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Building Tony's Sunderland


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These certainly build into an impressive model - our club chairman Sandy has built one and I saw it fly yesterday for the first time -lovely long ROG from short grass and a majestic appearance in the air, with a backdrop of the Scottish hills. With the dark clouds it could almost be the North Atlantic in some of the pictures.

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  • 4 weeks later...

Hi All,

The wings are now complete with the tips added, shaped and the whole panels sanded down.

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With the sheeting I opted not to make the entire sheet first but to fit them individually and making the servo boxes as I went and freeing the ailerons to sheet son their own.

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Both panels done along with leading edges added.

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Wing tips added, shaped and sanded ailerons dry fitted. Yes, the power cables have pulled out on the rear panel, thanks to the large holes in the ribs they were easy to reinstate at this point in time.

I have offered up one of the motors to see how to fix and cable run. The mount will have to be turned so the fixings will not conflict with the locating lugs on the nacelle sides but these will have to be notched to allow the captive nuts/bolt to fit. Not sure if I would be happy with only two fixings per motor.

 

Next, it will be the construction of the nacelles

That's all for now

Regards

Robert

 

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  • 2 weeks later...

Hi All,

Work on the nacelles has progressed quite well so far, although I'm not too fussed on the one of the nacelles.

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All of the motor fitted along with the esc's and all programmed. To the right of the picture the formers for the nacelles are pre-cut, all of the N-4 pieces have been cut as I see it too wide by about 6mm. All of the other pieces are a perfect fit.

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And they match the plan part but not the actual nacelle drawing

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I am not keen on the idea of "building-in" the esc's so I have made access hatches so I can get to them in future if needed.

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Sheeting the front section was straight forward and hatches marked out.

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The mid sections are planked in 3/16th balsa with a solid balsa block rear to be shaped to suit. At this point I dropped George from 4Max a couple of questions on batteries and an additional power source for the servos. Glad I did and his prompt reply was timely as I needed to remove all of the middle wires from the esc's and so 4 more access panels at the rear of the nacelles just in case I need to get at the plugs, only really need them on the inners to access the "Y" leads.

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So a ply plate with the rear block attached will do the job.

 

Next, the additional access panels and rear solid blocks.

 

That's all for now

Regards

Robert

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  • 2 weeks later...

Hi All,

Things are coming along a bit now.

I now have a one big wing, ailerons hinged and nacelles finished.

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Completed nacelles with rear access panels

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A nice snug fit they will be held in place with some small magnets.

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Ailerons hinged using some of Ron Gray's laminating film.

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Packed up the tips and centre section to keep the nacelles in the air and glued up and weighted down after the photo was taken.

 

That's as far as I have got for now

Next, some wing bandage and fitting to the fuselage and then on to the tail feathers.

 

That's all  for now

Regards

Robert

 

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Hi All,

Not a lot achieved this week.

Wing joint bandaged and wing seat trimmed and bolt hols drilled and captive bolts are next.

I used a cross line laser to get the fuselage "plumb" using the datum lines I put on the formers and then levelled across with the laser wing tip to wing tip a little more trimming was required and the wing diagonals from aileron cut out to tail were spot on.

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This aircraft is going to have some presence in the air when she is finished.

Not a bad crop of runner beans either.

 

Next, wing captive nuts/bolts and final wing fitting and then we will move on to the tail feathers, the fin is all sheet but there is a bit of work in the tailplane.

 

So that's all for now.

 

Regards

Robert

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  • 2 months later...

Hi All,

Well I'm back with the Sunderland, sort of, and this year is certainly one to put behind me.

I have lost both my mother and aunty within two months of each other as well as my wanting to build or fly these past couple of months.

This week I have made a bit of a start on the wing tip floats and the tailplane/elevators to try to get me back to building

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I deviated from the build article here and "built-in" the supports and ensured I made a left and right.

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The elevators use a 3mm balsa core and both halves are back to back. when dry they will have a 6mm leading edge added and flipped over to repeat the ribs.

Next, after finishing the elevators I'll start the tailplane.

 

That's all for now 

Regards

Robert

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Hi All,

I have made the tail plane, wing tip floats and cut out the fin/rudder.

The tail plane was straight forward, a simple fully symmetrical built up structure built flat on the board with the upper most side being the underside to give it some dihedral and then the tips added to it and shaped and sanded.

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I forgot to photo the open structure before the sheet went on.

