Skyraider (oz6178)


Skyraider (oz6178) by George Dawe, Frank Allen 1994 - plan thumbnail

About this Plan

Douglas AD-1 Skyraider. Scale model for .15 power. RCM March 1994. Model # pl-1163.

Quote: "Clear the workbench! This one builds fast, looks and flies great, and won't send you to the poorhouse.

In 1944, the United States Navy sought bids for an assault plane to replace the obsolete Douglas Dauntless dive bomber. By the time the first prototype of the AD-1 was ready for test flight. World War II was two weeks from concluding. The battle worthiness of the Skyraider remained untested until the Korean War.

During the Korea 'police action' the Skyraider acquired a solid reputation as a robust and reliable airplane capable of performing bombing missions under the most adverse of weather conditions in heavily defended enemy territory.

When the Korean conflict ended and the jet age of supersonic fighter/bombers and missiles was ushered in, the Skyraider seemed destined for the scrap heap. However, in 1960, with the advent of American involvement in the Vietnam War, the Skyraider was called upon to provide 'close ground support'. Given its large wing and comparatively low fuel consumption the AD-1, or A-1 as it was now called, was better suited for the close ground support role. Airplanes utilized in this type of operation are required to soar high above the ground conflict for long periods of time and then swoop down to strafe and bombard the enemy. Supersonic fighter bombers, with their high fuel consumption were inadequate for the ground support role. It was in Vietnam that the Skyraider was nicknamed 'Sandy'.

In late August of 1992, I had just completed building a .10 size P-51. My neighbor and building partner, Frank Allen, stopped by to comment and critique the model. Somewhere during our conversation, frank inquired as to the possibility of designing a .15 model of his favorite aircraft, the AD-1 Skyraider. The following afternoon, Frank brought over a 3-view from the instructions of a scale plastic model. I took one look at the drawings and proceeded to enlarge them until had a drawing of what I thought would be a .15 size airplane. I then transposed the shape onto drafting paper, penciled in the fines, and proceeded to design and place the bulkhead locations on the plan. I admit some of it was guesswork!

Frank and I then redesigned several of the bulkheads prior to cutting them out. After hemming and hawing over the use of a scale built-up wing we decided to use the wing structure which I had designed for the P-51 by utilizing 'Ace' tapered foam wings. However. Frank suggested that the wing be fully sheeted, not capstripped as I had originally incorporated into the P-51.

Frank and I spent many an evening in my garage/workshop trying to find a building technique that would allow for easy duplication of the airplane's fuselage. We decided to use the top block of the fuselage as a jig for the bulkheads in order to ensure proper alignment. We thought about the use of balsa blocks for both the radiator and supercharger airscoops, but decided to carve the smaller supercharger scoop front a light 1/2 x 2 x 3 in balsa block. However, in order to save on nose weight and better balance the airplane, we decided to build up the larger radiator scoop located at the bottom of the front fuselage.

After about two and one half months of a little building and a lot of colorful discussion, we rolled out the Skyraider from the San Diego skunkworks for its first flight on December 10, 1992. It was a beautiful sunny day, nice and warm, no wind. The first flight was flawless. The design arid completion cif the Skyraider was true team effort.

Our AD-1 is a 4-channel aircraft designed for at .15 size engine, but it will also fly with a .10. The aircraft in the photo utilizes four microservos, a standard sized battery pack, and receiver (microreceiver and battery are optional). The total weight is 26 ounces..."

Note this is a low resolution plan.

Supplementary file notes

Article pages, text and pics, thanks to JPM.


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Skyraider (oz6178) by George Dawe, Frank Allen 1994 - model pic


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User comments

Don't think the plan needs any corrections, since I've built ten of them, including 2 electric ones using .15. Rimfire, Castle 40 amp speed controller and a 3 cell 2400 May battery. Of course I am biased... as Frank and I designed the thing.
GeorgeDawe - 25/10/2015
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  • Plan File Filesize: 601KB Filename: AD-1_Skyraider_RCM-1163_oz6178.pdf
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