I usually drive an XJR but now I`m going to be a Hurricane pilot!

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Re: I usually drive an XJR but now I`m going to be a Hurricane pilot!

Postby J44EAG » Wed Feb 27, 2019 11:45 pm

Parts ordered on line from sellers in the States who USPS shipped to LA then Heathrow. At that point the package went through UK customs and somehow UK carriage got subbed to our Royal Mail. All outside my control and you only get limited tracking advice which is usually hours out of date. I might see if I can intercept the parcel at the Caterham Depot tomorrow. Time taken for delivery is now sixteen days.

I ordered servos via Bang Good in China. Those parts were here in about six days, no customs issues and no second carrier holding his hand out.

Currently ordering from Europe is a trouble free situation with no nasty surprises. What will happen after Brexit. Lets hope we don`t end up with the daft fiasco that seems to occur every time I trade with the States.

Disgruntled of Warlingham.
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Re: I usually drive an XJR but now I`m going to be a Hurricane pilot!

Postby Zennan101 » Thu Feb 28, 2019 11:27 am

Anything shipped via USPS will end up in the hands of the UK Post Office and you can almost guarantee the delay. It's just the way it (doesn't) work. Using the other courier networks takes the package through different a different customs process and delivery time is the only competitive advantage they have.
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Re: I usually drive an XJR but now I`m going to be a Hurricane pilot!

Postby J44EAG » Thu Feb 28, 2019 4:49 pm

I finally short circuited the UK post delivery service and collected the package myself this morning. At least I now have the parts I wanted.

Now all three Ultra Sticks stand on identical spatted landing gear. Now, apart form the big 1.08 engined machine fitted with a red propeller spinner, all three models look almost identical.
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I had another phone chat with the father of the designer/re-developer of the Ultra Stick this morning. "Big Al" owns a model shop business in Milton Keynes. His son, Ali Machinchy now works as a product developer for Horizon Hobbies in Illanois. Ali is probably the best UK flyer on the circuit and took his considerable talents to Horizon. He has developed several models whilst with Horizon under the Hanger 9 brand. This includes both sizes of my much prized Ultra Stick. I`ve therefore sent a mail to Ali and look forward to his reply.

Another Club night coming up at 17.30 hrs. All Ultra Sticks will be in attendance. They have all been cleaned up and are rearing to go!

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Re: I usually drive an XJR but now I`m going to be a Hurricane pilot!

Postby J44EAG » Sun Mar 03, 2019 7:26 pm

The Ultra Sticks were well received at the club night. Apparently we have a new member who also has one that was recently flown and said to be all good. The squadron builds! I`d love to see half a dozen all flying together in formation this summer.

I`ve spent a few hours on the Fiesler Stoch again. I found my interest in the model had wained and have had to push myself to getting into it again. The cowl and various metal components have been painted a near matching grey.

A trial mock up of the troublesome and difficult aileron and flap system is in progress. That has teased my head again but a solution appears to be forthcoming. What you see here still needs further refinement.
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Resting from that issue, I decided to give myself some renewed impetus by working on the colour scheme. The model was going to have a simple grey covering with Luftwaffe black and white cross markings and a few decal letters and numbers. Hardly inspiring and potentially being a difficult model to see in overcast skies. Google images turned up a camouflaged example wearing RAF markings. Some of these German aircraft were captured and used by Allied forces. Field Marshall Montgomery was known to have used one such example whilst reconnoitering the battle for Europe after D-Day. On the basis of that, I`ve added RAF markings, invasion stripes and yellow high visibility underside colours to the Storch which gives it eye appeal and increases its visibility from a model flying perspective.
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I`ve probably spent about eight hours applying the scheme shown in these images.
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Further stripes and insignia will eventually be applied to the wings.

