FT Nutball Swappable - Scratch Build by FliteTest

Rating: 4.74      43 ratings
Posted: March 19, 2012  |  99,750 views
INFLUENCE 93%

FTScratchBuild-Beginner

In this updated video Josh walks us through the Nutball scratch build. This plane is very cheap to build and flies great. Watch this episode to see more.  

Click HERE to see the original FT NUTBALL BUILD VIDEO.

The plans for this build are available here:

FT Nutball FULL SIZE PLANS

Click HERE to see the POWER POD BUILD VIDEO.

Click HERE to see the Recommended Electronics

Click HERE to see a complete list of FLITE TEST SCRATCH BUILDS


Special thanks to these guys! Check out their threads...

Gene Bond's Nutball Plans:

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Comments

parkflyer July 18, 2012
I need a PDF for the fusalage or can you tell me how to do it with just the image above?
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cmavr8 November 18, 2012
please see my comment below
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jaybone69 July 26, 2012
Hi. I'm a newbie new to rc planes and I need help!!! I went to the dollar tree store and got enough foam to make 2 nutballs (one for me and one for my kid). I made 2! They came out awesome!!! I ordered two of everything in the parts list from hobby king. Waiting for the stuff to come to my house was like pulling a band aid off slowly I wanted to fly them so bad! When I got the package I was PHYSCED!!! Everything was in it! But wait! no connectors on anything!!! and I can see how to put the prop on BUT in another vid you made You said to make sure the motor is spinning the right way! I guess here are my questions. What direction is the motor supposed to spin? What are the connectors you use so I can order them. And, do you think the screws that came with my 9g servos are good enough to mount the motor? I search around on here and RC groups and didn't find answers. Let the flaming begin!!!! LOL
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eagle4 February 4, 2013
i had to go to a hobby store to buy some screws, roughly 2mm ones should be fine.
did you get some bullet connectors so you can connect the motor to the speed controller? did you get a matching plug thats on the battery for the speed controller too? so you can connect the battery? I didnt know about this when i first ordered my parts too. as for which way the motor is ment to spin, just make sure the letters on the prop are facing forwards, and if you run it, just feel which way the motor is blowing, does it feel like its pushing air backwards? if not just switch two of the wires between the motor and the speed controller
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Freechip May 6, 2012
Where are the plans for the bat that is supposed to used the same setup?
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Adrian Ruiz November 3, 2012
What remote control did you use. I want to build one but don't know what remote to buy for the nutball.

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cmavr8 November 18, 2012
It doesn't really depend on the nutball. It just needs 3 channels.
You could get a Turnigy 9x which is way more advanced than what you need but you'll have room for growth!
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Jon88 May 24, 2012
Please put some spaces in the links.... also links to the type of control horns and rods would be brilliant, there are so many horns on HobbyKing and not many rods at all???
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CappyMan May 19, 2012
Thanks for the informative build video. I am new to the hobby and I bought a Cessna 182 a year or so ago and I tried to fly it this summer; well to say the least, it didn't go so good. I gave up on that plane and started to watch FliteTest on youtube. I saw the video of the Nutball. I thought I would give it a try. Well I went to the local store and bought some foamboard and printed off the plans. Within one night I had my Nutball done. I also took it out to fly and it flew great.
Thanks and keep up the good work.
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spencer June 9, 2012
Do you have the dimensions on this build? I love the interchangable fuse, but needs some dimensions. The image helps, but it would be great if you scetched in some point to point measurements.
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cmavr8 November 18, 2012
For everyone wanting to print the schematics tiled (using a normal printer), download the provided jpg and use this website http://www.blockposters.com/ to produce a tiled PDF (A4 or US-letter).

Then print the PDF and put the pages together to form your full-scale schematics.
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cmavr8 November 19, 2012
Unfortunately the printed dimensions are not correct...

