it is more likely to hit and stick to the little grey cells. Writing things out on paper by hand helps focus the mind and provides you with a regular "refresh" by quizzing yourself when coming up to examination time. The human brain is fully capable of achieving a good degree of retention provided you are interested in the subject and are capable of holding and compartmentalizing information. Carried out in a relaxed fashion, learning need not be difficult and it can be quite surprising what you have retained even years after you did a cramming session. At Aero School, I soon found myself developing a sharpened mind which seemed to open up and become more absorbent the more I studied. So with the A-test oral material, I found I enjoyed learning and that gave me the confidence when it came to oral examination. It pleased me greatly to answer the questions from Trevor and only on a couple of occasions did I have to dredge deeper through my mental filing system to come up with an answer. I always regard my own mind as infinitely expandable but operating in a slightly clunky fashion similar to lap top running Windows XP......it gets there eventually but that is sufficient for the purpose! As far as the A-test flights were concerned, I was operating at a level of less than full confidence. On the Sunday before the test, I was confident of a pass under coming test conditions on the Tuesday. I`d flown reasonably well in front of around twenty club members that afternoon and managed three consecutive dead stick landings on the pitch. I felt good and happy and was clearly primed and ready for the test. Next day (Monday) the wind had dropped to nothing and any that there was came from the North West rather than from the East. I knew that landings would be faster than on Sunday and that I`d have to work a bit harder to set the model up for the finals approaches between the two trees at the Biggin Hill end of the landing patch. I managed a couple of good flights but on my third landing l lost concentration for a moment and caught the model on the lower bough on the right side of the huge model eating oak tree! The Ultra Stick lodged in the tree for a couple of seconds before dropping flat to the ground. The damage to the tail, a wing tip, a wing leading edge and a displaced wing/fuselage mount was enough to cause me nine hours of frantic repairs and a consequential loss of built up confidence. Next day, I flew a test flight to confirm the model was good again but I certainly had the jitters. I could have cried off taking the test but I decided to continue regardless. (Get back on the horse that threw you attitude.) I`m a pretty emotionless person and refused to let the tree incident get a strangle hold on me. Never the less, my flying no doubt showed signs of nervousness. Trevor was the examiner and was typically he was his usual encouraging self and showed sympathy for my dose of jitters. I was chuffed to bits to hear I had passed the test and on the way home bought a chilled bottle of Pinot to enjoy in a deck chair on the patio. In the afternoon, I fell asleep, rather exhausted but very happy..... Saturday saw me attend the Sevenoaks fly in/barbecue. I flew three flights and began to feel the confidence return. It became obvious that the more elapsed time and the more flying I put in between the tree smash and my later flights, the sooner I would begin to forget about the incident. I know that almost everyone finds that oak tree at some time so the best thing to do is just put it down to experience and laugh it off. These things happen. The A-test examination occurred fairly quickly for me. I had the advantage of learning to fly models when still a teenager. Even forty years later, the skills had stayed with me and just needed polishing up again. I suppose the run up to the test took me about six weeks and in the final week I attempted to fly almost every day dependent on suitable weather conditions. At all times I was conscious that the Club had given me the total responsibility of my own actions which included adherence to CAP658, the content of the BMFA guidelines, BMFA questions and also those local rules of our Club. Trevor Searle who kindly nurtured my journey towards the test was consulted when ever I required advice and I listened intently to his advice if I was seen to have strayed off the track. I`m immensely grateful for his quiet, careful and watchful tutelage and his regular appraisal of my progress. As a pupil it is important that one listens to ones mentor and then takes the steps necessary to advance to the next stage or correct errors in procedure if they become evident. Trevors` unflappable temperament instills instant confidence and I can`t thank him enough for his time and efforts on my behalf. As I was a returning flyer after a 44 year break, I surmised that my reappearance on the modelling scene would probably be at a low intermediate level. That recognized, I began to look for a suitable air-frame for the A-test training regime. Knowing that I would need a tough model and one that I could easily repair myself, I discounted most of the ARTF/PNP foamy offerings. They can look a dreadful mess after multiple repairs and in any case, I really don`t seem able to bond with a model that I have not built myself. I was looking for a laser cut ply and balsa model that was capable of absorbing a huge amount of punishment on the lead up to taking the test. In my internet search, the Hanger 9 Ultra Stick 10cc quickly gained my interest. Whilst the H9 kit is ARTF, there was enough work needed from myself to enable me to bond with the model and make it "mine". Now having six of these models, some of which are scratch built copies, I can usually build