Dart Number One
For the first R/C glider version
I decided to increase the size to use
radio equipment I already have so that if the model is a resounding failure
I won't have invested much in it.
I designed the fuselage to provide as much leeway as possible to locate the
radio for balance. As it turned out the model balanced where I think it's
supposed to by mounting a
110 mAh battery just behind the cockpit and the receiver directly behind the
battery. Unfortunately, the servo extensions I had on hand were either too
long or too short and added about the same weight as using a larger battery and
moving the receiver to the rear of the model. (This was supposed to be a
simple project... do they ever turn out that way?)
silicone adhesive. I wish I could remember where I read about this
type of hinge so I could credit the source, but I can't. As I recall the
builder used the hinges for a sailplane. The hinge is light weight and
seals the hinge line. In any case, it's something I wanted to try and
they're the only thing that hasn't been a problem.
I am very impressed with this hinge and plan to use them on progressively larger
models to study them further.
The finished prototype was built in about two days. When the model was
good toss would result in the model spinning nose first into the ground about 20 feet
away. There was never any damage other than a scuffed nose. The
model had no fin at this point.
For whatever reason, I didn't think a flying wing absolutely needed to have a
fin, but I guess I was wrong about that. At this point I went back to work
on the smaller prototype as already discussed.
When I made the first fin for the small prototype I made a fin to scale for Dart
Number One. As I previously mentioned, the small prototype had the Dutch
roll with that fin so I assumed that Dart Number One would exhibit the same
On April 1, 2006 our club had an airshow. I took the model to show my
friend Mike. He kept bugging me about flying it so when the show was over
and the audience was gone, I handed Mike the transmitter and gave the model a
toss. He said the control was sluggish, but manageable. The
important thing was that the model flew straight with a good glide path - it
didn't roll over as it had when it didn't have a fin.
The next flight I took a short run and gave the model my best javelin toss at
about 30° nose up. The model flew very straight for nearly 300 feet.
Mike flaired it nicely for landing.
I can't throw any harder than I did and the model was only in the air less than
10 seconds. All indications are that this model can advance to the next
step now. The Center of Gravity is close to correct and won't cause any
serious problems. Hand launching doesn't give us enough flight time to
determine how well the model will turn, but the ailerons did work.
What I should do at this point is bungee launch the model. I don't have
one and don't know if it's worth the investment. We may just link a bunch
of rubber bands together and see what we get. Unless that reveals a
problem with the model then I'll probably move to building a new model identical
to this one except to mount a Cox Black Widow .049 on it.