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Vintage Tug - BH Storch ?

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  • Vintage Tug - BH Storch ?

    Hey Guys,

    I'm looking at the Black Horse Storch as a vintage tug. I found a video of it with a laser 300v(50cc) and it looks like a 360v may fit.


    Any thoughts on power levels for the Storch ? Even if it fits, the 360v (60cc) seems too big to me....

    I'm thinking a 300v with a 21x6 may have great power and not over speed vintage sailplanes ?

    The 300v turns 7,800 - 8,200 on a 20x8 depending on prop brand and nitro. That would put me at about a 50mph pitch speed with good thrust.

    Of course I would reinforce the structure and tow point to distribute the stress of the tow release. I had to do that in the L-4 I have set up for tug duty now.

    Do you think a 112in Storch with the 300v on a 21x6 would be a comfortable tow for 3-4 meter range sailplanes like APmodels Minimoas, Kranich, and Rhonsperber, or TWM Minimoa.

    The Storch seems delicate for a tug, but I really like the multi use aspect of it. I can use it for several styles of events like Giant Scale, Warbird, and tow duty....

    Anyone towing with the BH Storch ?


  • #2
    As long as sailplane will be light and fly slow, like vintages sailplane, this should be a joy.

    wouldn't recommend putting too much power on the airframe according to the style of plane. To give you a comparison my 108 in husky was flying and towing great with rimfire 43, a 50cc shoud be plenty!

    Just my thougth,

    Just curious, where are you located Joe?


    Horizon Hobby Team Member


    • #3

      Thanks French1,

      I'm not being a smart Alec but what would you consider light ? The AP Models ships are wood under-cambered wings but weigh 8-10lbs....

      I'm in Davison, MI. I've been looking at all kinds of scale tugs that would fit the 300v or 360v Laser. I will be confirming my order on the engine Monday. My order is left from a La-7 warbird project. I have a spot in line for a new Laser and it'll need a home. I have the 300v ordered but can upgrade Monday if needed.

      I really like the Storch, however, I know there are much more robust scale tugs. I even thought about a new Seagulls Models 90in Stuka as one of the the sailplanes we will be towing is a German Assault Glider the DFS 230. The 230 was towed by Stukas in real life but I can't convince myself that the Stuka would make a good tug for the slower sailplanes. I think it would be too fast when flying in it's comfort zone.... That narrows the usefulness too much for me to consider the Stuka at this point. Plus the Vee engine would stick out of the Stuka cowl I think.

      The 300v in the BH Storch looks to fit very well and might just fit the need if it'll tow a 8-10lb 3.4-3.8m vintage sailplane.

      It'll be a tug that fits into a special nitch but very cool I think with a Minimoa or Rhonsperber behind it.

      There are lots of guys online here towing very large (to me) sailplanes like 4 and 5m + and I just want to be sure I'm going to have comfortable power to tow a 9ish lb ship up with the Storch.

      The real goal is to tow the AP Models sailplanes comfortably.


      Last edited by Joespeeder; 09-04-2016, 01:07 AM.


      • #4
        HI Joe.

        Love the Storch, but like you mentioned its a bit delicate for towing. If you're not towing at an event or all day long you can certainly get away with it though.

        Keep us posted. Cool plane!

        Len Buffinton
        Team Horizon Hobby


        • #5
          Hi Len,

          Yup, Delicate and there are a lot of very poorly set up examples out there and some good examples. As far as towing, I think I just convinced myself with the video below of a Storch towing.

          The BH Storch is no where near as cool or well done as version. However, with attention to reinforcement, set up, and sailplane selection it looks like I can expect it to work and have a cool multi-use warbird.

          Monday I will confirm my 300v order and get the Storch ordered soon. This will be a winter project so watch for a thread later this year.

          BTW, I am revisiting my AP Models Minimoa. I ripped out the spinny bits this morning and will be fitting a tow release. It looking at it again I am feeling much more comfortable that the BH Storch should be right in the ball park for 3.5m vintage wood.

          First thing I want to look at is the way the BH front hatch attaches. I'd rather have it be part of the fuse structure than sitting on top of the fuse as a magnetic release. But all that will be addressed when I get it in my hands on it. I did the same thing with my L-4 and triangulated carbon rods with wood gussets in the rear to reinforce things.


          Last edited by Joespeeder; 09-05-2016, 12:22 PM.


          • #6
            Wow, really cool with the Moki up front. Tough choice, do I want the Rhonsperber or the Storch?


            • JimD
              JimD commented
              Editing a comment
              Video sure makes me want one...nice!

          • #7
            Originally posted by Joespeeder View Post

            Thanks French1,

            I'm not being a smart Alec but what would you consider light ?


            you can have 4m sailplane from 8# (woodies) to 20+# (like the blanik)

            So light for me in the the range of 8-12Lb

            You should consider joining us at my field next week end we are having a local aerotow, I have friends that have build WWII sailplanes like the giant Me 321 (gordon Pearson) and his friend built a DFS 230...

            Horizon Hobby Team Member


            • #8
              Originally posted by DennisB View Post
              Wow, really cool with the Moki up front. Tough choice, do I want the Rhonsperber or the Storch?
              I'm with you Dennis!! The Rhonsperber or the Storch!! I have seen the Storchschmeide kits on Vogelsangs website, but have never seen this video! Great stuff!! I didn't know the motor could be switched out in the time it took the pilot to change uniforms LOL I never thought I'd like the radial powered Moraine version either..... but wow!!
              Last edited by Xroadie; 09-05-2016, 12:34 AM.


              • #9
                Hey French1,

                Cool, sounds like I'm right in there with the sizes of tug and sailplanes I am thinking of.... Thanks.

                I ordered the Storch and the 300v..... Zoom....