an H9 kit example in abut nine hours. That the US was a product off the design board of Ali Machinchy gave the model some serious credentials. Sales videos confirmed that the model could be used as a benign advanced trainer but could also operate as something akin to a flying witch on a broomstick. There was no opposition or competition really. At £207 delivered from Als Hobbies (Ali Macs` fathers model shop in Milton Keynes) all that was needed to complete the kit to flying condition was the power system, radio receiver, suitable Lipos, an ESC and six standard servos. In my case, I asked George Worley at 4-max to spec and supply the power system. George sent me a 70a ESC, a 5065-420Kv motor, a 3700mAh lipo, a 14x8 prop (15x8 found to be better) and a motor program card. That package came out at around £270 so it wasn`t particularly cheap. Savings could be made by buying cheaper gear or going the i/c route with a .60 size or larger two stroke glow motor. Would the Ultra Stick be suitable for a raw ab initio student pilot? Perhaps not.....a new flyer really needs a couple of cheap and cheerful PNP models on which to cut his flying teeth. I`d say for a beginner, he really needs a relatively valueless model that can be bashed and smashed without fear of having to find over £200 each time the model gets hit hard enough to make it a bin bag job. Training thrills and spills can and do happen! There are plenty of cheap trainer models around and the possible the demise of a cheapy shouldn`t cause too many tears before bedtime. My suggestion for a newbie pilot would be to take advice from his tutor in respect of selecting a low value tool to fly until basic flying skills are attained. Once that is achieved, moving onto a more expensive model such as the Ultra Stick could then become a sensible progression. A newcomer to the hobby is almost certainly best taught using a buddy box lead and two similar linked transmitters. Once a reasonable standard of proficiency has been reached, then I believe it is essential that the the newbie flyer gains flying time off the buddy box system. It is one thing flying with a tutor having master control with one transmitter and the novice being on the end of the buddy lead with the slave transmitter. It is quite another thing flying off the buddy box system as one progresses to flying solo. As a newbie progresses to flying solo, he should also have studied and taken on board the contents of CAP658, the BMFA guidelines and questions and the local club rules. At our Croydon Club progressing to a level of basic proficiency leading to the A-test allows the novice flyer to fly off the buddy box system as part of the learning curve once reasonable proficiency has been reached. At other Clubs, the regime is not so helpful and one is tied into the buddy box system until the day of the test. I don`t think that is particularly helpful as it could come as something of a shock to suddenly find oneself off the buddy box in one swift moment. I think our Croydon Club operates an excellent policy of allowing you to fly solo and off the buddy lead before you take the A-test and I`ve been very grateful for that. It has meant that I could visit the Fickleshole site alone and get some true solo experience and practice achieved before submitting to examination under test conditions. My next target is obviously the B-test. Subject to test flights and confirmation that the model is suitable, my plan is to use my low wing version (conversion) of the H9 Ultra Stick. This is simply a standard 60" Ultra Stick modified by turning the fuselage upside down, correcting side thrust, adding a couple of inches of dihedral and re-locating the landing gear. That is for the future after progressing flying skills to the test standard. So thanks again to Trevor for his time and assistance. The picture below shows us together immediately after my A-test and was sent to me by Ivan Smith. The other image is of my Ultra Stick low wing conversion which might make a good model for B-test flying. Mike K
  9. An update on flying my No 1 Ultra Stick. This is an original built in June last year which first flew in the hands of Steve Fysh last November at the Riddlesdown MFC site below Edenbridge. The model was proclaimed as all good with pleasant handling, nice landing characteristics but performance wise was not that quick on the 6 cell, 420Kv and 14x8 prop. This model and several others built since November languished in my hanger awaiting the onset of nicer weather. The model flew again in mid April 2019 at Riddlesdown with me being passed the transmitter on that second flight. After a 44 year break from the hobby, I found no control difficulty but was obviously a tad rusty with technique. That didn`t stop me making several good flights with take offs and landings not causing any real issues other than learning the finals landing positioning. I was quickly doing "touch and goes" and received a dedicated two training flights off the buddy box to fine up on technique and to start to prepare me for the A-test. A prop change at that time to a 15x8 proved beneficial to performance and lead sheet was added as nose ballast when using a lighter 1.2Lb 3700 Lipo. This shifted nose weight forward and alleviated a tail down flying attitude. When using a 4500 lipo weighing 1.5Lb, additional nose ballast was not required. If I were to offer further opinion on this, I`d say it might be prudent to move internal fuselage mounted rudder and elevators forward as far as possible towards the CofG position with the relatively light 5065-420Kv or 360Kv electric motor set up. Installing a large lipo in the nose makes reasonable sense but space is somewhat cramped with a 4500 unit. As regards