Bowden Contest (oz890)


Bowden Contest (oz890) by CE Bowden 1945 - plan thumbnail

About this Plan

Bowden Contest. Free flight gas model. This is a low resolution scan.

Quote: "I imagine that there are many people who have been building rubber models in the past but who will be thinking of trying their hand at petrol models now that engines and coils will soon be with us again. These people are mainly experienced or fairly experienced builders, but are in need of a little guidance over petrol matters, and want a foolproof design to commence with. Here then, I can safely say, is the answer.

I have called the model the 'Bowden Contest' because I hope it may lead a number of people to have a crack at the 'Bowden International Petrol Trophy' and the other major petrol competitions next year. If the reader will build the model accurately, trim it as instructed, and ensure that he can operate his engine without fail, I feel sure he will have a darned good run for his money. The model flies with great ease and stability and its glide is just what the doctor ordered!

The Fuselage. Although I now almost always produce monocoque fuselages for my own amusement, there is no doubt that the old slabsider is more simple to build for the new-comer, and is a very stable type for competitions. This model is built by a method that I evolved a number of years ago. It is very easy to construct; automatically forms accurate angles of incidence, and when built is almost indestructible - all big points for a competition aspirant, or even for a general purpose flyer.

This method has been used on one of my old record models and also on a Sir John Shelley Cup winner, so it has been well tried in a practical manner and I recommend it to all. Take a look at the plan. First put some 1/16 balsa sheet on a building board or the kitchen table, and if the sheet is not wide enough for the depth of the fuselage then smear cement along the edges of several sheets and join them together; whilst drying, weight them down to keep them flat to the kitchen table - in order to keep in with the wife do not forget to put some grease-proof paper on the table first.

Now we can start. Stage A on the plan. Place some copying carbon paper over the sheet 1/16 balsa, lay the side elevation of the fuselage shown on the plan over this, and trace carefully the outline of the fuselage with a pencil. Trace in the positions of the uprights and remove the plan and you will find a blue outline of your model on the 1/16 in. sheet with correct angles of incidences of wing and tailplane all automatically aligned..."

Update 06/15/12: thanks to BrianCox, have uploaded a clearer version of this plan.

Update 05/08/2016: article pages, text & pics added, thanks to RFJ.

Supplementary file notes

Modern redrawn plan in PDFvector format, by hogal.
Article pages, text & pics.


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Bowden Contest (oz890) by CE Bowden 1945 - model pic


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Bowden Contest (oz890) by CE Bowden 1945 - pic CAD_redrawn_plan.jpg

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User comments

Hi, I am now 84 years old, but when I was 16 I saw the plan of the Bowden Contest in the Aeromodeler. I built it but could not afford an engine so I never got to fly it. I built it again in 1969 just before I moved to Canada, but I sold it before I flew it. My next effort was in 1972, but I modified it for R/C, powered by a Merco 35. This one I did fly, and it looked beautiful in the air, until I shredded it between some overhead electrical wires. I have built it several times since then, my latest version was originally powered by Merco 0.61, but I have now converted it to electric using an E-Flight Power 32, and 4S Lipo batteries. It still flies extremely well, and is capable of loops and rolls without any problem. The modifications I made include, lowering the dihedral to 1 inch, using a semi-symmetrical airfoil, adding ailerons, elevator and rudder. Attached are some pictures of it [more pics 007, 008]. In 1975 I built a Mercury IV, by Mick Smith, it is still in one piece, but not flying anymore.
TerryBrown - 06/09/2016
Hi Mary, Attached are a couple of pictures of the Bowden in flight, as you requested a couple of weeks ago [more pics 009, 010]. This is the same plane that is in the earlier pictures, but when I converted it to electric motor, I also changed the colour scheme. Cheers.
TerryBrown - 23/09/2016
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  • Plan File Filesize: 1029KB Filename: BowdenContest_oz890.pdf
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  • Supplement Filesize: 660KB Filename: BowdenContest_oz890_vector_hogalised.pdf
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