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February 2013

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The final meeting of the 2012/13 winter season of the Scale Flyers of Minnesota will be held on Friday, March 29, 7pm at the American Legion Post-6501 Portland, Richfield.  Come early and dine in the restaurant.  (Meeting Directions)

 At the last meeting ...

Drone Conversation: There was discussion of a Time Magazine article about drones.  Some felt it was “poorly written” but interesting.  It didn’t talk about our hobby.  The AMA is putting together a statement about drones with regard to model aviation.  Jon Bomers adds while posting the newsletter, that a recent editorial in the May 2013 of FLY RC magazine highlighted the new Senate Bill 71 that was just past in the Oregon Legislature.  It basically makes Oregon a "Drone Free" State!  Although the bill that passed doesn't clearly define what a drone is, it has has some pretty heavy language throughout the new law and you could pay a fine of $375,000.00 or serve 20 years in prison or both, if your aircraft is found to have drone capabilities.

Other States are drafting there own bills based on the precedent set by the Oregon Legislature.  To date (3/2013); Texas, Nebraska, Missouri, Florida, North Dakota, Virginia and California are drafting legislation.  In speaking with a local Washington Senator the bills being presented in Washington State basically plagiarize the Oregon bill, which does a very poor job of clarifying what a drone is verses an R/C aircraft.  Lets hope if legislation is crafted in Minnesota that it's clear and concise so it doesn't effect our hobby as it has in other states.

Balsa USA will be kitting a 1/3rd scale Albatross.  Design around the DA 85 engine.  Kit cost are expect to be in the $1200 range.

Glenn Torrence has suspended all other kit sales to ensure that his new 1/3rd scale SE5a will get released soon. The SE5a "is the most detailed and involved kit I've designed yet".  He wants everyone to be aware ... it's not a beginner's kit.


Local News ...

Joe Thiery is still in the VA hospital. Best wishes, Joe.

Tom Steinmuller is hospitalized, recovering from surgery.  Get well soon, Tom.


Cal Branton showed us his 1/4 scale Me-109 instrument panel from ProPagT.  This panel comes assembled and painted and includes the basic instrument panel, a set of instruments, controls elements such as switches and decals.

The panels are made

by AEROCOCKPIT in the Czech Republic and in addition to ProPagT, they are distributed by Hobby Lobby and IFlyTailies.  Some panels can be purchased as kits that need to be put together to save some money and additional items like gun sights etc are optional.

Jeff is building his 4th Fokker D7.  It is a quarter-scale Balsa USA Fokker-D7 that he modified to represent the prototype D7.  The original D7 prototype was test flown by Manfred von Richtofen who complained that it had poor handling,  so it was highly modified before being put into production.  Jeff reversed those changes by shortening the fuselage and nose, moved the wings forward, replacing the tail with a Triplane tail, and he squared the elevators and ailerons. Jeff joked that he “rejected success in favor of failure.”

Jeff installed a 38 cc gas engine and is looking for a scale exhaust.  Full cockpit, Solartex covering, Proctor 7 ¼” wheels.  The dummy engine manifold was made from BIC pen parts, parts of clevises and other scrap.


Kevin Kavaney’s ASW 28-18 carbon-fiber sailplane is 40% scale, 23-ft wingspan, 42 lbs, 13 servos, 10 channels (could use 13), disk brakes, electric retracts, A123 batteries on 3 Match-boxes.  An onboard variometer and altimeter give voice readout at the transmitter via an earbud.  Axel’s Pilots (German) female pilot figure.   (All of Kevin’s pilot figures are female.)

Kevin demonstrated the flaps and spoilers.  He described flying on the tow as “kinda like ballroom dancing.”  Tows to 1000 feet that produce flights “close to an hour.”

To see Kevin and Larry in action, check out the videos on

Larry Sorenson’s 1/3rd scale Super Cub Tow Plane was a study in field assembly efficiency.  Wing struts are attached with hinges on the wing, the jury struts are hinged at the strut and snap into the wing, and the lower end of the strut is attached to the fuselage with a single safety-wired shoulder bolt.  The stab comes off by removing only one bolt, the support wires being connected with an internal hook. All the while being totally scale!  Very clever.