In preparation for undertaking increased flying activities once the weather improves and I`ve had an electronic gizmo installed in my back in Guys` on Thursday, I`ve rigged and commissioned two similar protocol transmitters linked by an umbilical cable.
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One transmitter acts as a master unit, whilst the other acts as a slave. Control from the master can be passed to the slave by holding up a switch on the master transmitter. This means a tutor can teach a pupil to fly a model without having to grab a single transmitter from the pupil in the event of a model becoming out of control. Whilst I have previous model flying experience gained forty years ago and I`ve flown a couple of expendable models more recently, I`m loath to fly any of the prized Ultra Sticks until I`ve been checked out by a tutor. The umbilical cable is known as a "buddy box" and use of it for a couple of check flights seems sensible. I`m in no hurry to break one of the £500 Ultra Sticks due to sheer incompetence or arrogance. Using a buddy box is the right way to go. The system will again be used when my little grand-daughter has her own model flown and learns to fly the thing herself. So far, she has flown a computer simulator model with typical childlike ease and bravado. Take-offs, landing, aerobatics etc, get performed with reckless abandon. She has loves to deliberately crash the simulator model and watch it re-construct in seconds!

I`ve now also re-joined the Riddlesdown MFC. I was one of the founder members at the age of thirteen, some forty three years ago. Riddlesdown have a massive site below Edenbridge but outside the exclusion zone at Gatwick. The airspace classification allows my oversized Extra to be flown at the site, hopefully later this year. Presently the guys down there are doing preparations for a storage shed and getting two hundred tons of hard core graded into the access track across farmer land. Large, six wheeled dumping lorries also use the track which over the winter degenerates into a rutted quagmire only usable by four wheel vehicles or an army tank! Although the planning permission grants unlimited use of the site 365/365, winter use is presently impossible as members cannot get normal cars up to the flying area. Hopefully that will change over the next couple of months.

Parts continue to be sourced for my next build. This will be the proposed "upside down" low wing Ultra Stick conversion complete with "upside down" colour scheme. A few more servos are expected from China, a larger fuel tank is in the post and the recently acquired used Irvine.72 sits on the bench in anticipation. Everything else is included in the kit. When I`m ready to build it I can get one here in less than twenty four hours and have it converted and ready to go in less than another ten!
low wing ultra stick.jpg
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Re: I usually drive an XJR but now I`m going to be a Hurricane pilot!

Postby J44EAG » Wed Mar 06, 2019 1:23 am

Snatching two and a half hours this morning saw me up at the flying field for engine runs with the Irvine 72 nailed to the front of the Number 2 Ultra Stick. The sun was out, a light WSW wind but temps at just 2 degrees C. Certainly not as warm or comfortable as it was last Tuesday. It was enough to keep other flyers away this morning. I was treated to the sight of the resident two seat, Biggin Hill based Spitfire taking to the skies just to the east of our flying site. Nothing else in this World sounds like a V12 Merlin. The sound of freedom. I wonder if those hearing the sound in 1940 reacted as we do now to its magnificent and unmistakable melody. Perhaps its just nostalgia setting in. Test pilot Alec Henshaws` book entitled "Sigh for a Merlin" is a "must read". A fascinating story about the development and testing of the Spitfire at Castle Bromwich.

What a sweety that Irvine .72engine has become after a couple of tanks of fuel run through it. With fuel mixture progressively leaned off and low speed throttle air bleed adjusted, the motor ticks over reliably and dashes to full throttle in an instant. It starts with just one flick of the propeller by hand and equally as well using a hand held electric starter. No problems at all and settling in well. Note in this image how the sunlight reflecting from the revolving white propeller tips have scribed a dotted and dashed line around the propeller arc.
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A five minute engine swap then had the pre-used Irvine .72 installed. It is exactly the same engine as the new one but has seen earlier service. It was a bit reluctant to start but seemed happy enough to perform once running. I stopped the motor then attempted to re-start it. No go. Resorting to the electric starter, same again. I changed the glow plug and saw current draw on the flight box amp meter. No issue there. Applying the starter again, the plastic propeller spinner shattered under the starter load. The weather had become colder, wind had increased and my nose began to drip constantly. Blow this for a lark! I`d had enough and packed up. No point in getting a chill. More news in due course.

