When it comes to that first test flight of your newly finished giant-scale warbird (or any gas engine-powered model), you can increase your chances for an incident-free experience by correctly installing and setting up your powerplant. As with most things related to RC warbirds, neatness counts. Here are a few tips for making your firewall forward work like a pro’s.
HARDWARE AND FUEL LINES
It goes without saying that you do not want to take any shortcuts while building your warbird. So start off by using the correct hardware for the job. If you have an ARF, check the quality of the attachment bolts and nuts as well as the engine standoffs, if required. If the hardware isn’t up to your standards, get some replacements from RTL Fasteners. I often replace metric hardware with standard SAE versions. Inside the fuselage behind the firewall, if I have relatively easy access, I use plastic insert locknuts with large fender washers in place of blind nuts. Using a hex driver outside and a box-end wrench inside, I snug the engine attachment nuts and bolts, check the engine alignment and offset, and then tighten them up. If you prefer the blind nuts, be sure to use a little thread locker so the hardware doesn’t come loose. There is a good bit of vibration in this environment, so do periodic checks as well.
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IT'S ALL IN THE DETAILS
2020 TOP GUN SCALE INVITATIONAL
TOP GUN SCALE INVITATIONAL
THE 32ND YEAR OF EXCELLENCE!
THE COMPETITION CONTINUES
Every spring, Frank Tiano’s Top Gun Scale Invitational has heralded the beginning of the flying season, offering builders an opportunity to show off their projects in Lakeland, Florida after a winter spent finishing them in their workshops.
BUILDING BENCH & WORKSHOP TIPS
I have built countless RC models, from kits, plans and even my own scratch designs.
TOP GUN FAVORITE MARK CHAPMAN'S 1/3-SCALE ALBATROS D.VA
When I told Model Airplane News executive editor Debra Cleghorn that I was attending the Top Gun Scale Invitational for the first time, she asked me if I would interview the pilot of one of my favorite planes at the event. As a WW I fan (and a Balsa USA builder), I chose Mark Chapman’s beautifully detailed 1/3-scale Balsa USA Albatros D.Va, flown by Marvin Alvarez in Team Scale.
HEAVY-DUTY SCALE FLAPS
FUNCTIONAL CONTROL SURFACES WITH ADDED DETAIL
SEAGULL MODELS/LEGEND HOBBY SAVAGE SHOCK CUB
A short takeoff and landing wonder!
GETTING STARTED IN FPV
BetaFPV makes getting a bird’s-eye-view easier than ever!
AILERON/RUDDER MIXING EXPLAINED
Build good habits now and fly better tomorrow
BRITTEN-NORMAN - DEFENDER 2000
An electric-powered Islander on steroids