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PSS A-10 Thunderbolt II - another one

1 of 3 1/6th scale Warthogs

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Andy Meade17/01/2015 18:33:03
2614 forum posts
679 photos

As already mentioned in Phil's thread on this forum, I am building one of the other Harel A10's (the 3rd being built by Simon Cocker), and I thought I'd share my progress as I go along.

As far as timescale goes, I'd like to get this done for the June 13th / 14th PSSA meet on the Orme, which at the moment I think is doable. Airframe construction should be finished by the end of Feb; March will be time to get the glassing and primer done; April will be spraying and detailing; then a couple of weeks in May to fit the avionics. As such, the B24 is on hold - when I want a break from the Warthog I'm doing what I should have done over the winter anyway - maintaining the rest of the fleet and finishing off other small jobs (MiG29 canopy being one of the main ones).

So my A10 came with 3 carbon fibre tubes that were un-glued; some formers that were cut out form ply; the vac formed parts (canopy and engine parts); and the lovely big wings.

I started off by joining making the 1/4" play wing braces, and epoxying them into the panels to join inners to outers. Pretty much identical to Phil's, just not as neat Next up was to stick everything on the dining room table to see how big this thing is -

2015-01-06 22.04.28.jpg

indecision Yes, big. Once in one piece, the ailerons and flaps were cut out, faced, and marked up for hinges.


Balsa tip plates were added, and liteply root ribs too. My flaps will hinged at the top surface, allowing them to not only drop to about 50 degrees, but also allow a bit of up movement too if needed.

Landing gear pods were then added, to house the 6" wheels that protrude down from their stowed position to allow a bit of rotation when needed. I am supporting my wheels on steel axles that will be attached to the liteply side, that are reinforced where needed.


Some planking later -


Yes a slight boob there with the guide former. too high at the back, but I'm sure we won't notice once it's all been filled and glassed

so, to today. I bought the 25mm sq steel box section spar, and cut it to length (4 feet), then started off by building a liteply box around it, nice and tight -


This is then inserted into my 1/4" wing crutch assembly, that will nestle into the fuselage structure -


Looks about like this -


Although the rib plates will be attached much later on.

I had to sand a bit of material out of the wing boxes to allow the spar to freely be inserted. This gives a flippin great big wing that is as heavy as sin - without avionics / glass / flight surfaces / wingtips etc. Here, on the spare bed is where I scared myself with these wide panels -


I'm now waiting for a large delivery of spruce (3/32" x 1/8" x 36" ) so I can run the rest of the stringers in the fuselage, and then start the sheeting (which I just bought 40 sheets of 3/32" balsa for).

My engines will not be removable, but my tail assembly will be - which I start building tomorrow.

OK that's it for now - I will add a few more pics of the pilot and bits and pieces that I have got ready for the rest of the aircraft when I can.



Edited By Andy Meade on 17/01/2015 18:36:07

Mark Kettle 117/01/2015 18:51:38
2367 forum posts
1382 photos

Nice Andy, so is this one 110" in span?

Andy Meade17/01/2015 18:52:32
2614 forum posts
679 photos

Hi Mark,

Yes I believe it is, and about the same in length too!

Phil Cooke17/01/2015 20:29:21
2255 forum posts
1540 photos

Wow - working well Andy! - you seem to have achieved in a week what I managed in 8 weeks!

I'll look forward to seeing how you decide to bear your wheels - I spent a disproportionate amount of time fighting the fibreglass sheeting I used in my wheel pods, but I'm happy with the resultant stiffness and wheel operation. You talk about steel shafts in lite-ply with local reinforcement - I'll stay tuned to see what you have in mind!

Andy Meade17/01/2015 20:50:21
2614 forum posts
679 photos

Cheers fella. Yes I am worried about the wheels a little, but I don't tend to land on runways, or that fast with something that has crow brakes, so it should all be ok

Andy Meade18/01/2015 19:30:36
2614 forum posts
679 photos

Wing crutch assembly fully glued up, with triangular section reinforcement too -


Sunny(ish) morning, so I let the wife loose with my phone to take a pic with me holding the Hog. Engines are just taped on at the moment, but quite glad with the way everything is slotting together so far -


Tailplane has been cut from foam, full depth 1/4" hard balsa spar inserted, and it has been veneered. Now sat in its beds and drying.

Edited By Andy Meade on 18/01/2015 19:31:50

Matt Jones18/01/2015 20:12:23
1186 forum posts
1 photos

Nice work Andy, I'll buy you a pint if it's ready and at the June meet
Fly_Boy_Rez18/01/2015 20:26:16
166 forum posts
382 photos


Andy Meade18/01/2015 20:29:18
2614 forum posts
679 photos

Welcome aboard Rez!

Matt you still owe me a beer for that awful launch of my me262 last year!