suitability for an A-test, No1 Ultra Stick fitted the task to perfection. I worked solidly for two weeks attempting to fly every day at Fickles hole. Dear Trevor made a benign and very encouraging tutor, initially flying the Stick to get the feel for it, then passing control over to me using a second compatible Futaba transmitter with buddy box lead. I requested this action as the Fickeshole flying site is about one sixth of the size of that found at the Riddlesdown field down below Edenbridge at Mark Beech. I had the jitters about initially flying the Stick myself as it was somewhat larger than the 47" Mini Super I cut my teeth on when flying from Fickleshole in late 2018. The first flight under Trevors` experienced guidance went well, indeed I even managed a passable landing. Suitably reassured, I then did a second flight by buddy box with Trevor getting finger ache by having to permanently hold the master Tx transfer switch up for so long. The next flight had me doing take-offs, "touch and goes" and several more landings. Trevor said I was good to go solo, so off I went again with confidence and technique again improving by the moment. Then followed the two weeks of concerted effort to learn the A-test schedule and bone up on the 32 questions on the BMFA syllabus and fully drumming in the CAMFC local rules found in the Club joining pack. To memorize the BMFA questions, I hand copied onto four sheets of A4 paper both the questions and the answers. In this way it forced the contents into my mind and I took "possession and ownership" of the content. This methodology was learned when I studied at Brunel College in Bristol twenty six years ago for a Civil Aviation Authority Licensed Aircraft Maintenance Engineers qualification. (LAME) The method worked well enough for me all those years back so I saw no reason why it should not work again. Repeated scanning of those question and our local Club rules helped greatly when on test day, Trevor quizzed me for answers. So what makes the Ultra Stick such a good candidate for A and possibly B-test use? Firstly the model is exceptionally resistant to damage. It shrugs off heavy landings, has a wide flight envelope encompassing the ability to fly very slowly especially with just a little flap deployed. It is also aerobatic, will fly rolling circles and 3D in the right hands. It is apparently capable of flying with a two stoke .46 up to and including a Saito R3 19cc petrol radial! I`ve only had one mishap due to a momentary loss of concentration when attempting a landing in flat calm conditions from the Biggin Hill end of the site. Frustratingly, the large oak tree in the corner marched out and grabbed the model! The Stick lodged in a bough for a couple of seconds before dropping horizontally twenty feet to the ground. Damage was confined to a slightly damaged starboard leading edge, a crumpled wing tip, the tail-plane knocked off, the wing/fuselage mount torn out and several minor dings. Nine hours of frantic repair work had the model ready again in time to take the A-test the next day. I can`t admit anything else other than to say I suffered a confidence drop following the tree incident. I flew a check flight with the Stick first thing on the Tuesday morning. The jitters had returned but the Ultra Stick remained docile and forgiving of my somewhat shaky flying during the test. Undoubtedly, the most difficult task to perform during the A-test is the dead stick landing. I`d practiced this task many times during my run up to test day and out of the fifteen or so dead stick attempts done during practice, only three of them resulted in my landing short in the rough. At least that gave me some experience of dead stick landings and I`m glad I put the effort into attempting to get that aspect of the test well ingrained. The Ultra Stick took a severe pounding during those attempts at forced landings but apart from sustaining a slightly bent rear motor cruciform mount, it came through unscathed. Had I used an old Super Sixty for similar training, I`m sure it would have gone home as a nylon covered pile of matchwood. It simply wouldn`t have taken the punishment. On the day of the test and the dead stick demonstration, I hit the pitch nicely at about a quarter of the way along the strip and finished the roll out without running into the high field crop. The Ultra Stick looks after you in the air and tolerates speedy arrivals with aplomb. I have two people to thank for helping me obtain the A-test. My sincere thanks go to Trevor Searle for his tolerance, patience and time input during the past couple of months. Trevor is totally unflappable and is a master at gauging pupil aptitude and instilling enthusiasm and quiet correction where necessary. I made mistakes along the A-test journey but Trevor helped with timely and effective correction. So a very big thanks are extended to him. I`m deeply grateful. At a distance in Illanois, I have also voiced my thanks to Ali Machinsky and Hanger 9 for producing such a cost effective, robust and totally bullet proof model. My No 1 Stick has done me proud and I can only say that if you are looking for a docile model to complete an A-test, the the 60" Ultra Stick ticks all the boxes. It does what it says on the tin and the videos of Alis` prototypes demonstrate model capability. Cheers, guys. Thank you all too for your help and encouragement. The image below of Trevor and I together following the test was kindly sent to me by Ivan Smith. Mike
  10. Spitfire in near miss at Biggin Hill https://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-england-london-48413109
