Making the SR-71 (Flymodel)

Discussion in 'Aircraft & Aviation' started by Mindaugas, Mar 25, 2005.

  1. Mindaugas

    Mindaugas Member

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    So, after finishing Fokker DR.I from Maly Modelarz, I wanted something bigger, so I decided to make the SR-71.

    First of all, something about the plane. This is one of the most favourite aircrafts. It is almost 50 years old (it is operative since 1959), but it is still the fastest aircraft in the world (used in military service)!!! Its top speed is over Mach 3.2 (almost 4000 kmph).
    Note that I do not calculate experimental aircraft like X-15 (Mach 6.7) and X-43 (Mach 10).
    Other fast airplanes are Mig-25 Foxbat and XB-70 Valkyrie, but SR-71 remains the fastest in the world.

    So now about the model. It is from Flymodel in 1:33 scale. Width of this plane is 51cm and lenght is - 1 meter.

    Quality of colours, schemes, paper is very good. Almost all parts are in gloss black. It looks very interesting, when the paper shines! Full two-seated cockpit and landing gear wells are included.

    I don't know about parts fit, but it seems to be good. We will see during the work process.

    So this is the cover and some photos from the inside of the magazine:

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  2. Gil

    Gil Active Member

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    Mindaugas,

    I have the same model and found that print registration on some of the insignia is off and will need to be recolored. Check to see if it's the same on your's.

    Best regards, Gil
  3. Mindaugas

    Mindaugas Member

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    So the work begins.

    For now, I will make only the front part of the plane. The back one will be made in the future.

    The framework must be assembled very carefully and tightly, because it is a very big model. Also I must maintain the geometry and the shape, because it is very easy to coil and spoil the model :)

    First of all, I reinforce the formers and then cut out them with x-acto blade. Then I polish all the edges of cut out formers.

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    I have injured the index finger, while cutting out the formers :cry: :cry: :cry:

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  4. Mindaugas

    Mindaugas Member

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    Gil,

    It seems to me, that everything is more or less all-right. Some stripes on the fuselage are not very emphatic, and sometimes dissolves, but it is very small circumstancial. Also all cockpit and landing gear wells are absolutely white, so I scanned them, painted with Adobe Photoshop and then I printed them.

    Mindaugas
  5. Mindaugas

    Mindaugas Member

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    Since, this aircraft is rather modern and has inswept fuselage with sharp edges, so I had to work out, how to make nice edges.

    I saw, that vertical formers do not reach the edge of the flat former, so I decided, that the best way is to polish, and polish, and polish.... 8)

    For that polishing, I used the small sheet of almost smooth sandpaper. So take a look at this:

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    This is the main idea:

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  6. Mindaugas

    Mindaugas Member

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    Because this airplane back will be very heavy, so it won't stand on all wheels. Because this airplane has a nose-gear, I had to put weight in to the nose, in order to counterweight the back.
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    I've prepared the place for wheels in the landing gear well area, and I've also prepared the reinforcement area for landing gear attachment. Because this model is very big, it is going to weight much, so I had to make a tough gear :D :D :D

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    I have made a plenty of reinforcing formers by myself, because I want this model to be tough.
    Because it is very large, more time on making formers must be spent :] :]

    So I think, that the frontal part formers are finished. :D

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  7. bfam4t6

    bfam4t6 Member

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    Very clean and experienced work so far Mindaugas. This will be a very fun build for me to watch, and I am certain that you will do more than just do the kit justice.
  8. Mindaugas

    Mindaugas Member

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    I am going to install electric system in to this plane of shinning LED's (Light Emitting Diode), and I want to ask all of you, does SR-71 has the wingtip lights?

    On the wing parts, I did not find any lights... Maybe, SR-71 doesn't have these lights?


    Also, happy Easter to all of You!!!






