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Some questions and answers will be posted in this section.


Page 5 Questions 97-120 , click links or browse page.
Q97 Looking for Giant Corsair to build ? Q109 Is the Bearcat a bear to fly ?
Q98 Corsair flight characteristics ? Q110 Byron Corsair retract installation ?
Q99 Byron P-40 cg and throws ? Q111 Bob Holman plans ?
Q100 Fly with gear doors on or off Corsair ? Q112 DW Mustang kit ?
Q101 NWHT Focke Wulf constrution ? Q113 Just starting, what to fly before P-51 ?
Q102 Stuka for first warbird ? Q114 Hawker Sea Fury first flight advise ?
Q103 Ziroli P-51 engine size ? Q115 ME 109 ground handling ?
Q104 Landing the P-40 ? Q116 Using flaps on take off ?
Q105 Top Flite P-47 with a RCV 90 Sp engine ? Q117 Warbird with best glide ratio ?
Q106 Top Flite P-40 flaps needed ? Q118 Corsair technique ?
Q107 Bearcat or AT 6 for G-62 and speed ? Q119 More Corsair flying advice ?
Q108 Byron Corsair maximum flap extension ? Q120 Cub for trainer ?

Question 97: "I'm really trying to find a giant Corsair. I'm not having any luck. I have been told you have some great corsair's. I would like to buy one. Do you have one to sell? Please let me know or where I can find one. Thanks Wes"

Jack: "Hello Wes, Nice to hear from you. I own a kit manufacturing company and I have five different Corsair models in my line. I don’t have any completed models for sale at this time but all of the kits are available. I market a little electric model that has a 33” wingspan, a 63” version of the F4U-1A, a 72” span version and a 85” version of the F4U -1A and an 85” span F2G Super Corsair. All of these planes are proven fliers and they are not difficult to build. If you are looking for a completed airplane there is one of my kits for sale on RCU. Gary Weaver built this plane and it is a beautiful airframe that has all the panel line and rivet detail and it has been flown many times. Gary builds very nice models and is a good guy to deal with. I have known him for several years and you would get a quality airplane from him if you chose to go that route and buy a completed airplane. If you are interested in a kit please email me or give me a call and I can tell you about any of the kits that you might be interested in. My email address is and if you email me personally I’ll give you my phone number. Jack Devine"

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Question 98: "Hi Jack, I have been flying RC for 4 years. For the last year and half, I have been flying my TF P40. This P40 has a wing loading of about 40 oz per square foot. It has a Saito 120 for power. The procedure you mentioned in your "Flying Technique" article have been very helpful to me when I fly this P40. I just recently bought a TF giant scale Corsair kit. It will take me about a
year to build and spread out the cost. I don't have any giant scale experience. My question is: Would I be ready to fly this TF GS Corsair after another year of flying my 60 sized P40? Should I build and fly a TF GS P47 before I attempt TF GS Corsair? I would really appreciate your advise. Thanks."

Jack: "Hello Tien-When, Nice to hear from you. With your experience flying the P-40 I don't think you will have any problems with the Giant Scale Corsair. The larger airplanes are easier to fly and the Corsair is much easier to handle on the ground compared to your P-40. The techniques you use to fly both of these planes are very similar and I think you will find the transition into the bigger airplane very smooth and very rewarding. The Top Flite model is an excellent example of the F4U and you can detail it out as far as you care to go. It has an average wing loading for a fighter type aircraft and it is capable of doing any maneuver a fighter was designed to do. I have always enjoyed flying the Corsair and like all fighters it has a learning curve and will take some time for you to master. You started with an even more difficult model in your P-40 so I think the Corsair will be a pleasure for you to fly.

The Top Flite P-47 is another great airplane and it is easier to fly than the Corsair but you have gained some valuable flying skill dealing with the P-40 and I don't think that either of these two giant scale kits will give you any problems. Good luck with the build up and let us know when you have become an official Corsair Driver. Jack Devine"

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Question 99: "Hi Jack, I am in the final stages of refurbishing a Byron p40 and am having a difficult time finding control throws and C of G. If you have any info that would be helpful. It has the sachs 4.2 with a 2 blade prop and is about ready to go, I was told by another builder that the manual (which I do not have) C of G was too far back and he lost his on the first flight. Finally I have a Futaba gya350 gyro and am considering putting it on the plane, it is switchable so I can take it or leave it, I use rudder a lot in all my other flying but thought this might be a contender for this, what do you think. Good Luck Paul"

Jack: "Hello Paul, I love the P-40 and the Byron Model is a great example of this plane but it has the same nasty habits they all have when it comes to ground handling. The gyro on the rudder channel will make it easier to control on the takeoff roll but you will have to play a bit with the gain setting to see how effective you want the gyro to be You need to anticipate the left yaw as you bring up your power and stay ahead of it with the application of right rudder. It will take a considerable input to keep the model rolling straight down the runway and you will be able to reduce the input as soon as the rudder gets a good supply of clean air and that will happen as soon as the tail lifts. Keep it rolling on the main gear and don’t force it into the air. Once you have reached flying speed just a hint of up elevator will get her airborne. Don’t force the plane into the air with too much elevator applied way to early in the take off roll. Just think it over a few times before you fly and I’m sure you will do just fine.. Once airborne you don’t need the gyro if you have the rudder experience. I very much like your idea of being able to switch it off. As far as the CG goes on the Byron I don’t have that information but I assure you if you set the CG at 28% of the root chord of the wing you will be in pretty good shape and the plane will fly there. You may want to adjust it after a few flights but it will fly at that location. Divide the root width of the wing by 28% and you will have your number. I’ve flown the Byron Corsair and the Byron Hellcat and the Byron Thunderbolt all balanced at 29% and they flew very well. Most Byron planes do fly very well and I don’t think your Warhawk will be any different. The 4.2 Sachs should be more than up to the job of hauling it around and you should have all the power you need. Let me know how the test flight goes. Good luck Paul. Jack Devine"

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Question 100: "Jack: I am just about finished with a giant Top Flite Corsair, with a Sachs 3.2 and Robart retracts. Top Flite recommends that the gear doors that are mounted to the front of the gear be for static purposes only and that the model not flown with them. Can you tell me why they recommend this? I am an experienced giant scale pilot with over 15 years flying a Starduster Too with a Sachs 4.2 so I am not new to big birds, just big war birds. Thanks Paul"

Jack: "Hello Paul, Nice to hear from you. I don’t know of a single reason to remove the front gear doors on your Corsair for flight. The gear doors are a great speed brake and as long as you have hinged them so they cleanly follow the strut without any interference they should not present any problem. I have seven different Corsair models from 33” span up to 85” wingspan and all of them have these gear doors mounted and all of them fly just fine with the doors on the aircraft. I hinge mine to the leading edge of the wing and attach them to the strut with a small coil spring. The strut pulls the door closed as the gear goes up and the strut pushes the door open as the gear come down. Keep it simple and cycle test everything after every flight and you will be just fine. Bare struts look like hell and really detract from the scale appearance of the Corsair. Put them on and go fly your plane! Good luck Paul and let us know how it goes. Jack Devine"

