Glider Restoration Part 4 - Finishing touches

The weather today was unexpectedly awesome so it would have been a crime to not try and take the glider out for a flight. I had to quickly make a few finishing touches before it was ready to go.

First off the connectors were soldered to the motor and ESC and the motor was mounted to the pylon. Ultimately, this needs further finishing work, but I'd like to make sure the motor is suited to the job before doing anything more permanent. The elastic band will keep the wires clear of the prop.

Motor pod

The clearance between the pod and the wing limits the prop to about 5 inches. I'm running a 5x5 prop with a 1650Kv (ie. 1650 RPM/volt) motor from a 3 cell Lithium Polymer battery. Hopefully this will provide enough thrust, if not I may have to try a 3000Kv motor.

I bought some large 5" rubber bands to hold the wing and stabiliser on, as the ones from the original kit had perished. To protect the trailing edge of the wing from being crushed by the bands I installed a pair of ply plates on the rear of the wings. I first cut away the covering from a section of the wing and then epoxied on some 1/32" ply plates. These were then recovered with a small rectangle of film to neaten them up.

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With this done the model is now in a state where it is ready to fly, and can be stored fully assembled. This made storing it a bit easier since it can hang on the wall above my desk.

New home

Finally, I took it out to the field for a test flight. Fortunately a few other members of the Derby Model Aero Club were also out making use of the nice weather, so I was able to get a hand launch and a cameraman.

The model flew nicely as a glider. Unfortunately I only had a small battery charged which wasn't really capable of running the motor for an extended period without taking some damage. I also had to add a second heavier but incompatible battery for ballast to get the centre of gravity correct. Next time I have opportunity to fly it I'll use a larger battery so I can gain enough altitude for a proper test.