Nieuport 28

The Nieuport 28 was a World War One French biplane that was primarily used by Americans for a short time in 1918.

Paul's first flight was on April 21, 2012.



January, 2012

"In the last year there have been two crashes due to structural failures on the 1/4 scale Fokker D7. The tail on the Nieuport is constructed the same way. To prevent the same failure on a hard pull up (full power) from a dive, I installed a quarter inch carbon fiber box tube just ahead of the trailing edge of the horizontal stabilizer. I also sheeted the bottom with .03mm birch.

"The whole tail is removable. It just seemed easier to work on the fuselage without having to worry about damaging the tail surfaces. Besides there are several advantages to this should I have to repair crash damage. All it takes to get the tail off is removing three 4x40 bolts."

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February 5, 2012

"I got the wings on tonight. The distance between the wings is 10.55" on the left and 10.50" on the right. I can't believe it came out so straight. The square structure is to line up the cabaine struts for soldering. In the second picture, the blue tape is to keep the soldering flux off the fuselage. Notice the removable tail in the third picture."

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February 17, 2012

"Well the Nieuport is starting to show some progress. I got the struts and cabains built and installed last night."

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February 18, 2012

"I had a good afternoon today, the phone only rang once. Tonight it's ammo chutes and .03mm birch over the cabaines."

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February 20, 2012

"Well it's back to work tomorrow, but i did get a fair amount done today. I used .03mm birch wetted and rolled around a 3/16 dowel. When it dried it fit perfectly over the struts. I completed the gun mounts and ammo chutes."

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February 28, 2012

"Here are a couple more progress pictures. About the only major thing left is the motor and battery mounts.."

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March 7, 2012

"Well I'm back from Hawaii and back to building. I got the motor mounted. I mounted the dummy motor to the mount via some rubber tubing pressed over a couple of dowels and a 1/4x20 threaded rod on the motor mount. The tubing is hot glued into the back of the plastic motor making it easily removable.

"The motor is a Rimfire 1.20; the prop is a 16x10."

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March 12, 2012

"I have finished all the electrical portion of this build. I will be carrying two 5S 5000 ah batteries and have enough room to go 6S if I want.

"I put a 70 amp switch in the cockpit to break the battery to the motor connection. Since the batteries get loaded from the bottom I just wanted to hook everything up and not have the motor armed till I was ready to fly. The receiver battery switch is also in the cockpit. As soon as I hook up the controls to the servos the fuselage is finished."

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March 21, 2012

"I have started painting the Nieuport. I didn't realize how big this thing was till I started painting it with a one inch brush. I bought several books and none of them agree on the colors used. Mostly they have similar patterns, but that's about all. Since the camouflage was brush painted I thought I'd do the same thing. After doing one elevator I decided to spray the light tan base color. Then I drew the patterns on with a pencil and went to painting. I went to Home Depot and bought latex semi gloss paint in color samples for about $3.00 a half pint. It has taken about three coats of the color paint to achieve a full enough pattern and still look brushed on."

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March 23, 2012

"Well I'm starting to run out of things to do. One more evening of painting and hooking up the controls and she will be ready. I did make one major screw up. The struts between the wings have sockets they fit into and 4x40 bolts to hold them in place. There are also flying-wire hookup points located close by. I forgot to poke some holes in the Solartex before I painted the wings. Now I have to figure where all the holes are. Dumb Move!!!!!!!!

"I'm not too happy with the Balsa USA vinyl. It is a little too thick to form and stretch over an irregular surfaces. I got some wrinkling in the roundels on top of the wings. I think I'll order a set of paint masks and paint my own.

"In case you are wondering, that big switch in the cockpit is a 70 amp unit I installed to prevent the ESC from arming 'till I am ready to fly."

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April 8, 2012

"Well I'm just about to wrap this build up. I installed the controls and bolted the wings and tail on. All the control throws have been set. About all I have to do is install the flying wires and do the final balancing. Hopefully I can test fly it next weekend otherwise I'll do the maiden at the Dawn Patrol event up in Shohomish on the 21st."

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April 15, 2012

"Well it's still does not have flying wires, but that comes after the maiden flight. Which I intended to do today. Since it took me about half an hour to install the wings I decided this thing would be going to the field ready to fly. With an 80 inch wing span and a 63 inch nose to tail it will just barely fit into my trailer with minimal clearance. The problem is I can't step up into or out of the trailer smoothly enough not to bash the wings or tail and I need to be able to load it by myself. So I decided to bring the airplane to me. I installed a set of rails that allows me to slide the tie down platform to the edge of the trailer. It took most of the day to get it right so the maiden will probably next Saturday at the Dawn Patrol event."

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April 21, 2012

"The first Dawn Patrol event of the year took place today. We got six flights on the Nieuport 28 today. We had some problems to work out from being laterlly out of balance to under-powered or under-propped. We started out with a 16x6 prop; then went to a 16x8 on the next flight and there was noticeable improvement. So if bigger is better, we went to an 18x8 and things got a whole lot better. The flight performance is about scale speed plus 25%. It takes about five degrees of right rudder to maintain straight and level flight. We balanced the plane and found the left wing was heavy. Two ounces of tools placed on the right lower wing corrected the imbalance. I'll do a proper rebalancing in the shop later this week. One thing I did notice is the Balsa USA decals don't seem to adhere well to a latex finish.

"I've got a few things that need a little attention, but for the most part I am happy with this plane. I haven't figured out how long she will fly for because of the changing of the propellers. On my last flight I used 45% of my battery capacity in a five minute flight, but I spent a lot of time at high power settings doing aerobatics. And since I had failed to set the low voltage cut out on my ESC, I didn't want to chance a dead stick on the first day out so I kept the flights short. One thing that really amazed me was how well the plane handled on the ground with a tail skid as opposed to a tail wheel.

Well, I guess I should get back on the P-39. The Cascade Scale Rally is only 29 days away."

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