Begin gluing the two B 5" lengths and two C 1. Glue one C as close to one end of the B , and the other one somewhere in the middle. Not a big flaw, but no need to follow exactly like the photo as well. Even after the glue dried I left the tapes attached as that gave the connection more strength. And because of that I started cutting my tapes in thinner strips so that it looks better later on.

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Carefully push the wire through the center of the motor stick at a point 2" from the tall end. Then make two degree bends in the wire as shown, and glue into place using CA adhesive.

Reinforce the wire-to-balsa joint by placing a tissue paper cover over it. Dab the joint with a thin layer of CA. Spraying CA drying accelerator on the joint makes the process faster and less messy.

Glue the fuselage together as shown. Spray with CA accelerator. Next Prev Attach the 3 tubes to the fuselage as shown, with CA and accelerator. Make certain the tubes are aligned with the long axis of the fuselage. Use the needlenose pliers to bend the wire so the crank appears as shown. Insert the crank wire through the paper tube glued to the crank standoff. Place the 2 beads on the wire.

Create a bend in the back end of the wire to serve as the motor hook. Step 3: Make the wing spars. Next Prev Bend the music wire as shown. Glue into place using CA. Reinforce the joint by wrapping a layer of tissue paper around the joint and coating with CA. Step 4: Make the tail. Reinforce the joint by covering it with tissue paper soaked with a thin layer of CA. Poke the end of the fuselage tail attachment wire into the balsa tail member; then glue the assembly with CA.

Reinforce by wrapping with tissue and CA. Step 5: Make the connecting rods Conrods. The conrods undergo considerable stress. Step 6: Final assembly. Next Prev Cut out the tissue paper wings and tail using the templates. Glue the tissue paper wing to the wing spars and the top wing attachment member.

Glue the tissue paper tail to the balsa T frame with a glue stick. Connect the conrods to the wing- spar attachment wires and the crank. Adjust the spacing of the conrods so the crank turns smoothly. Place heat- shrinkable tubing over the crank and wing spar wires to maintain alignment, and carefully heat with a match to shrink the tubing. Use great care in this step. Bend the tail up so it is at about 15 degrees from the plane of the motor stick.

Step 7: Sending Orly airborne. Double the rubber band and place it over the front and rear motor attachment hooks. NOTE: To accommodate a longer rubber band, double it into 2 loops and place it over the front and rear attachment hooks. Rub the band with a little vegetable oil for lubrication. Wind up the rubber band motor by turning the crank at least 35 turns. Step 8: Troubleshooting Ornithopters can be difficult to fly. Common problems include stalling, nosediving, and veering, in various combinations.

Balance is important. Make certain the action of each wing is the same. Make the conrods and crank carefully to ensure balanced wing operation. Try lengthening the distance between the motor stick and the tail, or adding a rudder a vertical stabilizing surface on the tail.

If the ornithopter veers consistently in one direction and then nose-dives, add a small wire weight to the end of the wing tip on the side opposite the direction of the veer. The angle of the tail is important. Bend it slightly up if the flapper nose-dives, and bend it down if it stalls. If Orly goes through a series of stalls before ultimately diving into the ground, your tail may be mismatched to the rest of the aircraft.

Fix this by decreasing the size of the tail. A direct head first plunge to the ground may be a signal to increase the size of the tail stabilizer. It is best to make the rear lighter instead of making the front heavier. Bank and spiraling problems are common in ornithopters, and can be tough to correct.

If your ornithopter starts out with few good looking flaps, but suddenly banks or rotates around its longitudinal axis and then spirals down, try the following: Reapply the tissue paper to the wings, making sure the paper is not applied too loosely or too tightly stretched. Both wings should have the same amount of tension. Bend a small rotation in the tail plane relative to the longitudinal axis of the ornithopter. Add a small weight to the outside of the wingspar opposite the direction of the bank.

Fixing the bank and spiral problem can be difficult. You may need to try a number of fixes in combination before the problem clears.


Building an Ornithopter



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