Category: Free flight glider design


Free flight glider design

By Jurg

To build one is something. Building your own plane from pieces with bare hands and then seeing it soar in the sky can be the most satisfying personal experience. This article aims to provide you with all the concepts, workings and designing principles ucr cwpa with balsa glider design.

So that you can not only build but design your own glider according to your needs and preferences. A glider is a heavier-than-air aircraft that is supported in flight by the dynamic reaction of the air against its lifting surfaces, and whose free flight does not depend on an engine.

It is designed to glide after being towed aloft or launched from a catapult. In flight, a glider has three forces acting on it as compared to the four forces that act on a powered aircraft.

Both types of aircraft are subjected to the forces of lift, drag, and weight. The powered aircraft has an engine that generates thrust, while the glider has no thrust.

For a glider to fly, it must generate lift to oppose its weight. To generate lift, a glider must move through the air. The motion of a glider through the air also generates drag. In a powered aircraft, the thrust from the engine opposes drag, but a glider has no engine to generate thrust. With the drag unopposed, a glider quickly slows down until it can no longer generate enough lift to oppose the weight, and it then falls to earth. For balsa gliders, the aircraft is given an initial velocity by throwing the aircraft.

Some larger balsa gliders employ a catapult made from rubber bands and a tow line to provide velocity and some initial altitude. Pulling the glider aloft gives the glider a certain amount of potential energy. The glider can trade the potential energy difference from a higher altitude to a lower altitude to produce kinetic energy, which means velocity. Gliders are always descending relative to the air in which they are flying. A small glider can be built with cheap and easily accessible material.

Materials selected should be lightweight and tough because of obvious reasons. Balsa wood is mostly preferred because weight of the model is to be kept as minimum as possible. The special quality of this wood is that it is very light and hence adequate for our purpose along with the fact that it has good enough strength to not to breakdown away in wind.

Other required materials may include Metal ruler, suitable surface to cut onto, such as cutting mat, hot glue, glue stick, large elastic band, sticky tack. These glider models which seem to be toys at first glance, were once used by Wright brothers to unravel the mysteries of flight.

Even today NASA uses such model airplanes to develop new concepts, create new designs and test ideas in aviation.

DIY Free-Flight Glider

Now you are ready to design and build your own balsa glider using the provided information. Who knows it can be the next breakthrough design for aviation industry? We also, have some more cool projects and courses for you.

Projects Related to Mechanical Engineering While pursuing Mechanical engineering there are numerous projects that could be undertaken. As mechanical engineering Skip to content. Don't miss out! Subscribe To Our Newsletter. Learn new things. Get an article everyday.In this instructable, you will learn how to build and fly your own free-flight glider from printed plans.

This glider will provide hours of enjoyment for people of all ages. Most tools such as tape and scissors will be available in any home or office. Did you use this instructable in your classroom?

free flight glider design

Add a Teacher Note to share how you incorporated it into your lesson. After sourcing all the required materials, laying everything out on a large, clean, and smooth work area will make things easy. Be careful not to damage your work area with tools such as the hobby knife or hot glue gun.

The PDF plans provided can be printed out and taped together to form a template for each piece needed in the build. Use the tile print function of your PDF software to print out each page so that they can be assembled together. Tape your plans together so that the lines meet up in the proper place. You can refer to the digital PDF to determine the placement of each page. To prepare for cutting, place the plans on your foam board and tape them down so that they do not move.

You can trim some of the excess white area with scissors so that the plans do not overlap the foam. This will give you a better place to tape them down. Use the hobby knife to make the cuts.

Assemblies such as the fuselage, tail, and wing, can all be cut along the solid lines to form a part. For the dotted lines, the foam board should only be cut halfway. The paper on the opposite side should be left intact so that you can bend the foam there later. The smallest piece, the wing rib, should be cut out 5 times.

Free Flight Models

The horizontal stabilizer and vertical stabilizer should be glued together so that the vertical stabilizer is on top of and perpendicular to the horizontal stabilizer. Refer to the picture to see what the final product of this step should look like. The wing is made in three pieces- a rectangular middle section with two angled tips.

After all the rib glue has cooled, use a liberal amount of hot glue to glue each wing tip on to the main wing. Do each side individually. For added stability, angle each wingtip up approximately 20 degrees and hold in position as the glue cools. The fuselage is made so that it can be folded to create a rectangular shape. After scoring along the dotted lines, use the end of your pencil or pen to indent the score line. This will aid in the 90 degree fold.

Some trimming may be required to get a nice square shape. Fold the shape in on the creases at right angles. After the shape has been created, use hot glue to hold the fuselage closed. Leave the top flap of the nose cone open so that you can add your weight here later. The tail section can be completely enclosed now and your stabilizer assembly can be inserted and glued in place.

Temporarily tape the wing so that it it is approximately 3. Poke a BBQ Skewer through the sides of the fuselage below the leading edge of the wing and the trailing edge. With scissors, trim each so it has approximately. This will be where the rubber bands attach to hold the wing down. Use two rubber bands in a X pattern to hold the wing in place. Alternatively, you could glue the wing on, but this would not allow for adjustment or replacement.See the Product Review Page for further information.

