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Seamaster Refloat

A Dark Night Fix Up

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Nick Cripps12/10/2020 21:48:53
97 forum posts
65 photos

Unfortunately, Matty, I'm afraid that won't be the case. The BWA had to cancel all 3 of the usual weekend meetings at Nottingham this year and we've now had to put a hold on the monthly meetings at Billing Lake as well due to the current situation. I managed to get to the last one at the beginning of September but it's not clear yet whether we will get any more this side of Christmas - we can always hope. Of course, if it snows...

Anyway, back to the plot.

The photo below shows the difference between the one piece carb and inlet on the OS40 compared to the separate components on the '48.


Simple answer really, swap the carbs over? Well, apart from the fact that the carb on the '40 sits closer to the rear of the cylinder/crankcase and fouls the mounting point for the carb on the '48, it's a good idea. The purists might want to look away now, but I simply ground a clearance slot in the carb mounting to allow space for the carb. This won't affect fitting of the original carb again, if required, so should work fine. This will also make the throttle linkage a bit easier. Incidentally, I did try to swap the backplates over but found there was a small difference in their diameters and the crankcase bolts didn't quite line up.

I must admit, until I read Dave' comment above, I hadn't realised that the nylon I was using was any different to that I had used in my youth. It might explain why it is taking so many coats of dope to seal, even on sheet balsa. A good job I didn't use it on an open structure like a wing!

Ace13/10/2020 10:26:47
354 forum posts
23 photos

Nice workmanship thumbs up

Would it not be possible to recess the mount/firewall bolt head, or even grind that thinner as well then remove some of the nylon mount if we are only talking mm?

MattyB13/10/2020 11:38:02
2393 forum posts
46 photos
Posted by Nick Cripps on 12/10/2020 21:48:53:

Unfortunately, Matty, I'm afraid that won't be the case. The BWA had to cancel all 3 of the usual weekend meetings at Nottingham this year and we've now had to put a hold on the monthly meetings at Billing Lake as well due to the current situation. I managed to get to the last one at the beginning of September but it's not clear yet whether we will get any more this side of Christmas - we can always hope. Of course, if it snows...

Sorry to hear that Nick. The restrictions seem to be getting ever tighter, particularly in the North and Midlands. I went to Uni in Nottingham and still have many friends who stayed in the area - they are getting pretty peeved, but we are all going to have to get used to it as I suspect we are at least 9-12 months from a vaccine at least.

Nick Cripps14/10/2020 21:14:20
97 forum posts
65 photos

You're right, Ace, removing a bit of the nylon mount is probably a better idea but still leaves me with having to re-route the throttle linkage as it's all a bit tight for space in that area. Definitely a plan B option if this doesn't work.

Matty, I live just outside Nottingham city and we are in the high alert category now. We obviously can't blame the students but it is interesting to see that the 2 areas of the city with the biggest increase in cases are Beeston and the Arboretum which, strangely enough, are where the 2 universities are located...

Anyway, back to the Seamaster. Progress has been a little slow over the last few days but, on the positive side, I have been out flying twice.

Lurking in the back of a drawer in the garage/workshop, I found some unopened Ripmax Tufcote. Not sure how old it is but it mixed up ok and the 1st coat has been applied to the engine pod and upper surfaces of the fuselage. It went on well with a soft brush and, although a bit streaky in places, has sealed the covering well. I think I will apply another coat to these areas as they are the most exposed to glow fuel and exhaust residue before going on to the remainder of the fuselage.

Hopefully I can get that done tomorrow and finish off this little project by the weekend as I'm keen to move on to something else.

Nick Cripps15/10/2020 22:21:45
97 forum posts
65 photos

Today was one of those days where you seem to take one step forward but two back, as a couple of unexpected snags arose which slowed things down a bit.

The fuel proofer went well over the areas proofed yesterday so, once that was touch-dry, I moved onto the other areas of the fuselage. I'm not sure quite what happened but I think I applied a second coat of Tufcote onto one side of the fin too soon after the initial coat which resulted in the surface pickling.


