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TN Folland Gnat

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Martin McIntosh15/02/2020 17:31:03
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3576 forum posts
1231 photos

I don`t see a build thread on this so far other than Tony`s own.

I have always been impressed by this aeroplane since the Arrows flew them. Also, when airshows were held at Gaydon I remember the commentator announcing that a Gnat would be coming in low and fast from the right which it did very close to the spectators. It was scarcely visible and the sound followed later.

No point in doing a blog on this but any observations I make on the build will be reported and photos put on later.

I have cut out a kit for myself. Power train will be FMS 3s fan and YEP 40A esc. I have dug out a very tiny servo and will probably use this to fit a rudder.

ken anderson.15/02/2020 18:03:26
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8768 forum posts
813 photos

it must have been good martin....Donald Cambell bought a crashed/wrote off one to get the engine, he also used the fin off it... on K7...

ken anderson...ne..1...K7 dept.

Mike Bell15/02/2020 18:17:15
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302 forum posts
218 photos

Hi Martin

I've just finished my version, you shouldn't find too many problems but will be interested to see how you tackle some of the details.. I was a bit of a lazy git and used TN's wood pack which apart from the ply bits was really nice soft balsa. I think using soft throughout is key to achieving the weight, mine is 21.5oz ready to fly. Hasn't flown yet but I'm looking forward giving it a go.wp_20200131_17_14_04_pro.jpg

Martin McIntosh15/02/2020 18:30:07
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3576 forum posts
1231 photos

Beautiful job Mike. Did you cover the parts before final assembly or after it was all glued together? That black fin should make it more visible.

Mike Bell15/02/2020 18:57:18
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302 forum posts
218 photos

I covered it complete. Must admit that was one of the hardest parts of the build.

One useful build tip I got from the main TN thread was to insert the wings into the fuz separately before gluing together - highly recommended.

Steve Jones 215/02/2020 20:15:49
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604 forum posts
469 photos

dfd16d18-5ea9-44fd-af56-e84ba9fbe4ea.jpegMartin

build the Provost first . Great model and flys ok . But then build the Gnat and OMG... amazing .. such a great looker and flys so much better , smooth and with less power . Cruises on half.. your going to love it !!

Steve

Edited By Steve Jones 2 on 15/02/2020 20:16:26

Edited By Steve Jones 2 on 15/02/2020 20:17:02

Martin McIntosh15/02/2020 21:13:58
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3576 forum posts
1231 photos

Did not see the bit about inserting the wings separately so too late now. As on my TN Hunter plus I shall cover as much as possible before assembly.

Fus. sides now glued together and the fan installed.

Tim Ballinger16/02/2020 09:39:04
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799 forum posts
290 photos

Echo Steve’s comments the gnat is super fast and just awe inspiring , at least for those of us that have never come come close to flying a jet.

i did post a couple of video clips on the original TN thread .

Tim

Martin McIntosh03/03/2020 16:47:38
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3576 forum posts
1231 photos

Got mine finished at last, a longer build than I anticipated. A problem point was that one of the the outer sides did not fit, despite being identical to the other. I should have given it more attention because it governs the tail position. The turtle deck kept splitting down the pencilled in centre line but I got it fitted OK eventually. I was in two minds as to whether to cover the wing before fitting and risk damaging it when sanding the upper intake parts but this worked out fine. The tail and fin plus any possible fus. parts were filmed before assembly.

I decided to add a rudder to make the model more versatile and intended to fit the servo under the deck but forgot, so it is just at the front of this with a 2mm carbon link rod.

Weight is 22oz with a 2200 Lipo or 23.5oz with a 4Max 2600. My stock of 2200`s are seriously below capacity due to neglect so may go with the latter after a test flight.

Pics.

gnat 001.jpg

gnat 002.jpg

gnat 003.jpg

gnat 004.jpg

Mike Bell03/03/2020 18:00:01
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302 forum posts
218 photos

Still waiting to maiden mine, combination of crap weather and suffering from sciatica. Both must get better eventually frown

Martin McIntosh04/03/2020 14:09:47
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3576 forum posts
1231 photos

Have now added some yellow trim to the canopy because mine looked rubbish. Still does.

I have found that by adding a little restriction to the outlet I can give it a bit of a turbine roar.