For want of something to do, I nipped over to the model shop in Bromley this afternoon for a basic supply top up and a chat with the guys there. Customers and staff are all friendly and just enjoy hanging about with like minded people. It is a very club like atmosphere. You rummage through boxes yourself, count your bolts out onto the counter, grab a hand-full of bits and pieces, pay over a bit of cash and away you go. A great place to relax and see what everyone else is doing with their hobbies. Amusingly, Number 2 Ultra Stick disgraced itself whilst lent up against the counter with nose touching the floor. It deposited a couple of fluid ounces of fuel on Robs` well worn carpet. Robs reaction was that it just added to the ambience of the place. Nothing like the smell of methanol, caster oil and nitro-methane.

So another £36 spent on nuts and bolts, control horns, clevises and rods, a new starter motor drive cushion, a couple of replacement spinners and a Mustang P51 cockpit canopy suitable for the next Ultra Stick low wing conversion. That should look quite nice when fitted. This hobby does mop up the money.

I arrived home to find two deliveries. One was a new 14oz fuel tank for the next Ultra Stick build together with the eBay sourced servos which have taken six weeks to arrive from China by slow boat.This evening has been spent getting eight servos fitted with mounting grommets and control arms before exercising the new metal gearboxes until each servo loosens up slightly.

Time I went to bed.

Mike :wink:
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Re: I usually drive an XJR but now I`m going to be a Hurricane pilot!

Postby J44EAG » Thu Mar 07, 2019 9:17 pm

Its my 61st birthday today!

This was spent asleep on a trolley at Guys`. They were going to fit a trial electronic gizmo in my back but complications arose when I reacted badly to the anesthetic causing a very abrupt halt to the job and having to get me back to the land of the living as quickly as possible. Now back at home after a nightmare train journey out of London Bridge and termination of the train service at Purley due to the Caterham branch line having an obstruction on the line, has left me rather exhausted and disappointed that the electronic gizmo couldn`t be fitted. A question mark hangs over me as to why I reacted so badly to the injected chemicals. It now appear I`ve to get an appointment with a gastro wizard. I`ve a very sore throat caused by stomach acid burn and tonight I`m having difficulty swallowing. Bang went my proposed Chinese meal with my eldest daughter. Not the best day I`ve had in a while.

I built this engine test rig yesterday. Not much to say about it but that it will be useful for commissioning model motors and that the thing still requires to have a couple of epoxy resin wash coats over it to make it fuel resistant.
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I`ve watch an eBay radio receiver finish, then it is off to bed.

Mike
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Re: I usually drive an XJR but now I`m going to be a Hurricane pilot!

Postby Zennan101 » Thu Mar 07, 2019 10:46 pm

Happy Birthday Mike. Sorry to hear that it didn’t go to plan. I bet that somewhere there is a Medical Forum where your case Is being discussed at length! I hope you get back on track very quickly.
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Re: I usually drive an XJR but now I`m going to be a Hurricane pilot!

Postby davidr » Thu Mar 07, 2019 11:02 pm

Happy birthday old boy! Sorry to hear that things didn't go as planned at Guys.
Didn't they know that your regular anaesthetic is cyanoacrylate fumes and brandy?!!

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Re: I usually drive an XJR but now I`m going to be a Hurricane pilot!

Postby J44EAG » Fri Mar 08, 2019 10:44 am

Thanks guys.

Must admit to feeling very beaten up today. Swallowing hurts and I`m as slow as a snail. Some recovery needed before progressing things further. Retail therapy might help. Might order another Ultra Stick!

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Re: I usually drive an XJR but now I`m going to be a Hurricane pilot!

Postby J44EAG » Sat Mar 09, 2019 9:52 am

Recovery progressing now. 75% better than I was but still rather exhausted. At least I can now swallow again. Quite amazing how flattened that little session at Guys has left me. Now hoping for better days and finding out what caused the issue. For the time being, I`m again stabilized. Top people at Guys. Highly professional but somewhat hindered by the QA checks at every turn. The paperwork chase is incredible.