Also, there should be a way to scale the schematic for different sizes other than the 17"
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PrInCe May 17, 2012
rear skewer on plans in wrong place should be in front of the rudder location cut out not behind it.
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firenice June 9, 2012
How do you download your Nutball plans? I never have downloaded plans that were not on PDF.
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jaybone69 July 26, 2012
or maybe a vid for newbs like me on just the electronics from out of the box to install in the nut ball/ delta wing fuse.
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Adrian Ruiz November 6, 2012
What radio transmitter did you use for it?
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cmavr8 November 18, 2012
please see my comment above
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bradcox100 June 28, 2012
Okay, I give. I just assumed that there would be a link for the nutball that Josh shows building. I don't see it.

FliteTest can you possibly post a PDF build for this plane?


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FliteTest June 28, 2012
There is a link to the plans in the description... Plus a link to the build thread and also an image to show Josh's modifications. Do you need something else?
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bradcox100 June 28, 2012
FliteTest, thank you for replying. What I don't see is the build information for the fuselage that Josh was building, including what size of board is needed for the motor mount support.

Also, Josh referenced another plane that could use the same fuselage. Where would I find the PDF for that plane.

I appreciate you taking the time to respond.

My father and I really like this website. I am 49 years old and my father 70. We are getting into this hobby together. This hobby is bringing my father and I closer together. And it is also encouraging my father to be more physically active. I haven't seen him get so excited about anything for quite some time.

Sincerely,
Brad Cox
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TommyG July 19, 2012
See the post from Spencertrejo he has linked to pdf plans that seem really close to Bixlers build
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flysomeday December 31, 2012
Call me an idiot but the only thing I see in the links above that resembles the plan that Josh showed in the video (interchangeable fuselage) is a .jpg I tried following the advice from cmavr8's post about using blockposters.com to create a .pdf and all I cam up with is fuzzy images that appear to be unusable.

Will someone, anyone...flitetest personnel or not, tell me where to find a printable copy of the plans Josh demonstrated in the video!

I can not understand why this was posted in May and it is now December and there is still not any clear direction to this information.

I hate for my first post here to sound so negative but geepers my head is already spinning just trying to find somewhere simple to start with this hobby. Finally found where to start and still can't progress with the plans. (I know, maybe my username should have been 'Mr. Happy' instead of 'flysomeday')
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flysomeday December 31, 2012
Please ignore my previous post, for anyone as frustrated as I was....this link is to the 'fuselage' plans
http://forum.flitetest.com/attachment.php?attachmentid=5273&d=1343237175
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Nicholas Love June 11, 2012
will i need anymore connection from ESC to battery/ESC to Motor ?
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spencer June 18, 2012
Just so you know, I found this pdf after doing all the math and building one. Keep in mind, the pdf shows the scewer for the zip tie too far back. You'll want to move it forward.

Page 3, post #26

http://forum.flitetest.com/showthread.php?1681-NutBall-Scratch-Build/page3&highlight=nutball
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frozone273 December 13, 2012
What diameter bamboo skewers did you use? I heard a 4mm drill bit, so slightly smaller than that..
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JETSKIER July 17, 2012
The above diagram is it in a pdf full or titled?
the problem is that the plans I got on the website are not the same one's that you build in the video it does not have the electronic box that you build and put on the bottom. and the above has no dimensions on it for the box thanks
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flysomeday January 26, 2013
I am new to the RC airplane world. Well, today I finished my nutball and it isn't the prettiest or straightest thing ever built. Nevertheless, I was excited to try it out. I had 3 propellers to start with. Broke first one before taking plane outside, second one broke before leaving the ground. Then after about a ten second flight into a tree the third one was destroyed.

I am wondering if I will ever be able to successfully 'pilot' anything. I don't want to quit though, it seems like it could be fun. And, propellers are not that expensive but i would like to know I can do this without being the owner of 500 damaged propellers. I am fretting like Josh says not to, so I hope this will be of encouragement to anyone that feels like they are the only one with experiences like this. As it has seemed to me like it should be a piece of cake but my experience so far has proved otherwise.