No problem, I thought, I'll just wait until it has dried, clean it up with wet & dry and then reproof it. Unfortunately, when I tried to sand it, the fuel proofer just flaked off. I ended up removing it all from that side of the fin and then proofing it again later. There's still the odd patch where there has been a slight reaction but I'll leave it overnight and assess it again in the morning.

While that was drying, I finished off the installation of the engine and tank and bound a receiver to my transmitter to test the controls. I fetched the wing down from the garage rafters to check the aileron servo was still working ok and discovered the 2nd snag of the day:


I thought that the wing was undamaged but found that one locating dowel had broken off completely and other was cracked and bent. Like most modellers, I suspect, I've made some hole borers from sections of a scrap radio aerial so selected one that just slipped over the broken dowel and fitted it to an electric drill. The cracked dowel came out rather too easily and showed that it was actually only a shortened piece from what looks like an earlier repair.


Trial fitting of a new wing dowel showed the hole to be angled (hence the tapered dowel repair, I guess) and I had to use a Dremel (and some swearing!) to remove the original piece so that a new dowel would fit correctly. Fortunately, the other dowel came out fairly cleanly but I've had to open up both holes to accommodate larger diameter replacements.

Oh well, back on track now.

Nick Cripps16/10/2020 21:30:31
97 forum posts
65 photos

Taking the car in for an MOT (which it failed sad) restricted me to just a few small jobs today.

First up was gluing the replacement dowels into the wing with epoxy and then setting it aside to fully cure. I then assembled the water rudder onto the rudder itself and installed the whole assembly to the fuselage using flocked mylar hinges.


Rather than using an additional bolt to retrain the end of the spring, I trapped it beneath the control horn backplate and then bent over a small section of the other end to locate it in a hole drilled into the water rudder (which is made from plasticard, by the way). The water rudder now sits in the correct position parallel to the base of the fuselage and air rudder but is free to swing backwards if it hits an obstruction.

Apologies for the quality of the photo, I even took the model outside to avoid shadows and reflections from the garage lights and it's still pretty poor. Incidentally, you can also just make out the patches on the fin where the fuel proofer has bubbled again and which will need more attention later.

Nick Cripps17/10/2020 21:32:41
97 forum posts
65 photos

After fitting new front discs and pads to the car it was back to the Seamaster with a job I wasn't looking forward to. With the new dowels now securely attached to the leading edge of the wing, I had to open up the corresponding holes in the fuselage former to accept the larger diameter, up from 6mm to 8mm. It wasn't just a case of boring out the existing holes on the same centres as that would introduce a gap at the leading edge of the wing seat so I had to mark the larger holes touching the top of the existing ones and then carefully open them up with a Dremel. Fortunately that went well so I was able to put the model together on the lawn for some photos.



What may not be obvious from the photos is that the engine pod hatch is still in its original Solartex covering and looks a bit dull compared to the shine of the new nylon. However, I'm happy with the overall result and looking forward to when I get a chance to get the model back lakeside (whenever that will be).

Experienced waterplane flyers reach for their flying boats when the wind picks up - they are much more stable and unlikely to capsize when taxiing crosswind, unlike landplanes converted with floats. This is something that has been missing from my waterplane fleet for a year or two now so I'm really pleased to get it back again.

Nick Cripps17/10/2020 21:51:39
97 forum posts
65 photos

As a footnote, I thought I'd show a couple of tips for keeping your radio dry. First up is the switch, which is mounted on the left hand side of the fuselage below the wing, a rather vulnerable location for a flying boat. This has been covered by a rubber shroud, the sort that is sold for model cars and is completely waterproof. The rubber is flexible enough that you can just slide the switch across through the rubber cover.


