Bristol Scout (oz15338)


Bristol Scout (oz15338) by Peter Rake 1998 - plan thumbnail

About this Plan

Bristol Scout. Radio control sport-scale model WWI biplane fighter. Wingspan 36 in, for electric power with geared Speed 400 motor.

Quote: "The Bristol Scout is one of the few WWI fighters that come as close to perfect for a model as we can get. It has ample dihedral more than enough tailplane and is a real looker. Once you add to this the good handling of the prototype and the very straight forward construction, you have all the makings of a simple to build pleasant to fly model.

I chose this size for the model so that it would be the right scale as a partner for my Pfalz El Eindekker. They're both about 1:9 scale which is just about right for the (to my mind) slightly under-size Williams pilots.

We have quite a bit of scope for variety with the Scout since some had cut-outs in the top wing centre-section and some didn't, and those that did varied. As to armament, you could fit anything from a rifle to a synchronised Vickers gun. This includes a canister of steel darts for dropping on troop concentrations.

I chose to build this as a one piece model for simplicity and lightness but it would pose no problem to make the wings removable should you so wish. Just don't add too much weight.

Lightness is the key to success with these small electric powered models. That however, doesn't mean that they have to be very basic. By saving as much weight as possible elsewhere (without sacrificing strength) it should be quite possible to achieve a finished model that will still have good flying qualities. Like all my scale models, this is not intended as a competition class model. Just one that looks the part and flies well. I think that this is what most of us are after anyway. A model you don't have to be afraid to fly, for fear of damage and one that's easy to repair if you do have a slight knock.

The model uses either the Mini-Olympus gearbox with a 7.2v Speed 400 motor or the 2.33:1 geared Graupner unit. Both of these can be easily mounted and allow the Ni-Cad pack to exit through the cowl should the occasion arise. It also means that you can get the pack that much further forward to help with balance.

As to other equipment, my model uses 7 x 500AR cells, 2 Hitec mini servos, a mini Rx. and Westbury Products 12 Amp. speed controller. All light weight and nothing too expensive.

This model is far too simple to require detailed, step by step instructions so I'll just cover some of the less obvious points in detail.

Tail Surfaces: Nothing in the least difficult here. Build them over the plan as shown and don't be tempted to beef them up at all. Do make sure, however, that the rudder is securely hinged since flapping in the breeze will do nothing for the models flying.

Wings: Yes I know that the way the wings are fitted looks as if it would be more at home on a rubber-powered model. All I can say in my defence is that it works well, is easy and it's light.

Use your drilled lower wing root ribs to mark the holes for the locating dowels onto the fuselage sides. That way you'll be sure they'll fit when it comes to gluing them in place. Never a bad thing since this is likely to be a five minute epoxy job. It doesn't matter if the 1/8 dowel locators are fitted to the wing or to the fuselage, the effect will be the same. Don't forget to notch and reinforce the ribs for the interplane struts before covering the wings. It makes gluing in the struts a bit of a problem otherwise.

Fuselage: This is built in my usual way with a sheeted front half and built up rear half which are joined, after completion, upside down over the plan. Then add the formers, stringers, struts, sheeting and undercarriage. The latter being bound and cyanoed in place prior to soldering up.

The cowl is made as a separate item and fixed after the motor and Ni-Cads are in place. Don't cut the slot in F1 for the motor mount plate until after the front of the fuselage is built. Note the positive incidence on the tailplane. The wheels should either be homemade to keep them light or use Williams Bros items.

Assembly: Make sure you have the top wing perfectly aligned before gluing it to the centre section struts as everything else is fitted using the top wing/fuselage alignment as a reference. Once the top wing is completely dry, the bottom wing panels may be fitted using the top wing and interplane struts to ensure correct alignment. Now use this assembly to set up the tail surfaces. The 1/32 ply hatch is hinged at the front with tape and held shut with a wire in tube catch at the rear. Control runs are via closed loop direct to the servo arms.

Finishing: Although I'm not sure that's the right title for this section since it's likely to be done before the model is assembled. The prototype model is covered overall with Lite-span with the nose, struts and markings painted with Humbrol enamels. Panel lines and stitching may be either scored and laced or marked on with a drawing pen. Rigging wires cause rather a lot of drag so it's up to you whether or not you fit them. If fitted I would suggest thread and cyano.

Flying: I haven't tried an ROG with my model yet, all flights to date having been hand-launched. I dare say the model would take-off from a smooth surface though. It would just be harder on the skid. After launch (not like a javelin!) allow the model to build up a bit of speed before climb-ing away.

The Scout has very pleasant flying qualities and loops and stall-turns are definitely the order of the day. Don't, however, try to stretch the glide. There's a lot of drag in these little models and a stall a few feet off the ground is very bad news indeed. Try if possible to make landings under power for the approach and shut down just before she touches.

So the points to remember are to build lightly and save some of the power for landing. With my model set up as indicated 7-8 minutes taken gently, or 5 minutes of dog-fighting are to be expected.

Watch out for other models in this range. I have a Morane Saulnier L on the go at the moment. Again to a similar scale and with similar power.

Beware the Hun in the sun!"

Bristol Scout from R/C Scale Aircraft, December 1998.

Direct submission to Outerzone.

Supplementary file notes

Article pages, thanks to RFJ.


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Bristol Scout (oz15338) by Peter Rake 1998 - model pic

  • (oz15338)
    Bristol Scout
    by Peter Rake
    from Radio Control Scale Aircraft
    April 1998 
    36in span
    Scale Electric R/C Biplane Military Fighter
    clean :)
    all formers complete :)
    got article :)
  • Submitted: 31/05/2024
    Filesize: 589KB
    Format: • PDFbitmap
    Credit*: Circlip, RFJ
    Downloads: 580

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Bristol Scout (oz15338) by Peter Rake 1998 - pic 003.jpg
Bristol Scout (oz15338) by Peter Rake 1998 - pic 004.jpg
Bristol Scout (oz15338) by Peter Rake 1998 - pic 005.jpg
Bristol Scout (oz15338) by Peter Rake 1998 - pic 006.jpg

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