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Member postings for Piers Bowlan

Here is a list of all the postings Piers Bowlan has made in our forums. Click on a thread name to jump to the thread.

Thread: Airbus A350 for 50 mm EDFs
20/02/2018 21:35:13

Amazing, looking forward to the video.

Thread: Durafly Vampire V2?
20/02/2018 20:37:02
Posted by Trevor Crook on 20/02/2018 08:13:45:

Piers, I'm not surprised the Vampire slopes well, it is a slippery airframe. The air up a slope is often smooth, so stabilisation probably isn't needed, but it's different on a breezy day at a flat flying site surrounded by trees.

I take your point Trevor, the vampire fin and rudders are quite small so probably not greatly directionally stable following a disturbance.

The V3 sounds good, I wonder which colour scheme they will choose? I also wonder what price they will be on for, the V2 sounds cheap, so I wonder if they are selling them off cheap prior to the new release?

Everyone should have a Vampire whether they are into EDF or not! teeth 2

Thread: What are the rules?
19/02/2018 20:52:19
Posted by Biggles' Elder Brother - Moderator on 19/02/2018 14:09:37:

Its has to able to generate more lift than it weighs. That's it, no other rules!


Apart from generating more lift than it weighs, I think there are two other important design requirements for an aircraft which are not optional, namely, stability and control. If any aircraft is unstable and you do not have an effective means of control then you won't have an aircraft for very long after you leave the ground (if you are able to leave the ground). How you create lift and how you achieve stability and control is completely up to you! In the case of a model, if it is very stable it may not need control (free flight) but even then you may require a dethermaliser to control the flight time to avoid the practical problem of losing the model. However this is still control, of sorts.

Edited By Piers Bowlan on 19/02/2018 20:53:00

Thread: Durafly Vampire V2?
19/02/2018 20:31:00

No doubt you saw that the Canadian scheme Vampires are in stock from the UK warehouse Simon (£108.45 seems pretty good value to me). You could wait a long time for the model with the scheme you want to come back into stock (sometimes never).

As far as the 'fan exploding' I have heard of this happening when the wires are not restrained properly and get sucked into the fan!

19/02/2018 07:35:12

Like others on this thread I got the original Vampire which I found to be a cracking model after a bit of modification. The V2 seems to have addressed the issues of the V1, namely the booms are now carbon reinforced, the UBEC has been replaced with an internal BEC and the landing gear now has metal trunions so are hopefully a little more robust/reliable.

I flew mine from a slope so I flew it without the landing gear (no short grass to ROG) which made it lighter and I found a 3300mAh to be perfect for it. (C of G at 290mm if I remember correctly) My longest flight was over thirty minutes but that was slope soaring, which it does really well (no need to remove the fan/motor for this). It has a great glide and flies well in a good blow, I can't see why you would want to fit a stabiliser to it.

Mine could do with a new coat of paint now as the old silver paint is looking a bit shabby. The V2 has a new acrylic silver which is brighter and tougher apparently. Hope this helps.

Edited By Piers Bowlan on 19/02/2018 07:40:33

Thread: Electric Cars.
17/02/2018 09:28:02

But can you drive it without a licence in the UK Peter? I think that may be just France and the rest of Europe.

I found this Boeing video on Fuel cells Nigel, which I thought was quite interesting.

Edited By Piers Bowlan on 17/02/2018 09:37:31

17/02/2018 08:47:36

Nigel, fake news I'm afraid, well at least old news, as this article from the BBC (must be true!) said that manufacturers were very interested in Hydrogen as an alternative to Kerosine up to about 12 years ago but are now more interested in biofuel. However their objection was based on the high cost of hydrogen production and the fact that the huge amounts of electricity required produced from fossil fuel defeated the object (true-but). This assumes three things, 1) that fossil fuel is cheap, it won't be when it is not available. 2) It will continue to be OK to produce NOx and carbon, as waste products. 3) Alternative clean energy won't be omnipresent at some time in the future. So perhaps in the medium to longer term biofuel will be a good stop gap but after 30 years or even sooner hydrogen may find favour?

