Balsa Nova 1.20 (oz12126)
About this Plan
Balsa Nova 1.20. Radio control sport model.
Quote: "Here are the plans for the Morris Hobbies Balsanova 120. It can be built as either 72 or 80 inch span, and can handle a 20 to 30cc gas engine. This is from the late 80's to early 90's."
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Update 2/3/2022: Added instructions, thanks to WildBill.
Quote: "Morris Hobbies Balsa NOVA 1.20 Instruction Manual. Written by Tom Stryker.
After the success of the BalsaNOVA 40 (oz9666) the next logical step was to scale it up. The popularity of .90 to 1.20 engines dictated the size. The hope was to find a size that would fly well on this size engine, yet be affordable and fit into an average vehicle.
Enter the BalsaNOVA 1.20. The standard wing span is 72 in, but may be made 80 in ([MAA-legal) with a few modifications (detailed in the wing section).
We started with a clean sheet of paper when we designed this one to make it lighter and fly even better. This version is built using a balsa stick frame that is sheeted on all sides with 3/32 balsa. The fuselage is built on a flat surface (no jig is needed) and interlocks together when the components are completed. The fuselage practically floats off the workbench when it is completed! This is not a beginners model, but is designed for modelers who will spend a little extra time building to reap the rewards of a light, strong airframe
Important Notes: The engine range is quite flexible on the BalsaNOVA 1.20. At the low end, a strong .60 2-stroke would fly it if it is built lightly. At the high end, a 1.20 2-stroke is a good choice as long as the throttle is used judiciously. The best choice is in the .90 to 1 08 2-stroke range, or a 1.20 4-stroke. One of your considerations should be the size of the engine mount and whether or not it will fit under the balsa cowling. Some of the larger mounts will not. The Dave Brown 120FS mount fits well. An optional plastic cowling will be offered separately, and this will accommodate larger mounts.
You will notice that the BalsaNOVA 1.20 is not designed to conceal the muffler like the BalsaNOVA .40. While this is an attractive feature of the .40, it was also one of the toughest areas to build correctly. This, and the wide variety of engines (both 2-stroke and 4-stroke) that the 1.20 can handle, led us to decide to let the muffler just "hang out in the breeze" on this one. An added benefit is that now the bottom is a straight line, allowing the fuse to be assembled on a flat surface with no jig needed.
The radio requirement is for the basic four channels, with a couple of considerations; The ailerons require one standard servo in each wing panel. The elevator can either use two standard servos (one on each half) or one hi-torque servo. The rudder should use one hi-torque servo. No computer mixing is required.
To keep the price of the kit down, the kit includes what could be considered 'medium-duty' hardware that will work well if the kit is built and flown toward the low end of the weight scale - say 9 to 11 pounds. If you plan to build the BalsaNOVA 1.20 like a tank, glass and paint it, and hang a fire breathing ThunderSnort 1.20 on the front, then consider upgrading the hardware to items more befitting a giant scale model. Mainly heavier wheel struts, longer and heavier control horns, heavier pushrod material, etc.
Warning: The BalsaNOVA 1.20 was designed to fly best at moderate speeds. As with most R/C models, excessive speed (ie full power in a steep dive) may result in fatal flutter. Enjoy flying your BalsaNOVA 1.20 and trying exciting maneuvers, just remember to USE THE THROTTLE.
Before Construction: Carefully remove the 1/8 die-cut sheets from the kit box. To make the parts easier to find, do not take the parts out of the sheets until they are called for. Use the above Die-Cut Parts Guide Legend to identify each part. Label each part with a pencil or pen.
The 3/32 wing ribs may be removed from their blanks at any time. The ribs are identified in order by size (R1 is the largest and R12 is the smallest).
The balsa parts should pop out of the blanks with little or no effort. A little block sanding may be necessary to remove any excess balsa. The 1/8 aircraft quality ply parts, however, may be a little tougher to remove. If they are not coming out of the blank cleanly, simply trace around each part with an X-acto knife to cut them loose.
Building Notes: The BalsaNOVA 1.20 requires three sets of plans. The vast majority of building will be done using sheets 1 and 3. Sheet 2 is used mostly for reference in fuse construction, landing gear placement, engine mounting, etc. Sheets 1 and 3 should probably be cut into individual components to make them easier to handle.
This kit includes a large amount of stock 3/32 x 6 x 36 in sheet balsa that is used for sheeting all surfaces. You will have several large pieces of scrap that are cut away during the initial stages of building. DO NOT THROW AWAY THE LARGE PIECES OF SCRAP. Most of these pieces will be used to sheet smaller pieces, or to splice onto the wing tip..."
Update 27/3/2022: Added kit review from RCM, May 2000, thanks to RFJ.
Supplementary file notes
Instructions. 42 pages, complete.
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User commentsPhotos of my Balsa Nova 120 [pics 004, 005]. Not a beginner scratch build.
Martin Kolm - 28/02/2022
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