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New Glider Tug - Design Contest

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  • New Glider Tug - Design Contest

    Hey Guys,

    As many of you know last year was a year I tried to introduce local sport and warbird guys to aerotow. I'm happy to report I know of 2 new sailplanes being put together by guys that would have never tried it before. A World Models Minimoa and Seagull Pilates B4. The Minimoa has been messaged a bit with new incidence setting and corrected cg. I gave the B4 owner all the info I could find and suggested doing a carbon wing spar mod. He got it at Toledo.

    As for Tugs take a look at this. Each year a local hobby shop has a building contest. They choose one common part and you can build anything you want as long as you use the common part of the year. This year it was a common wing panel. I'm not sure if it was a common kit wing or a laser cut wing kit for the build contest. Lots of different designs showed up. Pattern bi-planes, WWI monoplanes, sport planes and a classic trainer style glider tug !

    Everything except the common rib and spars had to be designed and built by the modeler. The tug is electric and will tow in the small 2-3m range.

    So so interest is growing and guys that thought they would try aerotow are dipping their toes in the water.


    Forgot they also had to include a bomb drop for dual bombs on their aircraft. They will do a small contest to fly and try to hit a target soon.

    Last edited by Joespeeder; 04-30-2018, 11:03 PM.

  • #2


    • #3
      And some of the other aircraft build with the same wing base kit.


      • #4
        Last few...

        Btw, if any of you have seen the little Sinbad Sailor sailplane from RetroRC then the flying wing may look familiar. It was RetroRC's owners entry into the contest. Mark always does some neat stuff.
        Last edited by Joespeeder; 05-01-2018, 12:39 AM.


        • #5
          Very cool idea. Congratulations on getting a couple guys interested. It takes one at a time!!

          Now get them on the forums.

          Len Buffinton
          Team Horizon Hobby


          • #6
            I like the 'Tin Donkey' the best!


            • #7
              Hi ARUP,

              lol,,,, I know the J2 is right up your alley. I spoke with Curt Spicer the builder tonight. He said for such a simple seeming model it fought him the entire build. Curt was a designer for I think Aerodrome models and had a hand in Wing Mfg Co. He always builds awesome WWI stuff and is a true old school builder.

              I was asking him about the J2 tonight and never knew anything about it before Curt filled me in. Cool plane.

              The patern bi-plane won Pilots choice. But there's some sort of prize for the flying/bomb drop portion of the build contest. The builder of the bi-plane is an awesome scale builder and this project featured his own fiberglass fuse. He's a retired engineer I think. He did a Do-335 a couple years ago and made the lower horizontal movable using a hunting arrow shaft as a spring. So if the lower horizontal touched the ground it retracted by bending the arrow shaft and then just sprung back. Very cool.

              The designer of the Glider Tug is a retired structural engineer and years ago kitted a rc trainer type plane. I'll see if I can get info on his old kits.

              The guy running the contest used to have a line of kits under the name Aspect Aviation. So there is a fair amount of talent in these events. I'll get shots of the tug when we hook a sailplane to it this spring.



              • #8
                So the kit Barney produced was the "Hardwoody" and was a conventional trainer style aircraft for .20 sized glow with a 48 in ws and was unique in using spruce and basswood instead of balsa. He sold 300+ kits through Great Planes. He has one still flying and it's been updated to electric and ailerons...

                I razed him about his tug for the contest looking a lot like the kit from years past. But to be fair the Tug has open structures and lots of updates. Both are very nicely done and should be great fun.

                I also found some links to show a few of Johns old Aspect Aviation kits that people built.


                John is a very well healed classic sailplane flyer and competed for years with his father all over the area. He settled into a local club and owns a local hobby shop so he mainly flys power now. He and I flew together around 1977-82. Since I came back to RC about 2007 I have pushed to do some sailplane stuff and with Stephanes help and finding a great sailplane field that's very easy for us to get to in Frankenmuth we are able to enjoy silent flight once again. We even manage to get up to Sleeping Bear dunes once in a while to slope for a day or tow.

                At last years intro aerotow Stepahne let John fly his ASW20 and John was up over 2500ft before long.... Old habits die hard.... lol

                Hope I'm not just blathering on. I tend to talk warbirds etc with sailplane guys and then talk sailplanes with warbird guys....

                We have so many disciplines that we can explore.



                • #9
                  That's a lot of fun info! I remember Aerodrome and bought Pfalz D-III plans through them(?) I plan on making Frankenmuth so long as I heal okay from a soon to be had proceedure on my nose... ugh. There was a Junkers J-2 build in one of the British magazines not too long ago! Since I'm so 'scale model crazy' I just don't remember those kits. The yellow model looks like it would be a good tug for small sailplanes! I dabble in a few different genres myself and tend to like non-military birds more than military with the exception of WWI. Here's my CL 'Plumb Crazy' semi-scale Goodyear/Formula 1 racer 35" stunter.

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                  • #10
                    Hey ARUP,

                    Funny you should mention the Pfaz III..... I bought Curt's prototype from him a couple years ago. It had been hanging in his basement for about 20 years. I bought a NOS Saito for it and installed all new radio gear. The elevator needed some attention as it had a hitch in its action. Fixed that all up so it was smoooooth.

                    Then I detailed a really nice pilot and we test flew it a couple times.

                    I had had it hanging in my office and the more I looked at it the more guilty I felt. That plane has survived over 20 years, Curt built it and was happy to have me fly it but I decided it needed to go back to its proper home.

                    I took it it back to John's hobby shop and since Curt had the odd Saturday off we hung it in the hobby shop. I told Curt I had a gift for him hanging in the shop.

                    So now Curt has a fresh engine and new radio gear and his old friend back. He plans to fly it again this year. I bet we see it at our Flying Circus event.

                    Here's the remaiden

                    Cool Racer!! Hope you heal fast and can enjoy some cool thermals with us !!

                    Last edited by Joespeeder; 05-07-2018, 12:44 AM.


                    • #11
                      My WWI favorites change on a regular basis but I tend to gravitate/vacillate to the Pfalz D-III (and IIIa), Fokker and Sopwith Triplanes, DH-2 and -5 and German two seaters! That Pfalz is way cool! I play a flight sim called Wings Over Flanders Fields Ultimate Edition and these aircraft, plus others, are ready for flight duty! It is fun! There is no multi-player function but you can create a pilot and fly a campaign until the war's end... if you survive! I've only had one guy make it to the end. His method was to 'not get too involved'. In other words he was pretty chicken and ran away from most everything including shadows. He did get involved in scraps when he couldn't get away, though.