Tomorrow is a new day and I shall press on (when I get some new props of course)
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stonekap January 26, 2013
Please don't be discouraged... It happens to all of us. We say there are two types of pilots.
1. Those who crash.
2. Those who lie.
Thanks for being one of the honest ones :)
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flysomeday January 26, 2013
Thank you so much stonekap, I appreciate that greatly!
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FOhmFlyer June 11, 2013
Hi flysomeday, I consider myself a total Noob, and as a noob the things that have helped me the most is downloading a free flight simulator to my smart phone and joining an AMA chartered Flying Club. Our club as well as many others provides free flying lessons with an experienced instructor. The club and or instructors provide the planes, fuel and Buddy-Box. Also, with our club you do not even have to be a member for the free flying lessons, it is open to the public. If there is a RC Flying club near you, you should go to a meeting and check them out.
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OMG_its_me January 31, 2013
I live in australia in Brisbane and I was wondering does any one know a good place to get foam to build this plane
Thanks
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baronbernie January 31, 2013
Like many others, I am new to foam building. After watching this video there was no mention of the thickness of the foam board. I have called the stores with the name given in the video n my area with no luck as they do not carry any foam board. Can anyone please provide a thickness so I can purchase a sheet from a different place/hobby shop?

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jay302 February 2, 2013
Love the new plan format!
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Durzo February 18, 2013
please help mine won't fly. i have a the turnigy park300 1380kv motor, a turnigy plush 18amp speed controller, and a nano-tech 2 cell 850 mah battery. and by wont fly i mean doesn't stay in the air for to long.
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baronbernie February 24, 2013
I made a rice filled bag and used it to keep the plane down. The nice part about this is that it can take on many different shapes, even the power pod which is narrow. Also the weight (the rice) can be made heavier or lighter by adding or removing the amount of rice. Sand would work as a good substatute for the rice.
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snowthief2 February 27, 2013
it pays to be careful when installing the push-rods because I stabbed myself on one. :(

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baronbernie March 7, 2013
Having finished building the quick build Nutball has given the courage to attempt to try and do it myself. Not sure on just how to cut out the 19 inch circle. Any suggestions? Great job Flite test.
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joakimk March 27, 2013
Just finished building and testflying my nutball :). Flies beautifully. Blogged about the nutball with some pictures: http://getting-into-rc-flight.tumblr.com/post/46437402854/the-speedbuild-kit-from-flitetest-arrived-so-far
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cyasa July 11, 2013
Can i use the following together with out frying it on my nuttball?
8045 SF Props 2pc Standard Rotation/2 pc RH Rotation (Blue)
Turnigy 1000mAh 3S 20C Lipo Pack
Hobbyking SS Series 18-20A ESC
hexTronik 24gram Brushless Outrunner 1300kv

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awesomestuntguy July 25, 2013
can we use the new 28-26 ntm propdrive with this?
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peddiparth August 17, 2013
After crashing my FT Nutball several times on the motor and props, I added 2 additional BBQ sticks up to the props on the Nutball wings. They have taken the brunt of my crashes and saved me a few props. If they break in a crash, I just use a hair dryer blower to heat up the glue, and pull out the broken part from the wing, and replace it with a new bbq stick. I hope this info saves other noobs like me their motor/prop.
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Bellows September 9, 2013
Hi,
I recently quit flying a full scale powered parachute after 15 years and am now flying (or trying) RC.I bought a RTF park flyer electric glider from VolantexRC, Firstar Pro. It is a 2 ft. wingspan. I am having a little difficulty flying it but am getting very good at crashing it. It is very durable and it still flies.

I decided to build a Swappable Nutball (flitetest) as I think I can fly it slower. I bought the electronics package for the swappable power pod and it is almost finished. I am trying to use the transmitter and spare receiver from the Firstar and everything works with the new motor, new ESC and servos for the Nutball. Got lucky there I think. HOWEVER... there are no beeps to indicate that things are OK. The safety stuff works. You have to turn on the tranmitter first and have to at least return the throttle to the minimum position before the motor will rotate.