 

The wing tip floats are made up of laminations of 1/2" balsa and shaped.

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Front view

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A matching pair, these will slot into the wing, only 5g difference in weight.

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The fin/rudder is from solid 3/8" balsa, shaped and sanded to profile when done I'll cut out the rudder.

This then will slot into the fuselage after the tail plane is fitted and the closed loop guides installed.

 

Next, I'll be fitting the tail feathers to the fuselage and hinging the rudder and elevators.

 

That's all for now,

Regards

Robert

 

 

 

 

 

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Hi Paul,

The 4 engined wing in the background is from the Sunderland's stablemate, the Stirling, my own design at 72" span and all electric using the same power train as the Sunderland, I put a build blog on this forum, "build and design Short Stirling" which starts with the hand drawing of the plans right through to maiden flight.

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Built 2016

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Maiden flight, a very short flight indeed that resulted in some repairs to the u/c, just like the full size. Still waiting for the second flight. I've been holding off the second flight as I wanted to photograph both the Stirling and Sunderland, I think that would make a cracking shot.

 

We have the same taste in aircraft, here's my TN Beaufighter with a pair of Irvine 46's up front

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The torpedo is on a servo operated spring release. Built 2014 and still waiting to be maidened. Keep meaning to make stronger u/c legs these were my first attempt and look a little flimsy.

 

Thank you Murat. 

Regards

Robert

 

 

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That Beaufighter is gorgeous. It's a long time, as yet unfulfilled ambition, to fly a Beaufighter. Me and two pals built a 12 foot span salami-foam version in the early 90's, when models of the type were incredibly rare, but the regulations at the time wouldn't let our 14 year old pilot fly the thing, so it was never geared up and never flew. Over the next few years several Beaufighters were designed and built and I have a few smaller ones in my fleet, as yet unflown. 

It would be great to see your's in the air, Robert. 🙂

Edited by leccyflyer
typo
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Hi Manish,

I got mine from Traplet publications these plans are available from Sarik Hobbies, Bristol Beaufighter (70") Plan(MW2605), they have the cowls and canopies all £56.76. I asked Bel air to make me a short kit from the plans and done very well too.

 

Hi Leccyflyer, one day, one day, I promise myself they will all have at least one flight before I hang up my transmitter still plenty of time to go, I hope.

 

Regards

Robert

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  • 2 weeks later...

Hi All,

We digressed a little bit visiting my previous models.

So back on with the Sunderland, that said, I have not done a great deal since but it is progress, or is it see below.

The tails feathers are now glued in place and the rudder and elevators have been hinged.

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And now for a confession, whilst fitting the tailplane I noticed an error which must have crept in during April, when I was sheeting the upper fuselage, up until this point everything was straight and true, however, shortly after sheeting I glued on copies of the tailplane on each side of the fuselage using the top edge of the side sheeting for reference, and had gone un-noticed until now oooops

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I had hoped this would assist me with cutting out the incidence. But no, when I cut out for the tailplane as shown and fitted them and the wing in bolted place an eyed them through that it was very obvious that something was amiss, a twist had happened in the very rear end throwing the tailplane out, I could have left it as per pet Millers recent creation but not on this one. I alter the slots and cut some small wedges to bring it in alignment with the wing. I think it would have been too much to try to un-twist it. The rear gunner will be on a bit of a list, I'll see if I can tweek it a bit so it is less obvious, there again when she is in the air flying by it be hardly noticed 😉 

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Perfect here (March)

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This is when it must have happened, wished I check it then could have done something about it.

 

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A wedge to the turret floor to start with. Yes the fin is square to the tailplane 342mm - 342mm from tip to fin to tip I checked it twice.

 

Next, the elevator fairings, covering the rudder and elevators then on to the fitting of the cowls and finishing of the electrics.

 

That's all for now.

Regards

Robert

 

 

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  • 3 weeks later...

Hi All,

Now that the pre-Christmas jobs around the house have been done and Christmas has past, time to get back to the Sunderland and as all the weather wants to do is rain what else is there to do to pass away the time.

The elevators and rudder are covered and fitted, for the elevators I ended up using some scrap pieces of Oratex left over from my DH71. I had tried using laminating film but this failed twice. I have used it before on an open structure (only to try it out and it worked well ). The rudder was covered in laminating film and no problems at all.