  11. Here for sale i have my models and gear Weston mini Magnum complete with tuned 36 nitro engine, spektrum AR6210 RX with Sat and new Nimh 2300mah battery. Hitec HS-625MG and HS-65MG servos. Engine is a screamer! EFX racer complete with Zippy 35c 1800 battery and Spektrum AR6100 RX with factory servos. Some spares included. Very very fast! I have setup the ESC to give some 'Engine Breaking' as per the ESC instructions as this really does require flaps. Trex600 electric with Zippy 25c 5800 battery, Assualt 600 motor, Spektrum AR7000 Rx and Sat, Align GP750 gyro. 100A ESC has just blown so good for spares and damage to the carbon frame but still flies. Turnigy TGY-4409MD, Align DS615 servos. Trex600 Nitro FBL, beautiful clean machine. BeastX requires setup and has new Reaction 20c 5000mah Lipo battery. OS Max 55 motor and carbon main blades. On board glow start. Futaba S9256, S31525 servos. AR7000 RX with Sat. Avicraft Panic biplane. Needs TLC. Comes with Futaba S3004 and FP-S148 servos. Also a trip was made to Avicraft to buy new parts so engine mount, servo links, aileron links, fuel tank, wheels and all sorts were bought to fix this up after the previous owner crashed it. Fuel also included and MDS68 engine was bought but turns out to be a non runner so good for spares. Spektrum DX8 TX with charger and manuals. Optimix 20% fuel, Duraglow 16 fuel, carry case, glow start and charger, JP fuel pump, Imax B6 charger and leads with Ally carry case. Im happy for this to go as a set or individually and open to offers. More photos can be sent if required Also a full balsa laser cut kit of Hannos MAGIC 60 with plans and fibreglass canopy and cowel up for offers
  12. In mid April 2019, I took the Ultra Stick theme further. I began construction of a high wing, twin engine version. The project has been interesting with development occurring around a loose plan based on Ali Machinchys` Hanger 9 model. My twin is completely scratch built with the exception of an original Hanger 9 landing gear. Two fuselages were constructed in the first week. As I was to dimension and cut one set of fuselage parts, it seemed sensible to make an additional spare for future use. It can either be used as a replacement item in the event of irreparable breakage of one of my other Ultra Sticks, or can be used for another Ultra Stick build project. The twin uses a standard section wing rib taken from an original wing when I built the low wing version. Each wing rib was cut by hand from 3mm balsa rather than hard to work plywood. Each wing rib took me about eight minutes using the original rib as a template and cutting with a sharp scalpel blade. As a batch, the collection of ribs were dimension checked to ensure uniformity prior to inclusion in the wing build. A standard wing has 17 ribs. My twin version has had the wing stretched by 180mm ie 90mm/one extra panel on each wing half and uses a total of 25 wing ribs together with a slightly thickened 3mm x approximately 1700mm long. ply main spar. The spar has a vertical depth of 31mm . All ribs and spar components notch together to form a strong, accurate and warp free structure. Notch cutting in front and main spars is fiddly and time consuming but it is worth the effort. A plated dove tail joint joins the two wing spar components together with the joint being off centre of the mid point of the wing. The extra ribs replace lost wing area as a result of the twin version employing two 90mm wide engine nacelles. Essentially, the nacelles are two front sections of a standard Ultra Stick fuselage. The sides extend up into the wing and the tops are shaped as a standard wing rib. In other words, the nacelles form part of the wing structure rather than just being glued to the bottom of the wing. Ailerons are also stretched in length but flaps remain at standard size. The construction was fairly complex and time consuming and took me a good three weeks of concerted effort. Total build time has been about one month in total. A standard scratch built Ultra Stick by comparison usually takes me a just a couple of weeks. The fin and tail feathers have also been stretched by a proportional amount to match the new proportions of the twin wing. The model is now fitted with two OS Max 46SF two stroke glow motors. Sadly, they do not contra-rotate. One very low time motor was sourced in the UK, the other is brand new and unused but I had to source from the USA to find a good unit. The two motors then, probably cost me about £85 for the pair. One will be known as "Essex", the other as "Miami"! The wing stretch and weight of two motors has increased the final all up dry weight to 10.8Lb. That is about 5Kg. The fuselage only houses two metal gear servos for elevator and rudder together with a Futaba FS617 RX and a five cell, 2600NiMh battery. Cof G was easily obtained even with elevator and rudder metal geared servos tail mounted. For interest, eight metal geared standard servos weigh just over one pound. They are not light weight objects. Each motor with prop and silencer weighs just over a pound. The wing is extremely nose heavy with motors fitted even though the four MG aileron and flap servos are mounted aft of the CofG in the wing. The Cof G was easily set at a slightly forward position by placing the 2600 NiMh power pack right up against the front bulk head. ie the bulkhead to which the motor would normally be bolted. The nacelles also house two eight ounch Du-bro tanks and two mini servos for throttle control. Standard silencers are fitted. This model will obviously require noise testing. Overall, this model weighs about two pounds more than a standard Ultra Stick. Ali Mac built one of his prototype models with a Saito R3 radial spark ignition motor. That motor weighs about the same as my two OS motors. As a consequence of the heavy weight, Ali also mounted the rudder