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Float-planes

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Graham Ashby 12311/04/2007 14:16:00
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140 forum posts
7 articles
Thought it might be interesting to start a float-plane / flying boat thread. We're planning on doing a little more this summer and I wondered if anyone had experience of particularly good designs and / or float / airframe combinations. My only experience so far has been with the ARC Cessna 177 which is an absolute cracker on floats. It's so good I've decided to leave it equipped specifically for use off water when the opportunity presents itself. Anyone else got a favourite?
Bustergrunt13/04/2007 23:21:00
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161 forum posts
33 photos
I've recently bought an ARC cessna, having totalled my last float plane at the last Splash-In I attended.
I've flown a Ready 2 on floats and converted a Jupiter (RIP) into a float plane, which worked very well. As you can see I'm an admirer of the ARC products.
Furthermore, I've flown my Puppeteer from the water and that looked MAGNIFICENT!!
I recently bought a Herr Aquastar kit from the states...kit price and delivery 27, so hoorah for the weak dollar, although I intend to electrify this, there appears to be a little extra work to turn this into a good waterplane i.e. increasing the size of the fore body.
I also recently acquired a MK I twinstar, as there are several threads on how to convert these into Seaplanes...having cut my own wings for my most recent project, a friends somewhat bashed up Seamaster, you can tell that I'm a fan of the wet stuff.
Antony Wright14/04/2007 08:14:00
223 forum posts
5 photos
I guess another obvious seaplane would be the Wulrus or gruman goose
Bustergrunt15/04/2007 09:31:00
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161 forum posts
33 photos
I was float flying at Kielder yestereday...it's on today too, but I don't think i can make it today...but what a fanastic day it was yesterday
flytilbroke15/04/2007 21:34:00
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2083 forum posts
5 photos
I am sorry that once again I could not make it to Keilder. Maybe sometime. Loch Earn will be my first this year. I had hoped to have a Northstar built in time but it looks doubtful, so it will be old favourites, the ARC Ready and the Seamaster.
Graham Ashby 12316/04/2007 10:59:00
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140 forum posts
7 articles
We've been looking at the VMAR float set just recently. Has anyone tried them? Would be interested to know. I'd also be interested to hear from ARC owners about the roughest conditions they've flown in. The single water rudder on my 177 seems a little ineffective in anything above a 10mph breeze. I've extended it a little but as a result only tend to fly in late afternoon / early evening.
Bustergrunt16/04/2007 11:03:00
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161 forum posts
33 photos
The biggest waves I have been flying in were approximately 10-12 inches tall. That was using an ARC Jupiter converted to floats using the ARC floats. With an Irvine 53 she still got through the chop albeit with a lot of prop spray. A bit of a change from the glass-like water we had on saturday
Graham Ashby 12316/04/2007 11:13:00
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140 forum posts
7 articles
Crikey, that's choppy! Surely, it's difficult if not impossible to steer in that sort of wind?
Bustergrunt16/04/2007 11:23:00
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161 forum posts
33 photos
lets say it was...interesting. i had to be careful when taxiing
Nick Chudley16/04/2007 15:34:00
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77 forum posts
61 photos
Hi! Can we join in if we're interested in flying boats? I started with a little AquaStar kit from Herr Engineering, converted to electric. It has a 40" span and flies beautifully, after adding ailerons. But it's a bit small to handle on water and tends to get very wet, with interesting and expensive results!

So I bought a Catalina plan from Ivan Pettigrew. The biggest thing I've ever built - 84" and very unpopular on the kitchen table. This man knows what he's doing, visit his website at www.geocities.com/ivansplans.

It's a well-behaved plane in all departments - can't say the same about the pilot. I had a spot of bother trying to persuade it to loop-the-loop, fortunately nothing irreversible, but back to the kitchen table anyway.

That big tail means that it doesn't like to turn away from the wind on water, so I avoid taking chances. I don't like swimming in cold water. Definitely, I'll stick to dry land if the wind exceeds 10mph.
Bustergrunt16/04/2007 15:38:00
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161 forum posts
33 photos
Sure, jump in, the water is lovely!
I'm in the process of building an aquastar myself, just had the kit delivered. There was two at the splash in at the weekend. One electric, and the other a slimer. The electric one flew beautifully, and I've got a brushless set up for mine. I've seen Ivans plans, they look exellent.
Nick Chudley16/04/2007 15:56:00
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77 forum posts
61 photos
Hello Bustergrunt. I think you've got more experience than me, but with the Aquastar, for what it's worth, the more you do to make it waterproof the better. Mine was much more successful when I set the thrustline for the motor at about +3degrees maybe more. otherwise, revving up on the water has the effect of pushing the nose under. Also an extra splashrail around the front.

What motor are you planning?
Bustergrunt16/04/2007 16:03:00
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161 forum posts
33 photos
I picked one up from BRC at the weekend, i told them i needed a "revvy" replacement for an 049/061 ic motor, so i got a good deal on an esc/motor combo, turning an 8x6 on 2s lipo
Nick Chudley16/04/2007 16:21:00
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77 forum posts
61 photos
Sounds good. BRC are great aren't they! specially for motors and servos. I've never been tempted by their models though, 'cos I like balsa best.

I was using a motor from Galaxy Models - JP pro 2832/22, only 57gms and they claim 160watts at 75% efficiency. I've now nicked the one out of my Aquastar and I'm using two to drive the Catalina. Actually it's what Ivan calls a Minicat - only (!!) 3.5lbs auw. I think I need to look into my insurance.
Graham Ashby 12316/04/2007 17:59:00
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140 forum posts
7 articles
Like the Aquastar, very pretty. Would be lovely a little larger with an i.c. motor up top... Oh, and ARTF :-)
Bustergrunt16/04/2007 18:35:00
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161 forum posts
33 photos
What, like the Neptune? That's avaialbe as an ARTF, or the Seamaster, very available with the weak dollar. selling for 170 in the UK, but for bout half that with the weak dollar in the states. I got an Aquastar delivered to my door for approx 3/4 of the kit price in the UK by ordering from the states...I'm now waiting to finish my Seamaster before starting that kit.
Bustergrunt16/04/2007 18:37:00
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161 forum posts
33 photos
The Aquastar needs a few mods apparently, spray rails attached to the fore body and upthrust of about 3 degrees, according to build threads on the net
Bustergrunt16/04/2007 18:48:00
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161 forum posts
33 photos
Sounds like you've got the right idea Nick
Graham Ashby 12316/04/2007 19:31:00
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140 forum posts
7 articles
I'm not aware of the Neptune, I'll take a look. Any idea who makes it?
Bustergrunt16/04/2007 19:34:00
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161 forum posts
33 photos
Not off hand...but it looks like a Seamaster clone...so I'm guessing it's a bit further east than Canvey Island

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