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Durafly Bf109E

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Trevor Crook25/04/2018 16:00:19
655 forum posts
50 photos

After waiting since February for a decent weather slot and dry field, I finally maidened my DF BF109. It was quite breezy so difficult to give an accurate appraisal yet, but I had 3 flights without incident and it seemed to forgive a couple of near the stall landing attempts. A lovely little model. I've posted a picture below, but for some reason it's inverted. This happens when I upload it to an album. I even tried inverting it on my PC first to see if the upload turned it up the right way, but no joy. Any suggestions welcome!

20180422_112500.jpg

Denis Watkins25/04/2018 17:32:13
2668 forum posts
136 photos

img_20180425_171913_098.jpg

Rat a tat tat tat tat

Edited By Denis Watkins on 25/04/2018 17:33:57

Trevor Crook25/04/2018 19:29:44
655 forum posts
50 photos

Thanks Denis! If you let me know how to do it I've got another couple of pics to post which are also upside down. Never happened with ny of my other pics.

Denis Watkins25/04/2018 19:35:47
2668 forum posts
136 photos

Sorry about the delay Trevor, I simply took the pic onto my tablet photo gallery

It was inverted, and this was corrected in the edit on the gallery

Then I took it back to model flying

I could not invert it on my model flying albumn

Lovely looking model by the way

Trevor Crook26/04/2018 07:57:52
655 forum posts
50 photos

Yes, it's a really nice ARTF. I could never have built such a masterpiece myself, but I did enjoy applying the weathering. The decal sheet is superb, even includes the maintenance stencils.

I'm looking forward to trying it in calmer conditions. It's supposed to fly on a 3s or 4s 2200, I maidened it on 4s. It's well overpowered like that, unlimited verticle performance, but better to have too much than not enough. However, as the battery is virtually over the c of g it will be easy to try a 3s under more favourable conditions.

The Mk1 Spitfire I've got from the same source is equally nice. Unlike the Spit, the 109 didn't come with any handbook, you have to download it. For anyone thinking of getting one, there's loads of feedback on RC Groups, but you have to wade through loads of waffle to get the useful stuff. I found some nuggets there from the main designer, Tom Hunt, who seems a very knowledgable and nice guy.

If anyone here is interested, I can summarise the issues I found and the set-up I used. Unfortunately the model is unlikely to ever receive a magazine review.

Redex27/04/2018 12:27:10
143 forum posts

Trevor, I for one would be interested in the issues you have found and your setup.

Many thanks

Trevor Crook28/04/2018 07:44:11
655 forum posts
50 photos

Ok, I'll take a few pictures of the details and do a little write-up in the next day or so. There are some minor production gremlins but it's a really nice model, the best foamy I've encountered.

Trevor Crook28/04/2018 13:22:07
655 forum posts
50 photos

As promised, here are issues and information I encountered assembling the Durafly BF109E

 

Main U/C

The starboard U/C had less toe-out than the port, so I twisted the leg to correct this. In so doing, the U/C assembly pulled out of the wing. There is a plastic moulding which the retract screws into, which had insufficient glue. A generous coat of UHU Por sorted this. The U/C door rubbed against the tyre at the front on this side, I used a small nut as a spacer under one of the mounting screws to fix this. There were no issues with the port leg.

p1010288.jpg

Tailwheel

I always test all the servos on ARTFs before doing anything, and the rudder servo was very laboured. This was because paint had got into the tailwheel shaft. I removed it by slackening the 1.5mm grub screw, accessible via a hole just above the port tailplane strut. I cleaned off the paint, put on a thin smear of silicone grease and re-assembled – fixed.

p1010294.jpg

Decals

Like the Mk1 Spitfire, the 109 has thin vinyl decals that have a peel-off transparent front film. The marking is positioned then pressed into place, then the front film peeled off. This film is supposed to be less sticky than the marking, but I found it was sticky enough to lift paint. I therefore cut it close around the marking and lifted one corner before pressing down. For the small stencils I separated them from the film with a scalpel and pressed them on. All markings stay put after the application of a warm covering iron.

Set Up

I set the model up using Tom Hunt’s guidance that he posted on RC Groups – see copy below.

setup.jpg

I’ve also shown where I’ve put my battery. My c of g is a couple of mm in front of Tom’s as my picture shows – the small black dot is where it balances.

p1010290.jpg

p1010292.jpg

Postscript – while I was taking the photos the simulated oleo cover on one U/C leg came off – more UHU Por!

p1010296.jpg

I’m very impressed by the model despite these niggles. I look forward to flying it in less windy conditions, and should be able to give better feedback then. The stiff breeze may have helped it to track straight from moving off on the take-off run, we’ll see how squirrely it is when it’s calm!

Edited By Trevor Crook on 28/04/2018 13:25:02

Redex28/04/2018 22:30:14
143 forum posts

Great pictures and detail many thanks for your efforts - hope it all pays off on the next sortie !!

Trevor Crook07/05/2018 20:49:55
655 forum posts
50 photos

I flew the 109 this morning in near-calm conditions. The ground handling was nothing like as bad as I feared. The first take-off was a bit hairy as I used a bit of flap and it got airborne too quickly and started to torque roll left. I levelled the wings, cut the power and let it land. Next effort was similar, but I continued the take-off and got airborne.

The model flies really well, tracks nice and true and responds smoothly to controls. I landed with full flap and a little throttle, but it kept floating about 2 feet up until I cut the power, then it dropped rather abruptly onto its wheels, bounced and nosed over.

Next flight I changed the pack from 4s to 3s, and took off without flap. Much better. The model still has adequate power, and will still pull decent size loops. I found it easier to modulate the power for landing and made a nice touch down.

My tips are: Take off without flap, increasing power very gradually, and let the tail rise and the speed build. It should reach a safe lift off speed before full throttle is applied, even on 3s. Ease it off, pull up the wheels and ease in more power to climb away. Landing is typical warbird, with full flap and 10-15% throttle. All my landings were main wheels first, then ease back on the stick as the speed decays. It is not too prone to nosing over.

For anyone considering a small warbird, I strongly recommend this one.

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