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Saturday, April 8, 2017

NAMC Su-27 Flanker now available

Hi Everyone -

The NAMC team is excited to announce the release of our latest project, the NAMC Su-27 Flanker.  You can find the plans available here on our website.

You can find more info on the RC Powers NAMC Su-27 official support thread.

You can also read in more detail the background and development of this new plane on the RC Powers NAMC Su-27 design, build and test thread



Friday, February 12, 2016

New NAMC Mig-35B Fulcrum F available now

Hi Everyone -

To our loyal NAMC blog followers (although this is still our old blog, it gets steady traffic, so thank you :) ), we have just released the latest plane in the NAMC lineup, the Mig-35B Fulcrum F.

We are extremely pleased with how this plane performs and invite you to go check it out at our website where you can also read the new build instructions by scrolling down to the bottom of that page should you want to have closer look before purchasing.

We have also set up a support thread for the Mig-35B on the RCPowers forum.

We invite you to check it out, it is very agile, responsive, versatile but also more stable and forgiving than the original NAMC Mig-35.

Blue skies and calm winds to everyone.



Sunday, December 6, 2015

RCP Mig-29 V1M walkaround video

Hi Everyone -

I managed to shoot a walkaround video discussing in more detail the mods I made and giving my feedback on what I thought was and was not successful with the mods I made not that I have flown the plane.



Friday, November 27, 2015

RCP Mig-29 V1M build and maiden complete

Hi everyone -

I finished up my Mig-29 V1M build late yesterday and managed to get it out to the field today for a good "thrashing" (14 flights in total) ;).  Snapped a few pics of the finished plane before paint.

For some reason, I ended up a little heavier than I forecast, with 2200 battery I am at 510 gr/18 oz.  

You can go back through previous posts to find the details on all the mods, but essentially as a quick recap since it will relate to my flight report findings, here are the mods I made
  • added KF4 airfoils made of paperless dollar store foam, 41% of chord at the root, 35% of chord at the tip, leading edge symmetrically shaped and sanded;
  • added ailerons;
  • scaled down the height of the vertical stabs and added rudders, I also angled the vertical stabs out 3 degrees each to create a "wedge" for greater stability in the back end; and
  • scaled down the size of the elevons and created a fixed horizontal stabilizer rather than the elevon balancers on the stock plans.
Power/control setup 
  • Gear Best 2212/5T 2700 Kv motor with 6x4 APC prop;
  • Turnigy Plush 40A ESC;
  • Zippy Flightmax 2200 3S 40C discharge battery;
  • two 9 gram RC Timer nylon gear servos for the elevons;
  • two 5 gram RC Timer nylon gear servos for the ailerons;
  • two 5 gram RC Timer nylon gear servos for the rudders; 
  • the elevon and aileron servos each have their own channel, rudder servos connected with a Y harness so that I could use the lighter smaller 6 channel receiver compatible with my Turnigy 9x transmitter (with er9x upgrade).
I started off balanced on the stock CG from the plans, in this picture you can see three blue "+", the furthest on the left is the stock CG, I ended up 1" ahead of that as indicated with the hex driver.

This is where my 2200 battery ended up to give me that neutral balance point.

For some reason I seem to remember my battery being in the same place with my previous Mig-29 V1s, but I was still balanced on the stock CG...or was I?  Long ago and my old brain probably doesn't remember exactly.  Anyway, this is the setup that seems to give me the best neutral balance when I do the arc test and inverted flight.

I put the battery right on the centreline of the plane for best performance, fortunately I only needed about 1 click of right trim to counter torque roll and no trim in the pitch or yaw, sometimes you just get lucky :)

Before I go further into discussing how I felt the mods worked out, here are what I ended up with as final throws to allow me to fly scale and have a bit of "emergency" throw in the pitch for "object avoidance" :)
  • elevons 5/8" one way (1 and 1/4" total) in the pitch, 7/8" one way (1 and 3/4" total in the roll;
  • ailerons 3/8" one way (3/4" total); and 
  • rudders 5/8" one way, (1 and 1/4" total)
I am flying with 15% expo in the pitch and roll and 25% expo in the yaw.

