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Model Airplane News

Model Airplane News September 2020

Model Airplane News is the brand that started it all back in 1929, and it remains the trusted resource for RC aircraft enthusiasts everywhere. Written for the full spectrum of RC airplane, helicopter, and multirotor fliers—from beginners to seasoned pros—Model Airplane News entertains and informs with on-the-flight line event coverage, impressive flight techniques, detailed flight reports, DIY workshop projects, and much more.

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1 min
flight plan

FAA RULES When it comes to drones, the Model Airplane News audience is divided into two equal camps: you either appreciate their versatility and own and fly them, or you believe they are a menace to RC aviation and should be banned. In our feature story, “Rules & Regulations: A history of drone laws in the United States,” Patrick Sherman and cowriter Wendie Kellington provide a thought-provoking look at the history of unmanned aerial vehicle laws and where we’re at today. It’s a must-read no matter which side of the debate you’re on. WHAT’S IN A NAME? Sharp-eyed readers may have noticed that our last issue was labeled “Summer 2020.” That’s because after our usual August 2020 issue, we updated our issue names so they coincide more closely with the actual month they…

2 min
pilot projects

Airco DH.2 Carlomagno Morell, Bogota, Colombia In 1/3-scale, Carlomagno’s own-design DH.2 has a wingspan of 9.4 feet and is powered by a Quadra 50cc gas engine. It is the first plane in the Colombian Dawn Patrol, and Carlomagno notes that the 33-pound model flies beautifully at an 8,500 foot altitude. He adds that his passion for building model airplanes began in his high-school days, when he lived in Guatemala and visited with a fellow student who built models with his dad. Now retired, Carlomagno is happy to devote more time to his passion for RC aviation. F4U Corsair Christopher Folgert, Crestview, Florida _ is 86-inch-span warbird is a Byron Original kit that Christopher spent a year building. It’s powered by a Saito FG-60R3 and weighs in at 25 pounds. We especially like its “Skipper” paint…

2 min
hobby hacks

Cutting Plastic When trimming vacuum-formed plastic parts, you have to make multiple passes with the sharpest of hobby knives to cut through the formed plastic to free the parts from the mother sheet. If you take a propane torch and heat the blade, it will slice through the plastic like butter. You may have to reheat the blade a couple of times but the job is quick and easy. Be sure to discard the blade and replace with a fresh one as the heat takes the temper out and it will dull quickly if you try to cut some wood. Larry Tompson, Boston, Massachusetts Thread Lube Th reading a screw into a piece of hardwood (or plywood) can be difficult, even if you drill a pilot hole to help guide it. An old handyman…

3 min
on the flightline reviews | personalities | gear | fun stuff | news

Back in the early 2000s, Nick Ziroli Jr. wanted to design something extra special to compete with at Frank Tiano’s Top Gun Scale Invitational event. Since he hailed from Long Island, the famous Grumman TBM Avenger torpedo/bomber seemed most appropriate. Nick Jr. designed and drew all the working plans for the 1/6-scale TBM model. He went on to build all the plugs and develop molds to produce the fiberglass fuselage and engine cowling, and he vacuum-formed the clear plastic canopy and gun turret. Nick Jr. then tackled the very daunting job of designing and machining the functional folding-wing mechanism. Nick Sr.’s longtime friend Bob Walker of Robart Manufacturing agreed to build the scale retractable landing gear and also helped Nick work out the design of the wing hinge locks. The finished Avenger…

1 min
wingcopter delivers coronavirus tests

Bottlenecks in medical care have a significant impact on patient treatment and recovery, and this is especially evident during the current coronavirus crisis. In Scotland, drone service delivery company Skyports and technology company Thales have teamed up to start a drone-based COVID-19 response trial. Working on behalf of the NHS Scotland, they are providing the Isle of Mull with corona tests by means of a Wingcopter drone, cutting 6-hour delivery times by car and ferry down to just 15 minutes by drone. Speaking of the endeavor, WingCopter co-founder and CEO Tom Plummer said, “Drones offer the opportunity to quickly and easily take corona tests, drugs or personal protective equipment to places that are difficult to reach by conventional means of transport. We are delighted to be able to help in Scotland…

1 min
latest news & releases

Grupp Modellbau 42% RV-4 This 114-inch-span RV-4 ARF features CNC-cut balsa and ply construction with Oracover covering. It comes with aluminum main landing gear, light-alloy wheels with three-piece aluminum rims, and a fiberglass cowl and wheel pants. It’s intended for a 100 to 120cc engine and costs $1,695.00. chiefaircraft.com L-39 Albatros Designed for a 90mm Midi fan and 8-cell, 5000mAh LiPo, this kit features CNC-cut balsa and ply parts with a tablock design for easy building. The 60-inch-long model has a removable wing for easy transport and although it’s fast, is easy to fly and land. The kit comes with rolled plans, vacuum-formed canopy, nose cone and wing tanks. It costs $270.00. rbckits.com 2020 Rhinebeck WW I Jamboree Canceled We are sad to report that, due to the ongoing Covid-19 pandemic and issues with state…