Monday, October 22, 2018

Dewey Bird Control Line Adventures 2018

My first real start in model aviation was with ½ A control line planes, I remember building a Carl Goldberg Stuntman 23 when I was 9 years old. Last year in the fall I was trying to fly an electric control line for the first time after no control line flying for many years. I was running out of warm weather and tried to fly in too much wind with too long of lines. The plane was repaired and flown successfully but it looked like this plane was rather fragile to be crashing from beginner mistakes, so over the winter I built a Sig ½ A Dewey Bird to be powered with a Cox Babe Bee .049. 

1/2 A Dewey Bird

Bottom of Piston shows Where Connecting Rod Came Apart

The Cox Babe Bee is another story, I saw it on a hobby shop counter. The owner said it didn't run and that I could have it. It felt like something was broken, it turned out the connecting rod had ripped out of where it connects to the piston. I thought maybe it had over heated as it had a 7-6 wood propeller on it but people tell me larger propellers are run on .049's for Texaco event. I found a piston in my junk parts collection and the engine ran great.

Dewey Bird in Stooge

Electric Control Line

Free flight kept me really busy for most of the summer but after the Nats I fly my Dewey Bird for first time. There was no one to help so I made a stooge using a couple pieces of wood in a drillpress vise. I was using 35' .012 metal lines which I had from childhood. I think 26' lines are recommended, it flew on the long lines but tension was not great. Next time out I flew the Dewey Bird on 26 foot Spider wire lines which were better but it was really gusty that day. It was a good lesson in keeping the line tight when a gust hit it. For the next time flying, I added sidethrust and moved leadouts back. It might have helped a little. Again I tried to loop and stepped backwards really quick to try to regain tension. I tripped in the tall grass and fell on my butt. One more try and the plane went around once but lost tension and went up for another loop but crashed on the bottom. Only broke the propeller but I fell again.

Damage from Slack Lines

 Next time out I tried loops twice and crashed but no damage. Then I leaned the motor out more, I was afraid it would get too lean in the air but it didn't. Now tension was better, I tried a loop and it went around easy with plenty of room to spare. Tried it again and it went around fine. Fly more laps and then decided to try one more time but hesitated and the plane went into the wind and there was slack in the lines. The crash did damage this time, it only took a few minutes to fix when I got home.  

Add Weight to Tail  to Move CG Back

Now it gets dark so early and it has been windy for a couple of weeks. One evening I flew my electric control line again and it flew well.  Then tension is much better with this plane but I still want to get more practice with the ½ A.  I still have a Carl Goldberg Buster with a Fox .35 on it from my childhood I want to fly that again also. 

Goldberg Buster

I realize it would no doubt be easier to learn aerobatic maneuvers with a larger plane; at this point I am just too afraid of crashing a larger plane. There is also the challenge of pushing for higher performance with a small plane. 

Bill Kuhl

No comments:

Post a Comment