2018 Kibbie Dome Annual

In Uncategorized on March 5, 2018 by nicholasandrewray

Kibbie Dome Color 2018 copy

Click here to download a PDF of flyer.



Denny Dart Mk. SO 2017

In Uncategorized on December 12, 2017 by nicholasandrewray

Denny Dart Mk. SO 2017
DDMkIIHPlans-SO2018Version1 copy
Click here to download a PDF of the plan.
There really is not a whole lot to the plane that Gary Hinze doesn’t already cover in his Denny Dart Mk.IIH build tutorial.

Build it as per the plan, but without the tissue on the bottom. Tissue covering goes on last.

Prototype was covered with Esaki tissue, but dollar store tissue will work fine.

I highly recommend laying out the tissue and misting it with water, then letting it dry first before covering. Cut pieces to size, then use an iron on the highest setting to press it flat.

I like to use the back side of paper towels as a bottom surface as it gives the tissue a bit of surface rugosity. Cover immediately after pressing.

Glue sticks work great for this. Cover the center of the wing before the tips.

Only small notes I’d make:

Make sure to sand the wing tip spars at an angle to match the center spar at the dihedral breaks. You don’t want gaps here as gaps = weak point. I’d also recommend cutting small strips of tissue and reinforcing the bottom edge of the wing spars at the break.

Also will recommend doing the same with the rudder, going over the top side opposite the covered side as this area will take a lot of abuse.

Stab tilt may need adjustment, so I recommend that this joint by glued with Duco or Ambroid.

These glues can be dissolved with acetone readily for easy adjustment. The rest of the plane can be built with Titebond or Duco. I don’t recommend CA as it is too brittle.

~Mike Kirda


F1D Junior Plane

In Uncategorized on November 27, 2017 by nicholasandrewray

f1djr copyClick the links below to download a copies of the build files:

F1D Junior Notes

F1D Junior Wing

F1D Junior Stab

F1D Junior Fuse

F1D Junior Prop

F1D Junior Kit




Call for Timekeepers for the 2018 Indoor World Championships at West Baden

In Uncategorized on November 27, 2017 by nicholasandrewray

call_for_timekeepers copy

Click here to download a PDF of the flyer.


The Jim Richmond Open

In Uncategorized on November 23, 2017 by nicholasandrewray

The Jim Richmond Open

Jim Richmond Open flyer_regs_rs copyJim Richmond Open flyer_regs_rs 2

Click here to download a PDF of the flyer.

This year the annual indoor contest at West Baden will an F1D only contest.  The contest is named the Jim Richmond Open in Celebration of the 50th Anniversary of Jim’s First Indoor World Championship.  The contest will be held the weekend before the 2018 Indoor World Champions, Saturday andSunday, March 17-18, 2018.  As well as being a fun contest for all to honor Jim, the event will allow two extra practice days for the WC entrants

Registration and entry fee payment will be done at the contest, however, we would like to have entrants notify the organizers of their intent to compete.  Please send an email (or private message) to Leo Pilachowski (leop at lyradev dot com).

Room reservations this year will be handled a bit differently because of the WC and the many international competitors.  The Hotel has asked that the organizers and the AMA handle the room reservations.  So, reservation requests with nights desired and a choice of one bed or two must be emailed to the above email address.  The rooms are limited at the Hotel and to make sure of availability, requests should be received by 1/1/2018. Rooms will cost $159 plus 13% tax per night.

The contest is limited to F1D class models so as to lessen the risk of damage to the F1D’s that will fly in the WC.  However, smaller, easier to build, and less fragile models built and flown to the F1D rules will be allowed as long as the models meet minimum wing, stab and prop size dimensions and maximum weight limits.  The Supplemental Regulations have more details.

Plans and build notes for such a F1D junior model will be posted.  The model is quick and easy to build from craft store balsa (my Science Olympiad students built theirs in three sessions of  two and a half hours each).  Anyone with the skills to build an LPP, A6, or P18 should easily be able to build one.



Substituting Carbon Tow for Boron

In Uncategorized on November 20, 2017 by nicholasandrewray

Substituting Carbon Tow for Boron

In the summer of 2012 Bill Gowen introduced me using single threads from Mike Woodhouse’s 0.08mm thick Russian Unidirectional Carbon Cloth. The tow is easier to work with than boron and provides sufficient structural reinforcement for most F1D applications. The carbon tends to have better adhesion characteristics than boron due to its rougher texture and ability to be flattened against the balsa. I have since equipped my current F1D program with this material including, my 2014 AMA Cat I record model.

The Russian Unidirectional Cloth is different from other unidirectional products I have worked in that it is more like a knitted blank. The cloth is made up of 0.08mm threads running in the longer direction with 0.08mm interwoven orthogonally every few centimeters. Thus, making it easy to separate the individual threads. I start at one corner of the cloth and pull outermost thread away from the cloth. Take care to pull gently because the product has exceptionally short fibers and it is easy to fray the threads.

Carbon Tow 1

Separating carbon tow

Once a thread has been separated from the cloth, it will need to be pretreated with 1:10 Ambroid or Duco diluted with acetone. I hold the thread up with one hand and gently run a paintbrush loaded with diluted glue along the length of the thread. The thread will not necessarily be straight when it is dry. The thread is now ready to be attached to any structure boron would have traditionally been used to reinforce.

Carbon Tow 2

Carbon tow being pretreated with Ambroid solution

I recommend experimenting with different glue dilutions, using your experience with gluing boron as a guide, to determine how much glue to use for proper adhesion. Start by gluing a small segment of thread down and then pull enough tension into the thread to hold it straight. Glue the thread to the structure a few centimeters at a time pressing it flat before the glue dries. When finished gluing, cut the thread off with a razor blade or scissors and tack down the loose ends with glue.

Carbon Tow 3

Carbon thread being applied to the underside of an elliptical F1D stabilizer spar

Carbon Tow 4

The bottom thread has been trimmed and the top has not

Carbon Tow 5

Elliptical F1D stabilizer spars after carbon reinforcement has been added

I have found the carbon tow to be a feasible alternative to boron and I am looking forward to seeing future work expanding its applications.

~Nick Ray


Kurt Krempetz Cat II AMA National Record Catapult Launch Glider

In Uncategorized on November 20, 2017 by nicholasandrewray

Kurt Krempetz Cat II AMA National Record Catapult Launch Glider

Rantoul SlowCat_Plot copy

Click here to download a PDF of the plan.