Mike Morgan of
DW Foamies & 3DimensionalTools
Mike Morgan DW Foamies 3-D Printed Edge
3DimensionalTools 3-D Printers
I started my hobby at the age of 5 with my father. We belonged to the LARKS (Los Angeles Radio Kontrol Society), many legends came from that club and era. Ken Willard, Fred Dunn (Astro Hog), Howard Bonner (servos & Smog Hog), Bob Dunham (Orbit) were some of the ones I remember and flew with. I had my own workbench in the garage and built many stick and tissue kits.
By Carl Murphy
Part I, Mundane, deliberately so, as specified from the Manufacturer
Synopsis: Construction and extended use starting 2014 of a Multiplex Mentor, a medium sized (five foot/1,60meter wing span weighing about four pounds/2.2kilos) trainer/sport radio controlled airplane made of expanded in molds high impact foam plus modern synthetic materials as reinforcement. The test model was modified to sustain many flights landing on rough farm fields. It was used trying out various brushless electric propulsion combinations with (11.1), (14.8) and (29.6) Volt Lithium Polymer batteries and folding propellers.
A paper analysis of cost per flight based on one hundred flights for an as specified by the manufacturer Mentor is included as were for two similar sized foam airplanes.
This is Part 1 of Two Parts, in which the basics of ownership, such as acquisition, assembly and suitability of purpose, for an RC airplane this size and type are gone over.
The Multiplex Mentor, although not all that popular, may be seen and experienced in person at RC flying fields all over the world. A recommendation for extending your experience beyond your personal range is the You Tube videos on the Internet as other written reports are almost universally deficient. Included in Part II is the authors personal modifications (tape, fiberglass, blocked off air inlet, reinforcing, clearancing for a folding propeller and so on and so forth) for durability of use and ease of swapping between propulsion systems.
Some uses for which a Mentor is entirely suitable, such as a tow plane for RC gliders or fitted out for use as a Remotely Piloted Vehicle, are omitted from these articles, just going over the basics here. Although with it’s in flight stability, size, the easily available additional power, internal room and impact absorbing foam construction a Mentor can serve those rolls well.
Another use often cited in my reports for other airframes, the use of a simple, durable and small foam airplane (Easy Star II, Fun-Man/Mini Mag, Zagi flying wings, even the Twin Star II) to investigate possible slope lift, along with wandering miles across the countryside transmitter in hand and RC airplane in the air, are not omitted from this report due to lack of time to investigate every possible use, it is because the Mentor isn’t suitable! With the shift to it’s four pound size the physics change, a Mentor is not a carefree use it anywhere and land as the mood suits you of one pound foam airplanes. Off the landing field impacts can shear off the wings and generally trash the Mentor, you have to plan the landings ahead of time with this one.
Part II covers use of non-stock propulsion components to create an RC airplane which is a blast to fly, sometimes lighter and lower powered, and sometimes way more power, even on windy days landing on rough fields.
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