The Cub was built from a Balsa USA Super Cub kit.  Tundra tires were added for extra ground clearance, a 2” extension of the landing gear was added for extra ground clearance for the scale 30” prop.  Differential quarter-scale Formula One car brakes, slaved to the rudder via a V-tail mixer, were included for safety and steering.   DA 150 engine provides lots of power for towing large and fast sailplanes.  Enough fuel for 10-12 tows, fuel level visible thru the windscreen.  100’ towline is green or orange for visibility in the air. Dual receivers and dual batteries.

Larry announced that there will be a multiday Aerotow Event at the old Owattona field July 11-14, 2013.  More information at


Jeff Quesenberry discussed his “half-way done” 1/5th scale, 120” span Ki 45 Dragon Slayer scratch-built from David Andersen Designs.  His plane is one of three prototypes (the others are being built by Roy Maynard & Dick Steine). Molded parts by Micko Aircraft & Accessories.

Two G45 engines with 20x10 3-blade props.  One 50-ounce tank in the fuselage instead of separate tanks in the nacelles.  This freed up space for two air tanks, one in each nacelle.  SACMIDWEST instrument panel.  Jeff used conventional pushrods shown as an option on the plans instead of the non-pushrod controls also shown.  He said the plane was “not difficult to build, but time-consuming.”   He found some 20 mm cannon on EBay for $26 each.  These will be mounted upward-firing behind the pilot.  The plans show the belly pan held in place with the wing bolts.  But Jeff glued the belly pan to the wing, saying that he has had similar belly pans come loose in flight.  (Editor’s note: Provides a neater filet fit too.)  He said that Micko’s fiberglass nacelles and other molded parts saved “a ton of work.”

Jeff inserted nylon plugs in the wing tubes.  This provides material to accept wing tube drywall screws.

He used an incidence meter for the first time.  He found the stab to be 2° too high.  Readjusted accordingly.

Maiden flight is expected this summer.


Joe Niedermayer said his electric T28 was “fast, cheap and low effort.”  52” span, 6 ½ lbs, blinking lights. Less than $200 total.  His Chinese FMS ARF is distributed by Banana Hobby in Los Angeles.

“It came ready-to-fly but I changed that.  I made it not-ready-to-fly.”

It didn’t come in the color scheme he wanted so he “ripped everything off,” and changed the color to trainer yellow, and replaced all of the decals.

He replaced the prop blades, added electric retracts with doors on a sequencer.  In the course of this work, he discovered that dents in foam can be almost entirely removed with hot water.

Jon Bomers has some news, COLOR-COLOR-COLOR could hit your workbench in the near future!  Some designers may be using color printed plans to further highlight building steps, materials and photos etc.  If you have aircraft drawing done in color contact Jon to print.

Big News!  We'll be incorporating "RC Flight Deck" into our website and will not have separate LOCAL & National Event Lists within the website starting the 1st of April 2013.  Flight Deck will give you access to all listed events within the USA & Canada, you can add to the events listings and the systems allows you to register for events and pay any related fee's.  It pretty nice and takes us out of the paper chase mode and use our laptops, cell phones etc to access and use the systems.  The system was designed by Micheal Kranitz, the gentleman that developed and owns R/C Universe! Checkout the YouTube Video

“We no longer call it The Cockpit,” said the captain of the all-female C-130 flight crew.  “It's The Box Office.”

To Our International Visitors ...

Thank you for checking into our website from time to time.  We appreciate your desire to keep Scale & Giant Scale R/C planes flying everywhere!


Cal Branton, President

(651) 459-5107

Brian Crossley, Treasurer

(612) 721-4989

D. Andersen, Secretary

(952) 890-9529

Jon Bomers, Web Editor

(651) 343-3407

Fly well, fly safely and share your skills

David P. Andersen, Secretary of The Scale Flyers of Minnesota.

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