I have tried reversing the throttle control but I do not get any beeps.I am going to try to fly it with the 2s batteries from the Firstar. The electronics package from Flitetest includes 3S batteries.BOth of my receivers have the bind switch broken off from previous flights. I tried using a shorting wire to rebind but detect no difference.
Any help here would be appreciated.
Thanks,
LooseBruce
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Bellows September 9, 2013
Hi, just an update. I put it all back together and everything works....even the beeps. Don't know why but I am one happy camper. Hoping to maiden it tonight when the wind subsides around dusk. I am very pleased with the plans, the power pod electronics I bought from Lazertoys and especially Josh's "don't worry, it's not rocket science" attitude.
Thanks Flitetest,
LooseBruce
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Bellows September 10, 2013
Slow Fly Props for Power Pod?
Hi, I am loving my Scratchbuilt Swappable Nutball. I broke a prop last night however. It took many attempts but I finally did it. My question is this. In the ad for Lazertoys power pod it says the props are 8x4. On my parts bag it says there are two 8x6 slow fly props. On the props themselves is printed GWS EP 8060. Is the EP 8060 a slow fly prop or would that be a SF 8060?
I am very happy with the performance. I just want to replace the prop with the correct size.Thanks,
LooseBruce
PS Great FUN flying plane. I love it. Thank you FLitetest Folks
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Gregier January 25, 2013
I put a 14gram, 2200kv motor, That was just laying around, I also have the cg setup correctly. I can't get it to climb very high and it seems to fly nose up until it flips over backwards. I a new to the scratch build stuff, Any idea's, Bigger motor or ????
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rick_harriss October 19, 2013
C of G is wrong.
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baronbernie March 20, 2013
Also I have a park 300 motor, in the specs. it uses a 10 amp ESC, all my esc are turnag 18 amp ESC, now call me thick but can the 18 amp replace the 10 amp without destroying the motor? My guess is NO, am I correct?
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rick_harriss October 19, 2013
as long as the ESC is 25% to 30% or more ABOVE the motor current - at least - your OK.
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Fastlearner October 24, 2013
My son and I flew our first swappable Nutball tonight. Truthfully it is our first truly successful rc airplane. The power pod houses a Neodym park 370 1350kv, 30A esc, 2s 20c 2659mah and 9x5 gws prop. We got 3 good flights before we accidentally got it into a hover and tried to fly out instead of cut power and land. Surprisingly durable despite lightweight materials. Thanks guys we're hooked!!!
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Turbochanger January 27, 2014
Just completed my scratchbuilt nutball. waiting on electronics to fly it. More later.
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RustyMustard February 1, 2014
Did you know that the Nutball surprisingly makes for an amazing slope plane? Ballasted and balanced with a forward CG it's quite the little leadsled if flown fast, but still can turn into the wind and park in a hover nicely. The roll rate with a good wind is incredible!

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=DF-WOweTkm8

C'mon Flitetest, let's see some more slope flying!

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dfleroy March 9, 2014
Great flyer... I used the Suppo 2208-14 motor with 9x5 GWS prop with 2S 1000mAh battery. Don't try to fly this with an 8x4 and 2S - not enough power. Enjoy.
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Pat March 9, 2014
This plane is the IDEAL build if you would like to include say, a three year-old! So quick to build and simple. It's a circle! How cool is that? It's so much fun to let him crack open the score cuts and decorate it. It's durable enough to play pretend flying in the house too! And if it ever suffers a mishap, rebuilding is not a problem! On top of all that, it's fun to fly! I've got a turnigy park 450 890kv with a 10x4.5 on a 3s 1300mah. On that big prop, it can just hover forever, it's hilarious. I wonder if I will ever get sick of these foamboard airplanes? So much fun.
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divizero June 15, 2014
Hi everyone
So I'm building my first plane - the nutball - soon and just wanted to make sure I understand everything and buy the right electronics.
First of all, the plans. I suppose I should just print out the tiled copy, put them all together, cut them out, and trace the pieces onto my foamboard?
Second, since I'm trying to be as cheap as possible, for the control horns can't I just use popsicle sticks and run the push rods through them after they are secured to plane? (Also, does anyone know the hole size for the 9g servos and the control horns?)
Third, if I am going to buy FT's suggested 500 mAh LiPo battery, what is a good charger? The 500 mAh has JST-XH connector leads, but most/all chargers I have seen carry the XT60 lead head. Any suggestions?
Fourth, what are the linkage stoppers, what are they used for, and do I need them? If they are just to secure the push rods, can't I just twist the push rods into a shape that ensures they won't leave the control horn?
Fifth, for all of the electronics (motor, servos, speed control, etc) do they come with all of their necessary mounts and screws?
Sixth, any suggestions on glue guns? Currently I have a small superbonder, but I don't know if it will get the job done.

