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Flair Cub

Second Hand Model

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Mike Etheridge 112/12/2018 15:40:39
1553 forum posts
430 photos

I went to a club's AGM and 'Bring and Buy Sale' on Monday knowing that the last thing I needed was another plane. The sale commenced at 7.00 PM and the AGM an hour later. I could have missed the sale by turning up late but then car parking would have been awkward. There were not a lot of items in the sale but most were low priced and three items in particular caught my eye. There was an immaculate Majestic Major complete with engine and radio for £65, which was very tempting but I already have a KK Falcon . There was an equally immaculate veteran model with a Spark Ignition engine for £95, and the general feeling was that the engine alone was worth more then that. Next in line was a Piper Cub for £16, what a bargain I thought and how would I get it past my wife at home? The plane had no engine or fuel tank. There was one servo only fitted and a 35 mhz Hitec receiver inside plus a Nicad battery. It occurred to me that the plane would be ideal for an SC 52 four stroke I have owned for ages but never used. So I bought it and quickly stuck in the back of my car and after the meeting took the plane home. Once my wife had gone to bed I extracted the plane and the attached plans for a thorough inspection, oh dear!.The plane in fact was a Semi-Scale Flair Cub.The constructor (Deceased I think ?) generally had not made too bad a job of putting the plane together, but the ailerons had gaps with the wings that appear to be far too large so will need to be re-fitted. Unfortunately the hinges have been pinned in place. The covering is OK on the wings but the fuselage covering although not ripped is scruffy partly due to the top layer not being ironed on last. The covering procedure is usually bottom first then the sides and then the top. The Cockpit covering looks a bit of a mess and there is a miniature Postman Pat and his Black and White cat glued in place instead of a pilot ! There are no hatches fitted at the front of the plane and the whole of the thin ply cowling is glued in place so fixing the engine to the wood bearers could be tricky especially if the bearer spacing is inadequate. The plane will of course need new radio. Well of course it could be a good winter project, I would have liked it to be in Military colours but for £16 perhaps what the heck!

Anyone flown a Flair Cub , I would be interested in a report ?



Nigel R12/12/2018 15:58:37
3934 forum posts
687 photos

Seems an ideal case to seal those hinge gaps with film, before trying the major surgery route.

A very very long drill bit might be a useful investment for the engine mounting?

Jon - Laser Engines12/12/2018 16:23:53
5513 forum posts
268 photos

I wouldnt change a thing. The model is so docile that the aileron hinge gap wont matter one jot. The 52 will be more than enough, slap it in and just get ready for some stick and rudder fun.

Alan Gorham_12/12/2018 16:54:22
1288 forum posts
145 photos

I used to have one and I had hundreds of lovely relaxing flights with it. Mine was a restoration project. It was beautifully built but horribly covered, so I stripped it down and recovered it as you see here.

The fixed plywood cowling is as per the plan and I never found it to be any problem. I would either re-do the aileron hinge gaps or seal them with film as the aileron response on mine was very soft (nice with a bit of rudder, both thumbs type flying).

I fitted an OS40 Surpass engine in mine. Went great. I flew it with wheels, skis and floats fitted (not all at the same time). I sold it last year to make room for new projects and I miss it.


flair cub float.jpg

Edited By Alan Gorham_ on 12/12/2018 16:58:09

SR 7112/12/2018 17:00:06
452 forum posts
140 photos

I wonder why everyone is so frightened of their swimbos, i thought it is an equal partnershipsmiley

SIMON CRAGG12/12/2018 17:00:12
575 forum posts
5 photos

I had many flights with mine, powered by a Saito .45 fs. Brilliant model, but need coupled aileron - rudder which is common with this sort of model. Bargain for £16.00.

Martin Harris12/12/2018 17:05:49
9351 forum posts
252 photos
Posted by SIMON CRAGG on 12/12/2018 17:00:12:

...but need coupled aileron - rudder which is common with this sort of model.

Great opportunity to learn to couple aileron and rudder with your thumbs!

Alan Gorham_12/12/2018 17:36:47
1288 forum posts
145 photos

Amen to that Martin - it's what flying is all about!

Geoff S12/12/2018 17:52:29
3669 forum posts
26 photos
Posted by SR 71 on 12/12/2018 17:00:06:

I wonder why everyone is so frightened of their swimbos, i thought it is an equal partnershipsmiley

Quite! You would only need to look in our so-called lounge to see we consider it to be our house In fact most of the garage is concerned with bike storage (she's keen) and her gardening stuff (gardening is her aeromodelling).

The only thing she ever complains about is smells from my workshop (paint, dope etc) which adjoins said lounge. We celebrate our 52nd wedding anniversary next March.

I learned to use rudder a lot more when I started flying small V911 helicopters during winter indoor flying sessions. Other that I'm 100% fixed wing. It means I'm no longer afraid of flying a model which might need a little rudder assistance in normal flight.


