Aqua Sport (oz14926)
About this Plan
Aqua Sport. Radio control sport floatplane model. Wingspan 49 in, wing area 447 sq in. For electric power with Astro 15, or .10 -.15 glow engine.
Note the plan shows a 49 in wingspan, but the article also mentions optionally building the model at 62 in wingspan (with two more bays in each wing) to make a slower flying model.
Quote: "Build it as an electric or glow powered, wheels or floats. It's a good performer. Aqua Sport, by Mitch Poling.
The Aqua Sport is a lively water plane that is a blast at the lake or pond. It picks up speed quickly and is off in a 50 to 75 foot water run, with a rapid climb rate. The Astro 15 has the power to handle windy days and reasonable wave conditions, plus the ability to take off easily in glass smooth water.
I've been flying this plane for three years, including four float plane contests. In all the contests it competed on equal terms with the gas planes and always came out near the middle of the pack. It could do a lot better than that, but the pilot is a definite handicap! Somehow, I always manage to snag a buoy, and I once even hit a tree! Oh well, next year.
It is a delight to do touch and goes (excellent), loops (slow), and rolls (surprisingly quick). Best of all, no neighbors complain about noise, it starts every time, it can start and stop out in the middle of the pond, and always taxies back to shore (the engine doesn't quit!).
An extra bonus is the construction; it follows the rule of KISS (keep it simple ---), with a sheet fuselage, sheet floats and tail, and a simple wing with a minimum of parts and no sanding or shaping. This means you are out at the pond having fun in minimum time. So try it, the water's fine!
Wing Construction: The plans show the 50 inch wingspan version. I have also flown it with a 62 in wingspan; this is exactly the same as the 50 in wing, except that two more bays are in each wing panel. If you wish the 62 in version, just sketch in the two extra bays and build ahead!
I do recommend the 62 in size if you wish a slower flying plane or if you are new to float flying, since the handling is more easygoing. The 50 in version is quite snappy in its handling, and quicker in the air, which would suit the more advanced flier or the experienced water pilot.
Do pick light balsa for all parts of the plane. A small postal or diet scale works well for weighing balsa (the ones that have grams as well as ounces are the best). My guideline is 1/2 ounce for a 3 x 36 x 1/16 sheet, 3/4 ounces for a 3 x 36 x 3/32 sheet, and 1 ounce for a 3 x 36 x 1/8 sheet. If the scale has grams, this would be 14, 21, and 28 grams.
Since the wing ribs are all the same, it saves some time to stack blanks and do them on a jig saw, however, the good old standby, the razor blade, works fine, it just takes longer. The trailing edge is notched to fit the rib ends tightly. This not only makes the wing stronger but makes it easier to build, since the ribs are spaced and jigged at the same time by the trailing edge.
The spars are 1/2 x 1/4 spruce. If this size of spruce is not available, the spars can be made by gluing two 1/4 square spruce pieces together, or use basswood. Do not use balsa, unless you like to watch airplane pieces fall out of the sky! All glue in this construction, by the way, is thick cyanoacrylate (thick Hot Stuff, Super Jet, etc.), unless otherwise stated. The leading edges are also spruce.
Once the trailing edge, spar and leading edge are glued in, glue on the center rib doubler and the wing tips. Since the left and right wing panels are identical, just put the tips on opposite ends of the panel to get the two wing halves. Install the aluminum tube for the dihedral wire below the spar. This tube is the K&S 12 in long, 3/16 internal diameter stock. Use the tube as its own drill by notching one end of it slightly, then bore through the ribs by hand with the tube. Hold a balsa block behind each rib as you do so, to prevent breakage..."
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