Moon Dancer (oz11012)
About this Plan
Moon Dancer. Radio control aerobatic model for .09 - .12 engines.
Quote: "32 inch span aerobat for 1.5 to 2cc engines and 4-channel R/C. Moondancer, by Peter Miller.
Moondancer was designed as a result of the styling doodles done for 'Yuppy Love' (RM August '92). One of the drawings that did not fit that name looked so good that I developed it a little more, added some aerodynamic features that had worked well on another design and came up with the plan that you will find in the centre of this issue.
The model was designed to take four Fleet mini servos and a standard size Rx. The rudder is only needed if you can take off and so one servo could be eliminated. Inset ailerons are used so the aileron servo can lie flat in the wing - the upright servos for strip ailerons take up far too much room.
The wing is quite thick - NACA 0015 for those who take an interest in such details. This wing section gives plenty of room for the servo and the blunt LE makes the model much more forgiving in the stall. For once I did not design for minimum weight. I designed for strength and looks first, the finished weight was 1 lb 14 ounces which gives a wing loading of 17-1/2 ounces per square foot. This loading gives a reasonable performance on a standard PAW 1.49 R/C, one of the .12 cu in engines available now might make it sparkle even more.
The undercarriage is a little different from most, it is a system that works incredibly well. I have used it on a seven pound biplane powered by a Saito 90 twin and other models, the great advantage is that it will never bend backwards. How many times have you had to heave on the UC leg of a model to get the wheels back in their correct place? Well you won't with this model.
The end plates on the wing are really for styling but they do seem to make the ailerons more effective. I set the model up with a very small aileron travel on low rate, mainly because my co-pilot who flies the models when I am trying to get flight pictures does not like twitchy models. The small travel proved so good that I knew that if I went to high rate I could be in trouble.
Flying: The model is stable in flight and quite fast but the PAW 1.49 must be right on song and turning a good prop - an 8x4 Master airscrew seems the best. It pays to let the engine warm up fully before launching or you can finish up with an over-compressed engine in the air.
The model will do loops, rolls and inverted flight and any combination of these but vertical performance is a bit lacking and inverted needs quite a lot of 'down' elevator held in. Low speed passes are nice and easy to do. All in all, a very pleasant model to fly.
Construction: Most of the construction is pretty conventional but there are some areas that will call for a little more care than the usual box and plank, these slight complexities are there to allow for the styling or to improve the aerodynamic design..."
Direct submission to Outerzone.
Update 27/03/2019: Added article, thanks to RFJ.
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