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Question 101: "Jack-- I have a NWHT Focke Wolfe still in "kit form. I have moved recently and I cannot find any information on how to begin putting the thing together. Are there any resources out there who could provide some assistance? I would like to begin building by the end of September. Any help would be appreciated. Thanks Jim"

Jack: "Hello Jim, There is a complete build up article on the FW 190 on the website. It is in the second section of the forums in the kit builder area under Jack Devine Models. Lenny Smith from New Orleans did the first one and there are lots of pictures and he shows how he added the retracts and flaps to the model. The second thread was built by Forest Morris in Jasper, Ga. And he did a real nice job on his FW 190 too. Lenny Smith’s article is on the second page of topics in the Jack Devine Models forum. I am always available to help anyone building these kits and if you need answers to any questions I’d be happy to answer them for you. You begin construction by gluing the inboard and outboard foam wing panels together so you have a left and a right wing. Use the green masking tape across the joints to hold the panels firmly together while they dry. Smooth the tape down on to one side of the joint so it is stuck firmly to the foam and then pull it tightly across the joint and stick it down on the opposite side of the joint. If you slightly stretch the tape as you stick it down to the opposite side of the joint in the wing panels it will keep the two pieces aligned and give you a good tight strong joint. I use six strips of tape on the top wing surface and six more on the bottom. I use the Foam Bond glue to glue the wing sections together and let it dry overnight before you remove the tape. The next step is to apply the first layer of 3/16” balsa cap strip to the leading and trailing edges of the wing. Choose 3/16” stock that is just wide enough to cover the leading and trailing edge surfaces. The tips of the wing are capped with three plys of 5/8th” wide 1/16” balsa and you need to soak that wood down with a 50/50 mixture of ammonia and water so the strips will bend cleanly around the wing tip without breaking. If you spray them down and let then set for a few minutes they will bend very easily and go right around the wingtip. I coat both sides of the inner two balsa strips with yellow carpenters glue. Bevel the ends of the 3/16th” cap strip out where the trailing and leading edges just start to end and then the 3ply wingtip cap strips will blend right into the solid cap strips at a nice clean beveled angle. Secure all of the cap strips to the foam wing panels with the green tape and let them dry. Once the wing panels have dried you can glue the left and right wing panels together to form the complete wing. Cap the small straight areas at the center of the leading edge and the center of the trailing edge once you have the two wing halves joined. After the wing you will need to do the same thing to the horizontal stab halves and the fin/rudder. Again the stab tips and the top of the fin/rudder will have to be capped with three plys of the 1/16” X 5/8” balsa sheeting. Apply all of the first layer of cap strips before you cut away the elevators, rudder and the ailerons. The second layer of cap strips are glued in place after the wing and tail surfaces are sheeted. The second layer of cap strips interlock the sheeting to the leading and trailing edge of the wing and this insures you will not sand through the balsa sheeting as you sand the leading and trailing edges on the wing and tail surfaces. If you don’t understand what I have described please get back to me so I can help you get started on the right track. These models are really very easy to build once you understand how to build them. They are very different than the standard stick built kits but they are very enjoyable to build. Once you have one of them under your belt I’m sure you will find it was one of the easiest kits you have ever assembled. They build very quickly but like I said they are very different. They fly beautifully and I’d recommend a G-45 to a G-62 for power. Either will fit easily into the cowl and the G-62 makes this plane very fast. It will fly very scale like with the G-45 and any of the available motors in the 50cc range will work very well too. I flew the first one of these models on a US 41 that I made a straight stack exhaust for and I also had changed the carburetor on the US motor to a Quadra 52 carb. The plane flew very well on that combination and the G-62 just put it on Steroids. Unlimited vertical with the G-62 and a top speed of about 125MPH. Way too fast for me. My son loved it but I was much happier with the US 41. A Quadra 52 would also be a good choice as wood the BME or the Brisson 50s.

Stay in touch with me and I’ll help you get the FW 190 in the air. Read the two build up articles on the website because they shed a lot of light on building these planes. There are lots of great pictures and lots of great questions get real good answers. I hope this helps you Jim and I look forward to working with you! Jack Devine"

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Question 102: "Hi Jack I have been flying for around a year and have become competent with low wing 3D aircraft.
I have always wanted to get into warbirds and somebody at my club has recommended the stuka due to its gull wing, fixed undercarriage and high rudder,wadya think for my first warbird???"

Jack: "Hey David, The Great planes Stuka is a good flying airplane and with the fixed landing gear it eliminates the hassle of retracts and still looks correct in the air. It has a wide flight envelope and is very responsive to flight control inputs without being overly sensitive. Scale flight for a Warbird is far different than you will have experienced with your 3D aircraft but one thing the 3D flight should have taught you is the value of rudder control input. You will never become a good Warbird pilot without mastering the rudder. With that said I think you will do fine with the Stuka and with that kit being an ARF it will get you into the air very quickly. I think you will find the Warbird side of this hobby is very rewarding and these planes are tons of fun to fly. Your desire to fly other Warbirds will grow very quickly and then you should be ready to take on some of the more complex models that are out there. Welcome to Warbirds David! Jack Devine"

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Question 103: "Hi Jack I have a zirolli p-51 100 inch wing span , framed up and sheeted ready for glass cloth . A friend of mine and myself are going to enter it in team scale , and he says it will need a bigger gas engine than the 4.2 sachs dolmer i have . I have talked to several people who fly them on g-62s and are happy with that so i think the 4.2 should be good power , but i want your opinion. Also how heavy is too heavy ? I am figuring around 30 too 35 lbs. Any info or ideas will be appreciated. Thanks Tom"

Jack: "Hi Tom, There are a couple of concerns here that I think will help make the appropriate choice of power for your new P-51. Having flown this same airplane on a G-62 I agree with the other pilots who felt it had enough power to fly on that motor. The Sachs 4.2 has significantly more power than a G-62 and propped correctly it will haul a 40 pound airplane around with authority. Your flight envelope, if you are entering this airplane in a scale event needs to be just what the contest says scale and you will easily exceed the scale airspeed envelope (and loose flight points for doing so) with the 4.2 at full throttle. A good friend of mine and fellow warbird guy has a CJ Hawker Sea Fury and it weighs 42 pounds. It is decked out with a ton of scale detail and it will fly 130MPH in level flight with the 4.2 in the nose. The other factor you must consider is low speed vibration and it’s effect on your air frame. The big 5.2 and 5.8 Sachs motors as well as the big Quadras, ZDZs and so on create significant vibration that really will have a toll on your airframe. I have never liked soft mounted engines because of linkage variation to the throttle but rather prefer a solid mount system on all of my airplanes. I don’t think the soft mounts significantly reduce vibration on the big gassers. The next time you are at your flying field watch the tail feathers of the larger models when the motor is at idle and the vibration issue will hit home. If you used the fiberglass fuselage it will have even more visible vibration than the built up fuselage will have. Over time that has a big effect. My advice is to stay with the 4.2 and I think your new P-51 will be a great airplane. Ziroli designs have always flown very well and you should have no problem competing with this airplane. The only thing that would change my mind here is if your 4.2 was a high time motor and showing it’s age. If the motor is healthy it will work just fine. Good luck Tom. It sounds like your adventure into Team Scale is right on the money! Jack Devine"

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Question 104: "What's your advise on landing the Gold Edition P-40 successfully. I've been snap rolled to death. This is my third and last try at tackling this bird. Thanks, Carl."

