Foam board wheels are not very durable. The question is what to do about it. I came across some 1-3/4″ I.D. rubber O-rings recently and thought they might be useful to add some durability to the foam board wheels. The process begins with gluing the artwork to the foam board. There are places on the Internet where you can buy excellent art work for just a few dollars. Then cut the circles out. I used a Logan WA8001 FoamWerks Foamboard Circle Cutter available at Amazon. Glue the rubber O-rings to the wheel. Don’t forget to use the doublers behind the wheel for added strength. And you may find a Center Finder useful to find the exact place where the axle needs to go though. I bought the O-rings on ebay from Mr. O-Ring. Finally I used some rivet parts to act as a bushing inside the wheel. See my Rivets post HERE. The O-ring is 1/4″ thick so the finished wheel is 2″ diameter. Probably suitable for a smaller model such as the FT Minis. I am looking for larger O-rings or something similar. I fly from a grass field and have found that something more like a 3″ diameter wheel will allow me to taxi and get off the ground.
Finally got the internal servos and pushrods finished. Check the pics below. Included is a pic of the pushrod guide that I installed in the fuselage. I used this method instead of the one shown on the Flite Test build video. The method shown on the video with the foam board keepers bends the pushrods and puts tension on them. So the servos need to work more. This method takes some strain off of the servos.
This video shows how the combo of internal pushrods and the slot in the stick fuselage work. At first the slot seemed a bit on the long side, but it turned out to be just about right.
Several years ago Sig Mfg. sold three old time kits that had profile pilots as part of the kit. You can still buy the kits or just the pilot figures directly from Sig. Click HERE to visit the replacement parts page. Then view the parts for the Antionette, Demoiselle, or Deperdussin. The Demoiselle comes with torso, arms, & legs. The others just come from the waist up. You can order online.
The main point of this post is to show an optional way to mount motors that allows you to adjust down and right thrust. This may be needed to improve flight characteristics of some models. In this example I made a new firewall from aircraft plywood.
These are two ways to mount the motor on the firewall. The FT motors come with an X-Mount that can be set vertical or diagonal. The motors come with tiny wood screws and the firewalls have pre-drilled holes for the wood screws. Over time and with vibration wood screws tend to loosen up and back out resulting in a wobbly motor. For me a better way to mount the motor is to set the X-Mount on a diagonal. You’ll need to drill new holes, use blind nuts (also called T-nuts) and socket head cap screws.
The diagonal mount can be used to provide just down thrust, just right thrust, or both down and right thrust. It is a bit easier than using the vertical mount.
Looking from the front, if you put washers under the top of the mount, you get down thrust. If you put washers under the right side of the mount, you get right thrust. And if you put two washers under the upper right corner and one washer each under the upper left corner and lower right corner, you get both down and right thrust. No washers under the lower left corner. If you decided to make a firewall for the diagonal mount, you will need to relocate the hole that the motor wiring goes through. Click HERE to see what the blind nuts look like from behind the fire wall.
While I was working on the FT Speedster I was amazed to see the skewer fall out on the floor! This is the skewer that holds the back end of the power pod in place. Lucky I wasn’t flying. A couple of short pieces of tubing will hold it in place.
When I am working on a project I often have small parts sitting around. I had been keeping them in a small, plastic cup – probably one from Taco Bell. Only problem was that I kept knocking it over. Quick fix was to hot glue the cup onto a piece of foam board. Now it doesn’t tip over so easy.
Here is a link to some (99) photos from this year’s Flite Fest. https://www.flickr.com/photos/safety_fast/albums/72157709881801187
So here is what the finished, installed firewall looks like on the power pod. Needed to notch the foam board a bit to make room for the blind nuts, otherwise the firewall wouldn’t lay flat against the foam board.
Finally went out to fly the FT Old Speedster for the first time. Things didn’t go well. When I went to taxi around it veered left when I gave it throttle. Then when I took off it kept wanting to climb even with several clicks of down elevator trim. The Speedster doesn’t have any down or right trim built into the motor mount. Every balsa model that I have ever built had both down and right trim. Lacking any other insights I decided to do that with the Speedster. I made a new firewall with a larger hole to pass the motor cables through. And I am going to use the X-mount and blind nuts with socket head cap screws. 4-40. To see the solution that I plan to use for down & right thrust, see a previous post here.