and elevator servos in the tail. I surmise my twin version probably weighs around the same as Alis` Saito version....hence the use of us both using the tail end servos to achieve a reasonable CofG. A nose cone is nylon sheer bolted to the centre fuselage. In these images, the cone appears rather long and may well get cut back in length. It is easier to cut a lump off rather than to retro fit additions. Getting the length looking right has been a challenge. I`ll get it up to the field and take others opinion on the matter. Then I can get the saw out again and hack a lump off! Members pointed me towards James as the test pilot. When asked, James responded well to the suggestion. So it now remains for me to set the model up and ensure engine reliability. Advice suggests I should fit a gyro on the rudder to assist in the event of an engine failure. That seems to be a good idea! Anyway, here are the images of the build and the finished model. Comments, as always, appreciated. Ignore the images of the tri-motor on No 3 fuselage. That just happened to be a fuselage I had to hand when I trial fitted the wing for the first time! A tri-motor...well that might be an interesting future project...... How many Ultra Sticks in the hanger now? Five and a half smaller versions and one complete scratch built 80" monster..... What next on the Ultra Stick theme....perhaps a canard, a bi-plane or even a tri-plane. Watch this thread! Mike K
  13. Rich

    Fun Fly Day

    Fun Fly Day at North Kent Nomads on the 26th May, on the Darenth Valley Path which runs from the Dartford Marshes up to the River Thames. Its going to be a day of Fun Flying with a variety of light hearted fun competitions to have a go at, with a trophy or 2 for the best of them that have a go. No BMFA achievement scheme certificate required.
  14. Rich

    Epsom Electric (FW) Fly-in

    The BMFA SE Area in conjunction with Epsom Radio Flying Club will be holding an Electric fixed wing fly in on Sunday 19th May 2019 in the area of Horley, Surrey. Open from 10:00, pilots briefing at 10:45, flying from 11:00 to 18:00. Pilots must be BMFA members and if not holding at least an “A” test will need to fly under supervision. There will be ample car parking and a BBQ. Send an email secretary@southeast.bmfa.org to register your models. Please include your BMFA number to receive directions to the flying field.
  15. So following on from the BBC's terribly irresponsible reporting regarding 1 Air Lingus pilot and an "unconfirmed sighting of an object" outside of the Gatwick Exclusion Zone, here: https://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-england-sussex-48086013 I decided that enough is enough and wrote to the BBC to ask 2 questions: Q1. Who wrote and titled the article, or at the very least was responsible for it being published? Q2. What facts do you have to prove the 1 pilot had seen a drone? Well, in true BS fashion, the reply I got from the BBC South East edior today was this: Basically he just wrote back repeating what the article had said and avoided my question completely! So I replied back to him reminding him that I knew what the article states, and that he had completely ignored my 2 questions, and could he please answer the questions. Please do feel free to let Mr Gibbs (https://twitter.com/leegibbs_) know if you are dissatisfied with the reporting of Gatwick events as it seems to be his department that keeps inserting the words "Drone" into everything that moves anywhere in the South East! I will continue to keep on his case until he provides satisfactory evidence that backs up the BBC's use of the word "Drone" and failig that I'll be asking them to re-word there articles to stick to only what they can actually prove.
  16. Rich

    BMFA FlightFest

    until
    The BMFA are holding a weekend long event at their HQ in Buckminster for anybody to either go along and try out model flying completely free or to spend the day there for £8 per day. Camping on-site is available for £8 per-night Contact the BMFA for more info. https://bmfa.org/Contests-Events/Contest-and-Event-Calendar
  17. Hi Ben, I am looking for a cheap trainer for my son to learn to fly. Do you still have the red and yellow trainer and if so, what would your best price be? Regards Darren Wygers CAMFC member
  18. Emma

    Phoenix RC Dongle

    Sorry for not replying sooner, I've managed to borrow 2 now thank you but i'd like to get mine fixed or replaced if possible. I have taken it to work to see if i can do it. if not Trevor i might give you a shout. Emma
  19. did you get this sorted Emma, I could have a look thru my stuff? Peter
  20. Trevor

    Phoenix RC Dongle

    Might be able to fix the lead for you, depending on how broken it is
  21. Davidford

    Heli Setup

    Hi All, Is there anyone fairly close to Rddhill way that would be able to assist in heli setup. Im Happy to make it worth while. Currently have TREX FBL 600 nitro and lecy Rex 600 Copy with a DX8 Tx. Ive slowly learned to fly but have no idea on how to setup to fly these new ones. May look to Avicraft and have a trip tomorrow Cheers Dave. feel free to bung me a message 07976939743
  22. Hello, i was wondering if anyone has a non broken Phoenix rc flight simulator dongle they aren't currently using that they might be willing to lend me. My USB lead into the box has been damaged during my house move and I could really do with practicing my take offs and landings before I risk my airplane. thank you for reading emma