Jack: "Hello Carl, The P-40 in general is a difficult plane to get into the air and to land but it is usually an airplane that flies very well when its in the air. The narrow landing gear has a great deal to do with the takeoff and landing problems but it is a manageable plane if you employ the proper control techniques. I hope you have flaps on your P-40. This is one model I would not consider building without them. They are extremely effective in slowing the airplane down and even more so in keeping the plane stable in the roll axis as you approach the runway. Management of the throttle is also critical during approach because deploying the flaps will slow your airspeed considerably and you will have to add power to avoid the stall that will severely damage your airplane. With flaps down you control the decent with the throttle not the elevator. Adding power will slow your rate of decent and reducing power will steepen the approach. I make warbird approaches to landing at a fairly steep angle usually 45 degrees to the horizon. With the flaps down and the nose of the aircraft down you will see the big drag effect of the flaps but you also see the improved stability as the airspeed comes down. The key is managing the decent rate so you stay just above stall and I think more importantly understanding when a stall is about to occur relevant to your airspeed. I deploy my flaps when I’m learning to fly a new airplane and then reduce the throttle with the plane in level flight until I see the stall beginning to occur. Some planes snap violently which is a disaster at low altitude and a handful to react to even at a safe altitude. Keep in mind a stall occurs when the lift generated by the wing is not enough to continue flying, It is influenced by your trim settings and by the torque generated by the prop. A typical warbird stall is a sudden roll to the left. Application of right aileron to correct the condition further stalls the wing and a crash usually follows.

So keeping the stall in mind there are only two ways to stop the stall. Increase the lift or increase your airspeed.. The flaps increase the lift and good throttle management can keep your plane just above the stall sped. The flaps will slow your airplane down and you will have to increase the throttle setting to keep you airplane flying. Use the rudder to steer the plane and use the throttle to control the decent. Use minimal rudder to assist you in controlling the decent. You need to fly the airplane all the way to the ground and I prefer to allow the touchdown to start on the main gear and then as the airspeed drops and the tail comes down you gain good ground control with the tail wheel. It takes practice but once you understand the technique your landings get very good quickly. Use the flaps and use the rudder and the throttle to control the direction and airspeed of the approach and you will see a vast improvement in your flying abilities. Good luck with you P-40 Carl!!! Jack Devine"

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Question 105: "Hi Jack I have been trying to decide between the Top Flite P40 and P47 (63'' WS) and having read your various post I have decided on the P47 because of the better handling as I am a relatively new pilot. My question is how do you think the plane will perform with a RCV 90-SP four stroke engine. I got one half price in a closing down sale:) This engine swings a 15.5x12 four blade prop at 6000rpm due to the gearing in it, Regards Rob"

Jack: "Hey Rob, You won’t regret choosing the P-47 over the P-40. The P-47 is the best flying airplane Top Flight has ever produced in the Warbird line as far as I’m concerned. It has a great wing and the flaps are excellent and it is docile on the ground compared to the P-40. I think the RCV 90 will work well on this plane and with the big prop it should have good airspeed to boot. I have never owned a RCV motor but have seen several at the field and I was impressed with their torque. I’d sure give this combination my stamp of approval. Send us some pictures when you get it ready to fly. Good luck Rob! Jack Devine"

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Question 106: "Hello Jack! Bruce from Ohio here... I built a Topflight P-40 (my first warbird) and it did exactly what was in your posting on the Warbirds page (question #13). Too bad I didn't see that posting first! However, the crash didn't destroy it and I am in the process of repairing it. The only thing I didn't like about my original construction of the plane was that the flaps didn't fit well with the trailing edges because both trailing edges warped up. There's about a 1/8 inch gap between the flap and the trailing edge. I'm thinking it might be better if I just glued the TE and the flaps together to make the TE straighter and fly this way until I get a handle on flying the beast. Do you think this is a good idea, or are the flaps a significant factor in landing? Thanks for the posting about flying this. I'll be much more prepared on the next "maiden" flight! All the best, Bruce Curlette"

Jack: "Hello Bruce, Thanks for writing. The P-40 can be a real beast to get into the air because it’s a tuff airplane to control on the ground. The narrow landing gear take a bit of time to master but the airplane is usually a stellar performer once it’s airborne and properly trimmed. It will fly with the best of them once you have achieved a safe airspeed. I would highly recommend that you keep your flaps because they are a huge part of being able to successfully land the P-40 without damaging the landing gear and the fin/rudder because it is very easy to flip the model over on it’s back when landing speeds are too high.

The flaps are essential for the added lift they create so lower flight airspeed is possible in the landing configuration but they are also highly effective brakes that help you reduce the airspeed in your landing approaches. I personally won’t build a Warbird without flaps. Once you get use to using them you will completely understand their necessity.

No let’s talk about your problem with the trailing edge of the wing. I have seen this same problem several times before. Once you cut away the flap section of the lower wing skin the upper skin is very vulnerable to warping and it is compounded if you used a shrinkable covering material on the model. As you add heat to shrink the covering it can easily warp the trailing edge of the wing and care must be taken to avoid this. First I would attempt to warm the covering and pull the trailing edge of the wing back down where it belongs. Most fabrics are pretty tuff to do that with but most of the film type coverings can be adjusted a bit if you are careful with heat and apply the right amount of pressure. You might consider removing the top wing covering in the flap area and then reinforcing the top wing sheeting in the flap area with additional hard balsa half ribs glued in place from the underside of the wing up in the flap bay. I have always thought that was a weak area of the Top Flight design because it calls for those ribs to be made out of plain 1/16th balsa. I’d recommend 3/16th balsa that is dense and hard or 3/16th aircraft grade plywood (not Light Ply) and you can usually find it at your local hobby store. Sort through the bin of 3/16th wood and I’m sure you will find a hard piece of balsa or a piece of the aircraft ply wood to make the little half ribs out of. Make sure the new half ribs are glued to the trailing edge of the wing and the leading edge flap spar. You will need to space the new ribs appropriately to clear the ribs on the flap itself but this is usually not difficult and it will really strengthen the top wing skin in the flap area. I doubled the number of ribs that were illustrated on the plans in the flap bays on both of the Top Flight P-40 that I built and it worked out very well. Once the top wing sheeting is properly reinforced you should be able to cover it without any fear of the wing warping again. Use your iron/heat gun wisely and only apply enough heat to stick the covering down and don’t add excessive heat once it’s applied especially in the flap areas of the top wing skin. You will not regret saving your flaps because they are the best addition you could add to this plane to help make landings slower and much more stable. Remember, on final approach to keep your glide path fairly steep with your flaps down and use the throttle to control the decent rate. With the flaps down adding power flattens out the approach and reducing power makes it steeper. Remember those flaps are giving you a lot of additional lift but they are also creating a lot of additional drag. I think you will be surprised at how much more stable your P-40 is with the flaps down on landing approaches. I hope this helps Bruce. Keep me posted on what you get worked out because I’m sure you will really enjoy this plane once you get it sorted out. Good luck and thanks again for writing. Jack Devine"

