Hangar 9 Ultra Stick

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Our kit had been ordered several months ago. It was back ordered and it was a pleasure to finally receive the kit. This model was different from many available ARFs because:
  • It is very good looking plane
  • Target weight 11 - 14 lbs (24 - 28 oz/sq ft loading)
  • Offers advanced 3D capability by design
  • Includes instruction for setting up the transmitter and learning mixing features
TheBox It is a fairly large model (76-inch WS 14 lbs advertised weight)
This is a kit we could learn a lot from building!
TheKit Here are most of the components in the kit. The kit itself was double boxed and arrived in fantastic shape. Everything was bagged.
We will install a Saito FA182 Twin 4-stroke motor, JR PCM10 receiver, and HiTEK HS605 servos (7)
Some components from the kit may be replaced as building progresses. We plan to "kit bash" this model some, although the components and instructions included in the kit will build a flyable model.
Weight_Check We weigh most of the components before starting out. This will help advanced planning and final balancing decisions that will be made as we proceed with this project. Some interesting observations:
  • The full length strip ailerons weigh 141 grams; the flaps and ailerons for the full quad flap setup weigh 135 grams! If it weren't for the extra weight of the two servos, the full boat setup would have been slightly lighter.
  • Firewall and mounting hardware weigh 249 grams (over 1/2 lb!)
  • The Saito FA150 is advertised to weight 30 Ounces (1.85 lbs), but in fact weights 924 Grams (2.05 lbs)
  • A 24 oz fuel tank weighs 25 grams more than the supplied 16 oz tank
  • The Saito FA182TDP (with exhaust) weighs 1074 grams (2.36 lbs)
  • The included main wheels weigh 149 grams for the pair. Replacing these with Sullivan Skylite (71 Grams per pair) or Dubro Lite Foam style (76 grams) will save some 78 grams.
  • The Indy EGAS on board Glow weighs 29 grams
  • Batteries
    • Nicad 6v 1100 mah - 152 grams
    • Nicad 6v 1600 mah - 262 grams
    • NiHd 6v 1200 mah - 134 grams (Nickel Metal Hydride)
  • The HS605 servos weigh 52 grams each. This adds 104 grams (3.5 ounces) the four servo setup.
In theory, we can save 133 grams by choosing different batteries, wheels, and the FA182 TDP (not using the included engine mounting hardware). This weight savings will be offset by the 29 gram on-board glow system and the extra 104 grams for the two additional servos.
This means our model with the quad flap setup will (in theory) weigh the same as an aileron only model, and less than a "stock" quad flap model.
If we use the on board glow and 24 oz tank, we will be adding 104 grams to the model. This would give us about an 18 minute flight (about 1.6 oz/min full throttle) with a more reliable engine. If we end up "tail heavy" we will definitely balance the model with the on board glow, larger fuel tank, and larger on board battery pack. We'll see, but our options are open to keep the weight at the designed specs.
MainSpar We added the main wing control surfaces per the instructions. The hinges will be pinned for security. Too much Fun! We elected to add a 6-inch long 1/4-inch dowel to aid in the alignment of the main wing halves. There is a rib located about 2-1/2 inches into each wing. We drilled each wing 3-inches from the trailing end dead-center three-inches deep into the wing panel. The main spar and locating dowel are epoxied into place with 45-minute epoxy. The wing was checked for the 1-inch dihedral several times before the epoxy set. We used approximately 2 ounces of epoxy for this operation.
Glassin_Dihedral While the instructions didn't request it, we decided to fiberglass the dihedral and wing joint area. 6ounce/sq yard fiberglass - 3-inches wide was used with epoxy.
The wing covering was carefully cut away to a width of 2-7/8 inches. 30 minute epoxy was thoroughly mixed, applied to the wing, then the fiberglass was added. A covering heat gun was used to heat the epoxy to water-like consistency while an acid brush was used to spread the epoxy.
Excess epoxy was removed by blotting with a paper towel and wiping with an alcohol dipped towel.
This may be over-kill, but adding wing reinforcement to other ARF kits has prevented damage to those models. We have seen ARFs both with and without the reinforcement, and those built without have had collapsed wings (with the resultant death spiral to the ground!).
Wheel_block_servo_tray More kit bashing going on here! Since we mixed the epoxy for the wing reinforcement, we also mixed some extra to use on the firewall and to reinforce the main wheel mounting block and to reinforce the servo tray area.
The use of the Saito 182 twin will result in less vibration to the airframe. Still, we have seen some rough landings knock the servo tray and/or loosen the landing gear block.
We use the heat gun and blot up any excess epoxy.
Again, not in the instructions, but our preference based on other ARF kits and problem areas.
Servo_Wiring As seen in this photo, the wing reinforcement has been covered with Monocote trim. The aileron and flap extensions are being installed into the wing. We are using the buffered extensions.
Secure_Connections The servo and extension connectors are held securely with dental floss that has been CA'd. It is a good idea to make sure these connectors stay fastened securely. They will be inside the wing and tough to see. Some modelers use electrician's tape, others use shrink tubing, and some buy the special connector holder. Something should be used to prevent the connectors from coming apart.
Mount_main_wing The main wing has been centered, the holes drilled the blind nuts epoxied into the wing mounting blocks, and the nylon bolts and steel washers installed. When aligning the main wing in the wing saddle, we also measured from the fuselage to the wing tip (shown with the yellow arrows). The wing was centered by moving it around on the wing saddle until the measured distances from the tail to the wing tip (the string in the photo was used for this) and the fuselage to the wing tip are equal.
We will be mounting the tail feathers next.

We weighed the fuselage and all the rest of the parts to see what the weight would be. It is heavier than planned. The rough weights are:

  • Fuselage weight 2611 grams now (with the wing on) That is 5.75 lbs
  • Engine with exhaust is 1077.5 grams
  • Tail Feathers 435 grams
  • Landing Gear 422 grams
  • tail wheel and misc mounting hardware 99 grams
  • Remaining servos (3) battery and receiver with switch is 356 grams
  • Onboard glow 29 grams (still need two nicad batteries for this)

That works out to 11.08 lbs! We'll see if some of the weight can be trimmed off by part substitution. For those who read this previously, I had added stuff in twice and ended up with a disappointing 19.19 lbs. The model really might come out to around 12 lbs as we'll see in part 2 of this building sequence.

amodrule3

We used a different technique to bond the horizontal stabilizer to the fuselage, The fuselage was inverted and leveled. The horizontal stabilizer was centered aligning center marks on the trailing edge of the horizontal stabilizer and then the distance between the main wing tips and the horizontal stabilizer was measured. A string was used to "tram" the distance between the center of the firewall and the tips of the horizontal stabilizer.
tailfeathers Once all of these measurements were identical side-to-side, we sighted down the fuselage to verify the alignment between the main wing and the horizontal stabilizer. This is easier to do with the fuse inverted.
In the background you can see the microwave used to heat the epoxy (before it is mixed) for 15 seconds on high. This makes the epoxy flow like water. It also seems to set up faster.
Vertical_Stab We pinned the vertical stabilizer to keep it centered. You must make sure to remove the covering material from the surfaces to be glued. A razor knife was used with a new #11 blade to prevent accidently cutting into the wood. Epoxy was mixed (after nukin' it for 15 seconds). Two metal squares and wood shims were used to hold the vertical stab 90-degrees from the horizontal stab.
All of the trail feather alignment distances and level were verified many times as the epoxy set. We've been working on this model for 4 nights now. It is starting to look like a plane now.

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