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A client of mine for whom I
built a Flasher 500 (Trex 500 clone) a little before Xmas
2010 has now decided that he wants it to be a scale
helicopter, and to that end has purchased a HeliArtist
Augusta 109 fibreglass fuselage and sent that, plus the
original helicopter to me to have it all built.
The owner is, I know, a
fastidious person, who likes everything to be just right, so
I will have to take great care of this fuselage during the
building process, especially as it is very light, and quite
flimsy in some areas.
Ok, here we can see
the quite pretty
HeliArtist Augusta 109 fuselage as it comes,
straight out of the box.
It is not as large as you might think for a 500
size, so I suspect it is going to be quite a squeeze
at times to get everything in there...
|It is a very nice dark
"electric" blue metallic colour, very
similar to the colour I used to use on my racing
cars (many many years ago....)
Here are some more
views of it "straight out of the box".
As you can see from
the pictures above of the inside of the
HeliArtist have not exactly gone to town with adding
much of the required woodwork !
If you look
carefully at the left hand picture of the nose
wheel mounting woodwork, you might just be
able to see that in fact, the slot for the retracts
control mechanism is not even cut straight, and I
have had to file it away on the right hand side to
get it squared up correctly.
Here are the "standard " retracts provided
by HeliArtist. They are certainly a lot better than
those they provide with their Airwolf and presumably
other 450 size helicopters, as they do have
"proper" retracts control mechanism boxes,
but I have to say that the quality of those
mechanisms is not what you would, and should
expect. I had to strip all 3 of them and sand
and file them to get free reasonably movement.
It looks to as though they are a bit of an
afterthought, as even the brass mount inside the
plastic leg holder is threaded, but the legs they
provide are not threaded ! It all had to be
carefully files down to get them to go together half
doing all that, here is the end result....
In fact, I also had
to carefully open up the wheel well cut outs as
as the bottom of the main wheels fouled the fuselage
as they closed inwards.
I would guess that these will
work reasonably well, but I think most people will agree
with me that they do not exactly add much to the
overall appearance of the helicopter when down.
No matter however, as just
after I had fitted the stock retracts, I received a little
jiffy bag from SportsMoto, so it was no real surprise
to find that the owner had purchased some decent CNC
retracts as per my previous advice.
Now those are what I
CALL RETRACTS.... Well done SportsMoto !
They even provide the
necessary additional woodwork so that the bar for the main
wheels is correctly supported at both ends. So I have now got to rip the
original system out, and work out the best way to fit these
far more elegant retracts.
The overall size of this
fuselage is going to be 30inches long, around 12 inches wide
and about 10 inches high.
Naturally enough, the radio
gear is to be Spektrum, this time a DX7 with AR7000 RX.
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