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Let us watch your model in the making, from when you open the kit to air-borne! Don't feel you have to chronicle every step, unless you want to. Just send an occasional picture or two and an explanatory note and we can catch up with your progress from time to time on this new page. It will only appear when there's something to report and we can keep as many projects going as you wish. I must reserve the right to select pictures, though, otherwise the page will take too long to download. 


JOHNY HOLLINSHEAD scratch-builds an Xtreme! 

A brief description of how I came to build an Xtreme Lite from scratch, having originally owned and successfully flown a full blooded Xtreme -much better with an OS 60 than the 58 MDS but that's another story! It came to a sorry end in a mid-air with the only other plane in the air. 

I saw the ARTF as a suitable replacement until I required oxygen when I found out the price - over a hundred big ones. I decided I could build one for half that price. I had a plan, a spare building board and a credit card . . . 

xtremea.jpg (46207 bytes)A quick look at the plan, 1/4" sq balsa frame, with 1/8" doubler, stringer turtle deck. Off down to the local shop and some careful wood purchasing, some new scalpel blades. It's a lot cheaper to buy the sheets and cut down all the required parts. xtremeb.jpg (32202 bytes) The wing ribs were cut sandwich method, from 1/16 good quality rib stock lightened by drilling and cutting out holes. The only pre-cut strip was the leading edge, which was 3/8" sq, and the trailing edge, 1/4" x 3/8". To maintain the level at the trailing during the construction I just packed it up with scraps from the scrap box and the straight edge. The wing tips are 1/4" balsa, with huge cut outs. The bulk head is birch ply epoxied and strengthened with ply gussets. All other joints, except the wing retaining nuts, which are also epoxy, are glued using cyano, mainly thin. 

The covering is Solarfilm, the yellow from the scrap box is Monocote. I did pinch the undercarriage design from the new Xtreme. But my material cost came only to £40.00. The engine is an Enya 45

Does it fly ? Yesterday, with a clear sky and a heckling crowd, it took to the air, Following a bit of trim it handles very nicely and now needs to be thrashed. Following a bit more thrashing probably the Irvine 53 might be a bit more suitable. But low speed handling is proving to be excellent.



Ron is Secretary of Trevallet, Cornwall, UK, model flying club -those of you who have met Denis Wolffe on this site might remember that was his club before he moved to Bridlington and it was Denis who introduced Ron to ModelFlight.

Some time ago, Ron told us he was building a Precedent Stampe and we can now take a look at his progress. We're picking up Ron's project at a fairly advanced state, but hopefully we can now watch its progress to completion.

The plane is a Balsacraft kit which it seems is no longer available, says Ron. It is 1/4 scale and Ron has opted for the Rothmans livery - and certainly looking very nice so far. Ron lashed out and bought a Laser 150 'to provide the urge', and the plane is covered in natural Solartex and sprayed with Flair Spectrum (six cans in all!).

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The logos and lettering on the fuselage (and also on the wings) were obtained from Pyramid Products and Ron has a very nice pilot which be bought from A.H. Designs (which I trust we will see later). 

When Ron first made contact with ModelFlight it was to ask if anyone could provide him with any details of the seats in the full size. Unfortunately, no such information was forthcoming and he is still struggling with them in the absence of any details at all.

Ron is currently busy working on the cockpit area. The instrument panel is made up of 'odds and sods', as he puts it. The green panel is unused litho plate behind which is a sandwich of Liteply, balsa, celluloid and the dials themselves. The two sizes of bezels are plumbers 'olives' which came at the correct scale size.

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Alvaro Riasco has now finished his Hobby Lobby Super Cub and has sent this picture to prove it! Super Cub.jpg (19401 bytes)
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Also recently acquired and assembled for flight is this lovely looking little Bebé Jodel - again from Hobby Lobby.
Here is the beginning of Alvaro's latest building project - a Lanier Indicator - a glow model with 45" wingspan which he is converting to S400 electric. indicator1.jpg (15454 bytes)

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You may remember that I reported that my attempt to spray-paint the wing tips of the Citabria had resulted in a spattering of tiny spots of paint where I had not intended them, due to inadequate masking of the rest of the wing. Although the spots are fairly small, I had resolved to strip the covering off the top of the wing and start again, but I changed my mind after receiving a little note from Tore - "Don't take time to re-cover the wing! After some time you will have forgotten those tiny spots - and the rest of the gang, too . . ." 

So, onward! Having sprayed one wing tip, I had to do the other, but this time with the rest of the wing fully shrouded from the masking tape back! I must say, I didn't really like the spray process - using my little airbrush, the covering seemed very thin and I had to go over the area several times to obtain any reasonable density.

Next, on to a few little finishing touches for the cockpit. 

When I visited the Sandown Model Symposium a few weeks ago, I looked out for a nice little 1/6th civilian pilot and was pleased to find a suitable candidate. My eldest son, Tim, is a bit of a minority modeller in that he goes in for white metal flat figures which he then paints in astonishing detail - something which I believe has a greater following on the Continent than here in England. Any way, I decided that he was the one to paint the figure, as his experience with his flats means he has developed a fine eye and a steady hand, often using a paint brush that has hardly more than one bristle as far as I can see! Like me, he uses his myopia to advantage - if you take your specs off you can hold very small objects very close to your eyes and see them in sharp focus and with very fine detail; it almost seems they are magnified!

pilotpainted2.jpg (5366 bytes)pilotpainted.jpg (19825 bytes)He didn't disappoint me! I delivered the little fellow on the left and one week later I collected the little fellow on the right! He bears an uncanny likeness to my brother-in-law, which most of the family noticed without being prompted by yours truly, so my pilot is now christened 'Captain Mike Simpson' and awaits his maiden flight! These two pics are thumbnails, click on them if you want to admire Tim's work.

Another Sandown purchase was a set of 1/6th dials for a representation of a control panel, but on later inspection I thought they were all rather dull, lacking any colour and looking remarkably similar without an attitude indicator or VOR dial among them! 

Brainwave! I booted up my Microsoft Flight Simulator 2000, and took a screen shot of the cockpit view of the standard Cessna (1, below) and another of the optional radio stack (2) that usually floats over the main view. Then I cropped the first image to give me just the control panel, expanded it a bit to the right and dropped in the re-sized screen shot of the radio stack, did a bit of crude editing then reduced it to fit the width of my Citabria cockpit (3), printed it off and trimmed it to fit. I did the same for the nice little row of switches to run under the panel (4). 






 Here's a shot looking over Captain Mike's shoulder, before glazing the cabin. Not a patch on Ron's beautiful scale job above, but it doesn't look too bad, does it?

On to the dreaded glazing! I took note of Steven's and Tore's comments (see post box) and obtained some clear-drying canopy glue and set to. The bowed front window was a struggle and the fit is not too hot but I eventually managed to get it held in place and, to my great relief, it appears to be holding. Four out of ten at the most for this bit, I'm afraid!

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Not too far to go now - next time I should be able to show you it finished!


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