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Making them light

How does Tony do it?

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Shane Sunday07/05/2017 22:58:30
342 forum posts
160 photos

I've built Tony's 46 Spitfire twice now. I've started his FW190 and I've crashed destroying his mustang and the one thing I could never figure out was how to get them as light as Tony has them on his plans. Until now. I don't think I'll finish the 190 instead I'll start again. the original Spitfire torqued like crazy and was a heffer. So how do you build them as light as Tony? You build them from mixed media AKA Depron, balsa, plywood and glass cloth epoxy finish. Do this and you can get closer to the original. My latest Tony Nijhuis 46 Spitfire finaly came at 1lb 13oz with 4s 2450 mah lipo.

I say this with tongue and cheek obviously but I've this time managed to build a TN model in and around to the original flying weight and I'm happy to say she flew beautifully today off a dolly. this is the first time i've been able to fly this model after 2 builds. I'm extremely pleased and I'll post some pics soon as. She required a little down trim and 3 clicks of right but then she was right as rain. Great in the air and so smooth to fly. Unfortunately a three blade prop on a belly lander is prone to breakage. So it's onto a 2 blade prop and new spinner.

This is a great flying Model Thanks Tony.

Denis Watkins08/05/2017 07:15:13
4082 forum posts
77 photos

Choose your balsa carefully Shane

Strong at the bulkhead and undercarriage mounts and spars

And lightweight thin skins and ribs

Just enough glue to, to wet and join the wood, but not oozing out all over the place


Edited By Denis Watkins on 08/05/2017 07:16:15

Nigel R08/05/2017 14:07:07
3407 forum posts
524 photos

Wood choice for sure. Balsa weight varies from around 6lb/cu ft to 14lb cu ft. 6lb stuff is expensive and tricky to find but 8lb grade is easy enough to locate. Overbuy your wood and use the lightest bits.

2lb8oz is certainly light for a 25 powered model IMO but possible with micro radio gear, no U/C and light wood throughout.

3lbs was fairly easy to achieve on a 25 size model with U/C even back in the days of standard servos, chunky 35mhz RXs and 500maH AA nicad packs, where you'd carry 2/3lb of radio and those nice light foam wheels hadn't happened.

eflightray08/05/2017 20:06:39
599 forum posts
128 photos

What next, the 72" version ?

My Depron version of the TN 72" Spitfire, (the free plan, as I hate spending money wink

7lb - 2oz flying. Including retracts and flaps.


Oh, it is electric.


Edited By eflightray on 08/05/2017 20:08:03

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