The battery and servos are sufficiently waterproof not to require any additional protection but the receiver can be vulnerable if water gets inside the fuselage. To avoid this, I use a simple method shown to me by fellow waterplane flyer, John Biggin. Here are the basic ingredients:


I have used one of the new AR410 receivers in this model which has the advantage of having an internal antenna which makes this process much simpler. Take a piece of Blu Tack and roll it into a sausage shape, and then hold the servo leads together and wrap the Blu Tack tightly around them:


Insert the receiver into a balloon, then add a tie-wrap around the band of Blu Tack and pull it up snugly, slightly compressing the Blu Tack to ensure a good seal.


A word of warning! After each flying session, remove the receiver from the balloon to avoid the risk of condensation and corrosion.

One other essential on flying boats, in particular, is to seal around the wing seat to prevent water ingress. Yet to be done on this model, I'll probably use some wing seating tape to close up any gaps.

Edited By Nick Cripps on 17/10/2020 21:54:43

dave windymiller28/10/2020 21:25:11
136 forum posts
160 photos

It wont be long before the flying field is flooded which would be handy for a re maiden eh Nick!

Nick Cripps28/10/2020 21:42:23
97 forum posts
65 photos

Great idea but unfortunately Nottingham goes into tier 3 after tomorrow so I won't be able to get there!

SIMON CRAGG29/10/2020 00:19:37
634 forum posts
5 photos

We have done a fair bit of floatplane flying this year, including the mandatory mid-air and subsequent air frame soaking!.

I found that coating the ESC in clear mastic, and spraying all the leads and RX with ignition sealer works a treat.

The plugs tend to stay put as well, which is an added bonus.

Nick Cripps30/10/2020 12:21:14
97 forum posts
65 photos

Thanks for the tips, Simon, good information.

The ignition sealer is a good idea which I've not heard of before. I have used Corrosion X which works well but is difficult to buy in small quantities and is messy to apply. Spektrum used to sell a version of one of their receivers which had a "conformal coating" which made it waterproof - unfortunately these are no longer available.

A number of posters on other forums warn against the use of silicone sealants on speed controllers as they contain acids which can damage electronic components. On the other hand, my Dragonfly (Skipper) has an ESC sealed in this way and has lasted for about 5 years so it may just be scaremongering.

To be honest, I don't usually go to a lot of effort in waterproofing individual components, it's more important to seal any opening effectively to minimise water ingress from the inevitable splashes during normal operation. I usually take a spare receiver with me just in case but I find that if a lot of water gets into the model, I've got bigger problems to worry about!

Piers Bowlan30/10/2020 16:05:50
2237 forum posts
57 photos

I used silicon sealant on an esc in my Puddle Master years ago and it still works today although I just sealed the ends with it, not covered the entire circuit board, which won’t be too good for cooling (my escs were water cooled . The Rx I wrapped in cling film and the hatch I sealed with duct tape and Vaseline - the water still got in! The Rx I attached to a lump of polystyrene which floated on the water inside the fuselage 😂.

Edited By Piers Bowlan on 30/10/2020 16:11:02

Bustergrunt30/10/2020 18:41:51
162 forum posts
33 photos

This is a really interesting thread. With lots of good info.. and I have just received a Seamaster plan with a view to building it over the winter, however I’d like to make a fibreglass fuselage as I have acquired some experience in that field...

Nick Cripps31/10/2020 10:28:18
97 forum posts
65 photos

Thanks for the feedback, guys, keep the good ideas coming!

A moulded Seamaster sounds an interesting project, perhaps you could start a build thread on here? I'd like to try fibreglass moulding at some point.

Steve J31/10/2020 16:05:18
2110 forum posts
61 photos
Posted by Nick Cripps on 30/10/2020 12:21:14:

Spektrum used to sell a version of one of their receivers which had a "conformal coating" which made it waterproof - unfortunately these are no longer available.

It's easy enough to coat the boards yourself, Google "circuit board lacquer".

GT85 is good for servo connections.

Nick Cripps31/10/2020 20:17:33
97 forum posts
65 photos

Thanks, Steve, good info.

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