Matt Jones18/01/2015 20:42:32
1186 forum posts
1 photos
So I'm not launching this then?
Mark Kettle 118/01/2015 20:45:51
2367 forum posts
1382 photos

....where you going to hold it when its done? Andy with the wheels in just poking thorough the wing will you be able to roll / slide it off the slope for launching? laugh

Andy Meade18/01/2015 20:50:37
2614 forum posts
679 photos

Spin and chuck - DLG style

Mark Kettle 118/01/2015 20:57:55
2367 forum posts
1382 photos


Peter Garsden19/01/2015 08:57:57
1573 forum posts
1159 photos

Looks scarey Mr Meade - you will need to drink lots of meade before you fly it, Ha Ha Ha!

Where did you get the engine plastic pods from - look like one our pudding basins or a Panettone holder?

I admire you greatly for your ambition and design skills. Wish I had the courage to do this sort of thing. Would have to learn CAD first. I think I will let others make mistakes first then bathe in their glory.

Andy Meade19/01/2015 09:02:39
2614 forum posts
679 photos

Hi Pete,

Thanks, yes I will need to renew my prescription for Brave Pills before getting on the sticks for this one!

The engine pods were vac formed from a wooden plug that (I think) Mr Cocker created. They are rather nice, if very very big.

I wish this one was my design! Unfortunately not though - it's a heavily modified Josh Harel ducted fan plan, and I think those mods (i.e. wing design) are down to Messrs Cooke and Cocker

Andy Meade23/01/2015 09:44:01
2614 forum posts
679 photos

Some more progress from recent nights.

Tailplane cut and full depth hard 1/4" balsa spar inserted. Note it will be left proud of tips to allow proper anchorage into fins :

2015-01-18 18.16.27.jpg

I've had huge problems veneering this for some reason.  I've done dozens of wings in my time, but this tailplane has had my pulling my hair out - I've had to remove and reapply then adjust, fill and sand the sheet on the bottom.  No pictures of that until it's finished now cheeky

Version 1 then version 2 of tailplane mount :

2015-01-22 18.30.54.jpg

2015-01-22 21.04.32.jpg

First engine pod planked (joined 7 bits of 4" wide x 230mm long 3/32" sheet flat on the bench. When dry, just rolled it round and hey presto) :

2015-01-22 18.31.07.jpg

Vac formed parts bunged onto mounting blocks, temporary fit for now of course :

2015-01-22 21.25.55.jpg

First wingtip done. 4 sheets of 1/64" ply rolled into shape. This has now been sanded and shaped with filler, looks a lot neater now I've tickled it :

2015-01-19 20.46.21.jpg

This weekend - start and finish fins, get them mounted, finish other wing tip, sand wings to final finish, complete tailplane mounting. Easy!

Edited By Andy Meade on 23/01/2015 09:46:45

Matt Jones23/01/2015 10:10:44
1186 forum posts
1 photos

Rapid work Andy, at this rate I'll owe you another Pint!

Andy Meade29/01/2015 14:23:58
2614 forum posts
679 photos

I may have been quiet, but have been getting on with plenty

The fus is now fully stringered (is that a word? it is now!), as well as having a hatch for batteries underneath and behind the cockpit (not 100% sure that was needed now). I haven't moved the wings on at all, but my 6" wheels are here now so I will crack on shortly.

Here are two built-up fins, one with a locator plate for the tailplane (very messy board at the moment) :


So as things move on, I am getting closer to needing the cockpit at least semi boarded out before my sheeting commences, so a test fit of planks sees us here :


So that FltLt. Chad "HogLover" McThunderburger will have an office (£40 purchase on ebay, comes with loads of accessories that will look nice in the cockpit) :


He's actually from a Tomcat (even has Jolly Roger insignia on him, plus those G-pants that squeeze your undercarriage), but will make a decent addition I think.

I have joined about 14 sheets of 3/32" medium balsa into 6 foot x 10" planks ready for sheeting, but first will get this cockpit done, then add some wiring, and the joiners for the fuselage split.

Peter Garsden29/01/2015 14:58:06
1573 forum posts
1159 photos

Sterling work sir. Coming on a treat. I find the best place to make sheeting that big is the dining room table without the cloth on. Makes nice marks in the polish?

Have you had a chat with the pilot yet. If he is wearing G-Pants, then he is probably falsetto? Will probably look butch, but you just can never tell, particularly these days.

Andy Meade03/02/2015 10:08:19
2614 forum posts
679 photos

Lots of progress at the moment - fins have been built up as per plan, and are ready for their final carving. I'm in two minds as to what to do with the bottoms of the fins; whether to have them knock-off or not. My fins are permanently fixed to my tailplane, which is then removable as an assembly. Having knock-off tips jsut means that the first foot or two of landing will see the tips off, then the rest of the time the weight is sat on the square faces that the tips used to attach to indecision So not sure what to do as yet.

The fuselage was split, then rejoined with a fighteraces wing joiner tube, and three nylon bolts to secure (pics to follow). This suddenly makes the fus much easier to man-handle in the workshop, so sheeting started on the tail end, after some hatch hardware was added over the wing joining crutch assembly.

I have still yet to get back to the wings, but having started the fins I thought it best to actually finish them off before jumping to another job - something which I am bad at doing.

Still on target for June PSSA? Yes.

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