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Building an Airsail DHC1 Chipmunk

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13 (medium).jpg12 (medium).jpg10 (medium).jpg2 (medium).jpgOn taking Chris' advice I have started a new thread to follow my building of an Airsail Chipmunk..

Generally I found the instruction manual to be somewhat sparse on detail so I would suggest that the kit be built by someone who is an experienced trad builder. Having got that niggle out of the way, though, I have to say that the wood selection was excellent as were the composite parts e.g. cowl, fillets, etc.Many of the pre-cut parts were not numbered so, as a trad builder from way back when, I found it simpler to cut out parts from my own stock of wood using the plan. To date I am up to the colour coats.1 (medium).jpg

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There have been quite a few references to the Airsail Chipmunk running in parallel to the Bryant build, it would be good if we could get them all onto a single (Airsail Chipmunk) thread. I assume that there will be a few more when the 50 from NZ turn up. It's clearly well thought of and as the interest seems to have been inspired by the original Chip Shop idea from Chris and Danny, it will be interesting to see them running side by side.

If there is an assumption that some of our endeavours are going to turn up at Greenacres next year (?), perhaps there will be some Airsail versions present as well. I imagine it wouldn't be easy to tell one from the other. Even nicer if ZK BAP turned up with his, but sadly Christchurch NZ is a long way to come for a weekend!

Edited By Chris Bott - Moderator on 24/10/2014 11:19:33

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Good one David, if mine finishes up looking half as good as yours I will be well pleased. In the covered and painted photos it looks as if you've got the anti-spin strikes fitted. My copy of the Bryant plan doesn't show them, unless I am going cross-eyed as well as senile. It should do, most Chipmunks are fitted with them and I believe if they haven't got them, aerobatics aren't allowed.

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Thanks to all the contributors who have commented so far - Chris, Colin and Danny, et al. Whether you knew it or not I am living in Wanganui New Zealand, on the west coast of the North Island. Our climate is temperate but even so we have our share of cold, wet days over the winter. I'm telling you this because my work on the Chippy pretty much stopped for a few months over the winter. If you work with acrylic lacquer you will understand why. Lacquer blushes very easily under those conditions and, besides I need an excuse to stay in a warm house.! However, we are well into Spring now and it's warming up a treat . So there will be some action in the workshop very soon. I have started to mask the canopy ready for the white upper. Can someone please verify that the wings are NOT white but are more of an oyster grey? And, yes, the anti spin strakes are shown on the Airsail plan, which is very accurate to scale. The plan, incidentally, was designed and drawn by the late David Hope-Cross, who was a very good scale builder in his own right and concentrated on ALL de Havilland a/c including free flight rubber and power scale as well as R/C.

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As an aside, if you are interested in seeing where we fly then either Google Earth and find the main Wanganui airport. Our area is the strip of land (we call it the "gully" going off at right angles from the main runway. If you zoom in you will see oue sheds and the mown strip. Also, we have a Facebook page - type in Wanganui Aeromodellers.


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You're right about the grey David, I haven't checked the references so you will need to do that. The full size example that I'm basing mine on has been re-painted in that scheme recently and I will be going to see it in the New Year. If you need any help please let me know.

I was in NZ early in 2013 for three weeks, starting in Auckland where I have family, then toured South by car and finished up in Christchurch South Island, looking at the earthquake damage. Absolutely love the country. My wife and I are combining another trip there with three days in HK and two weeks in Oz early next year. This time we are starting in Auckland and then travelling North by car with my cousin, up to the Bay of Islands, 90 Mile Beach etc. Sadly we have only got 7 days there this time, but it completes our intention to see pretty much all of both islands.

ZK BAP also lives in NZ, but Christchurch is a long way from you, of course.

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Hi David, great to see another kiwi building a kiwi made plane. I have built one a few years ago and use it every weekend at the field down here in NZCH for the last 3yrs with no accidents ( apart from a small pits incidence which was not my fault ) and flies very well indeed. I think the Airsail lans are very accurate scale wise and the strakes are important as mentioned above. I have a few build blogs and pics of most Airsail planes I have built on this site.

Colin, thanks for the invite for the Greenacres airshow, but I don't think I will be able to make it Im sorry. I am currently on holiday in Orewa, north of Auckland so too far away to upload some pics for David on the other chippie I am currently building for my mate. I also have another one in a box ready to go as soon as I have finished my Auster AOP9. If demand is there after the 40 kits arrive ( due Nov I believe ) I may be able to convince Brian Borland from Airsail to maybe do another production run in the near future. We shall have to see. I know of one last kit here for sale in NZ. After that goes there will possibly be no more.

Sorry for being sparse on post as of lately I have moved house and taken some time out.

Hope to catch up with you guys when I return home.

Cheers and happy building



MFNZ 11300

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Hi ZK BAP, I wondered how you were getting on. David, here is my subject, WP848, recently being re-painted in the red/white/grey scheme, although I intend to do it in the earlier silver scheme with Dayglo panels. There is information on the Internet and I just had a quick look. I found one reference to Light Aircraft Grey BS381C/627, so that might be it.image.jpg

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Posted by john stones 1 on 24/10/2014 22:06:47:

Hello David

Nice chippie, did I see on your plans a little negative incidence on the t/plane, and what if any do's the wing have ? just curiosity.


John - sorry but I forgot you'd asked me a similar question on another thread...

I've done some measuring and if my trigonometry is correct, the angles with respect to the plan datum are as follows:

Wing: + 2.2 degrees

Engine thrustline: - 1.45 degrees

Tailplane: + 0.6 degrees

So in confusing conclusion there is a small positive tail incidence which is 1.6 degrees negative with respect to the wing...


Out of interest, the DH Pilot's notes quote the following for the full size:

capture.jpgUnfortunately it isn't clear what they are measuring the tailplane incidence from although the wing incidence is quoted from a fuselage datum which is possibly the same as used for the Airsail plan.

Edited By Martin Harris on 25/10/2014 11:54:49

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