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Gangster 63

A retrospect

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Denis Watkins29/01/2017 19:00:27
2567 forum posts
129 photos

Just look at the lightweight build John, there are more empty spaces than timber, and the thinnest sections possible, all a result of laser cutting tech. These lightweights are a joy to fly as they can be adequately powered and equipped without lightweight servos. I am a fan of laser kits.

gangster29/01/2017 19:31:37
739 forum posts
7 photos

The lack of plan is deliberate, as all UK kit producers suffered from including full plans, as the plans would then be passed round, and kit sales dried up - making it not worth developing the kit in the first place!

Well the original Gangsters never had a plan but they only had about a dozen bits of wood in anyway. Modellers regularly drew around the components and copied the models like that . The lite however has about a million lazer cut parts and I cannot imagine anyone having the patience to copy them.

Prop size John well I have had a 13 inch prop on with no problem, a 14 inch would clear but it would be very close!

dave parnham29/01/2017 19:57:02
137 forum posts
11 photos

Mines still flying and goes very well on the Irvine 46, only bit on the build that throws most people is the fit of the Ailerons they are just not quite right somehow, but easy to fix.

Must admit that I had a fuel tank leak, or cracked pipe at least, and it somehow corroded the battery lead.....well I started the aircraft and it ran on the the ground for 30 seconds then cut, and again and again. Turns out my Tx was doing its job and telling me the battery was now dud and wouldn't let me fly it. Model Saved...lesson learned.

John Emms 129/01/2017 21:20:37
225 forum posts

Thanks on the prop sizes Gangster - that opens up a whole host of possibilities. No, I won't be tracing round the parts!

Denis, I spent a number of years on the phone all day, and over the counter at shows, specifying power systems for a huge range of models, and the most difficult part for me was people wanting to power old favourites that were over heavy as IC models, never mind loading the poor model with batteries. Putting high power into smaller props generally meant more specialist motors (read as higher cost). Quite often the low cost answer was to abandon that project, because a new light airframe with a lower cost power system would have a combined price considerably lower. The simple maths are that it takes a certain amount of power to maintain a certain weight in flight, and it roughly works out that halving the weight will double the flight time for the same power system.

Other than, perhaps, Hotliners, I see a small number of Czech designers first getting to grips with the concept of really successful "normal size" electric aerobatic models (the same designers who traditionally produced most of "German produced" models), and of course those methods were taken up by Asian manufacturers. So, 1,5m aerobatic models in the Gangster 63 bracket that I have experience of (that are no longer produced) are:

My Gangster 63 with Merco 61 was 6 1/4lb dry (lost to "period radio" )

Obag Super Lark: We flew these on 14 and 16 NiMh cells (4S and 5S equivalent) at 5.5lb to 6lb, both were a revelation in 2003/2004, and would still be impressive today.

Pelikan Wildcap. One on 5S was truly wild at a little over 5lb. Mine, on 4S 3700 was 4 3/4lb. The 600 size MVVS 4,6/840 on an 11x7 was only peaking at 35A, but gave vertical climb out, and 20 minutes of aerobatics.

Putting to one side my Gangster sized Reichard Okapi, which would appear to be flying at a similar weight to the Gangster Light, you might see just how excited I am that a British kit producer has truly got to grips with the concept of a 1,6m electric aerobatic model (OK, 1,58m). I am buying one, both to support the effort, and also to have a replacement ready for the Okapi (also no longer produced).

Oh, and top tip: When wanting to draw higher currents at higher voltages, it is always more efficient to use a larger motor than a higher resistance smaller motor.

Edited By John Emms - Puffin Models on 29/01/2017 21:21:41

John Emms 131/01/2017 19:46:19
225 forum posts

Oops, hope I haven't killed the thread!

The kit was ordered yesterday, and is on it's way today (it could have been here today if I had been quicker).

I have projects to finish, and an Electricub to start, but I have been looking at possible suitable motors. I have a 45mm diameter Roton 600W/12, which is looking interesting, and I guess props for 4S will be around 12x8, but putting a prop and battery on it is the only way to know. I guess balance will be the issue, but as the motor is little more than half the weight of the engines this model is intended for.....