I spent yesterday quietly re-working the Number 2 clone fuselage. I felt the carburetor was set to high relative to the centre line of the fuel tank and that I would get adverse fuel delivery when either pulling positive or negative G during aerobatic flying.The mixture to the carburetor would have perhaps enriched under positive G and leaned off during negative G. Getting the carburetor nearer to the tank centre line should alleviate any of those possibilities. The modification involved turning the engine and its mount by ninety degrees and then installing a throttle control wire support conduit within the tank compartment.
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The install is not that easy. The conduit tends to obstruct the fuel tank and has an abrupt downward angle through the fuselage. This means the internal piano wire control push-rod has to be angled at both ends to allow it to reach the carburetor lever and the control servo at the other end of the rod.
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This part of the job fought me all of the way. I finally succeeded by reducing the push-rod diameter to allow an easier path at both ends of the conduit exits. Modification and development work takes time and effort. I won in the end and the knowledge is now filed away for future use.

The internal layout of the fuselage also came up for adjustment. The NiMh battery pack was re-located to an aft position to help bring the Centre of Gravity to a more neutral position. It had previously been just a tad nose heavy.
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I did apply some retail therapy yesterday. I phoned Big Ali at Als Models to order another Ultra Stick model. He said I sounded dreadful. Being the good fellow he is, the kit is now being dispatched together with another larger DuBro 12oz fuel tank. This tank install is now becoming my standard fit on the model. Tuesday should see the model here and this construct will be a low wing variant.

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Re: I usually drive an XJR but now I`m going to be a Hurricane pilot!

Postby JerryL770 » Mon Mar 11, 2019 8:42 am

Hello Mike,

Since you PM'd me yesterday I had a quick squint at the link to this thread and thought this chap is going to have fun fixing up that old crate, as I scanned down the page, little realising how long was that page.

I came back for a look this morning after you advised the number of views and - good grief, it runs to 13 pages. You have certainly been having some fun for the last year but I'm sorry to read about the dicky back gizzmo problems etc. Hope it gets sorted soon.

I jumped to this page so have not read all your posts. You seem to have good model shops around. Do you know of HobbyKing? Excellent supplier of components out of China but with UK and European warehouses now so avoiding some delivery problems. Good prices and ranges.

Excellent. I will slowly read through your thread.

Jerry
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Re: I usually drive an XJR but now I`m going to be a Hurricane pilot!

Postby J44EAG » Mon Mar 11, 2019 9:41 am

Good to hook up, Jerry.

Yes, I do use Hobby King. They market a Chinese covering which is a seriously top grade material at a brilliant price. About £9.50 for a five metre roll plus a bit of postage. With Oracover at around £18-£23 for a two metre length plus post, buying the HK material massively reduces covering costs. HK are also very competitive with Lipo, NiMh and LiFe battery packs.

Keep watching. There is loads more fun to come!

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Re: I usually drive an XJR but now I`m going to be a Hurricane pilot!

Postby J44EAG » Mon Mar 11, 2019 2:13 pm

I`ve just had an eBay offer accepted by a nice lady who is disposing of her late Fathers modelling gear. An unused, still in plastic bag, un-run .91(15cc) two stroke ASP engine came up with "make an offer". I pinged my offer in and it was accepted. Now on its way to me by first class Royal Mail. I`ve saved about £60 compared to the current retail price.

The engine is brand new and un-run.
ASP .91 1.jpg
It hasn`t even had its carburetor fitted.
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This is another Chinese "value"motor with a good reputation for reliability and size wise it fits above my new Irvine .72(12cc) motor on Ultra Stick No 2 and below a couple of ASP 1.08(17cc) units that I also have. One of those 1.08 motors is bolted to the front of Ultra Stick No 3.

Decent new and low time IC motors are in very short supply presently. The parent Chinese company who produce the ever popular ASP, SC and Magnum engines (American market versions with a need for at least 15% nitro-methane fuel content) are expanding and re-locating their factory due to increased global demand for their products. Their new production runs are now awaited with great impatience by global markets and consequently there is a noticeable shortage of good used and new engines on the market generally. The prime examples offered both by the trade and from private sellers are presently quickly snapped up with used example prices being kept artificially high due to supply and demand. I`ve wanted out of the used chain and have decided to buy new and un-used examples for preference. I`ve caught several colds buying second-hand used motors so to avoid disappointments, I`m trying to solely buy new motors but at rock bottom prices. I think I have been fortunate to buy this particular engine with a £60 saving. It has filled a gap in my engine collection and will become a very useful addition.