I agree hybrid drives are attracting a lot of research and may suit some niche applications. I think the problem is weight: engine/fuel/generators/batteries/motors. Weight is not so critical with buses or cars but with aeroplanes it tends to impinge on efficiency, payload and range. There are some interesting concepts out there though. We live in interesting times.

16/02/2018 18:32:44
Posted by Nigel R on 16/02/2018 17:10:47:

Hydrogen is, as some have noted, a net energy sink. You have to use energy to make it. That fact alone makes it a non starter for an oil replacement. Yes it can be made by hydro power, but the capacity of that is far too limited.
Not only hydro power but solar power or wind/wave/tidal power will produce hydrogen too. Certainly the aero engine manufacturers seem to think that there is a future for Hydrogen. As for a net energy sink, arn't all batteries just that? Also, oil may be 'free' but it costs a heck of a lot to find it in the first place, especially if it is under the sea or the Artic. Then there is the energy required to refine it, transport it to petrol stations etc. As well as being a pollutant at so many levels, oil is a finite resource but hydrogen's raw material is water and the waste product of burning hydrogen in air is water. There is quite a lot to like about hydrogen. heart
However, the next big thing could be metal-air batteries (says he, gazing into his crystal ball) Unfortunately they can't seem to make them work properly but if they ever do it will be a game changer with the prospect of a 1000 mile range on one charge.


Edited By Piers Bowlan on 16/02/2018 18:33:38

Thread: Coming back after 50 years: bit lost
14/02/2018 06:44:46
Posted by Martin McIntosh on 13/02/2018 21:45:56:

No, I am not a doom monger, just passing on information learned the hard way. When I was building my Mosquito I was advised that all ESC manufacturers say not to do this, but you may get away with it if you add special high value low Z capacitors fitted directly to the ESC which I did since I needed to extend by 30cm or so with very heavy duty cable. Despite vigorous testing one failed at take off on only the second flight and the model was destroyed (12 months work gone). Draw your own conclusions. The offending item did not completely fail but only gave very much reduced power. I would say that given the OP`s stated very short wiring that short extentions should not be a problem, but the way round it is to lengthen the ESC to motor wires if that would help.

So sorry to hear about the demise of your magnificent Mosquito Martin. Can you be sure that it was the extended battery lead that caused the ESC to fail, despite you adding the special capacitors to smooth out the voltage spikes? As we all know, these ESCs are made in huge numbers and can inexplicably fail occasionally. An 'engine' failure with an electric twin would seem most unlikely compared with an IC model but never say never.

Extend motor wires yes +1

13/02/2018 20:32:20

Keep the faith hillclimber, all will be well. A 9 X 6 prop should be fine, and if you had bought a wattmeter you would know that to be true! Good luck on the maiden flight - fingers crossed or 'break a leg', as they say in the thespian world!

Thread: What is the best option? Okay! Second best option?
12/02/2018 09:01:11

TattanMac sounds like he may have a simple/cheap solution that is worth a try. I would not attempt JB Weld etc myself as I cannot see it being successful. If a professional welder can guarantee his repair and it doesn't cost more than half the cost of a new crankcase, then that might be worth a try. Otherwise bite the bullet and buy a new crankcase from JE and put it down to experience - it is a lot but still less than a quarter of the cost of a new engine and your engine won't run as it is!

Thread: Hinges - how many ?
11/02/2018 09:24:33

Thank you Cymaz, I will heat the epoxy to make it runnier. yes Thanks Ron, I will try gorilla glue too.

I have used blenderm tape (and sewn hinges too) on smaller models to good effect, where the surfaces are too thin to slot.


Edited By Piers Bowlan on 11/02/2018 19:44:50

Thread: RM Trainer
11/02/2018 06:54:24

Why don't my wingtips look like that? Very neat yes

Thread: Hinges - how many ?
11/02/2018 06:34:44

For years I have used pin hinges and epoxy but I have not found a neat way of doing this. First, I put vasoline on the hinge part to stop it seizing up when the glue dries. If I put the glue on the flat part of the hinge it tends to get wiped off when I push the hinge into the slot in the wood, so doesn't seem very reliable? Alternatively I have trouble getting enough of the epoxy deep into the slot, if I do that before pushing in the hinge. Either way a messy operation. Using a syringe and hypodermic needle might put the epoxy where it is needed in the slot but you would get through a lot of syringes/needles when fitting all the control surfaces. Am I overthinking this or is there a simple solution? Recently I used superphatic and a thin spout to wick the glue into the slot. Took a time to dry, seems secure but I would rather use epoxy. Also, for pinning the hinges I usually use pieces of cocktail sticks cut flush when dry. Do people use pins instead?

