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Redshift F3F

A lightening fast version of the Stormbird

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Peter Garsden29/10/2018 08:56:18
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1039 photos

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This F3F plane by Doc J Hammond will fly, there is no doubt. It is beautifully made and is the double carbon version.

Andy Meade29/10/2018 09:39:41
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2531 forum posts
644 photos

Very nice Pete, I fancy one of these myself, but I'm not on pop-star wages like you Lawyers cool

Martyn K29/10/2018 09:47:11
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4805 forum posts
3498 photos

Love that colour scheme..

Peter Garsden29/10/2018 10:34:11
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1463 forum posts
1039 photos

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The parts arrived some time ago, but I have had to finish the Canberra first. I daren't open the box in case I got side tracked.

My initial reactions when I opened the box were:-

  1. The quality of finish is superb
  2. The wings are incredibly strong being double carbon
  3. The fuselage is still very narrow like the Stormbird, and the construction very similar, so there won't be a lot of room.
  4. This model has a square ballast tube for the fuselage, which won't fit my round ballast slugs, so I ordered some 19mm brass bar (3/4" in old money).
  5. When I crashed the Stormbird the fuselage broke near the join. I did think of reinforcing it with some Kevlar when I built it, but never did so. I regretted it. I am going to reinforce this one with some Kevlar, which will make the join between the carbon under the wing and the light Kevlar up front less of a break point. I have bought some 150 gram Kevlar cloth, which is now in situ.
  6. I have ordered some KST Servos for the wings and 2 Bluebird servos for the V Tail, which I have never used before.
  7. I did order a standard 4 pack NIMH battery for the nose but it clearly wont' fit as there is not enough room, so I have ordered a 1600 mah 4 cell instead made by Overlander
Peter Garsden29/10/2018 10:35:25
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1463 forum posts
1039 photos

This photograph shows the Kevlar in situ - you need to trim it with a Dremmel and be very careful not to get epoxy on the lovely gloss white fuselage - I wiped the excess off with Meths before it dried.

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Peter Garsden29/10/2018 10:36:32
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1463 forum posts
1039 photos

Yes I know it is a bit extravagant Andy, but I know it will fly like a dream, having flown the Stormbird.

Peter Garsden29/10/2018 22:04:38
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1463 forum posts
1039 photos

Doc Hammond designs aircraft for a living, puts all his designs in a wind tunnel, and manufactures wings with a new sine wave system. He used to design RCRCM gliders but left to set up his own company because he didn't agree with their policy of making fuselages to flimsy to encourage resale of parts, scandalous! He designed the Tornado, Sunbird etc. What a designer. You just can't resist any of his designs. You get what you pay for - Kevlar and Carbon not fibreglass which is brittle and snaps.

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The instructions recommend that the ballast tube should measure 400mm ie 10 x 35mm slugs plus a plug and width of the ply 6mm end caps x 2, but the one supplied only measured 386mm so my slugs are each 34mm, hope that will work.

Doc recommends that you use a piece of Depron or Hard Foam to hold the slugs in but I normally use a piece of dowel with a bolt through it and a nut underneath. I will try the foam method as I have some left over blue foam, which might work. I am a bit nervous of what might happen when it is upside down? Presumably if it is oversize and jammed in we might be OK?

So previously I have always put all the slugs in then balanced the tube, but Doc say measure half way down the length of slugs and mark it. This mark then has to line up with the C of G which is 98mm from the leading edge of the wing.

Edited By Peter Garsden on 29/10/2018 22:10:09

Peter Garsden29/10/2018 22:11:47
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1463 forum posts
1039 photos

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I knew the tool would come in handy one day.

Peter Garsden29/10/2018 22:17:33
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1463 forum posts
1039 photos

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The ballast tube is supported on 2 pieces of 5mm x 10mm Spruce which is planed and rounded off to follow the curve of the fuselage. It also supports the servo tray, which is good thick and strong fibreglass 6mm thick

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If I wasn't so short of length, I would have recessed the end caps then flooded the edges with epoxy and fibreglass powder mixed. As it was I carefully put the minimum amount of epoxy glue to secure them and avoid the slugs binding.

NB, you can use sold brass (very expensive and the route I went) or brass tube filled with lead - which is the option I should have gone for, or Uranium - much heavier but crazy price, and I don't have a supplier.

Peter Garsden29/10/2018 22:19:24
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1463 forum posts
1039 photos

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Quite tricky to cut these all to the same size and shape, so we will see if it affects the C of G when they are in. These boxes to hold ballast come from Decathlon and are perfect and cheap at £1.79 each.