Special bulk packs for schools are available details upon request. In the Indoor technical committe of the BMFA is running a challenge using the Gyminnie cricket for further details see this link includes PDF downloads on how to improve the Cricket.

Pteromys: Interactive Design and Optimization of Free-formed Free-flight Model Airplanes

This design is a simplified version of the model the Igor has flown with great effect for a number of years. On receipt of an S. I will send copies A4 sized 3 views of the above before you commit to a purchase. Fuselage upgrade components are described in detail in the Rubber Accessories.

If you want further details of possible further events Contact Me. The kit is complete with laser cut parts, tissue and rubber motors. All kits include all materials, including selected balsa, laser cut sheet parts, Esaki tissue. These kits are for the experienced builder. Value for money.

Laser cut balsa and ply parts, tubular balsa fuselage ready to finish, 2 rubber motors. Materials for 2 fuselages, 1 wing, P30 prop plus prop block for carving. Check here Rubber Model Propellers for details of what is currently available. Other designs can be quoted for.

If you prefer to not buy the kit. Plans Only Booms. Short kit. Please let me know your needs and I will see what I can suggest. We can discuss these needs and I can produce a customised package of parts.

Free Flight

See Laser Cut Kits of Parts for more details. Leon has kitted a number of models from plans in the Free Flight Supplies catalogue. Details of plans below.You created it. Vicariously you soar with it, with its freedom. Much has changed since that first second flight in Paris, but the essence of FF remains the same. It is about the purity of flight, and confidence to make an aircraft fly stably and efficiently, with no piloting after the launch.

Probably the easiest way to get involved in FF—or model aviation, for that matter—is with a simple, handheld catapult glider. It is a simple, inch wingspan design that is mostly balsa, easy to build, and flies superbly. The idea behind the Catapult Glider event is straightforward: the models are adjusted to launch vertically from a 9-inch, handheld, rubber band-powered catapult.

In less than two seconds, they reach speeds in excess of mph and heights of more than feet. From a good launch, a well-trimmed catapult glider can remain aloft for approximately 90 seconds without thermal help. Stabilizer tilt and center of gravity CG are generally only effective during the glide.

And incidence changes affect both launch and glide. Begin your initial flight trimming by setting the CG at the plans location and hand gliding the model in calm conditions at a local park. Look for a gradual left glide turn with no tendency to spin or dive.

free flight glider design

If the model dives, add incidence stabilizer trailing edge [TE] up until the model is at the edge of a stall. If the model spins or banks drastically, you probably have a crooked fin or wing. Reverse this scenario for a left-handed flier; bank left at launch and the trim should be reversed for transition to a right glide circle. For more than 30 years, the best starting point for powered FF has been the P model. True to its name, this is a simple-to-build-and-fly competition class that provides loads of fun at a low cost.

The Square Eagle can be built in a week of evenings by even the most inexperienced builder. Basic familiarity with stick-and-tissue construction techniques is helpful but not required. Probably the most important thing about building FF models is recognizing the importance of precision. Sloppiness, at even the earliest stages of construction, will show up later with warped flight surfaces, and a model that is difficult to adjust for flight.

Work on a completely flat tabletop surface. A hollow door from a home store makes a good flat surface. A good pin board is a 2 x 4-foot acoustic ceiling tile. Small rubber-powered models, such as the P, are almost always open-structured balsa frames covered with an ancient but superb material: Japanese tissue.This means no radio electronics is controlling the models path.

These aircraft are designed to fly slow and to be stable in the flight path, typically by designing in a much lower wing loading and balance via added wing dihedral and particular attention to the center of gravity. They are indoor and outdoor. Competition for all these models is strictly based on time in the air after successful launch.

Typically, these free flight models are design to fly in a circle. F1D Indoor: This indoor free flight model is best known outside of the hobby, but there are many! This class of model is for indoor flying, powered by rubber-band. They are constructed of extremely light balsa, boron filament, carbon-fiber material and covered with an ultra-thin transparent film called micro-film, which is less than 0.

The propellers on these models, made from the same material described above, are large and typically rotate at or below 50 RPM resulting in a very slow moving model during flight. These are amazing to watch!

F1D Indoor Free Flight. In competition, these models are beautiful to watch as they search out thermals prior to release. These can range from simple store bought toys to complex high-end competition models where attention to rubber type, torque curves and folding props becomes very important!

In competition, the initial energy from the rubber band is critical to get the model to a desired altitude for free flight. F1C Motor Powered : this free flight model is powered by a motor that is not rubber and is typically an internal combustion motor of sorts. These motors are time constrained on how long they are allowed to run, which in competition is typically 5 seconds.

Optimal power output is also critical for competition since time is limited. Interestingly, reducing drag by folding the wings during initial climb can also be found in the high-end models. The specifications of this class include: Minimum Weight of 1. Rubber motor Max of 0. Rubber motor Max of 1. The specifications of this class include: Minimum Weight of 3. We have begun a journey to see if we can develop the skill and patience to design and build an Indoor Free Flight Model.