 

I bought 10m of laminating film from Ron Grey earlier this year intending it for another project, when I decided what to build after the Sunderland. However, looking at the eye watering prices of Oratex and the size of the Sunderland I thought to myself lets give the laminating film a go, especially as it worked out at a modest 58p/m2 compared to a 2m roll of Oratex for £35 for 1.23m2. I think the savings speak for themselves plus on an environmental note there is no backing sheet of plastic to throw away either, so helping to save the planet as well. At 1.8m wingspan it would take two rolls of Oratex or other iron-on film to cover the wings alone saving me £66!!! 

 

Yesterday, I made a start on the wings, yep this stuff is great as easy to put on as Oratex/Solartex possibly even easier as no heat gun required.

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Just started tacking the film in place. 

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The smaller access panels were a little tricky to cover due to their size

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Only a few small creases but I'm happy with the results

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Wing half underside and access panels done

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Then onto the top side

With confidence levels high, I thought let's try a wing float next

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Before, hardly a flat surface in sight.

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Starting at the bottom, this was the easy bit

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Using the off-cuts from the wing panels I allowed plenty of material to give me enough to pull on as I teased the film around the compound curves then trimming it off with a knife/scissors

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Yes, this is the after shot. One float covered.

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Float in position cowls cut out and placed in position just the nacelles to cover. Just a note, I found that the film stuck very well to the wing bandage which some films do not stick so well. 

 

Next, finish covering the wing and cut out the remaining access panels, that's todays task.

I have given the fuselage some thought regarding the covering, the hull I'm going to use glass cloth to give added strength and durability as this is going to take the all of the take-offs/landings and for me this Sunderland will be a landlubber. The rest of the fuselage will be film covered.

 

That's all for now 

Regards

Robert

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  • 2 weeks later...

Hi All,

And a Happy New Year to you all.

Well I was convinced that I had glass cloth somewhere in the cupboards, but after a good search through nothing was found, so I ordered some and it finally arrived yesterday. Whilst waiting, I gave the hull a coat of sanding sealer, the dope based type not the water based type, and sanded it with wet and dry.

 

So, with no time like the present the cloth was cut and I applied a coat of Poly C through the cloth and then two more coats after it had dried. Poly C is great stuff applied in thin coats, however, back to my earlier comment about the sanding sealer, on a previous model I used water based sanding sealer and what I found was that the Poly C, also water based softened the sanding sealer/balsa to the point that several areas had to be cut out as the balsa had warped very badly. I don't think it would have been an issue here with the hull but better safe than sorry, nothing worse than repairing a model whilst still building it. 

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Left overnight to dry and cut off the excess cloth with a new blade

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Then a gentle rub down with wet and dry once more

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Mixing up some of "Freddie B's" filler recipe which is basically mixing all of the above ingredients in equal quantities (ignore the Poly C) into a paste and apply and leave to dry thoroughly and sand away leaving a smooth finish.

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It looks a mess but it will all sand away as it just fills the holes and weave.

 

Next, Sanding back the filler and apply more if needed. Plus I'll finish off the power cables and solder all the connections now that I have all the bits I need

 

That's all for now 

Regards

Robert

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  • 1 month later...

Hi All,

Well time has certainly flown by and the fuselage is now covered this went on very well, again using the encapsulating film it was all very uneventful and came out really well, so we move onto some detailing.

Back in October, I ordered a set of turrets from a well known provider of pilots and accessories. I have now given up on them despite a having chased them up, so going as per plan as Tony drew them.

 

The model works out at around 1/18th scale and the crew were ordered from the Vintage Model Company and promptly arrived these are unpainted so I have been giving them some paint, not quite finished yet. I have made the machine guns and glued to the turret bases and the cockpit.

 

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The dorsal turret sits off centre and faired in using balsa and "Freddies formula" and blended into the fuselage

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Meet the crew a fine bunch of lads.

They need a few more touches of colour and then gluing in position and finally the turret tops and cockpit glazing can be fitted and painted.

 

I have just about reached the stage where the airframe needs painting and this will have to wait until the weather warms up and the winds stop blowing as I have to paint outside. I still need to fit the servos in the fuselage, I think I can  just about squeeze them in. 

 

Meanwhile, I have started my next project, something for some relaxed flying, a Flair Black Magic with a SC30 4-stroke up front. 

IMG_20220220_172450.thumb.jpg.7fa9c07389a3804a15cf07357a823958.jpg

 

That's all for now 

 

Regards

Robert

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