  23. Here is my latest low wing conversion Ultra Stick project which is now complete and ready to go. A couple of weeks ago I bought another standard Ultra Stick kit from Ali Machinchys` father at Als Hobbies in Milton Keynes. This makes the third one I`ve had from him to date. The first two have been built, one as an electric version with a 5060-420Kv motor running on a 3700 or 4500 six cell and UBEC set up. The second one has a brand new and unused Irvine .72 nailed to the front. I also have a scratch built cloned fuselage fitted with a low time ASP 1.08. A genuine spare wing will be sourced from Munich over the next few days to give it its own wing. Why from Munich? Well, even with delivery charges and customs and UK delivery added, I can make a saving of £36 on that spare wing with the complete and covered "spare part" with ailerons coming for exactly £80. In the UK, the lowest price I can find for that same part, costs another £36. In perspective, given materials and covering costs of scratch building, it hardly makes building a cloned wing a financially viable proposition let alone finding about twenty five hours of personal time required to build it from raw materials. OK, everyone knows I have the hots on the H9 Ultra Stick ARTF kits which are not only exceptional value at £206 delivered, they fly like a witch, are very forgiving with a wide flight envelope, but best of all, the kit is so well designed and has a large amount of parts included which makes building a standard high wing kit possible in only about eight hours. Over the past year or so, I`ve looked at a number of internet forums and at YouTube vids. This has given me an insight into the world wide Hanger 9 Ultra Stick scene. It has been interesting to see what other modellers have done with this particular H9 offering. One of the most fascinating models was a standard kit modified to take an I-beam across the engine bearers which was then fitted with two electric motors. Ungainly the model was but boy, did that model do the business when flown. The sound was amazing. Just as interesting was that the modeller was based in deepest Alaska and was flying the Stick in winter half light off a beach covered with foot high snow! I also tripped over a 2001 vintage article published in the American RCM magazine. The writer, Jim Feldmann had taken one of the early Hanger 9 78" Ultra Stick Lite kits and converted it to a low winger. He then wrote about it for the magazine and included detailed images of the salient conversion points, miniature plans and also helpful pointers for anyone thinking of converting a kit from high to low wing. Google images also showed that several other modellers had also built similar low wing conversions. The Feldmann article gave me the impetus to perform surgery to Ali Machinchys` latest Hanger 9 kit and to get into email conversation with him at the Horizon Hobbies HQ in Illanois where he holds the position of Senior Product Development Manager. Ali was interested in my comments about the standard Ultra Stick kit and was quite amused when I said that I intended to chop a kit about and turn it into a low winger. Now the model is complete, images have been sent to Ali and I`m presently awaiting his comments. I`ve also mentioned that I quite fancied building a high wing, twin OS .40 engine version but that is a subject for another thread. The conversion was straight forward enough and without any particular issues. I noted Jim Feldmann had initially flown his conversion with a standard flat wing that was devoid of any dihedral. This caused the model to suffer adverse yaw when rudder was applied. Right rudder input would cause the model to roll to the left which was of course rather undesirable. Jim then cut the wing in two and added an inch of dihedral under each wing tip which cured the issue at a single stroke. Rob at Avicraft and indeed our James both thought that adding dihedral would be un-nessesary. I went away and cogitated on the conundrum. I hated deciding to turn down the advice of Rob and James especially as they are two such experienced guys. Mr Feldmann said in his article that the model improved greatly as a result of the dihedral addition and that the resulting improvement gave the low winger almost identical benign flying characteristics as the original high wing configuration. My flying abilities are presently advanced ab initio at best so I decided to err on the side of caution and give the model the highest chance of survival in my hands that I could possibly manage. So dihedral this model has gained at this point in time. A flat wing can also be trialled at a later date. The next item that required my attention was moving the landing gear from the bottom of the fuselage to the top. The idea of the conversion was that the fuselage would be stripped of the original H9 covering and simply turned over to provide instant low wing configuration. On the high winger, the landing gear axle line is just behind the leading edge of the wing. Short of building the landing gear into the front of the wing just behind the leading edge, on the low winger I would have to accept that the landing gear had to re-locate forward of the leading edge putting the axle line about two inches further forward when compared to the high winger. Jim Feldmanns model was built to that maxim and he said there was little to chose between high and low wing versions when it came to take off, landing and during ground taxi work. That gave me further encouragement. The Dural sheet, pre-formed landing gear is standard H9 Ultra Stick which on the high wing original, points slightly forwards. As I needed the axle line to move rearwards on the low winger, I simply reversed the landing gear and put the wheel spats on back to front! A classic case of keep it simple, stupid!! The thrust angle for the engine was reversed at the front firewall and I left down thrust as set in the high wing kit. Only after examining