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  9. bfam4t6

    bfam4t6 Member

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    I'm not sure if the SR-71 has lights or not, but I did do a search for pictures.
    The first one doesn't show any wingtip lights, here

    in the second picture however, there seems to be a faint greenish light on the far right side of the picture. If the left wingtip is the wingtip with the green light, then my guess is that the SR-71 has the lights as seen in the second picture.
  10. Gil

    Gil Active Member

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    Only a landing light on the front landing gear...,

    Gil
  11. Mindaugas

    Mindaugas Member

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    Thank you all very much, this information will help me alot. I found a photo, that shows, that SR-71 has only a landing gear light.
    Also I will put some LED's into the cockpit, just to see the shining cockpit instruments and radar.
  12. Jim Krauzlis

    Jim Krauzlis Active Member

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    An outstanding and instructive build, Mindaugas! :D

    A very interesting subject, with many sharp edges incorporated in the fuselage to permit the incredible speed she can attain. I plan to build her some day in the future, and so your very instructive posts are very much appreciated and enlightening to me. :D I appreciate the comments about the extra formers and finishing off the edges...that should make application of the skin a lot smoother and fine, like the actual plane.

    Looking forward to how that forward section works out when you start to apply the skin. The addition of leds is a great idea!

    By the way, I loved the way you built the Fokker Dr.1, she came out brilliantly!! :shock:

    Cheers!

    Jim
  13. Mindaugas

    Mindaugas Member

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    Hello everyone,
    Today I began work on electronics.

    While the cockpit is not made, I could make only the lighting for pilot's instrument panel. Other lighting will be made together with cockpit.

    There are some photos.

    This is how looks the pilot's instrument panel lighting. In front of these LED's I will attach instrumental panel with transparent instrumets.

    Note that I've used the original layout for cockpit (white one). Just for experimet, to see how everything looks like.
    When I make the cockpit, I will use my painted and printed one.

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    At night:

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    To be continued...



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  14. dk

    dk New Member

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    Wow very cool! I love the idea of LED lights in the cokpit. It is going to look awesome!
    Tell us more on LED whic ones are you using and what is the power souce? Is there going to be a swich inside a cokpit?
    I am planning on using LED on my next project of Thunderbolt from JSC for wigs lights and landing gear.
    Anyways, great work!
  15. Mindaugas

    Mindaugas Member

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    Dear dk,

    Simple LED has standart parameters:

    current = 0.01 A
    voltage = ~2V

    Off-course there can be a +/- 10% of bias.

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    I am using external 9V or 12V energy supply. I reduce voltage using rezisostors (I count resistance using the Ohm law - I hope you know it :wink: )

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    So I'm going to make a small socket somewhere in the plane belly. I won't do any connectors, because when I plug in external energy source, all lights will begin to shine :)

    There are alternative variants:

    To make openable panel, and install batteries.

    Whats good - no wires sticking from the plane.
    Whats bad - you need to use 6 batteries to get 9 volts (or buy expensive special battery that has voltage of 9V) and it is hard to make openable panel.


    To put rechargable battery in to the plane forever...

    Whats good - no wires sticking from plane and no openable panels.
    Whats bad - expensive batteries, risk of acid spill, difficult to make recharging system.

    But the most simple way is to make external power source. Only one "bad" - wires sticking. 8) :wink:

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    And about wing LED's
    Most of the planes have flashing wing tip lights (I don't know about Thunderbolt).
    It is hard to make flashing lights. You need to use moderate scheme of tranzistors and condensers or to use chips (NE555 timer or LM3909).

    That's all
    Good luck on your Thunderbolt




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  16. rkelterer

    rkelterer Member

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    hi midaugas,

    there are LED's which are able to blink ~1.2 Htz (Kingbright L-36BYD)

    cheers from austria
    raimund
  17. Mindaugas

    Mindaugas Member

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    Hello rkelterer,

    Thank you for your answer. Yes, you are absolutely right about blinking LEDs. This is the cheapest variant and the frequency is almost good for wing tip lights. But all LEDs have small bias and after some time LEDs will desynchronize and begin to blink disorderly.

    Good luck!
  18. Mindaugas

    Mindaugas Member

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    Hello everyone,

    Currently I am not able to print these coloured cockpit parts of some reasons, so I decided to continue along with the skelet. I've cut out some more formers:

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  19. Mindaugas

    Mindaugas Member

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    I can't wait to see the size of this model, so I put together all flat former parts to see the aproximate size of it.

    This is the comparison of model with cell phone and apple:

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  20. Mindaugas

    Mindaugas Member

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    Hello everyone,

    I decided to take more time on building the cockpit. Unfortunately, the cockpit, that came with the kit was barely detailed, but I'm going to make it extremely detailed.

    First of all I began with seats. So for this update I will show you only the pilot and RSO seats (they're the same :) )

    I've thicken the seats parts on the cardboard, and then I assembled the main body of the seats.

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