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Question 107: "Hello Jack, And what an honor I must say it is to ask you a question. I have been reading your responses and am impressed. Jack Im 44 yrs old and been flying since I was 11. A lot of time in those early 70's with our old style pattern ships. Yes things have changed a lot, but its even more fun now.
Jack I've always like speed and performance, and even today its my big unlimited birds that really excite me. Jack I would like to know what Bearcat or AT-6 would make the fastest performer with a G-62 that I have.
Then I need to know which kit or ARF is out there that will do the job? Naturally I want a quality airplane to handle the pressures and G's associated with the flying style. I think people race both of those airplanes, but in your professional opinion, which PLANE, and which KIT/ARF do you reccommend for me to set up with the G-62 for that. Also, I hear the prop selection for racing the G-62 can be quiet tricky, get me started there too if you would. Many Thanks,Charlie."

Jack: "Hello Charlie, Thanks for writing and for passing along your very kind comments. The guys here at RCWarbirds share a common goal in trying to help our fellow modelers with the best information we can develop and I’m happy to hear the things we spend time writing are worth your time reading. That is a win/win situation of the best kind. Let’s get to your question regarding the AT-6 and the Bearcat and the G-62 power plant. As you know the G-62 in stock trim is the motor that is normally used in the AT-6 class racing so it is a good match for that plane in the 100 inch span size. There are several kits available for that class and the American Eagle kit, the Nick Ziroli kit and the Yellow Aircraft AT-6s are all worthy kits to consider and built correctly are very competitive. This is the most closely matched class of RC Warbird racing and allows even a new guy to easily build a plane that has the chance to win. RC Racing is a ton of fun and very popular in some areas of the country. As for speed capability the F8F Bearcat is a much cleaner airframe than the AT-6 and would fly at a higher speed with the G-62. I’m not exactly sure if you could build a competitive airplane in any of the classes for the other types of warbirds that are commonly raced like the P-51 Mustang, and the Hawker Sea Fury or the Bearcat with a G-62. Most of the unlimited type scale aircraft are using high dollar highly modified two and four cylinder motors that have them flying almost 250 MPH. I don’t know if you are interested in that level of racing because it usually is won by the guys that can afford the most expensive custom built engines that are available and the high end kits that are usually about 80% carbon fiber.

The G-62 is going to keep you in the 1/5th scale area if you want a finished Bearcat with performance. There are several good offerings in this size range. Jerry Bates has a great plan set and many of the kit cutters can produce a good kit from his plans. Nick Ziroli has a very nice kit offering as does American Eagle. I also own a kit line called Jack Devine Models and I have a Bearcat offering in this size range as well. The Bearcat that is currently being built by Bill Krummel, who is a modeler from the New Orleans area, is a featured forum thread in the Jack Devine Models forum section on The forum is located in the kit manufacturer section of the website. If you take a minute and check out the website I’m sure you won’t be disappointed. This will give you a good look at a Bearcat under construction and a look at my kit line as well. The American Eagle and the Ziroli offerings have fiber glass fuselages and the Ziroli can be built up if you would prefer to build the fuselage instead of using the fiberglass offering. Any of the above mentioned kits would be good choices and give you the opportunity to produce a very nice airplane. The G-62 is capable of powering all of them.

As for prop selection for the Bearcat you need something in the 20 X 12 to 20 X 14 pitch prop size to get good speed out of the model. Some modelers are having good success with the 20 X 12 trimmed to 19” in diameter by trimming ½” off of each blade. Carbon fiber is also a plus but the price of these props is very high when compared to the wood props that are out there. I have had great luck using the Pro Zingers and the Ultra wood props and they are reasonably priced. You need to get up in pitch if you want to develop the speed capability. There is no other trade off for speed other than higher RPM and the stock G-62 will achieve it’s maximum safe RPM range with the props that I have mentioned. MAKE SURE you balance your prop carefully before you ever attempt to fly it. This will greatly reduce vibration and dramatically extend the life of your airframe.

I think you could have a lot of fun with this project Charlie. Bearcats are great flying models and though the Texan can be tricky to land it is a stellar performer in the air. Keep us posted on what you decide to do and thanks again checking us out here at RC Warbirds. Good luck with your new project! Jack Devine"

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Question 108: "Hello Jack, in first sorry for my bad english. I´f been a modell builder from germany and i have a question about the byron corsair. I have bought the kit for a longer time and i have lost the building drawing. My question: how much is the maximum flap degree. In the moment i have ca. 50°. Ist this enough. In advance many thanks for your help. Best regards Rainer "

Jack: "Hello Rainer, Thanks for writing! The Byron Corsair is a great airplane and you will like the way it flies. I have had three of them over the past ten years and I still own two of them and fly them regularly. I have the flaps set up on both of mine to 50 degrees of maximum deflection and use a two position flap switch on my transmitter that allows me to use 25 degrees of flaps at the switch first position. The 25 degrees of flaps works well on windy days and the 50 degrees is a good setting on days when the wind is calm. The flaps on this model are very effective and with full deflection of fifty degrees you will have to add power to keep the model flying on your final approach. Make sure you are ready to add power when the flaps are fully lowered because the big three section flaps are very effective speed brakes too. This is a great model and it should give you many hours of flying fun! Good luck! Jack Devine"

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Question 109: "Jack.... I am considering building a Ziroli (or Bates) Bearcat... my friends tell me it is the most difficult of Ziroli's planes to fly. What is your opinion? Is there a difference between Ziroli and Bates in the way they fly? Thanks for your comment, Jim. "

Jack: "Hi Jim, Thanks for writing, I would not be one of the folks that were on the side of saying the Bearcat was a difficult airplane to fly. It is a high performance Warbird and it requires experience in Warbird type aircraft but if you bring those skills to the field I don’t feel you would have anything particular to this airplane that would cause you any problems. Large models fly much better than small models. That is fact. I would not recommend the Bearcat as a first Warbird but I make that statement with some qualification. The Bearcat is fast and you have to stay ahead of a model with this type of speed capability. It has wonderful flaps and they really tame this airplane in the landing configuration because they are very effective speed brakes and slow the model rapidly. You need to manage your throttle setting as soon as you lower your flaps. The plane remains stable right down to touchdown but if you fail to add power with the flaps down it will stall very quickly. It does not present any particular takeoff problems other than it requires a good bit of right rudder as soon as the tail wheel leaves the ground on takeoff. I’m always telling people that if you are going to be a good Warbird pilot, you need to become competent on the use of the rudder and this is experience you should have before taking on any of the large high performance warbirds. The rudder makes a warbird track straight down the runway and is the only directional control you have until the aircraft is flying and you want minimal aileron input until you reach a safe flying speed.