 

gnat 005.jpg

gnat 006.jpg

Edited By Martin McIntosh on 04/03/2020 14:26:17

Graham Stanley 309/03/2020 12:17:43
11 forum posts

I've built mine with four servos, and kept the control arms inside the fuselage. It's added a little extra weight of course, and I only had 9g servos available for the ailerons. I also decided to make the ailerons a slightly bigger chord, and hope they can be used as effective flaps too.

For the finishing.. Clearly film covering a small, curved model when built is a pain, and paint (to a decent standard) adds rather a lot of weight. What do you recommend? The current weight RTS but no covering or paint is 610g.

Nightflyer09/03/2020 12:49:47
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207 forum posts

Love the build myself and my son are both building TN Mini Jets. I have recently found time to start the Gnat while my son has started the Hunter.

We are both using the FMS 3S unit and while I am finishing the Gnat as a Red Arrows one, the Hunter is going for camo finish, but have considered it being finished in silver.

Both aircraft types lend themselves to many options on colour scheme.

Both should be finished in time for some decent flying weather - I hope.

Dickw09/03/2020 15:08:36
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763 forum posts
103 photos
Posted by Graham Stanley 3 on 09/03/2020 12:17:43:

........................................

For the finishing.. Clearly film covering a small, curved model when built is a pain, and paint (to a decent standard) adds rather a lot of weight. What do you recommend? The current weight RTS but no covering or paint is 610g.

I can't help you with the weight of film, but tissue covering (to hide the wood grain) followed by paint added a total of 56.5gm to mine. The vinyl decals added another 4gm. There is a photo of it (without decals) on the other TN Gnat thread.

Mine also uses 4 servos and the all up weight ready to fly with a 4s 2200 Lipo is now 680gm.

Dick

Geoff Gardiner09/03/2020 15:44:59
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568 forum posts
949 photos

If it's any help, my TN Jet Provost was covered in Hobbyking film.

This added 38g to the weight.

Graham Stanley 309/03/2020 15:51:44
11 forum posts

Thanks both. I'm concerned about the weight and (lack) of thrust. I'm measuring about 440g of thrust, 3S set up. I was hoping for more installed thrust, and potentially even more in the air. Time to go an get a fresh battery and retest..

Graham Stanley 309/03/2020 16:12:08
11 forum posts

Better battery and of course more thrust if the scales can be trusted. "new" weight down to 583g and thrust up to 470g. The scales might be telling porkies, but I'm more confident it will fly even after adding the covering or paint.

Nightflyer11/03/2020 12:41:37
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207 forum posts
Posted by Graham Stanley 3 on 09/03/2020 15:51:44:

Thanks both. I'm concerned about the weight and (lack) of thrust. I'm measuring about 440g of thrust, 3S set up. I was hoping for more installed thrust, and potentially even more in the air. Time to go an get a fresh battery and retest..

HI Graham, I ran a static test on my 3S FMS unit and while kitchen scales are variable in the level of trust, I did unsurprisingly find that the battery pack type made a difference; the lower the C rating, the lower the power. Using two different manufacturer packs (both 35C saw about 27g variance), but using the better pack to repeat the test when the room temperature was 8degC cooler saw a drop in thrust of 24g.

Mike Bell11/03/2020 19:27:44
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302 forum posts
218 photos

Covering such curvy fuselages with film is a bit of a pain but I don't think I could have got anything like a comparable finish with tissue and paint without adding a load of weight. I have no idea how much weight the Oracover I used added, but the overall weight came out on target.

I haven't bothered with testing static thrust, I'm not sure it's a particularly reliable indicator. I'm just going to chuck it and see when the weather gets better.

Graham Stanley 327/03/2020 11:28:02
11 forum posts

I've since flown my Gnat. After two less fast throws the third got it away, and it flew very well. Initially, a tad of a handful as the ailerons needs trimming. I forgot to throttle back until reminded, so fast, small, and a bit tricky to hold level. But once I managed to feed in the trim, absolutely lovely. Not for the faint-hearted, as the roll rate lives up to "twinkle" rating! On the next flight I fed in even more exponential, as well as reducing the throws to about 25%. Roll rate them a little less than scale, so will be increased for the next outing

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