Wednesday 28 July 2021

Eagle Eye #3 - Mitsubishi Ki-21 "Sally" & Fiat BR.20 "Cicogna" in hinomaru - update and "help wanted"

First of all we hope you are all in good health and somehow enjoy your summer vacations. We would like to apologize for being quiet on this blog the past couple of months. We have been working 24/7 to finish our new Eagle Eye, and we are very happy to announce that it's ready at about 90% and absolutely GREAT! So, expect this brand new publication of ours to go to the printers within the next couple of weeks.
Meanwhile, we would like to include a small table comparing "Sally" with other similar bombers of the era. As you probably know, we are quite "illeterate" when it comes to non-Japanese aircraft types and we found very confusing data on Wiki and elsewhere.
To be clear, we want to roughly compare the various aircraft types. Yes, there were various models of each aircraft type, some experimental with special equipment and modifications. Here, we want to compare the data of the "standard", most produced model, flying an average mission.  
So, would you like to help us out if you can?

Thank you guys!!! 

Tuesday 6 July 2021

Nakajima Ki-44 "Shoki" free flight model by Doug Beardsworth

I wanted to share some photos of my "Shoki", which will be making its first contest debut later this month. The model was built from a heavily edited Diels engineering laser-cut kit. The "Shoki" is a very challenging Free flight subject, due to its very short nose and small wing. The short nose means that achieving the necessary balance point will mean adding a fair amount of dead-weight ballast to the nose. And then the small wing area means there are fewer square inches of lifting area to carry the all-up weight of the ship and ballast with its rubber motor. I’ve changed the construction from using 1/16” square stock to smaller 1/20” square stock for the fuselage stringers, and stabilizer and fin/ rudder construction. And the dihedral and stabilizer’s area have both been increased in order to improve lateral and pitch stability. 
To my mind, the "Shoki" appears more like an air racer rather than a dog fighter. It is essentially a big radial engine attached to a small airframe with a comparatively small wing. In my opinion, it “looks fast” and that fin and rudder extending well past the stabilizer only adds to the effect. And from what I’ve read, it was employed in combat in the manner of a fast, swooping and diving attacking  airplane. 
The ship is covered with Esaki Japanese tissue, and the translucent silver color was sprayed on with multiple, highly thinned coats of nitrate dope with some silver enamel added. All of the markings are cut from colored tissue or hand painted.
I have not created a spinner for this bird as yet. That will be completed once I find the correct propeller diameter and pitch that gives the best flights. So the prop is a bit provisional until I get the flight qualities dialed in. 

- Doug Beardsworth -