With all of that said this plane flies beautifully once in the air and trimmed for level flight. Maneuvers are crisp and very pleasing because the Bearcat is a true pilot’s aircraft in the air. Powered correctly, this plane will impress you with it’s speed capability. The F8F is a very clean airframe and it will go exactly where you tell it to. Both the Bates and the Ziroli offerings are great choices for this aircraft with the only real difference being the Ziroli aircraft is slightly larger. The Bearcat is absolutely one of my favorite airplanes and they command a great deal of attention at any flying field. If you are ready for this type of aircraft Jim I don’t know how you could go wrong adding a F8F to you hanger. Consider what I have said and I think it will help you make the decision of weather this is the right plane for you at this time. I’ll close with one recommendation. In my opinion the best and easiest flying Warbird out there is the P-47. If you need to gain some experience before you take on the Bearcat build a P-47 and fly the paint off of it. It’s an honest airplane and by design is a natural flyer. I would highly recommend this plane to anyone breaking into the giant scale warbird arena. It’s easy to get into the air and flies beautifully and it also has very effective flaps. If you are going to fly warbirds you need to learn two things. How to use the rudder and how to use the flaps. Taking the time to learn them will keep you taking your warbirds home in one piece for years and really allow you to enjoy this section of our hobby. Good luck Jim and keep us posted. Jack Devine"

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Question 110: "Jack, I recently purchased a Bryon Corsair and have just started putting it together. I have cut out the wheel wells and strut door area. I have trial fitted the Robart retracts and found that unless I enlarge these areas I will not be able to remove the retracts for service, once installed. Perhaps this is a non-issue, put it has me slightly perplexed at the moment. If you know of any sights that have photos of this area of the Corsair or know of anyone that I could talk to ( phone ), I would appreciate the information. I am also interested in the Century Jet Corsair, but have not been able to find anyone that has built one and the only review I could find in one the the scale magazines was rather superficial - any thoughts?
Thank you for your help, Doug"

Jack: "Hello Doug, I can't specifically give you an answer for the CJ Corsair but for the Byron I think I can help. I happen to have owned three of them. If you want to de able to remove a panel for removal of the main gear you simply need to mark out the section of wing panel that you need to cut which is about two inches wider than what you already cut out and then make that wing section a removable hatch. You will have to construct two plywood half- ribs for each side. One to support the wing skin just outside of the hatch
line and the second to support the hatch and that rib goes with the hatch when you remove it so you would have to glass that rib to the hatch. You would then have to add four small hard wood blocks that you can screw the hatch down onto so you could secure the hatch for flight and then remove the four screws when you need access to the gear.. I would add a layer of cloth to the inside of the hatch lid after the frame work was glued in and I think you would be fine. The Byron Corsair builds a little heavy but it sure flies well. My first one had a Mustang 50 and the other two are both G-62s. Good luck with your Corsair Doug. Jack Devine"

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Question 111: "jack, read a lot of your answers and my son and i are going to build us a couple of warbirds. i wanted to ask this question but wasnt sure to ask on the site. what do you think of the bob holman plans and his laser parts if you have any knowledge of these. my son and i have been flying for 3 yrs now.i fly edges and giles.the plans and parts are for the 82" corsair and the 94.5" harvard.are these true scale and have you heard how they fly. thank you for your time. matt. "

Jack: "Hi Matt, Nice to hear from you, Both of the planes that you mentioned here are outstanding examples of kits that will take you a long way into the wonderful world of scale Warbirds. Bob’s plans and his laser cutting are outstanding. He is a gentleman of the highest regard and all of the kits and products that he markets are very high quality. The Corsair is my favorite airplane. It’s a great looking great flying Warbird. Set up properly it will put a lot of smiles on your face. They will keep you honest and bite you when you make mistakes but that being said you absolutely get my stamp of approval on the Corsair. A 50 CC gas motor should handle the 82” Corsair very well. Retract gear are expensive for this airplane and in my opinion the Robart 148 or the heavier 150 gear are a good choice for this airplane. I have owned six giant scale Corsairs over the past 15 years and I used the Robart gear in all of them. I also would highly recommend you build this aircraft with flaps. Flaps will dramatically increase low speed stability and they really extend the life of your retracts allowing you much slower landing speeds.

The Harvard/AT6 is another great airplane in the air but it is a difficult airplane on the ground. The narrow landing gear make it easy to ground loop and sometimes difficult to get airborne in any cross wind. You need to really know how to fly with the rudder to master this airplane. Flaps are a must have on this airplane too to get the airspeed as low as possible before you let it touch down. This airplane has a nasty tendency to start bouncing if you don’t set it down correctly and the bouncing really takes a toll on the landing gear and on the airframe in general. Spend some time learning to taxi the Harvard before you take it into the air. I assure you it will be time well spent and that will allow you to enjoy this model when it’s in the air. I don’t think the Harvard has a single bad characteristic in the air. It goes where you well it to go and is capable of doing any maneuver that a warbird was designed to do. A G-62 would be a good choice for the Harvard power selection. It has plenty of power and is one of the most reliable motors out there.

Matt I think you and your son could have a blast flying these two Warbirds and with some flying experience behind both of you I don’t think you will have any problems. I wrote a couple of articles in the Techniques section of this website a few years ago about stepping into Warbirds and if you have the time I highly recommend you read them. I think you will find there is some really solid advice there. I wish you both the best of luck with these two great airplanes and let me be the first to welcome you to the wonderful world of Warbirds. Best of luck to both of you and thanks again for writing. Jack Devine"

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Question 112: "I bought a Bud Nosen 120" W/S Mustang kit from my R/C club's yearly auction.The kit has fiberglass fuse and foam core bulkheads,wings,stab and rudder. I am missing the plans to complete this kit, and also it seams as if I have the wrong peice to 1 of the wings(thought the deal was too good).Do you know where a guy could have a new foam wing cut, and where I could get a set of plans? I have tried A A inc.,the company that took over Nosen, but their web site does not work.Also I need to verify this is even a Nosen kit, there is a sticker on the inside of the fuse that reads "D.W. Giant Scale Aircraft".Any help you could provide would be wonderful. Thanks, Rick S."