Follow along with us! As with all outdoor flyers, a good understanding of the Beaufort Wind Scale while flying kites is handy. Here is a simple video that helps to explain it. It will be copied to your Clipboard. Skip to content Home. Time to get serious with a Design The Journey to design and build an entry level, competitive Indoor Free.The segment of model aviation known as free flight is the original form of the aeromodeling sport, extending back centuries.

The essence of free-flight is that the aircraft have no need for external control, for instance by radio. Aircraft of this type have been flown for over two centuries. They are designed to be inherently stable in flight; if disturbed by a gust of wind or a thermal current they will return automatically to stable flight.

For this reason most free flight aircraft are not replicas of man-carrying ones, for they are designed for a quite different purpose. Their stability is achieved by a combination of design and trim, - the relationship between centre of gravity, wing and tailplane incidence and rudder setting.

Most of them glide at little more than walking pace and few weigh more than grams. Free flight models may be broadly divided into four categories. When flown competitively, the usual aim is maximum flight duration.

In the case of models flown outdoors, the modeller attempts to launch the model into a rising column of air, a thermal. These outdoor free flight models tend to be designed for two very different flying modes: climbing rapidly under power or tow, and gliding slowly while circling with minimum sink rate.

Much of the challenge in designing and flying these models is to maintain aerodynamic stability in both modes and to make a smooth transition between them. Modern models use mechanical or electronic timers to move control surfaces at pre-set times.

Detecting the thermal into which to launch is vital and can involve several methods, ranging from radio telemetered temperature and wind speed measurements plotted on a chart recorder to Mylar streamers or soap bubbles to visualize the rising air. Because competitions normally involve up to seven rounds during the day, each is flown to a maximum flight time hard to achieve without thermal assistance; an automatic on-board time switch upsets the trim of the aircraft when the "max" is achieved, to bring the aircraft down safely and quickly.

Locating and recovering the aircraft for further flights is an important part of free-flight. Many aircraft carry radio location beacons, and flyers will use GPS, binoculars, a compass and a directionally sensitive radio tracking receiver to assist them. A day's flying and retrieval may well involve 20 miles 32 km or so on foot or on bike, depending on wind strength. Models flown indoors do not depend on rising air currents, but they must be designed for maximum flight efficiency, because of the limited energy stored in the rubber or electric power source.

Within each category, there are different classes. The FAI is the international organising body for all air sports worldwide, including aeromodelling and it sanctions World and European Championships. Within the competition classification codes specified by the FAI, free flight aeromodeling gets the generic code of F1where the "F" stands for flying model aircraft in general, with the "1" standing specifically for free flight models.

Gliders have no on-board motive power. The only energy inputs are from the flyer at the launch, and rising air encountered during the flight. The model must have a projected area wing and stabilizer of between dm 2and a minimum weight of g. Launch is by hand tow, using a cable of 50 m length. Open glider contests are rarely flown, and most competitors in such contests use F1A gliders. Other glider classes include magnet-steered F1E gliders - essentially a free flight slope soaring class, and hand-launched glider usually abbreviated HLG, and also widely known as simply chuck glider.

HLGs are small models which are launched from level ground simply by being thrown hard. This is one of the more athletic of the free flight disciplines. Rubber-powered models are powered by the stored energy of a twisted elastic material. These range from the simple rubber-band powered toys available in many toy stores, up to the Open rubber class, examples of which often use g of rubber in their "motor".

free flight glider design

Rubber does not produce a constant power output; when fully wound a rubber motor produces its maximum torque, but this drops rapidly at first before 'plateau-ing', finally declining again, after which the propeller stops. Using this initial burst efficiently is vital and automatically variable pitch propellers help here, together with timer-operated changes of wing and tailplane incidence and of rudder setting.

At the end of the power run the blades fold back alongside the fuselage to minimise drag during the glide.The items shown below are portals into the corresponding web pages that contain the plans for download.

You will then be taken to the associated page or pages. The Blatter "40" a great flying indoor model for the person new to indoor duration flying. Downloadable Plans. Free Flight Models. Radio Control Models. Techniques and References. Comet Catalogs. About Us. Reproductions of the old Carl Goldberg rubber powered Free Flight models. Reproductions of the old Cleveland Quicky series of sheet balsa rubber powered Free Flight models.

Reproductions of the old Hales Frogflite series of sheet balsa rubber powered Free Flight models. Reproductions of the old Midwest series of sheet balsa rubber powered Free Flight models. Reproductions of the Veron Quicky series of sheet balsa rubber powered Free Flight models. The Flying Star - a beginner catapult glider design by Walter Legan that uses flying surfaces cut from foam dinner plates. Indoor and outdoor versions are provided.

The Stick-UP an all sheet balsa simple rubber powered fun flyer. Winner of the E20 event at the, and U. Free Flight Nationals. Ralph Bradley's Thermite E Skipper 24 - A reduced size version of the Skipper as it appeared in the July issue of Flying Models.

This model has a 25" span and features removable wing panels and landing gear. This model has a 25" wing span and features removable wing panels and landing gear. A winding stooge for the models presented on this page.