James Hammond 431/10/2018 23:44:58
7 forum posts

Hi Peter, some more on the ballast tube for the Redshift. What I do now is to put the ballast tube in with the opening at the BOTTOM of the fuselage - but I'm not sure which version of the instructions you have. I make up the tube first, work out where the opening should be in the bottom of the fuse, then make a smaller opening so I can see what's going on. Then I splooge the ballast tube itself in. When its cured, I clean up all the edges, sand off the extra splooge and make sure the slugs can go in and out easily. This way the ballast is easier to access, will not interfere with the control rods, and is given another level of security by being covered with the nose cone.

Peter Garsden05/11/2018 17:27:07
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1463 forum posts
1039 photos

Don't quite follow this James, don't know if you have the up to date instructions. I have puzzled over it once or twice.

James Hammond 406/11/2018 00:32:49
7 forum posts

Hi Peter - if the instructions mention bottom access ballast tube install then you have the correct ones.

Peter Garsden13/11/2018 08:39:44
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1463 forum posts
1039 photos

Well there has been some fiddling and farting around as James says in his instructions to get the ballast tube in, hindered mostly by my putting an extra layer of kevlar inside the fuselage for strength. This narrowed the hole through which the tube would go.

Initially I planed some wood off the sides of the beech supports to make it narrower, but too late realised that the inside shape was like a narrow waisted woman, so when it finally went in, there were gaps between the sides and the inside of the fuselage.

Eventually I got a round Permagrit tool to dremmel away the high spots in the kevlar to eventually get it in. What a phaff.

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You can see in this picture how the servo tray stands proud of the top of the sides by about 2 mm. This is because the tube was not pressed down far enough when glued in. In turn this meant that the tube was too high by about 1mm where the wing joiner is meant to go and had to be filed away with another Permagrit file. The joiner does fit now, and I didn't have to grind away to expose the inside of the tube and the ballast which is what I feared.

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You can see, however, how I wrapped the fuselage in cling film to protect it from sticky fingers. You cannot protect the front section which has to be wiped with Methylated Spirit before the epoxy sets.

I used slow setting 24 hour epoxy which is essential. 5 minute just peels off as it is too soft. I ran out for the servo tray and used 20 minute with milled fibreglass mixed in which works just as well. Sprinkle enough to cover your pool of epoxy. It makes the epoxy dry much hard to match the density of the fibreglass

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Andy Meade13/11/2018 08:44:38
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2531 forum posts
644 photos

I must admit Pete, there is a lot of work to do on this model with such a high price tag surprise

Peter Garsden13/11/2018 08:47:05
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1463 forum posts
1039 photos

So the tip is to insert the wing joiner when you glue in the tube to make sure there is sufficient gap for it and the tube is pressed down far enough. Be warned.

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The tray had to be filed and fiddled with to get it to fit in between the sides with the Kevlar taking up more room than the original, but it went in eventually and is a good fit.

I then applied clamps to bed it down onto the beech rails. This adds a lot of strength to the fuselage.

As with all Doc's designs there is not a lot of room for error.

I have worked out, however that my battery fits a treat, better than the Stormbird because I have gone for an overlander this shape

I went for the bottom version which fits just fine. It has been pointed out that a LIFE 6 volt would have been better but I haven't bought the right servos for it - next time.

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Peter Garsden14/11/2018 18:20:56
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1463 forum posts
1039 photos

This is standard for an F3F plane Andy. They always need assembling.

Andy Meade14/11/2018 18:35:04
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2531 forum posts
644 photos
Not my experience. The Pike just needed pushrods making up and servos dropping in. Ditto on the Blade - and that's a quarter of the price.
Callsign Tarnish14/11/2018 18:36:03
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71 forum posts
1 photos
The last moulded model I bought was servo ready, and that was less than the Redshift. Unless you're competing and need the best why wouldn't you just buy a used one for ?300 Ready to fly off the classifieds?
Peter Garsden16/11/2018 08:35:01
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1463 forum posts
1039 photos

I think I am just a Doc Hammond fan. His models all fly like lightening and are very strongly put together. If I see one that cheap I will buy it next time. I have made about half a dozen mouldie's now and they all have to be put together like this one. I don't know where you are getting servo ready planes from Andy but if you buy them new, in my experience, they all need the sort of construction I am going through now.

The main difficulty with Doc's design is that there is usually very little room in the fuselage or wings to cram everything in. Aeroteam models however have more Kevlar and carbon than their competitors and are more strongly built, certainly than RCRCM

For instance, the recommended servo for the ailerons is actually 8mm, so I have ordered this one **LINK** which is not cheap.

I am sure it is all done for the best of aerodynamic reasons.

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