images taken yesterday, did I note that the engine appeared to have a considerable degree of up-thrust. How I missed that detail, I don`t know but the issue has now been fixed by insertion of a covered 1/4" ply packer inserted between the top part of the two part nylon engine mount and the top of the firewall. The engine now appears rather better zero`d out and the panic packer is almost un-noticable! The wing was cut in half with a modellers hand saw. Wing ribs and spars are made from lazer cut and profiled 3mm ply. Ribs are notched at the TE, LE and mid depth section to engage the spars during construction. Lengthwise, the two part spar is joined off centre from the centre section with a dovetail joint which is over plated with a section of 3mm ply which acts as the reinforcement joiner. Above and below the main spar are two conventional 6mm square spruce spars which together with the full depth ply spar, run full length to the tips of both wing sections. 2.5mm balsa sheet spans the centre section with capping strips topping the majority of the wing ribs. It is traditional construction given a modern twist. On the standard wing center line there exists a centrally placed 3mm rib. To keep that rib in one piece to act as a pattern for my re-construction, I cut down either side of the rib in order to preserve it as a template. That done, all I had to do was cut two new and identical ribs plus one that had and extra 2.5mm of height added to wing sheet level. The three new ribs were laminated together and that gave a glue land for new sheeting to be added either side of the center line. Dihedralled wing joiners were constructed for all three spars with the LE and TE spars having long, taper scarf joints machined on their exposed faces with a similar detail being machined onto the new dihedralled wing joiner reinforcer at the LE and TE. A replacement planted on balsa leading edge was glued to the front spar and sanded to profile. Wing dowels were re-located as the wing orientation is turned up side down (or downside up) which ever way you might wish to see it! Re-building the wing took just a day and a half and although I had to cut back covering in order to chop into the wing, some of this has now been replaced with matching Hobby King white and black covering with the Oracover bright day-glow orange also requiring replacement in various areas. Inevitably you can see where I have replaced covering sections but the end result is probably a 95% good job. I could have completely recovered the wing but that measure seemed rather extravagant. You have to examine closely to see where I have cut and shut this wing back together. The wing weight gain after reconstruction was just two and a half ounces. The fin and rudder required triangular additions once the fuselage had been inverted. The tail plane is mounted exactly as for the high winger but obviously the fin and rudder had to mount at 180 degrees variance from the high wing model. Small dorsal fins have been added in front of the fin and below the fuselage. A modified Du-bro tail wheel assembly was required in order for the tail wheel assembly to mount correctly. Inverted, the flat profile of the Ultra Stick looked very poverty stricken and uninteresting. It also visually looked "unfinished" and the presented top decking looked like it had been penned by the man who designed the railway sleeper. To counter that effect, a simple shallow, light weight "whale back" structure has now been constructed on what is now the top of the fuselage. This tapers in a straight line from zero at the front firewall to a height of 18mm approximately 30% back from the wing LE line and then again tapers down to about 6mm at the rudder stock. The effect is of a long, gentle curve of an elongated aerofoil which adds interest and character to an otherwise bland expanse of fuselage top deck. To pep things up further, I plundered Jim Feldmanns model for his cockpit idea. Jim had a molded, clear plastic canopy made for his model which is somewhat reminiscent of a P.51. To save additional cost and effort, I cobbled up a light ply and balsa cockpit, sanding to profile and covering with white Hobby King film and some silver film to hint at a glazed area. This cockpit represents an option or two. Once the model has been test flown without the canopy, it can then be added if desired and the model reevaluated to ensure flying characteristics haven`t been unduly eroded. Fitting only requires a bit of double sided tape and the gap disguised with a few strips of HK covering material. The motor fitted is a brand new, unmarked and as yet un-run ASP.91 sourced at a bargain price from eBay. It is side winder fitted with the exhaust exiting just inboard of the starboard landing gear leg. It looks a neat and tidy installation and one that is rather prettier than an inverted install. My 1.08 version has the inverted set up and frankly, it is downright ugly as well as being more challenging at start up time. I changed the standard 8oz fuel tank for a Du-bro DB412 12oz tank in view of the large engine fitted and its fuel thirst requirement. The tank just squeezes through the bulkhead aperture forward of the wing. I soon realised that an access hatch would be impractical given that bottom access would be needed and that any chance of removal via that hatch would be impossible due to the new mounting location for the landing gear. Jim Feldmann also came to a similar conclusion as myself and he too also decided to fit the tank into the model via the wing leading edge bulkhead, dealing with any tank maintenance or cleaning when and if an issue ever arose. I don`t like sealing a tank in place but in this case, like Jim, I had little choice. The model weighs