                Do you know Noel Hunt who flys the Ka8 and the WWI Spad? He was at a tow event in Winamac, Indiana and came back to fly the Spad with us at our Flying Circus.

                Here's his Tow Event video.

                Thanks for the great offer! I will be in Ann Arbor this Saturday night for the Alex Skolnick Trio. Maybe I can come down early to check things out to do some flying at a later date.

                I'm only and hour away from you. What time and where are you flying?

                On Saturday the 18th we are having a Scale Event at our field in Pontiac if you have any interest. Not a sailplane field as we have trees and a 400ft altitude limit that goes back to way before the most recent FAA/Drone stuff.

                This year I'm guessing we will have a good amount of WWI stuff since our Flying Circus had rain right up till event time and it scared a lot of pilots away. If all goes well this week I should have a Dr1, a Fiat G-55, and a ME-163 there. If it's scale it's welcome and we love to see all power types or styles of aircraft.

                You can see the flier at this link.

                Our web site is Be sure to check our videos and photos....

                For some reason we've had really unusually windy or rainy events days this year. But we still fly and have fun....




                EDIT: Hey Stéphane, is the DFS 230 you're talking about Gino's ? I just flew with him on Saturday. No Tows Saturday, but he and I have been towing with the L-4 at his Frankenmuth field. He just finished a Clipped wing cub for tug duty and we will be practicing with his ASW 17 (at least that's what I think it is...) soon.
                Last edited by Joespeeder; 09-05-2016, 03:10 PM.


                • #10

                  The news so far.... This past winter was very different than I had planned. Real life took over as I have been care-giving since December for my mother. Good news is she is doing very well now and I am getting back to a more normal life. But it was very intense for a few months.

                  The Storch project stopped totally and then started again about a month ago. I will load chunks of photos rather than doing the planned build thread. You guys will get the idea and if you have any questions just let me know.

                  I'm using a Laser 300v, Spectrum Rx, MKS HV 1220 servos, and replaced the soft push rods with standard 2-56 push rods from Dubro. I had to order the extra long rods from the LHS.

                  For a flight crew I watched and search Ebay for Col Wilhelm Klink and Sgt. Hans Shultz. While it's not Klinks beloved He-111 it gets him out of the office and into the air again. Unfortunately, Shultzy has never seen anything interesting to report..... We have hope.

                  I reinforced the release for towing with 3/8 square hardwood and gussets. Currently, I'm working through the weathering/detailing of the paint.

                  I have the paint work done except for the dull coat which I will do in two sessions. The first to spray the satin, then a re-coat of the canvas parts in a flatter dull coat. Or maybe I'll do the other way.... Anyway The canvas should be flatter than the metal bits.

                  I'm still learning how to post pics here so this may require a few postings as I learn and they may not come out in the correct order....


                  Last edited by Joespeeder; 05-24-2017, 09:08 PM.


                  • #11


                    • #12
                      Sorry Guys,

                      Well I have more pics but they are exceeding the size limit to post.... I will do a build video from the iPhone slide show wizard thingy and post it to YouTube soon.

                      But you guys get the idea and the project is on track.

                      Once done, I will have a multi-use plane. Warbird Events, Giant Scale Events, and Tow Events are all open to the Storch. Plus I can tow a sailplane or two at a Warbird Event where lots of people have never seen a tow flight.

                      As far as build notes I will confirm the CG but after lots of digging and trying to confirm with video I think I have a good feel for the CG and where to start. The short answer is 115mm from the front of the slat.

                      There is a thread where they go through the CG exercise as threads always do. They discuss, then someone test flys and they set the proper CG then measure where it ended up. Easy right?

                      Well the Slats confuse the issue on the Storch. You have to be very careful who's posting and know where they are measuring from as they post.

                      Lots of planes were set at 115mm from the front of the wing, flew, pronounced tail heavy. Then the CG was reset to about 90mm from the front of the wing or 1/4 inch behind the main spar. That area, just behind the main spar, seems to be the sweet spot. If you measure from the Front of the Slat 115mm rearward you end up, guess where, about 1/4in behind the main spar. lol

                      It makes good sense when you look at the wing as a total unit including the slat.

                      Final word is one of the best BH Storch videos out there confirms the 115mm from the Front of the Slat.

                      The second video shows guys flying in high winds and showing scale short take off and landing practice. They also do slow flight.

                      One thing is for sure.... The Storch likes rudder !!! lol.

                      More updates as we move forward.


                      Last edited by Joespeeder; 05-24-2017, 09:10 PM.


                      • #13
                        Second Vid...



                        • #14
                          That Storch will make towing uber cool!


                          • #15
                            Hey Guys,

                            I'm still out here and the project is getting close to a maiden.... I final balanced the Storch today. Since I posted last time I had a good friend read the German thread and I put it through Google translator. I revised my CG measurements and have read/re-read and studied the videos and where they came from.....

                            The German thread reviled that the CG of 115mm as shown in the manual is from the from of the wing, not the front of the slat.... From the from of the Slat the CG measurement is 140mm - 150mm. The video I posted with the 2 storch's are being flown with the 140-150mm CG. I finally tracked those planes down in the German thread.

                            So I set my CG at 145mm (from the front of the slats) with a slight nose down attitude. With fuel it will be nose down slightly around the 140mm. I'm betting I take weight out once flown. This has be a very confusing set up due to the way people post their results. Sometime they post things as if you're reading in real time and you have to follow their thoughts as they don't state where they measured from the slat or wing leading edge...

                            So I'm at 145mm from the front of the slats......

                            I hope to run the engine and maiden soon. Maybe next week. The weather is getting iffy here and the days are getting shorter, so it's hard to get this type of tuning done. Soon...