Toon P-40 regress, and further top secret developments…

I regretfully must inform everyone that the Toon P-40, as beautifully as it came together and ended up looking, was a tad too large and too heavy for the Surestart powerplant for which it was designed. A slightly more beefy engine would’ve made her work, but my very narrow goal is to use the engines which I currently have on hand, so the Toon P-40 is retired at the moment. However, we have started another project intended for the same powerplant that will hopefully be a better fit and produce more satisfactory results. Top secret transmissions from behind the iron curtain have revealed that a Toon version of the following aircraft is under construction. More data will be released in the near future.  : )



Ford Flivver Flies

Well, it’s been a while since I’ve gotten around to getting some of this stuff up on the site, so here we go. Here is what the Ford Flivver actually ended up looking like when completed.

Not too bad. The dummy Anzani engine heads really give it a scale presence.

And here is the video of one of the first proving flights.

It’s not the best quality as it was taken on a simple hat cam, but you get the basic idea. As was mentioned in the clip, I am experimenting with different prop sizes to try and cut the speed a bit to help with landing on my rough field.

All for now….but stay tuned as there are some Toon P40 pics detailing some of the progress made there coming soon.


Some Undercarriage details for a fellow Roland CII enthusiast.

This is for Peter who is carrying forward the Roland CII tradition and building his own, around 50″ scale version. His will likely be more successfull than mine was, as he won’t be overloading it with too large an engine and fuel tank, so that it becomes overweight and flies like a pig…..thats been eating bricks…….for weeks. You can check out his comments so far in the Roland CII section all the way at the bottom of the page. I thought I’d move the conversation here though, as others might benefit from whats being discussed. We had been discussing undercarriages, and I did a quick sketch of the one I used on the Roland CII. Poor as it is, it is a picture, so maybe it’s worth 500 words, I wouldn’t wager a thousand.

The top is the type I used on the Roland. Since mine was so small, a little less than 30″, I couldn’t use the type on the bottom that I used on my larger sized WWI birds. So what you see is a steel wire “V” frame inserted into wood blocks inside the fuselage that are glued to bulkheads. You just drill the right size hole after shaping the v and insert the bent ends and(glue) them. Then you bungee the floating axle to the bottom of the “v” with an appropriate strength rubber band..(your discretion). The fairing is attached to the top of the axle, I used small copper wire on the bottom to fasten the fairing and glued it into the foam fairing by simply pushing it in with glue attached. Be sure the axle spins inside the three or four little wire loops. This way, when in place, the axle can bounce up and down, and the little indented ends of the fairing keep it level in action by contacting the v frame. I hope this makes sense.

The bottom example is great and authentic when you have a thick enough fairing (larger models) and simply uses streamlined aluminum tubing (with steel wire inside optional) for the frame. At the bottom a piece of tin or aluminum flashing is folded around the bottome and glued in place. In this with a drill, a vertical slot is cut for the axle. Another thin peice of flashing can be connected between the two underneath to join the two sides and act as a cover for the groove in the fairing. I usually add tabs to this by which I can use screws to attach the fairing. Once the axle is in place and the two ends bungeed, you simply slide the fairing down over the axle, ( I use foam so I simply cut a horizontal slot to accomodate the axle in the fairing) and attach it to the bottom cross member with screws. This way the axle bounces up and down inside the fairing.

Hope this helps, it’s a lot in a very small space. But if you have any questions please ask, and perhaps others have their own techniques they’d like to share! There is more than one way to do this.


Flivver construction continues…

Alrighty, not to get too wordy on this post, lets get down to the good stuff.


Above shows the aileron cut free from the wing. Then after this was accomplished, I found the aileron control rod holes were mis-aligned, leading to the final decision that it’s simply better to punch them at this stage anyway by simply sharpening one end of the wooden control arm dowel, aligning it, and re-punching the holes while sliding it through the foam ribs with the new corrected alignment. Try doing that with ply ribs sucker face!  It worked….enough said. Ok, I might mention it’s a little late here. Enough said again.

Oh and the second pic is of the inspection by supervisor number two who decided to give it a look. Yes, the yellow one. No, the smaller white fluffy one is supervisor number one……oh never mind.


These show the tail surfaces being aligned and fitted, as well as the hinge locations being established. A single wood dowel runs the length of the control surface, and soda can stock hinges wrap around this and attach to the opposite surface. It makes a very realistic, strong and smooth operating hinge.


And finally these last two show, first a better shot of the soda can hinges in place before gluing, and secondly, the method I decided on for attaching the wing. Those ply saddles will take screws that pass up through the wing and hold it in place. I was just going to permanently glue the wing in place, but then decided on this method, although a bit heavier for versatilities sake, especially due to the fact it’s a prototype. It can be built either way though.