More news soon.

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Re: I usually drive an XJR but now I`m going to be a Hurricane pilot!

Postby J44EAG » Tue Mar 12, 2019 4:43 pm

I`m off to the Riddlesdown Club meet tonight at Four Elms near Edenbridge. Lets hope the management of the village hall condescend to turn the heating on this evening. A couple of months ago we all froze. We might as well have met in a mortuary! I think we all got away just about alive. I was positively hypothermic by the time I got home. That wasn`t funny at all and had to dive into a hot bath to feel human again!

So I`ve just re-joined this Club again after a break of about forty four years. A few of the original guys are still around....just. It will be good to hook up again.

How many models can you get in a stripped out and converted disability Peugeot Tepee Pope Mobile?
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Now loaded into the chariot are three and a half Ultra Sticks (one, a complete new and un-opened kit received this morning), a pile of electronic transmitters and also the big 80" heavy weight 17Lb Extra.
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If the vehicle had a high level removable shelf through it like a hearse, even more could be carried. I must work out some sort of elasticated cats cradle made from luggage spiders for that. What a useful and thoroughly versatile little vehicle that car is. Tax at just £30 a year, about 44mpg as a low pressure turbo diesel is fitted with a six speed auto box and flappy paddle gear change over-ride. I love driving the thing and the economy is great compared to the XJR! I get into the XJR and find myself going for imaginary paddles. They were of course only in their infancy when the XJR was current. Fitment would have made a great car absolutely supreme.

I find it hard to justify the XJR on occasions. £360 road fund and about 19mpg for the usual use it now gets locally. If the XJR had to go, then the Peugeot would be a definite "go to" replacement. Different from the XJR the Peugeot certainly is but it really is terribly good and a total joy to drive. Perhaps a bit thirsty when pushing on on the motorway but that is its only downside other than the slightly chaotic layout and operation of the drivers switch gear.

My new ASP.91 motor sent from Glasgow is currently at a depot in Warwickshire awaiting another movement down to presumably my local Caterham Royal Mail distribution centre south of London. I`m hoping it might arrive tomorrow but that is perhaps being rather hopeful.

The hangar is now prepared for the proposed conversion of a standard Ultra Stick kit to a modified low wing version. That should be an interesting next project.

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Re: I usually drive an XJR but now I`m going to be a Hurricane pilot!

Postby J44EAG » Wed Mar 20, 2019 1:38 am

A week since I last posted about the model antics. It has taken a fair time for me to feel more my usual self after the incident on the operating table at Guys. It certainly knocked the stuffing out of me and left me feeling mentally flat. Even keyboard bashing and loading images has been more than I could cope with. Fortunately, I`m feeling a little more chipper having taken things a bit easy and having had a few tests carried out locally. Results due on Thursday so perhaps we can find out what occurred at Guys and begin to move forward again.

I`ve not been idle though during the period though. The next Ultra Stick kit which arrived on the 12th March has been started. Although an identical kit to the ones previously built, this one has been seriously hacked into.
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Heart in mouth, I cut the wing into two parts and stripped off the fuselage to permit this model becoming the planned low wing conversion.
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With the fuselage flipped "upside down", the top became the bottom and the bottom became the top!
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With the tailplane also flipped, the fin and rudder also came in for modification and extension.
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The wing cut had me carefully mark up the centre section with two lines penned onto the wing to allow two saw cuts to be carried out either side of a central wing rib. Approximately 6mm was removed between the two pen lines and allowed me to salvage the central wing rib for copying and reproduction.
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A new central wing rib was cut on the band-saw and carefully made 2mm larger all round. Two standard sized ribs were recreated and were glued either side of the 6mm rib. That gave me the basis for reconstructing the wing but with an inch of dihedral added under the tips at either end of the wing. Essentially then, the wing is no longer flat but a very shallow V configuration. This equates to 3 degrees of dihedral which will help stablize the model at slow landing speeds and stop adverse rudder yaw. If the wing remained flat as per the standard wing found in the kit, a right hand rudder input would cause the low wing model to roll to the left. Obviously undesirable, this nasty adverse yaw effect should be cancelled out by adding the dihedral. Advice for this modification appeared in an ancient 2001 magazine article with the model designed saying that the modification was worth all the effort involved and had produced a low wing Ultra Stick which he said flew little differently from a high wing version. Only when we come to fly this model will we find out whether this modification works on this model.