I have been modelling for thirty years, you would think I would have it figured by now! crook

Thread: Returning to hobby
10/02/2018 09:16:46

Robert, Which model are your Futaba servos? As they are new and presumably not left plugged into a battery for any length of time they are probably fine, I have servos of all ages and some much older than 20 years! Like BEB I wouldn't be particularly concerned about the nylon gears but corrosion of the circuit board and potentiometer could be an issue if they have been stored for long periods in a cold damp shed/garage for instance. I would connect them to a servo tester for thirty minutes or so. If you detect any hesitation/glitching or poor centring, then bin them. Otherwise I am sure you could find a use for them in a suitable model (Super sixty?). Nothing to stop you buying lighter, faster, more powerful servos too!

Multistrand silicon wire is not expensive and you don't need a lot unless you are building a multi, so personally I would buy something of known specification unless you are an electric wiz and can test it (I'm not blush).

I binned all my Sermos connectors a few years ago and have standardised on XT-60s which have several advantages:- gold plated, smaller, safer and the Nanotec,/Zippy/Turnigy liPos I use come with XT-60s. smiley

Thread: Lidl Sander
09/02/2018 17:19:19

Fortunately I didn't read the instructions and I was too lazy to remove the table. Consequently I didn't lose the bolt inside and I was able to get the self adhesive disc concentric on the sander through a combination of skill and beginners luck. smile p

Thread: Proposed new drone legislation/registration
09/02/2018 17:10:15

If you take a look at current Topographical Air Charts which are generally concerned with lower airspace and VFR traffic, you will see symbols indicating (full sized) gliding and parachuting activities for example. Study of the promulgated NOTAMS will give details of geographical limits, affected altitudes and days of/hours of, operation etc. If the CAA grant exceptions to the 120m rule for model aircraft you can be pretty sure that affected areas will be documented to warn other airmen of the presence of model aircraft. Additionally, it would not be unreasonable for the CAA to require models flying above 120m to carry telemetry so that the pilot in command (PIC) is aware of his height.

Edited By Piers Bowlan on 09/02/2018 17:11:28

09/02/2018 10:13:17
Posted by MattyB on 08/02/2018 17:09:50:

"...The delegated and implementing acts adopted under this on the basis of Regulation and concerning unmanned aircraft should take into account that such model aircraft have so far had a good safety record, especially those operated by members of model aircraft associations or clubs which developed specific codes of conduct for such activities."

What slightly irritates me is the 'so far' bit. Either model flying has a good safety record or it hasn't, the 'so far' is superfluous. Model flying has been going for over a hundred years, the so far bit sounds like they are saying it has only just become popular. Why should model flying suddenly not continue to have a good safety record, with or without the proposed legislation?

Am I being oversensitive? (probably!)

Thread: Solarfilm
09/02/2018 08:08:52
Posted by Bob Cotsford on 08/02/2018 11:13:19:

TomTom, I agree that the ARTFs have had an enormous effect on modeling generally, despite some iffy QC. I wonder whether anyone at Solarfilm had tried selling their produce to the ARTF manufacturers? Too late now.

ARTF manufacturers source their covering films locally, twenty years ago the quality was very poor but look at them now. When on my travels, I used to buy a few rolls from Radar, the retail outlet for World Models in Hong Kong. There were bins full of rolls of film for about a pound each. With manufacturing taking place in mainland China the labor, production and with minuscule overheads, compared to the UK, little wonder Solarfilm didn't stand a chance despite customer loyalty.

Thread: Lidl Sander
08/02/2018 11:57:23

I like the clamp, much quicker than screwing it to a bench which is what I was expecting. Nice and quiet too. I have been thinking of lots of new uses for it, so it won't be living in it's box looking for a home. Thanks for the heads up on this one as I have considered getting one in the past and I think it will be hobby money well spent.

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