Affects of the mods


Almost right away I could feel the added stability and "locked in" feeling provided by the KF4 airfoils, everything the plane did just seemed smoother and even more direct in it's tracking, very pleased with that change.


I know this plane would be fine without ailerons, but since I like to fly all my planes with them, I did notice better balance in turns and rolls having the ailerons rather than just all the control surface deflection coming from the rear with the elevons.  Again, perhaps personal preference, but I found them to be a good addition.

Vert stabs/rudders

This is probably a combination of the reduced size of the elevons and vert stabs/rudders, but I did feel less drag as I was flying.  I will admit, I probably went "overkill" on the rudder size, if I was to do it again, I would probably cut them down by almost 50%.  Even with the small amount of throw I have and expo, rudder input has to be very smooth and subtle or it will cause the plane to "snap rudder roll" which looks cool, but not too scale and would be less than ideal if I was low level, so more work to tune those in as I explore slow flight and high alpha.

Reduced elevons/horizontal stabs

I have been a big fan of this setup ever since trying it on the stock RCP Mig-29 V4, I like the extra stability it brings to the back end of the plane.  I had actually forgotten how responsive the Mig-29 V1 was in the pitch.  I initially maidened it with 1" of deflection (2" total) in the pitch and after scaring myself executing a loop when I thought I was just climbing, I toned that down immediately to find more ideal scale response in the pitch.

Overall impressions

I have always been a big fan of the RCP Mig-29 V1, it has been a very important plane in my development as a park jet pilot and right away it brought back fond memories of how much fun it is to fly.  However, since my flying style and skills have changed over time, I look for a plane that is balanced yet responsive and allows me to continue working on my scale flying skills.  

Obviously it still has some profile characteristics as with all those flat surfaces in the "fuselage" it can get bounced kinda funny by the wind sometimes and with the nose being a flat part of the wing plate it does tend to float and not maintain it's momentum like a score and fold park jet.  Having said all that, I found the mods I added helped the plane fly and feel much closer to a score and fold plane than I have ever experienced before with a profile park jet.  It was a lot of fun to see how a few simple changes made such a difference to the flight experience.

Time to put some paint on her and look forward to lots of ripping up the skies with the RCP Mig-29 V1!



Tuesday, November 24, 2015

RCP Mig-29 V1 build update #3

Hi everyone -

Another busy day puttering with my RCP Mig-29 V1M, I am in the home stretch on the build now :)

Here is a picture of it head on now, starting actually look like a jet, the vert stabs are just dry fit for now for the picture.

I glued the nose and wing plate together and after the glue dried, I cut out the center "fin" to give me more room to move my battery around and make it easier to install the rest of the electronics gear.  Here is a before picture with "fin" still there waiting for glue to dry.  

In this picture, you can see where the "fin" has been removed and velcro run back for battery placement.

Today after hooking everything up to make sure they work, I installed the servos, ESC and receiver and put in some velcro to hold the battery.  I used a trick I learned from my last Mig-29 V1 build and used a zip tie to secure my ESC.

On the outside of the intake/nacelle, I put a little piece of popsicle stick to keep the zip tie from tearing the foam :)

Here is a picture of the electronics bay from the rear, motor will be mounted after final sanding so as to prevent any dust/debris getting in the motor.

Showing the servos, from left to right, aileron, rudder and elevon, pushrods and control horns will be installed in the next stage of building.

KF4 airfoils installed and taped down, I will let the glue dry overnight before shaping and sanding the leading edge symmetrically.  Here is a picture of the rudder servo from the top, counter sunk into the top KF to help keep it out of the way.

Hope to get final finish and sanding done tomorrow, motor installed, pushrods connected and everything set up to be ready to fly before the end of the week.  Unpainted with a 2200 3S battery, I anticipate my weight to be around 480 gr/16.9 oz.  Hard to believe how heavy I used to build my planes.  My first Mig-29 V1 with only two servos, no KFs and nowhere near as much reinforcement weighed 19 oz/540 grams with a 2200 battery!  Even after painting, I will still be under that weight with KF4, 6 servos and linkages and lots of extra reinforcement.

