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2W's Hawker Fury Mk.1

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I have joined the team to build this plane because I love biplanes – they are full of character. I prefer to scratch build rather than buying laser cut parts, but looking at the plans, that would be difficult to achieve for the Fury with its complexity.

I recognise that I have so much to learn, as I found out building the Albatros D.XI to the Peter Rake design in FSM some years ago. Details like bending wire accurately particularly for the cabane struts, and setting the wings when very little detail is available on angle of attack, and any relative setting difference between the upper and lower wings, which was further compounded by manufacturing tolerances in scratch building. I also want to learn to use Litho Plate for detailing.

The version I will build will be K5674. I intend to visit Duxford in the near future to take photos of the Historic Aircraft machine since there are a number of details on the plans which do not look correct, e.g. tail feather hinges and bracing details.

I have a Laser 1.20 which I want to use, but may be a little too large, in which case I will have to raid the piggy bank for an alternative.

I want to use closed loop control on the elevators to dispense with the joiner between the elevators and to save weight in the tail. Looking at Mike Freeman’s article on the subject on the August issue of RCM&E it seems the best way to do this would be to use an idler bar located behind the cockpit. If space allows, the idler could be located in front of the cockpit, in which case the cables could be routed down the sides of the fuselage to avoid cockpit, thereby allowing space to detail it. If closed loop control is used, it will be necessary to allow some extra 10mm in the lower cable to account for its shorter length compared to the upper cable.

This will not be a quick build. I seem to spend too much time correcting my errors and planning how repair the damage and how to do the next part, but here goes: it’s all part of the learning experience, and as the Greeks said “If at first you don’t succeed then Troy, Troy again!”

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I started with what I thought would be the easiest part: the stabiliser. All was going well, until I lifted the competed part from the building board, and found it slightly warped. I have no idea how this could have happened as everything had been weighted down to hold it straight, but I must have got something wrong.

The first thing I did was to check the level of my magnetic building board: this was less than perfect and had dip of approximately 2 mm over 600mm – not good. I purchased a thick MDF board, bonded the metal plate to it, weighted it down, checked it was level, and left it overnight to dry.

I then cut a new 1/16” sheet stabiliser core, marked it up with the ribs etc. and cut the new parts. The ribs were cut from 3/16” x 1/8”, and the 3/16” x ¼” post were added to the core, and were weighted down to the board until dry. The stabiliser was then turned over and the process repeated.


I used the Toolzone hole cutter to cut lightening holes. By calculation, the holes cut amount to the approximately the same area as the original part. In my opinion, the wood between the ribs will help make the stabiliser stiffer and stronger. The holes were surprisingly clean, only requiring minor trimming to complete them


I cut the slots out for Dubro pin hinges because they look better than the flat hinges shown on the plans.

Edited By 2W on 07/10/2018 22:54:57

Edited By 2W on 07/10/2018 22:56:27

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I will be using pull-pull elevators, so I cut a slot each side of the central section for the top cable using a saw to get the angle correct against the plan:


There's a difference of 10mm approx. between the length of the upper cable and the lower cable as it enters the fuselage which will require compensation somewhere to get the lengths of the top and bottom cables the same. I propose to use an idler either in front or behind the cockpit depending on the space available, and drive it with a snake to the servo. This will enable me to run the the cables down each side of the fuselage from the idler to each elevator. Provided the cables are the same length, and the pivot points of the elevators (the hinge) is same relatively on the idler, it should work well - see the article in August RCM&E by Mike Freeman.

A question: do photos of the Fury show any any connection between the elevators, or is the wire connection on the plans only a function of the method of operating the elevators?

Here's a view of tail & elevator with the hinges trial fitted:


The pins of the hinges will be covered, and the hinges glued in when the model is covered.

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All was going well with the fuselage, everything nice and square:




I decided to add the side panels to the tail end to set the angle of the upper 1/4" piece, and glued the ply parts having drilled the holes for the rigging wire. This left a 1/16" step on the bottom panel because I cut the part with tangs from 3/16" sheet. Better perhaps to use 1/4" instead of 3/16" sheet and reduce the tangs underneath to fit F11.

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Then disaster struck! I had a banana on my hands:


I tried to correct it by replacing the top 3/16" cross braces, but this left the tail end crooked. I had checked during building that all was square, but something went wrong. Drastic action was called for: I built a new rear section of the fuselage:


This was now fitted to the front half after checking that all was square and straight:



Now it's left overnight.....


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