Varieze (oz6203)


Varieze (oz6203) by Frank Baker 1979 - plan thumbnail

About this Plan

Varieze. Radio control scale pusher model.

Quote: "Frank Baker's trial and errors have resulted in this eye catching stand-off scale version of Burt Rutan's popular home-built canard.

One of the most spectacular airplanes to appear on the homebuilt scene has been Burt Rutan's Varieze. The aircraft is unusual for both its composite structure (fiberglass over foam) and its canard planforrn. In addition, the Varieze has unusually high performance relative to its modest power. Since I live close to Oshkosh, Wisconsin, where the EAA annual convention is held, I have been able to inspect the plane and watch it fly. It is every bit as spectacular in the air as it is on the ground. Last year there were four or five Varieze's at Oshkosh and the workmanship on all of them matched the usual pattern R/C model. Also a forthcoming space epic movie will use a small fleet of the Varieze as space style fighter aircraft.

When the Varieze first appeared, I looked at it from the point of view of an R/C model but decided that there were too many unknowns. About a year later, I read an article in the EAA magazine Sport Aviation mentioning that Mr Rutan had been an R/C modeler for many years. Being rather quick to recognize a truth, I decided that he had probably built and flown a lot of canard R/C models. Armed with this knowledge, I proceeded to build a quick approximation to a Varieze. True to the original Varieze, I put a Vector Director on the front canard to give both ailerons and elevators via the canard surfaces. When launched, this model would initiate a slight bank and never recover from the turn. I promptly shelved the model.

The next flying season, I noticed that Mr Rutan had added ailerons to the main wings and turned the canard surfaces into elevators, so I did likewise. On the next test flight, I launched from the top of a hill. The plane went out straight as an arrow. Application of ailerons yielded the fastest roll I had ever seen. However, it still wouldn't turn and once the nose dipped below the horizon, there was no recovery. Knowing that I was making progress, I re-read the articles on the Varieze and noticed that the wing tip rudders only moved outboard to create drag for turning purposes. I also decided my canard was too small and increased its area by a third.

The next test flight took me by surprise - the plane flew perfectly! It would turn right and left, loop, would not stall, still rolled like mad, and had a smooth stable glide. After a few flights, I decided to disable the 'kick-out' rudders and fly a pylon race. On the first turn, I discovered again that, without the rudders, it wouldn't turn - and scratch one model. Although the 'Schoolyard Canard' (RCM, May 1978) would fly without these rudders, the present model will not, for reasons that escape my limited knowledge of things aeronautical. However, it does fly. Now that the concept had been proven, all that remained was to build a pretty, Stand-Off Scale version to replace the balsa box prototype. The resulting Stand-Off Scale version is the subject of this article.

Construction. Due to the use of foam wings and rather simple framework, the construction of this model is straightforward. First, let me justify the rather sturdy fuselage. With the long span canard out in front, its tips tend to hit the ground if one makes a bad landing and they snag doorways. As a result, considerable stress is placed on the fuselage. My prototype fuselage of 3/32 sheet proved to be very fragile. The 3/16 sides on the present version are quite rugged and eliminated the breakage problem.

The fuselage is basically a box which is built upside down on the work bench as the top is flat. When installing the firewall, check to insure there are 2° built-in down thrust. Also, glue in the triangular plywood wing hold-down plates so they clear the fuel line holes and the motor mount bolt holes. You may need to do a bit of carving to insure the proper clearance..."

Hi Steve - Here is Frank Baker's Varieze from RCM magazine issue 12-79.

Direct submission to Outerzone.

Supplementary file notes

Article pages, text and pics. Also, PDF tracing of airfoil templates for the ACE foam wing used on this model, thanks to Rudy.


Did we get something wrong with these details about this plan (especially the datafile)? That happens sometimes. You can help us fix it.
Add a correction

Varieze (oz6203) by Frank Baker 1979 - model pic

  • (oz6203)
    by Frank Baker
    from RCMplans (ref:784)
    December 1979 
    37in span
    Scale IC R/C Pusher
    clean :)
    formers unchecked
    got article :)
  • Submitted: 13/12/2014
    Filesize: 557KB
    Format: • PDFbitmap
    Credit*: theshadow
    Downloads: 5566

  • Rutan_VariEze | help
    see Wikipedia | search Outerzone
    Test link:
    search RCLibrary 3views (opens in new window)

    ScaleType: This (oz6203) is a scale plan. Where possible we link scale plans to Wikipedia, using a text string called ScaleType.

    If we got this right, you now have a couple of direct links (above) to 1. see the Wikipedia page, and 2. search Oz for more plans of this type. If we didn't, then see below.

    ScaleType is formed from the last part of the Wikipedia page address, which here is
    Wikipedia page addresses may well change over time.
    For more obscure types, there currently will be no Wiki page found. We tag these cases as ScaleType = NotFound. These will change over time.
    Corrections? Use the correction form to tell us the new/better ScaleType link we should be using. Thanks.

Do you have a photo you'd like to submit for this page? Then email

User comments

Hi Steve, Wonderful work you are doing with your OUTERZONE website - many thanks! I have downloaded a ton of the listings; it's time for me to contribute a bit too. Re: Plan ID=6203 : Varieze. The plan has no airfoils, as the model was to be built using the then-available ACE tapered foam wing set. Today's builders would have to cut their own foam wings. I have an ACE wing on hand, and have traced the root and tip airfoil outlines. Not sure if they will come out at 100% accurate size however. The chords are as follows: Tip = 4 inches. Root = 5 3/8 inches. Also, for general information, the ACE tapered wings, when assembled, have a straight leading edge. The trailing edge has the taper. The 'Constant Chord' ACE foam wing simply uses the identical root airfoil as I have traced.. Cheers,
Rudy - 27/12/2014
Add a comment



Download File(s):
  • Varieze (oz6203)
  • Plan File Filesize: 557KB Filename: Varieze-RCM-12-79-784_oz6203.pdf
  • Supplement Filesize: 23KB Filename: Varieze-RCM-12-79-784_oz6203_airfoil_templates.pdf
  • Supplement Filesize: 858KB Filename: Varieze-RCM-12-79-784_oz6203_article.pdf
  • help with downloads


* Credit field

The Credit field in the Outerzone database is designed to recognise and credit the hard work done in scanning and digitally cleaning these vintage and old timer model aircraft plans to get them into a usable format. Currently, it is also used to credit people simply for uploading the plan to a forum on the internet. Which is not quite the same thing. This will change soon. Probably.


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.


Terms of Use

© Outerzone, 2011-2024.

All content is free to download for personal use.

For non-personal use and/or publication: plans, photos, excerpts, links etc may be used, provided that full and clear credit is given to Outerzone with appropriate and specific direction to the original content i.e. a direct hyperlink back to the Outerzone source page.

Unauthorized use and/or duplication of this material without express and written permission from this site's owner is strictly prohibited. If we discover that content is being stolen, we will consider filing a formal DMCA notice.