Next update will be when she is one and ready to fly :)



Monday, November 23, 2015

RCP Mig-29 V1M Build update #2

Hi everyone -

I made quite a bit more progress on my RCP Mig-29 V1M today.  Sorry, the first one is a bit of a blurry picture :/   I first sanded the leading and trailing edges of my elevons/horizontal stabilizer, installed some bamboo skewers for reinforcement in the elevons, back plate along the horizontal stab, in the vertical stabs and along the nose as you can hopefully see in this picture.  This is a function of the Fli-Power Value XPS foam I am using for this build.  As I was handling the pieces, I found them to be very flexible and thus far these reinforcements seem to give my wing plate about the same rigidity as Depron.  So lessons learned there and when I am done this build, I will write a post about building an entire plane with this foam.

I also installed a 20" piece of 4mm carbon rod just behind the prop slot for my wing spar.  Given the flexibility of the foam and the fact I want to use a 2200 3S 40C battery for most of my flights, I wanted some extra strength and wing loading capacity.

You can see I also cut out holes in the wing plate to accept my rudder servos.  I would normally run these a bit more inboard, but if I did that, the pushrods would interfere with the prop slot.

In this next picture, you can see I expanded the prop slot just a bit, put some transparent duct tape on the bevelled side of my elevon hinges for extra insurance and installed the two side pieces.  My next step will be to install the elevon and aileron servos and pushrods with the plane as is since this is easier to do with the battery bay wide open like this and the plane laying flat on it's back.

I also measured and cut out my top and bottom KF airfoils to make the KF4 I want.  For now I am going with about 41% of wing chord at the root and 35% of wing chord at the tip.  These dimensions work really well on the NAMC Mig-35, so since it is a very similar wing, I will start there.  The slots cut out are to accept the rudder servos.  I will now use these as templates for the other wing.  Once I figure out if these dimensions work well, I will take some measurements and publish those in a follow on post.

I hope to have her ready to fly in a couple more days, much of the rest of the build is a bit fussy getting the gear installed and sorted out, then I always like to leave a plane overnight once it is done to let all the glue cure (ask me why I do that... :/) before flying.

I have a paint scheme in mind, but won't paint until I put a few flights in it in case I need to trim anything off with my knife like the KFs, etc.

I'm very happy with how it is shaping up thus far :)



Sunday, November 22, 2015

RCP Mig-29 V1M - build update #1

Hi everyone -

I have all the pieces cut out for my Mig-29 V1M other than the KF4, I will wait until I get the wing plate all put together since I will have to do some measuring and tracing around the leading edge and wing tip to get the right dimensions before cutting those out.

I tried to remember to take pictures as I went along, so starting from the back, here are my modified elevons.  Similar to the F18 V3M project, I looked at diagrams of the Mig-29 to get a ratio between the wingspan and the elevon span to determine how much I needed to reduce the elevon to make it more scale.  This will also give me slightly smaller control surface, but that is OK as it should also reduce drag, improve stability and speed.  The area highlighted in orange is how I added some lines to make sure I could still match the hinge line on the back plate.  I also wanted to change the "nozzles" a bit as I always found them a bit too "pointy".

After getting my drawing done, I then cut this new elevon from scrap foam to use as a template so when I cut out the back half of each wing with the back plate, I could trace out the elevon and cut it off so that I still have the fixed horizontal stabilizer attached to the back plate.  

For the shortened vertical stab, I used one of my NAMC Mig-35s for reference as I knew that Stephan had made those plans scale, measured that and then sized it accordingly for the smaller Mig-29 V1.  It might look a little "squat" on the top, but we'll see.

To get the "wedge" where the vertical stabs are angled out to help with yaw stability in turns as well as high speed stability, I made the following change to the slot that accepts the tab from the vertical stabilizer.  I also moved the slot outboard about 2mm, I know that isn't much, but given that the back plate is fairly narrow, if I moved it out much more with the new angle I am using, the back of the vert stab would not stay on the top of the back plate.

For the ailerons, I used the dimensions of the ailerons on the NAMC Mig-35 and scaled down accordingly for the smaller Mig-29 V1M.

This build should come along pretty quickly, as long as flying doesn't get in the way ;).