I think that's it for now. Thanks for your community outreach and trying to get people into the hobby flight test! And of course thanks for the plans! Thank you anyone for your assistance as well.

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coombs June 18, 2014
1) The plans - download the tiled PDF and open it with Adobe Reader and print it on plain white paper using 100% scaling. Don't let Reader scale it up or down for you. The cut out the bottom-right margin from each page, lay them out and use masking tape to put them together. Tape the plans directly to your foam board with a little masking tape and then cut out the parts right through the paper.

2) Order the laser cut control horns from Flite Test store. They are way easier to use and you don't want to mess up the control horns and the throws on your first plane. Plus, you support Flite Test in the process.

The hole size for the 9g servos doesn't matter. Just cut out the square that is on the plans to the size it is and the servos will fit in perfectly. This is why when you print the plans, you need to print in 100% scaling so that the hole come out the right size.

3) I use the IMAX B6 Charger/Discharger 1-6 Cells (COPY) from HobbyKing (http://www.hobbyking.com/hobbyking/store/__15379__IMAX_B6_Charger_Discharger_1_6_Cells_COPY_.html). Get the Hobbyking 60w Power Supply to go with it (http://www.hobbyking.com/hobbyking/store/__20968__Hobbyking_60w_Power_Supply.html) and the PLUG-KING Multi-19 Mega Charge Plug Adapter Set (http://www.hobbyking.com/hobbyking/store/__18738__PLUG_KING_Multi_19_Mega_Charge_Plug_Adapter_Set.html). This may seem like a lot, but it's the last charger and plugs you will ever need to buy. Ever. I have 4 of them just so I can charge multiple batteries at once they are so good.

4) You don't "need" linkage stoppers, but they make your life way easier. They attach to the servo or to the control horn and they allow you to put the push rod through the hole and tighten the screw down once the flap is at the proper angle. Otherwise, you will need to bend your push rods at BOTH ends and to the exact length which is difficult even for an experienced builder. Get Linkage Stopper D1.8mm (10pcs) from HobbyKing (http://www.hobbyking.com/hobbyking/store/uh_viewitem.asp?idproduct=8226&aff=247441).

5) Motors are mounted to the firewall using the screws from the 9g servos (you don't need screws for the servos since they are hot glued on to the foam). You mount the speed controller to the inside of the power pod with velcro (I get strips from the dollar store here). You will need bullet connectors if you wish to disconnect the motor from the speed controller, but you can always just twist the wire together and tape (not recommended though).

6) The Ad-Tech high temp glue gun from Walmart is pretty awesome. I think that's what these guys at Flite Test use. I use them are they are perfect.

Good luck on your build. If you live in the USA, try to get some of that HobbyKing stuff I posted above from the US warehouse if possible. If you're like me and you live outside the USA (Canada for me), then order from the International warehouse and enjoy the wait!!
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Gowtham April 22, 2014
Hi Josh
thanks for providing us with the plans and tutorials. This is really a great effort. I just have a question on the weight of the nutball. I am using a 5 mm foamboard. and I ve weighed the circular body and the power pod that I made today with out any servos,motors and electrics and it came to 440 gms (almost double the weight). But as per your specs it has to be with in 212 gms with out battery. I don't know what to do now. Did I select a wrong foam board ? or should the existing weight be ok?? shall I choose a thinner sheet? Please help? we live in india and I don't know how a dollar tree foamboard look like.
thanks in advance.
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coombs June 18, 2014
That seems really heavy!!! What country do you live in? You should be using the paper coated foam board from Adams or similar. Here in Canada, Elmers make it as well. I can get it at Dollarama here in Canada and you can get it at Dollartree in the USA.
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Foxfield July 23, 2014
Hi Josh
thanks for the plans and show.i have a question on the firewall. it seems that the firewall is made of wood which is hard to cut with a knife.so what kind of tool do you use?
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Bellecombes August 29, 2014
Great plane, not yet flown, but easy to build !
Just bought most of the electronics parts (except Rx/Tx) on hobbyking for about 50€ from the european warehouse to France with extra supply.
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