Culver Dart (oz5569)


Culver Dart (oz5569) by Tom Mountjoy 1977 - plan thumbnail

About this Plan

Culver Dart. Scale model for radio control. Wingspan 59in, area 570 sq in. For .35 to .45 engines.

Quote: "If model builders are reluctant to tackle a scale airplane design, there is usually a good reason. In the case of the Dart, I believe the reason was basically that the airplane is short-coupled and, therefore, somewhat tricky to fly. Rumor had it that the real Dart suffered from the same characteristic, which also accounted for its outstanding aerobatic ability. The popular Pitts Special is a prime example of the same type configuration, with world aerobatic trophies to prove the point.

In order to make this model of the Culver Dart a good R/C flyer that anyone can enjoy, and without detracting from its appearance as well as aerobatic maneuverability, I have lengthened the fuselage by 3.5 in and added 1/2 in on the height of the vertical tail. This is the only deviation from a true two-inch scale version of the real Dart. If anything, the airplane model takes on a more graceful and pleasing appearance. I am certain there were times when the Culver people wished they could have done the same thing without going through the expense of getting a new type certificate!

Constructing the Fuselage. This model has been carefully designed in order to keep the overall construction basically the same as that of the real Dart. You will find balsa sheet to represent metal covering back to the aft cockpit bulkhead. From there on, you have fabric covered stringers.

The first step after cutting out all the bulkheads is to glue each one in its proper position on the 1/2 in square balsa rod. Make certain the rod is straight and from rather hard balsa. The rod acts as a jig that controls how true your fuselage will be when you finish.

When gluing the x 1/4 in stringers, do the side ones first, alternating from side to side in order to hold the proper alignment. Notice that the side stringers run the entire length of the fuselage. Also, that from the alt cockpit bulkhead to the firewall, there is a 3/32 relief cut made on the outer side to each stringer to accommodate the balsa side panels to be added later in that area.

The aft (top) stringers are positioned next. Be sure to use hard, but good bending, balsa in order to maintain the proper curve to this section of the fuselage. These stringers are secured right on top of the bulkheads and are equally spaced as shown on the plans. The top one goes on first, Using 3/32 medium grade balsa, cover the outside of the forward section of the fuselage. The inside of the cockpit from the firewall to the aft cockpit bulkhead is fined (between bulkheads) with 1/16 plywood sheet. This forms a strong box-type construction to protect your radio gear froth unscheduled landings.

In fabricating the cockpit and firewall bulkheads, you will see that the plywood in each case is backed up with balsa. This is done to save weight, to have the thickness required for the proper scale appearance, and to give a more secure glue joint. Stay away from warped plywood.

After framing up the fuselage, you are now ready. for the test of your balsa carving ability. The bottom section between the firewall and the leading edge of the wing is made from balsa block. Use a good grade of carving balsa, not too hard or soft..."

Direct submission to Outerzone.

Update 27/06/2014: Replaced this with a clearer plan, thanks to theshadow.

Update 6/7/2022: Replaced this plan with a corrected version, thanks to Balsaworkbench. This fixes the scaling on the first sheet to fullsize.

Supplementary file notes

Article, thanks to theshadow.
Previous scan version.


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Culver Dart (oz5569) by Tom Mountjoy 1977 - model pic

  • (oz5569)
    Culver Dart
    by Tom Mountjoy
    from RCMplans (ref:703)
    October 1977 
    59in span
    Scale IC R/C LowWing Civil
    clean :)
    all formers complete :)
    got article :)
  • Submitted: 05/05/2014
    Filesize: 845KB
    Format: • PDFbitmap
    Credit*: JJ, theshadow
    Downloads: 4357

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Culver Dart (oz5569) by Tom Mountjoy 1977 - pic 003.jpg
Culver Dart (oz5569) by Tom Mountjoy 1977 - pic 004.jpg

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* Credit field

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This model plan (like all plans on Outerzone) is supposedly scaled correctly and supposedly will print out nicely at the right size. But that doesn't always happen. If you are about to start building a model plane using this free plan, you are strongly advised to check the scaling very, very carefully before cutting any balsa wood.


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