in at 8.3Lbs/3.7Kg and is about a pound heavier than the very light weight electric version. The heavier .91 motor allows rudder and elevator servos to be tail mounted. All servos in this model are metal geared and as a result a pack of eight weigh just over a pound. Seven are fitted in this model. A 2600NiMh 6v Rx and servo battery pack is positioned on the main internal chassis plate just forward of the rear wing sheer bolts. Moving that battery for or aft is easily accomplished and has a useful weight shift which allows the C of G to be altered with little fuss.The weight and balance schedule now being what it is implies that the model is of a similar weight to one of Ali Macs prototypes. On that example, Ali fitted a beautiful if somewhat heavy Saito 19R3 radial engine and countered the weight with rudder and elevator servos placed at the tail plane leading edge. That model flyies wonderfully even at that weight so hopefully mine will do likewise. With a reverse colour scheme now applied and with a standard high wing US along side, I find myself doing a double take each time I see two fully rigged models in the workshop. You think, "Eh, err, which one is the right way up"?! I still haven`t adjust to that visual impact yet. I wonder what others will make of it? As always please guys, comments good or bad appreciated. Mike
  24. Guys, does anyone have a very low time OS Max .40 SF two stoke nitro/glow engine with muffler in near new condition that they might no longer need? I have one almost new engine here but need another identical unit for an up and coming twin Ultra Stick project. Please give me a call or pm me if you have one you no longer need. Thanks. Mike Kennedy. CAMFC member. 07974 131127
  25. I`ve copied and pasted the text below which I`ve extracted from my post asking for advice on a suitable B-test model. As it is about the Ultra Stick, it seems appropriate I add it to this thread. It makes interesting reading. "This is an old PDF from around 2001 and can be found attached at the foot of this posting. It is an extract from the RCM magazine publication of a similar period. This is the write up of an inverted "low wing" conversion undertaken by Jim Feldmann...presumably in the States. Jims` conversion was applied to the then current Hanger 9 Ultra Stick Lite 78" version which was the earlier H9 kit produced before Ali completely reworked the design into the version which hit the suppliers shelves in 2018. Jims` low wing conversion appears very nicely executed having acquired a bubble canopy and pilot, a Pitts type cowl, had its fuselage inverted, fin and rudder inverted together with a dorsal strake below the lower, rear fuselage added and the landing gear moved forward to enable the wing to mount without obstruction. The model has also gained a rounded turtle deck which softens appearance somewhat. My next proposed Ultra Stick is highly likely to be a low winger with an inch or so of dihedral added to the wing to counter adverse rudder yaw. As I understand it from other forums, the low winger then flies pretty much the same as a high wing model. My intention would not be to add the extras that Mr Feldmann built onto his model, but would keep the hard edged appearance of the standard H9 model complete with an "inverted" colour scheme. This would be quickest done by stripping the fuselage covering off completely and recovering once modifications are complete. Using the remaining stock of my Hobby King white and black together with florescent red Oracover which I have here, the re-cover costs will be minimal with time taken to re-cover being just a couple of hours. If another H9 kit arrived tomorrow, I`d estimate that I`d have a conversion ready to fly in little more than a couple of days. These kits really do build quickly and without issue." It looks as if a third landing gear ordered from the States is on the move again out of Heathrow via carrier. This will enable all three models to be fitted with a spatted landing gear. In the meantime, I`m off up to Fickleshole in a moment with a view to joining Trevor for a bit of flying. The plan is to fly the electric Ultra Stick and perhaps run engines on the other two air-frames. I`ll take a camera and see if I can grab some images. Mike Ultra_Stick_Lw_RCM-1307_Article(1).pdf
  26. Here you go, Ben. Available from Als Hobbies on weekday, next day delivery by DPD. Ask for Big Al and mention my name. Ultra Stick 10cc ARF (A-HAN2345) These two videos show Ali discussing the model and flying it. 13:15 Hangar 9 Ultra Stick 10cc ARF 60" Flight Talk 3:54 Hangar 9 Ultra Stick 10cc ARF 60 It would be nice to get a squadron of them flying together! Ten good modellers sat round a table together with basic tools could have one flying in an hour! Mike
  27. Very interesting summary indeed Mike. I have actually been looking at an Ultra Stick as a hack-type model. You see, I used to run a second hand (£45 bargain) Wot Trainer, until her tailplane succumbed to both my exuberant flying and her age. The problem I now have is that the market doesn't seem to be awash with new contenders. All of the new Wot 4' and Wot Trainers are too flimsy for my purposes, and wouldn't cope too well for very long. The other alternative is to immerse myself in the second hand market once more, but there are a few problems with that, the main ones being that they are nearly all crash damaged, too expensive, or would need new engine/radio gear etc. My Wot Trainer had a rx in it, and the faithful SC .46 pulled it around the field doing rolls and pulling gliders for nearly 2 years. The best hack model? Anyone would say the Wot 4, but I might just give the Ultra Stick a chance!
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