New EPP foam Fuselage with pusher motor setup: started on December 16th, 2010, & first test-flown on Dec. 18th : Web page built out on December 20th, 2010; thanks for visiting!

Above: This is DANCER II with the 46" span KF3P wing mounted. It is designed to be powered with a C20 motor with a 2050 Kv rateing, so that it generates good thrust while turning a modest sized 6" prop. (This size of prop generates less drag than lasrger props when the motor is turned off and the prop has stopped.) The fuselage is sized just high enough to provide clearance for this size prop, while the forward end of the fuselage exrtends far enough forward to allow for balancing with a light weight 2S 900 mAH battery installed in a compatment in the nose. Two HXT900 servos are installed well forward to help with balancing, with .060" diameter solid CF rods running back to the rudder and elevator. The ESC and radio receiver are also installed, inset into cutouts in the foam, in positions forward of vhe leading edge of the wing.

Fuselage overall length from the nose to the rudder's trailing edge is 34-3/8". (The second one I'm helping a friend build has the tail boom shortened by another 3/4" to help with balancing with the 2S 900 mAH Mystery LiPo battery.)

Above: "SLOW DANCER configuration: this is the DANCER II fuselage with a ~39" span undercambered slow flyer wing mounted; flying weight is at 9.5 ounces. Photo taken just before a test flight with no shaping done yet to the fuselage, & battery velcro-mounted to test fly for final balance. [The square-cut fuselage with the velcro-mounted battery had a lot of noticable drag; after doing the carving, shaping, & covering the fuselage drag was reduced dramaticly.]

Above: The high undercamber of this slow flier wing is appearant in this photo. 3mm LEDs
(for night flying) barely extend at the corners of the wing, etc.

Above: Thre undercambered slow flier wing has 3mm LEDs mounted for night flying; wiring is simply taped to the under-side of this wing. A separate 3/4 ounce ~6.3V lighting battery (5 cell 1/4 AAA NiMH 220mAH) powers this 12 LED array to light them very brightly for well over two hours.

Above: This is a view of the left side of the fuselage after the shaping and covering was completed. The wires running from the inset ESC back to the motor are covered with iron-on white covering material. The fluorescent orange lightning bolt was cut out & ironed in place beforew the final layer of thin 1.7 mil clear iron-on covering was applied over the entire outer surface of the EPP; this keeps both moisture and dirt from penetrating the EPP foam, making it very durable for all-weather & all-terrain landings.

Above: View of the right side of the fuselage after the final covering had been ironed on; receiver pins for connection of the aileron servo lead are the only part of the receiver which is left un-covered.

Above: EPP fuselage block as it is cut from a larger block of EPP foam; shown here before any components are added.

Above: Battery compartment cut well foreward in the nose for the Mystery 2S 900 mAH LiPo battery. Servos are also installed in a single full-depth cutout & hot-melt glued in place, with the servo leads routed out the right side of the fuselage in slits in the foam. The Battery bay area foam had been cut out full-depth to snugly fit the battery. A ~1/4" thick slice was then cut from the block of removed foam, then hot-melt glued back in place flush with the right fuselage surface. Next, with the battery in place, a piece for the hinged cover was sliced away from the foam block. The area around the battery bay cover is covered with iron-on covering film after final carving and shaping of the fuselage is completed; the tape latch for the batttery bay cover holds nicely against the covering material.

(I also run a fine bead of hot melt glue around the inner joints inside the battery compartment where the right side cover is glued in place to solidly attach & strengthen this area of the nose of the fuselage; the covering material does the rest of the job of strengthing the nose.)

Above & below: Motor Mount & rear wing hold-down detail; 1/16" birch aircraft ply is used. Motor is a C20 2050Kv motor, 26 grams. A Turnigy Plush 10 Amp ESC is used. GWS 6x3 SF prop shown in this photo is OK for slow flying, and helps limit the top end speed for niviice pilots and trainer service purposes. The APC 6x4 Thin Electric prop shown in some other photos performs very nicely for higher speed flight- it runs smoothly, quietly, and efficiently, and when throttled down, it performs well for slow flying tasks, too. I use a fixed prop mount on mine, rather than a 'prop saver' type of mount, since ground strikes are very rarely an issue when the motor and prop are set up in this pusher configuration.

Above: CORONA RS410 II receiver is inset flush with the surface in a cutout within the EPP foam fuselage, with the antenna wire inset in a shallow slit in the foam, routed back along the tail boom & then up the leading edge of the vertical stabilizer, & following the rudder's outer edge. This keeps the antenna wire closely in place, with none of the wire dangling. The pins for connecting the aileron servo are all that is exposed on the side of the receiver- everything elas is covered over.

P>Above: Two noses- before & after the carving, shaping, & covering. There is a lot of drag produced by the square 1-1/4" thick fuselage nose- very noticable when flown with the battery velcro-mounted with the slow flying LED lit wing seen in one of the photos above. Once the excess foam was carved away with a very sharp knife & the shaping was completed, the 1.7 mil 'Doculam' iron on clear covering film was applied over the entire EPP foam fuselage. The result is a smoothly shaped sleek fuselage with greatly reduced drag. It now accellerates far more easily & quickly, and cruises at low speed with a very modest amount of power required. (Low drag is good!)

Above: Photo of the tailgroup laid over a cutting mat with white 1" grid lines. These are cut from 4mm black Depron. The rudder and elevator are hinged top & bottom with 3/4" wide Scotch brand transparent 'multi-purpose' tape.

NOTE: The horizontal stabilizer has the center area (on either side of where it is epoxied to the .188" O.D. C.F. tail boom tube) overlaid with clear covering material on both the top and bottom surfaces. This horizontal stabilizer can then be cut away from the tail boom carefully, making an angled cut about 1/2" away from the tail boom on each side, and juse off the aft end of the tail boom at the rear. This allows thew fuselage to be packed in a fairly shallow box for shipping.)

A custom "VikLink" linkage is used at the elevator control horn which is easily removable; (more details and photos of the "VikLink" will be added to this page soon.) To reinstall the cut-away horizontal stabilizer for flying, simply set it in place with the beveled cuts matching and apply clear scotch tape on top & bottom along the joints, and re-attach the VikLink.

Above: Side view of the vertical stabilizer & rudder. I decided to run the front end of the vertical stabilizer forward to increase total area, stiffen the tail boom a bit, and have very adequate stabilization capability for flying with even larger wings than the two shown above. It's handling very well in flight.

More Soon!

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