Jack: "Rick, based on the "D.W." sticker, this is an old Dwight Warner kit. He used to be in California, then shot off to Hawaii I believe. As far as I know, he is not around any longer. Does not sound like a Nosen to me. I would suggest you contact Dynamic Balsa for a foam wing replacement. He can custom cut foam cores for you. Jeff"

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Question 113: "Hey Jack! I am a new RC pilot and am ready to move into a 2nd airplane. I learned on a Kadet senior and my goal is to fly a P51. What would you say would be a great 2nd plane so as to be moving towards getting a P51? Any help would be really appreciated! Thanks! Rob "

Jack: "Hello Rob, Nice to hear from you. I always like to hear from new pilots that are working their way toward enjoying the wonderful world of RC Warbirds. This is a really fun group within our hobby and the thrill of becoming a Warbird Driver is one you will truly enjoy. You state in your email that you are ready to move on to your second airplane and the only thing that makes me hesitate telling you to make your next airplane a Great Planes P-51 is not knowing if you have any tail dragger experience. Most trainer type aircraft have tricycle landing gear with a steerable nose wheel while the majority of the Warbirds have the ground steering done with a tail wheel. They are very different handling aircraft on the ground and with tail draggers you really need to learn to use the rudder stick input if you are going to master Warbird flight.

With that being said let’s talk about the Great Planes P-51 Mustang. This is a forty size plane that can easily handle a. 60 size motor once you learn to fly it. It will fly very well on a good .46 glow two stroke or a 70 size four stroke motor. It can be built with retractable landing gear and it’s just an outstanding airplane in the air. It has full span ailerons like most trainer type aircraft and best of all a great flying rudder that you will really need to learn how to use. I can’t think of a single bad habit that this airplane has and it is a natural progression airplane into a full house Warbird. It has great potential growth capability in that you can add retracts after you get some flight time on the model and with a increase in power this airplane will really perform. It will be a handful in it’s recommended trim form for a few flights comparing it to a trainer type aircraft but a plane that most new Warbird pilots get comfortable with very quickly. I have recommended this plane for many years and over and over again it has proven to be a winner.

My main concern is that a new warbird guy does not choose a complex warbird to start out. Learn to fly a simpler warbird first and then as your flight skills grow move into the more complex models that take much longer to build and more skill to fly. The Top Flight gold addition P-51 is a beautiful airplane and flies like it’s on rails but you need to develop the flight skills first and then move on to the advanced airplane. The Great Planes Mustang will fly any maneuver in the book, is a great looking little airplane if you spend some time trimming it and it is not difficult to build. All pluses in my book. Some of the ARF P-51s that are out there and configured similar to the Great Planes offering would also make a good transitional airplane but my vote has always been the Great Planes offering.

Good luck with this project Rob and keep us posted on your progress. Becoming a Mustang driver is something you are really going to enjoy and once you get it down you will be amazed at the possibilities in RC Warbirds. Jack Devine"

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Question 114: "Hi Jack I'm currently busy constructing a Top Flite Hawker Sea Fury Gold Edition. I will use a OS120III FS with CJM scale retracts and operational flaps ect. What can I expect with the first flight? Thanks for any help from South Africa Hennie"

Jack: "Hello Hennie, Nice to hear from you. Your new Sea Fury is a very nice airplane and with a 1.20 for power it should really perform for you. I don’t know what your flying experience is so let’s start there. I would never recommend this aircraft for a new RC pilot but is you have a few aircraft under your belt then the Sea Fury should not pose any great problems in being able to successfully fly this aircraft. With a big powerful motor you will need a fair amount of right rudder input to get the airplane into the air. Anticipate the rudder so you stay ahead of the aircrafts tendency to turn left on the takeoff roll. You have to develop a feel for this and get on the rudder early and if you pay attention to this and stay ahead of the left yaw you will enjoy this airplane immensely. The Sea Fury is a stable and very fast airframe and a beautiful airplane in the air. It’s flaps are very effective for landing and I highly recommend you use them. They will add a lot of stability to your approaches for landing and slow the plane to a much lower landing speed that will extend the life of your model. The flaps are also big speed brakes so understand that you will need to carefully manage your power setting once you drop the flaps and landing gear and prepare to set up your landings. With the undercarriage retracted and a clean airframe this airplane will fly with the best of them. Clean crisp maneuvers are done with ease but you have to stay ahead of this plane because at the speeds it is capable of flying things happen very quickly. It has a wide flight envelope so if you like to throttle back and just cruise through the air it will do that for you as well. As you can see I really like this airplane and I think you will too and if you have the advanced skills to fly it you have made a great choice in this airplane. If you need a bit more stick time to prepare for your first complex Warbird then take the time to gain that experience before you fly the Sea Fury. Good luck, Jack Devine"

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Question 115: "Hi Jack, I am currently considering building a 1/4 scale ME109, but am a little worried about it's ground handling, especially on take off. I know in real life they were difficult to get up, with a tendancy to drop a wing to port unless the stick was pushed forward while accelerating to raise the tail. Does the 1/4 scale need the same precision, as I am afraid of prop strike? Also, with a narrow undercarriage rake are they very unstable in T.O. and Landing? I have my A Rating in fixed wing, but this is my first venture into giant scale Warbirds and wish to minimise surprises. Any other suggestions and advice to flight characteristics would be welcome. Best Regards Brian J (UK)"

Jack: "Hello Brian, Sorry for the delay in answering your questions. These things can really stack up at times and I usually get around to answering all of them even with several other irons in the fire. The ME 109 is a great flying airplane but not an easy airplane to get into the air. It has a nasty tendency to fly too early in the take off roll and you need to make sure that does not occur. A 1.4 scale ME 109 model needs a 200 foot take off roll to gain enough speed to avoid the takeoff stall/crash. The tail jumps off of the ground which takes away tail wheel steering and most modelers will over correct for the rising tail and apply enough up elevator to make the plane rotate. It will jump into the air and without sufficient airspeed stall the left wing and you are immediately in big trouble. Your eyes tell you to add lots of right aileron to correct the left roll and that stalls the wing even further and all of this means you will be walking to a crash site. With that all said let's start over. Make sure the aircraft is properly balanced and that the landing gear tracks smoothly and in a straight line. As you start the takeoff roll add power slowly and let the plane roll. As the tail comes up you have to immediately add enough right rudder to compensate for the left yaw that will start to occur immediately after the tail wheel leaves the ground. If you are ready for this it won't be a problem. The rudder effectiveness increases quickly as the speed comes up but keep the model on the ground by staying off of the elevator. The model will clearly tell you when it is ready to fly and the slightest hint of up elevator will have you airborne and starting a gentle climb out. If you manage the throttle correctly and come up on power slowly and consistently you don't have the tail jumping into the air which forces that premature application of up elevator. That is a disaster waiting to happen! The longer the takeoff run the better is about what it boils down too. Once
airborne and cleaned up and trimmed you will have a thrilling model on your hands. The 109 is a sinister looking airplane and it's all business in the air. Do not over do your control throws. More is NOT better here. The plane will be sensitive to elevator input and it does not require huge amounts of elevator to very effectively cause your altitude changes. The ailerons are very good. Rudder input on all of your banking turns will keep the tail flying at the proper attitude and the tail will droop if you don't coordinate the rudder with your aileron and elevator inputs. Lots of pilots dial in the rudder by coupling it to the ailerons on the computer radios. Landing is going to require flaps if you want to extend the life of your landing gear. You need speed brakes to slow this plane down and the flaps will get that done and stabilize the 109 as the speed comes down and the flaps are very effective. Manage the approach to landing with the throttle stick and let the flaps do their job. Keep the approach steep enough to keep up the airspeed and once you get into ground effect let the main gear touch down and start bleeding off the speed. Let the tail come down on it's own do not force it down with the elevator and use the rudder not the ailerons for course corrections as you get close to touchdown. It will be an easy plane to taxi. I don't think you will have any problems there. I hope this will help you Brian. Best of luck with your ME 109. Jack Devine"