Jon - Laser Engines12/12/2018 18:45:31
5513 forum posts
268 photos
Posted by Martin Harris on 12/12/2018 17:05:49:
Posted by SIMON CRAGG on 12/12/2018 17:00:12:

...but need coupled aileron - rudder which is common with this sort of model.

Great opportunity to learn to couple aileron and rudder with your thumbs!

absolutely. Aileron rudder mix should never be used in my view

Mike Etheridge 112/12/2018 19:07:26
1553 forum posts
430 photos

Great photos Alan , and thanks for the responses all. I briefly flew my Flair SE5A this year and that certainly needed rudder input with ailerons on the turns which is something I have not practised much in the past, so I intend to use the technique in future with most planes, and will need to use a transmitter tray for comfort in the process. Mixing ailerons with rudder up to 25 % was discussed with a colleague prior to the club AGM, but I do understand there are objections to that set up..

It would be nice to at least re-cover and refurbish the fuselage so I can at least take some pride in the plane and not feel embarrassed at the flying field. As for the aileron gaps just to fly the plane I could just cover over them otherwise it's a case of cutting through and replacing the existing hinges with some Kevlar material or similar, and releasing and re-fixing the ailerons from/ to the torque arms. As is fairly evident the edges of the ailerons where they are attached to the wings are not suitably profiled.

Edited By Mike Etheridge 1 on 12/12/2018 19:11:49

John Tee12/12/2018 19:37:18
858 forum posts
65 photos

It might be my old eyes but it looks as if the aileron hinge has been nailed on not pinned.


Jon - Laser Engines12/12/2018 21:10:17
5513 forum posts
268 photos

I would not mix the rudder for a number of reasons and they are all related to the need to use the two controls in opposition.

As an example, you go in to a left turn with left aileron and rudder together, then pull up slightly and round you go. At this point the ailerons return to neutral but you may need more rudder to keep the tail up and keep the turn nice. Even if you dont the outer wing is flying faster than the inner wing and so it may rise with the extra lift and roll you into a steeper bank. As a result you will need right aileron in your left turn to maintain the bank angle you want, with left rudder used to keep the nose tracking nicely round the corner.

Another example would be if you have a cross wind on takeoff. If we assume a cross wind from the model's right i would always hold a small amount of right aileron to prevent the wind lifting the right wing as i leave the ground and flipping the model over. I would also need left rudder to prevent weathercocking into the wind. In this case i would need even more left rudder on the tx as the mix will cancel a bunch of it out. 

In both of these cases you have to use the two controls independently as roll and yaw need to be used in opposition. If they are tied together through the radio this will be impossible to get right.

I couldnt fly a model without a rudder now, i just use it too much.

If you want to practice using the rudder, fly directly away from yourself and rock the wings right/left to about 40 degrees bank angle. As you do it, move the rudder with the aileron stick and vary the amount of rudder you use until you find a sweet spot where it looks right. After that is mastered move on to steeper turns and cross control. By the end you should be able to fly totally flat circles with loads of rudder and opposite aileron.

Its not super easy to see but in this video of the full size there are a number of times you can spot the cross control.


Edited By Jon - Laser Engines on 12/12/2018 21:11:55

Former Member12/12/2018 21:12:41
724 forum posts

[This posting has been removed]

fly-navy13/12/2018 01:01:44
422 forum posts
11 photos


Edited By fly-navy on 13/12/2018 01:02:26

fly-navy13/12/2018 01:08:07
422 forum posts
11 photos

This is how mine turned out after some modification, fed up with engine sticking out so inverted it, flaps, landing light comes on when flaps selected, fully sprung working home made u/c Saito 65 cos of all the mods on board glow battery ,lights batteries etc, flew a dream now just gathers dust. must dust it off one day.

David Davis13/12/2018 07:12:20
3763 forum posts
719 photos

I've had two of these both obtained second hand. They flew nicely powered by an Enya 40. I crashed the yellow one through flying it in a wind which was too strong for my abilities at the time. I can't remember what happened to the blue one but I no longer have it. I still have the maroon sweatshirt mind!

I have sometimes used medical tape to seal hinge gaps.

stripey flair cub.jpg

old stripey flair piper cub. enya 40 up.jpg

Cuban813/12/2018 09:26:17
2961 forum posts
1 photos

We used to get quite a few beginners turn up with Flair Cubs as their first model. Naturally, they varied in quality from immaculate to 'thrown together'. However, providing they were safe they all flew perfectly well, so I'd be inclined to keep your changes to a minimum unless the aesthetics really get on your wick. From your photos, Mike, I'd say that your B&B find is distinctly towards the upper end of the quality scale.yes

Andy C13/12/2018 10:20:38
163 forum posts

I built one as my first venture into RC first time round 25 years ago. Was easy to build and flew great but I crashed it due to no knowledge etc. I would love another now that I know what I am doing to experiment with fun improvements such as fly-navy also did. If anyone has one to move on let me know. 😀👍


Andy C13/12/2018 10:21:48
163 forum posts

Sorry. Double post

Edited By Andy C on 13/12/2018 10:22:54

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