GeeBee R1 Racer, 1:33, Rafal Ciesielski

Discussion in 'Aircraft & Aviation' started by rlwhitt, Nov 19, 2006.

  1. rlwhitt

    rlwhitt Active Member

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    Hi all,

    I'm going to try my hand at a build thread! I'm starting with something relatively simple, and a free model to boot. It is the GeeBee R1 racer by Rafal Ciesielski. You can download it here: http://www.gremirmodels.com/downloads.htm

    I wanted to start a build thread for several reasons. First, build threads have been pretty much my favorite part to read on this forum and on Kartonbau.de, so I wanted to try it myself. Secondly, I think it will force me to do a better build, since I will have to exhibit my results in public - it will keep me more focused. And of course there's that whole giving back to the community, yada, yada ... ;)

    I picked this model for a specific reason. I'm anxious to try my hand at more complex, commercially produced models, in particular things with propellers that flew in the '40s. I've got the Halinski Hellcat on deck, but since there's a lot of processes and techniques I haven't yet tried with the models I've done so far, I felt I needed a warmup. I wanted to gain experience with various things like laminating and cutting thick parts, building a radial engine, wheels, propeller, former-based fuselage, cockpit, etc, and this model has all that in relatively simple form. Plus if it turns out pretty decent, it'll make a good entry for the freebie competition.

    I hope you experienced plane builders will give me plenty of constructive critique on methods, sequences, and such like, as this is a learning experience for me. I'm going to bore some of you with picky how-to details that helped me on this as I encounter them. Hopefully other relative airplane newbies can benefit from it.

    So, onward we go.
    Rick
  2. rlwhitt

    rlwhitt Active Member

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    Started with getting the laminated parts ready. I decided to go with built up card stock instead of cardboard to see how that went. I ended up going with 3 sheets of 110 lb stock plus the one sheet of 65lb that the parts were printed on. I don't have a digital caliper (yet, it's on the List), but as near as I can tell, this produced very close to 1mm thickness. I used spray adhesive with this and am happy with the result.

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  3. rlwhitt

    rlwhitt Active Member

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    Here's a pic of the crankcase (don't get too excited now). I found that the front of it has the white area where the conical front section glues is drawn too large. You have to color it in with marker or paint.

    I started trying scoring the parts on the backside by transferring lines with a pin. Works a lot better, no flaking of the ink!

    The wire in the pic was used as a guide to get the cone on in exact alignment. It's 1mm wire, and I used a twist drill to do the holes.

    There is a part (S4) drawn alongside the other engine parts that was never mentioned in the instructions. It appears to be of a correct size to go in the back of that front cone, but I did not think it needed it. Also, there are OTHER parts labeled S4 for the tail. Odd...

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  4. rlwhitt

    rlwhitt Active Member

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    Here are all the parts for one cylinder laid out. The wire is here 20 gauge floral stem wire, a bit less than 1mm. I found both 20 ga and 18 ga wire at Michael's for less than 2 bucks for a bag of wire that'd last a lifetime.

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  5. rlwhitt

    rlwhitt Active Member

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    This is the first time I've done a radial motor, so I had to guess and experiment with sequence of assembly. I think for this one I came up with one that suited me that was fast and easy, you may not like it at all!

    I see that the 2 cylinder band pieces have a glue tab so they must intend for you to glue that into a cylinder first and then put the disks in. I decided to go backwards, since it seemed easier to me. I cut the glue tabs off and wrapped them around the disks. I glued the top 2 disks together actually. I assume they mean for one to go at each end, but it's such a small difference I went with the quicky method (for me). Then I put the 2 cylinders and the top conical piece together.

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  6. rlwhitt

    rlwhitt Active Member

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    Once the bottom bits are together, you have to cap it with the head piece. When glueing the 3 main parts together, align all the seams so they can be at the back, and that puts the main cylinder part in correct orientation to receive the head part. you'll have to squeeze the cone part together a bit front to back to match the width of the head. I found it easiest to pre-bend and glue just the center part of the head in as the picture below shows. Once that's dry, glue down the ends.

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  7. rlwhitt

    rlwhitt Active Member

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    Once the head is on you have to glue on the little pushrod covers. They need to be rolled into a curve, and I found a neat little hard foam rubber block that makes a handy curve roller for small parts, pressing and rolling with small round things like the toothpick here. Hope the picture describes what I'm talking about. I've found that for larger parts, including cones, the back side of a mouse pad works well.

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  8. rlwhitt

    rlwhitt Active Member

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    OK, here is one cylinder done and mounted. I painted the wire flat gray to take the shine off.

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  9. rlwhitt

    rlwhitt Active Member

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    Lastly (for now) the finished motor. About 105 parts in all! I'm kinda glad it did not have any more cylinders :grin:

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  10. Amazyah

    Amazyah Senior Member

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    Applause!!!

    Nicely done Rick!

    The engine looks great!

    Russell
  11. cmdrted

    cmdrted Active Member

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    Rick, that's one excellant engine. Thanks for the step by step, I have a few kits to build with the radials and I deliberately avoid them because I hadn't a clue where to start, you cleared it up in a few small pics,thanks again!
  12. shrike

    shrike Guest

    WARNING:
    If you are working from the download - don't know if it holds true for the printed kit.

    The former marked W8 is wrong. It's the right height, but should be the width of W9
  13. OldSalt

    OldSalt Member

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    Shrike - confusion here. My download from Gremir has no former W9. It has W1 through W8 and then W10. My download is GeeBee R1_rev.pdf - perhaps the revision eliminated W9??
  14. rlwhitt

    rlwhitt Active Member

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    I think I saw that the online version had been updated. But I'll keep an eye out...

    Rick
  15. shrike

    shrike Guest

    Mine has no rev.#, so I guess that was the revision. A look at the picture on the first page doesn't show the former I meant, so...umm.....never mind
  16. cardmodeler

    cardmodeler Member

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    Your build is looking great so far! I ordered the kit for this plane the other day, and then I stumbled upon the one that can be downloaded for free, and they appear to be one and the same. Oh, well.:roll: I also found a very helpful step-by-step construction article on the Kartonmodelle forum. Although the text is in German, it has many good pix of the construction process. I look forward to building the Gee Bee, as it is another of my favorite planes.
  17. Bowdenja

    Bowdenja Active Member

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    Hey Rick..................

    FREE Model..................

    Fantastic building thread...............

    If you wait and enter it in the Free Model Contest BEFORE showing a completed picture in your thread................ it would be a nice entry.......:grin:

    Lots of nice prizes!

    john
  18. rlwhitt

    rlwhitt Active Member

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    Next up I'm doing the cockpit and propeller assemblies in parallel so as to save time, one bit can dry while I work on another. The cockpit is nothing out of the ordinary, but one note is that the seatbelt parts (K6 series) don't seem to be mentioned in the diagram anywhere.

    UPDATE: I've seen pics of the printed kit that had the little triangle doodads similar to the ones on the outside of the seat sides printed on the F7 former - the one that attaches behind the cockpit - so the shoulder belts must be intended to attach there. But I did not see that until I'd already build this, so I assumed they must go behind the seat. Oh well...

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  19. rlwhitt

    rlwhitt Active Member

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    The propeller assembly is a bit more mysterious. Going on things I've watched in other build threads I've tried to make it as smooth looking as possible. First up you have to wrap a large piece around some wire pieces. Now that I've done it, I can't figure out why the wire is needed (see later post). But in the interest of following directions, this first picture is of the 2 bits of wire tack glued to part 23a, laid out against the pattern.

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  20. rlwhitt

    rlwhitt Active Member

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    Next, you roll it up

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