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Question 116: "Hi Jack, this is about my third post here and this time is about takeoffs with flaps; we fly at the beach and our runway is not very long and I have the 2nd largest bird in the fleet (GSP 70" FW-190A) that should be ready in about 3 weeks, the largest bird is a 100" stinson reliant but is not ready either, so what is the proper technique for this type of takeoffs? your friend from Southern Mexico

Jack: "Hello Mauricio, Nice to hear from you. The FW 190 is a great airplane and I'm sure you will enjoy flying it. I would recommend a 20 degree deployment of the flaps for takeoff. Any more than that and the drag dramatically increases and you are looking for lift here and low drag. If you have your flaps set up on a two position switch on your transmitter the first position is usually half flaps and that will be enough to do what you are trying to accomplish. You will definitely get into the air more quickly with flaps but I highly recommend you climb out at a safe angle. The flaps increase your lift but they can also increase the possibility of stall. On takeoff more flap input is not better. Use the rudder for course correction and keep aileron input to a minimum until you reach a safe flying speed/altitude. I would consider 1/2 flap the maximum for takeoff. Good luck with your new 190! Jack Devine"

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Question 117: "What Warbird has the best glide ratio? I would think this would help my landing reaction time, even though I think landing a 48" electric Mustang has got to be harder than any GS Warbird.....I hope. "

Jack: "Hello Mike, I don’t think there are many Warbirds that have an exceptional glide ratio. The wing loadings are heavy so gliding is in question when power is not available. Drag is another issue to consider. Retracts, landing gear doors and flaps also come into the picture because they dramatically effect drag. Flaps add low speed stability but they slow a model very quickly and thus create drag. That drag is compounded when there is no power available like in an engine out situation. Of all the warbirds I have flown, I think the best and most efficient flight is in the P-47 Thunderbolt. It is a traditionally stable aircraft and one that has a very efficient wing for a Warbird. It has very effective flaps that are a pilots friend if they are used properly but you can only achieve their maximum benefit with available and manageable power. The Thunderbolts are consistent in flight and that is the main reason I have always recommended the P-47 to new warbird pilots. Your statement about larger model airplanes flying better than the smaller ones is absolutely true as long as the aircraft is set up properly. The right amount of power and balance are critical.

On electrically powered model airplanes great strides have been made in the past two years on electric motor design and the availability of efficient light weight batteries. Lithium Polymer batteries and brushless motors have opened up a whole new world in model aircraft. The efficiency numbers have increased dramatically and I think modeling will se more and more aircraft powered with electric propulsion.

I think a 48” wingspan Mustang would improve in it’s ability to glide if the wing loading is reduced with stronger but much lighter batteries. Noise regulation and clubs working with the neighbors that surround our flying fields will drive future development in electric model aircraft. I hope this answers your question. Jack Devine"

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Question 118: "Hello Jack I have recently bought a KMP corsair and installed the OS 120 four stroke. this model weighed in at 13.5 pounds, is this motor enough to fly this bird? And have you any insights that you could tell me about Take off landing flying characteristics anything will be helpful Thank you for your help! "

Jack: "Hello! The Corsair is one of my favorite subjects. I think the OS 120 fourstroke is more than up to the task of hauling a 13.5 pound Corsair and I think you will have a good match there. I have not personally flown the KMP Corsair but I have flown many of them over the years. I own five Corsairs in various sizes right now and I built them because they are great airplanes and they fly beautifully. They are a good honest Warbird but they have a distinct personality but one that is worth getting to know. A few years back Paul Grubich and I talked about getting some basic information about flying Warbirds together for modelers that were starting to think about making the transition into this great area of our hobby. Both of us felt that far too many new warbirds were heavily damaged or destroyed because new pilots simply did not know what to expect the first time they advanced the throttle stick on a new Warbird. I wrote a couple of articles for this website and I think the information contained in those articles is still very accurate and I would highly recommend you take the time to read them. The subject airplane by the way us the F4U Corsair. The articles are in the Technique Section of the website and I hope you take the time to check them out. I have had many modelers say that the information really helped them get ready for that first flight and the development of the routines that are described in those articles helped them make a successful transition into Warbirds. Good luck with your
Corsair! Jack Devine'

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Question 119: " Jack The weather here in michigan is getting warmer and I want to start flying my KMP corsair. I have the OS 120 4 stroke and I am looking for advice on flying it. it weighs in at 14 lbs this will be my 2nd war bird, 1st was a kyosho spitfire 46. just a few question's What should the flap location be on landing? will this engine be enough power? And any other tips on flying it? I have read all the page's of your advice on the web site and I am still a little scared to fly it. Maybe you can settle my mind"! Greg"

Jack: "Hello Greg, I'm sure that the 1.20 4 stroker is up to the task of hauling your Corsair so I wouldn't waste much time there. Be careful not to over prop the motor and just make sure you use a fuel with enough good oil in it to keep it well lubricated. As far as flight characteristics I think you will find that because this plane is considerably larger than your Spitfire it will fly more smoothly and you will notice the "feel" of the increased flight performance. It's no secret that the larger planes fly easier than the small ones do. No matter what size Corsair you fly you will need right rudder input on takeoff. As soon as the power starts to come up, and bring that up slowly, anticipate the left yaw and correct it with enough right rudder to keep your plane rolling down the center of the runway. The tail will lift early in the takeoff run but "DO NOT" force the Corsair into the air with up elevator. That can lead to a real disaster and this has destroyed many Corsairs on their maiden flight. Let it run on the main gear and build speed. Once a safe flying speed is reached just a hint of up elevator will make the Corsair rotate and you are off into the wild blue yonder! Start making the first turn with a combination of rudder and
aileron input and clean the plane up for flight. It should trim easily and once the plane is secure and in level flight you can relax a bit and finish trimming the plane.. I think the big secret here is to not try anything complex but rather just let it fly and get the feel of it. The flaps are very effective and the plane will start to climb when you lower the flaps. About 99% of the Corsairs out there will do this and it's easily corrected by dialing about 5 degrees of down elevator and coupling it to the flap switch. The second caution is to immediately notice how quickly the airspeed starts bleeding off. You will have to add power and maintain it until you turn final once you lower the flaps. You have the flaps so use them and you will really like what they do for this airplane. They add a ton of low speed stability and they will dramatically extend the life of your retracts/landing gear. Manage the decent to your touchdown point with the throttle stick and make your approach to landing fairly steep. About 45 degrees decent angle works great. Adding power reduces the decent and
decreasing power increases decent. The long slow and low approaches are what get new Corsair drivers into trouble and you need to avoid that type of landing. Once you know you have made the runway bring the throttle back to idle and let it touch down on the main gear. As the wheels start to roll the airspeed will bleed of pretty quickly and let the tail come down on it's own and maintain your direction with the rudder not the ailerons. Once the tail settles down you will have good ground steering again and your flight should put a great big smile on your face. If you overshoot and decide to go around bring the power up slowly and let the airspeed build again before you try and get the plane back into the air. Stay calm and don't panic it will fly right off again but just like on the original takeoff you do not want is flying before you reach a safe takeoff speed.

