Wednesday, May 25, 2011

I'll tell you a tale...I mean tail!

Moving onto the tail section now. Each of the pieces were glued together after giving them a good sanding. As instructed, I then angle sanded each of the tail sides as well as the rear of the body where the tail will be joined. The supplied angle jig enabled me to get the correct angle before gluing. In mounting the tail pieces to the body, I used some epoxy resign just to give it a bit of extra strength.

The wing and body are again joined to check alignment. Just a bit of sanding here and there and everything was spot on.

I'll now move back onto the wing and try to get the servos installed into the body ready for the fixing up to the V-tail.

Monday, May 23, 2011

Heads, Shoulders, Wings and Tails, Wings and Tails.....Eyes and horns and mouth and beak.....

OK a bit more progress has been made and the Pterodactyl is really starting to take shape now.

The next stage was to attach the head and neck which I made the other night to body sides once they'd all be aligned against the plans. 

 The center double added to the under side of the top rear piece

 The rectangle belly pieces shaped to fit the curves of the side body parts.

With the exception of the bottom rear piece which I have left off to allow access into the V-Tail servos and linkages, the head, neck and body are pretty much complete. I just need to add in the #8-32 blind nuts under the wing screen down holes.

The moment of truth where the body and wing are aligned for the first time!  Very cool, if this doesn't turn a few heads I don't know what will!

 Back onto the wing at this stage and the next few pictures show the bottom rear trailing edges being added along with the bottom covering near the motors.

 The Top rear trailing edges are added and the aileron servos are positioned to check size. I'm getting to the nitty-gritty parts now but thus far I'm thoroughly enjoying this build. I can really recommend it if a Pterodactyl is your cup of tea. I just hope this wind we've been having in the UK throughout May doesn't last too much longer otherwise I'll have forgotten how to fly RC planes before I get to fly this beast! :)

Friday, May 20, 2011

Pterodactyl Head and Neck

As the build instructions state, the first step is to push all the Pterodactyl head and neck laser cut parts out of their respective sheets ready for assembly.

The next step was to fit the head cross pieces to the neck sides.I dry fitted as many of the pieces as I could first and then applied the thin CA once I was satisfies everything was where it should be.

The centre neck piece in-between the neck sides was then added. I did each side in turn apply pressure on the neck sides to form the correct shape.

The shoulder pieces marked 1 and 2 were next on the agenda. Both sides were glued in place and then sanded. The picutres below show the shoulders prior to sanding and then one of them sanded

Once the shoulders had been sufficiently sanded, it was a case of attaching them to the neck as shown below.

The top and bottom neck sheets were then added and sanded into shape.

Next up were the shoulder pieces (3) which required a bit of sanding action to shape accordingly before finally fitting into place.

Next up were the head sides (it's starting to take shape now!).

The head bottom and top sheeting was then added, shaped and sanded, however I have left the very head top and neck pieces as this is where lead would be required to get the centre of gravity correct at a later stage.

To get to this stage it probably took me just short of two hours. I bit more sanding is required to really smooth the head and neck down, but the Pterodactyl is really starting to take shape now. I'll move onto the body next I think and post again once I've made more progress.

Tuesday, May 17, 2011

A little more progress on the 52" Marstons Pterodactyl

Ok as well as pulling a 20+ year plus IC plane out of the attic and installing an SC40 IC motor in it,  I've also been able to make a bit more progress on the Pterodactyl. Probably not as much as I would have liked, but hey, I'm in no rush!

Following the last post, I've fitted the trialling lower wing edge as shown below in the next few pictures.


Added the slightly angled wing tips to both sides of the wing.

Having soldered all the bullet connectors to the two motors, speed controllers and extension leads connecting the motors to the speed controllers, everything worked perfectly when I tested them prior to installing in the wing.

The following two pictures show the two speed controllers wired into a single XT60 connector which I use on my lipo batteries and the two speed controllers connected into a Y harness lead. As detailed in the build instructions, I've cut one of the red wires from one of the speed controllers. As opposed to cutting the actual wire which comes from the speed controller, I cut one of the red wires on the Y harness lead. You never know, I may be using the speed controller again for another project in the future, although not too soon I hope!

As can be seen below in a little more detail, one of the speed controller ESC red wires has been cut in the Y harness.  

I made some extension leads and as can be seen below, these have been fed through the wing ribs ready to connect to the ESC's. 

One of the motors mounted connected up in more detail.

A portrait view of the wing so far with the wires running through the wing ribs.

The following video shows progress to date in a little more detail. I've connected up the motors to a receiver, battery and watt meter and it's pulling about 20 amps total on full power with two 6*4 props.

The next stage it to try and finish off the wing adding the leading and trailing top and lower edges.

Please feel free to add any comments which you may have and drop back in for further updates soon!

Friday, May 6, 2011

Underway with my 52" Marstons Pterodactyl

After a month or so of completing other projects, I finally decided to get underway with building my 52" Marstons Pterodactyl last night.

As well as reading the instructions a couple of times, I took time to read the following sources of information on the Web relating to this kit, namely:

I decided I would start with the wing, so the first steps was to cut the two carbon wing spars to the correct length in the build instructions/plan. The picture below also shows the balsa sheet of laser cut wing ribs which were easy to push out.

Each of the ribs are numbered, so having pushed them out of their housed balsa sheet I positioned them onto the plan with the numbers facing inwards.

The next stage was to thread the ribs onto the forward carbon spar, all of which went on very easily. At this stage, there has been no glue applied.
A closer view of the ribs positioned on the forward spar.

Next it was the turn for feeding the rear carbon spar through the ribs. The holes for the rear spar were a lot tighter and I had to be careful here to twist and push the carbon spar through without breaking any of the ribs. Again no glue at this stage.

The next step was to position the four leading edge peices. Again these were tight fits as you'd expect. I just need to check that my motors will fit now before these peices are secured.

A closer view of the wing so far. Again, at this point it's only dry fitted together and I haven't applied any glue.

Picture of the wing after an hour or so! First steps made and so far so good.

More to follow very soon!  Should you have any comments then please post.

Thanks for viewing.