Cutting the wing into two halves meant cutting through the flat main wing spar and rejoining it so that dihedral was introduced. This also meant making wing joiner braces with added dihedral which were inbuilt at the wing leading edge, the main spar and at the trailing edge of the wing. Think three times before cutting once applied. The two main spar sections were rejoined with the additional joiner braces being employed to sandwich the two spar halves back together but with the dihedral inbuilt. Two twin tubes of five minute Araldite epoxy were used as adhesive to ensure this critical load bearing components would not fail under high load G forces when the model is subject to high loads during aerobatic flying. Once the core structure was back together again, new balsa sheeting was fitted over the exposed central wing ribs, sanded to profile and then epoxied over with a light e-glass cloth and industrial boat building epoxy laminating resin.
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Cured overnight, the now set epoxy mass was sanded smooth and the glass edges blended and tapered down to a level finish with the underlying balsa sheeting. From start to finish and including replacement of removed coverings, about twenty five hours work has elapsed.
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One stands back and surveys the work.....the colour scheme is identical to the original flat wing found in the kit. The eye popper is seeing the wing but with the added dihedral. My eye still hasn`t adjusted to this yet!
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There are of course more items to modify on this model. The landing gear also has to be re-located from the bottom of the high wing fuselage to the "bottom" of the low wing fuselage. This is needed because you would otherwise have to take off and land the model upside down and that would look daft!!!! In practical terms this means the landing gear has had to move slightly further forward towards the engine or otherwise be re-located within the wing structure. The easy option is therefore to continue to mount the gear on the fuselage and be aware that ground handling characteristics may be a little more tricky to handle when the model is taking off or landing.

The fuel tank access also "moves" from the top of the fuselage and on this low wing configuration, is accessed from below rather than on top.
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That is no big deal though.
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The motor side thrust angle also needs reversal having flipped the fuselage. An additional quarter inch thick ply bulk head was epoxied to the firewall on the model, then the ply was cut and machine sanded to "reverse" the side-thrust angle. No issue with that other than to say that a fair amount of ply dust was generated during the modification. It is amazing how much mess gets made during model making. This type of work will generally require my under desk rubbish bin to be emptied at least twice daily. The floor similarly requires sweeping almost hourly to avoid dust being trodden into the house.
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Tonight, the wing has been trial fitted to the fuselage. No problems found and all looking good. The landing gear mountings are still to be cut from ply on the electric jig saw tomorrow. All is going well.

This model will use my recently acquired and brand new and un-run, Chinese ASP two stroke .91/15cc glow motor. A little over-sized for the model, the trial fit for that has gone well. Definitely a bargain for £60 on eBay and at about a 50% reduction in cost compared to buying from retail sources.
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Somewhat amusingly, I received an email from eBay informing me I had also won an SC.75/12cc two stroke motor. Again new and un-run, I`d forgotten I`d made a bid for it up to a £30 limit. This is not something I would normally do, preferring to pile in with my maximum bid within the last eight seconds as a listing comes up to the end of the auction. In this particular case, I made the bid and never actually thought I would still be the top bidder at close of play. That engine has also arrived and joins my collection! In these images, the .91 ASP has a red cylinder head, with the slightly smaller SC.75 being the plain cast engine.
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So it would appear I have two bargain new engines in stock with the .75 being bought for just one third of its value in a retail situation. No more half clapped out second hand motors for me from now on. New motors don`t need to be expensive. All one has to do is keep an eye open for a bargain.

A couple more days work should have this low wing Ultra Stick ready to go. It looks like I now have a good stock holding ready to tackle the coming flying season. Perhaps now my pocket can take a well earned rest.

Mike
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