The key here Greg is not topanic and think over the flight before you fly it. Leave the hot-dogging to after at least two successful flights and I think you will get comfortablewith the Corsair very quickly. Make sure that during preflight you double check everything and that the flight surface directions are moving exactly as they should. That includes the flaps. Move everything with the motor running at high speed just to make sure that everything checks out. Double check the landing gear before you start the motor and if you have pneumatic retracts make sure that you have plenty of air pressure on board. Double check the fuel load while you are at it and last but most important check the onboard batteries and make sure your power switch is functioning crisply with good contact. Use an onboard battery that is sufficiently high enough capacity to power this airplane. This is not a .46 size Spitfire and you will need the extra power of a larger battery to run the extra servos. I'd recommend at least 1000mah battery and a 1500 would be even better. You will get more safe flights and you won't run out of electrical power with the high demand that warbirds can place on their receiver packs. Balance is critical and there is no such thing as close enough. Make sure your balance is spot on the money before you attempt to fly the airplane. If you get all of this accomplished I think you will really enjoy the feel of a nice Corsair in the air. It is absolutely my favorite Warbird and once you have some Corsair Driver time in your log book you will begin to really appreciate how special this airplane is. Good luck with the maiden flight Greg and let us know how it goes. Jack Devine"

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Question 120: "Hi Jack, my name is Andrea and I live in Italy. First of all I would like to congratulate with you and other folks of for this fantastic website: you give us a lot of useful information about the world of rc airplanes, so thank you all. Now here’s my situation: I want to get into the world of glow powered airplanes, but I’m not sure if the ARF I’ve chosen can be used as a trainer. I was looking at the Great Planes Fabric Covered Piper Cub ARF (code GPMA1310) with an FS-70 ultimate in the cowl (13x7 Zinger two blade propeller) and controlled through a Futaba 7C. I know that usually glow powered trainers are much smaller and are designed for small 2 stroke engines, but I’ve read somewhere that the cub has very forgiving flying characteristics compared to those of nearly every other miniature model of a real airplane, so I think that it could be fine as a trainer. Also bear in mind that I’ve already had some solo flying experience with my electric basic trainer (about an hour total flight time in the field behind my house), so this cub should not be a problem with an instructor. You may also think that the FS-70 ultimate would be a little too much for an airplane with such a purpose, but this engine is listed as suggested for this model on the Great Planes website, I want to use a 4 stroke engine (because of its sound) and finally I thought that having a relatively big engine under the cowl would give less problems than having a small one. This is because a powerful engine can pull the plane out of a stall even if it is low and slow, while a less powerful one wouldn’t be able to do so, and in normal fight you can simply avoid pushing the throttle stick all the way forward if you don’t need the extra power. So, do you think that this airplane could be fine as a trainer, or should I go with a smaller, specific model? Are my thoughts about the engine correct? And what should I expect when the wheels of the Cub leave the ground (sooner or later I want to have that airplane anyway…)? I thank you in advance and apologize for my poor English. Andrea."

Jack: "Hello Andrea, First off let me say that the English I’m reading here on your inquiry is very good and I understand the questions that you are asking. The Piper cub could be a trainer aircraft especially if you begin with an instructor pilot and a trainer (buddy) box setup until you get use to the way the cub flies. It is not the easiest model to begin with. The high wing tricycle gear trainers are easier to take-off and with that said let me explain my answer. Tricycle gear where the airplane has a steerable nose wheel, makes it easier to maintain direction on a runway because you have nose wheel steering until just a moment before takeoff. With the Piper Cub you loose the wheel steering as soon as the tail of the plane lifts on the takeoff run and you must rely on the rudder to steer the plane until it becomes airborne. Ailerons will not steer the plane on the ground . Learning the rudder control is a good thing bit it is one that in my opinion does not come naturally. I have seen many new pilots with their first tail dragger aircraft really struggle to get the plane into the air and with a tricycle gear plane with a steerable nose wheel they had no problems taking off. Next problem with the Cub is that it does not usually have as large an amount of Dihedral in the wing and this is a disadvantage. The more advanced cubs have no dihedral. I’m not sure what the plane you are considering has but it won’t be as much dihedral as a standard trainer aircraft. Most R/C trainer aircraft have a lot of dihedral angle in the wings because it helps this type of airplane maintain stable flight. They like to fly straight and level and they will fly out of most turns and maneuvers easily with very little stick input. With the cub you need to fly the model at all times. You will bank it and have to feed opposite aileron and a little rudder input to bring the airplane back to level flight. With less dihedral than most trainers you need coordinated input of aileron, elevator and rudder to turn this model correctly. Most trainers will let you get away with just aileron and elevator.

As for power the 70 Four Stroke is a good choice and a very reliable motor. It would be capable of supplying all the power you would need on this plane. If you decide to go with the Cub this is a good choice.

I think that learning to fly an R/C airplane is a much more complex adventure than most people realize. I’m not going to say it is difficult but it is complex. Before you fly make sure you clearly understand what each control surface does and what effect it has in flight. Know the airplane before you ever try to fly it. I make it a regular point to talk with a new pilot for several minutes before I assist them in flying their airplane. I completely inspect the airplane and if anything is found to be less than 100% the airplane does not fly until the problem is corrected. I always use a buddy box and no advance maneuvers are on the table until the student pilot can perform all of the basic maneuvers. Learning to climb, descend, bank left and right and fly the airplane in both directions at the flying site are first order of business. Once the basics are done then you start working on the takeoff and landing scenarios. I usually have 20 landings flown with a student before I even think of letting them solo. Some instructors do not feel it takes that much time but let me just say that the only thing that will make you a good pilot is Practice. Take it slow and easy until you are comfortable with the plane. Master the basics before you start worrying about the more complex maneuvers. After all Formula 1 drivers didn’t start their racing careers in Formula 1 cars.

If you are aware of what to expect with a Cub and you have a good instructor pilot with you until you are comfortable with this airplane I’m sure you could learn to fly with the Cub. They are a very nice flying airplane but I do not feel they are the best trainer aircraft out there. If you have your heart set on the Cub then please pay attention to my advice and make sure you have a good instructor with you until you learn to fly this airplane. You can have a great deal of fun with a Cub once you learn how to fly it and you will enjoy all of the things it can do. I have a ¼ scale Sig Cub with the OS Gemini 160 Twin in it and I have a set of EDO floats for it as well. It’s a great flying airplane. I hope this advice helps you with your decisions Andrea. Good luck! Jack Devine"

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