John Emms 103/02/2017 22:01:17
225 forum posts

The kit arrived today (Hermes Economy), and I have had a chance to look inside. The balsa is light and consistent quality (which it needs to be for laser cutting), and the laser cutting has no splatter on either side of any cut that I have seen so far. I am pleased to have the kit of cleanly cut wood parts, and undercarriage fittings (with canopy and cowl) arrive for £81, and I think it is a sheer miracle that it can come with what appears to be a complete set of fittings for that price, including engine mount, tank, wheels, and spinner. I am almost prepared to bet that the model could be made with simply the addition of covering, radio, .40 engine, prop, fuel proofer, and fuel tubing. Clearly this can be a very low cost, and very worthwhile project as either IC using a .40 engine, or electric using one of the 3548/12 outrunnners as used by Gangster.

Inevitably, I will make changes (I always do!) The wheels are quite light, and very suitable for the tarmac runway at Woodspring (and have been pre-bored out), but I will probably fit foam electric wheels. The spinner is a good fit for the cowl, but may get replaced by an Irvine (or Pelikan Profi) electric spinner, and whilst I am happy to turn smaller models over to fit the battery, I see a model of this size having a removeable top to the fus, so that WILL be happening - experience tells me to use a catch, and not simply rely on magnets to retain the hatch.

Looking at power, and following the lead of a friend who's advice is "Don't give your money to those model dealers if you can use something in stock", I had a search round: the Mega 22/45/3 (don't ask the price of those now!) will clamp into the kit engine mount. The Palicka Roton (comes between his original AXi design, and further developments for MVVS) fits into the 700 size "Aerovee MM2" mount, and that mount just fits inside the width of the cowl. An option is, of course, to build a box for an outrunner, mounted from the front or from the rear.

I have a few projects on the go, and a birthday present Electricub, so the Gangster will have to wait a while unfortunately. last but not least, thanks to Martyn for pointing out that the ailerons are trapezoidal - that could save a lot of heartache!

John Emms 111/02/2017 15:18:26
225 forum posts

Having had a little chance to look through the kit - again, I can see it is a REALLY quick build if the model is being finished as intended (everything should just glue and screw together).

For electric, I see a need to cut down the formers in the centre section, and there is easily space to fit 4S 5000s if so desired (I tried one this morning) so 5S would also be quite reasonable.

Looking at suitable motors, there are a huge number. This morning I was looking at the OS 5010 810, and 12x8 is in the mid 50s in terms of amps on 4S (11x8 looks more sensible).

Unfortunately, I have been processing orders, and working on the web site today, so models on the dining table are still waiting my attention!

Jim Carss11/02/2017 18:47:48
1965 forum posts
34 photos

My favourite model of all time,Mick Reeves should have an MBE for this one

John Emms 117/02/2017 13:41:29
225 forum posts
Posted by Jim Carss on 11/02/2017 18:47:48:

My favourite model of all time,Mick Reeves should have an MBE for this one

What, even before Prime Minister's hairdressers and personal assistants?

Like your Gangster Jim. Looking at what I have, I found a red spinner to fit, red, transparent red, and clear Oracover, so all I now need is the Antic off the table.

My motor will now probably be Mega 22/45/3 because it's there, and because it fits in the supplied engine mount.

I tried to create a photo album but came a little unstuck - will try again at some time.

Jim Carss17/02/2017 15:16:17
1965 forum posts
34 photos

wink 2

Old Geezer17/02/2017 17:13:29
485 forum posts

John - looking forward to your build album - I also intend to use LiPo power, can you show the alterations you make to the relevant formers to make room for the batteries & the access hatch.

My last Gangster63 was my first low-winger (beginning of the 80s) pulled by a smokey old Meteor 60. The Gangster was guided by a British built (and proud of it!) World Engines 27meg 4ch Tx - put together by Mick Wilshire's own fair hand. Very reliable set too - also great after sales service, Mick even sorted my crash-damaged Tx at no charge when it came off the front passenger seat in a low speed shunt.

Sooooo - I'm looking forward to another trip down Memory Lane, this time with a Gangster63, later this year.

p.s. - it's nice to have the rationale for the motor options options explained as you did earlier in the thread - Thanks.

Jonathan M18/02/2017 07:49:08
454 forum posts
258 photos

Bookmarked this thread as I'm currently considering ordering one as my second model for aeros, probably with an OS 35AX up front.

My only concern is that our patch isn't exactly bowling-green smooth. Is the nose-wheel steerable?

Jim Carss18/02/2017 09:13:43
1965 forum posts
34 photos


It has nose wheel steering,I have a 55ax in mine it goes vertical from take off.

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