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Author Topic: Float Flying Basics  (Read 385 times)

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Online Deerslayer

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Float Flying Basics
« on: July 24, 2018, 08:21:43 AM »
Perhaps this is a good place to store some floats information, as some of us may be adding floats to existing land-based planes, or upgrading existing setup.

Atttached is the original RCM article by Mr. Cunningham, from several decades ago.

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Offline Wilf

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Re: Float Flying Basics
« Reply #1 on: July 24, 2018, 10:37:20 AM »
Thanks Gary, I had the diagrams of which I shared before, but I did not have the article which explains in great detail how to set them up. This was and is a very good article on building and setting up floats. I have flown with floats for a number of years, but I had forgotten about balancing the floats once on the airplane.

Offline ganguy

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Re: Float Flying Basics
« Reply #2 on: July 25, 2018, 01:41:05 PM »
Members should know that Deseronto Club hosted a float fly last Saturday, and because of the wind there was no flying. However we all had a great time, a terrific barbecue, a swap shop, and lots of talk. The next one should be fun! Thans Walter!
Gary - your idea of a Deseronto Club Events category on our site is great.

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Offline ganguy

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Re: Float Flying Basics
« Reply #3 on: July 25, 2018, 01:43:02 PM »
I need practice. So far I have made 5 water take-offs, and only one successful landing!
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Online Deerslayer

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Floats Material - Any interest?
« Reply #4 on: July 26, 2018, 06:45:28 AM »


I located a source for 3" thick styrofoam sheets, the kind used in basement insulation. This stuff is ideal for making floats, wings, fuselages, etc. They are rather pricey and come in a much larger size than I would likely ever need.
Cost is $52 + tax for a 2 foot by 8 foot sheet. This is larger than I will be able to transport in my car, so I would end up cutting a sheet, anyway, probably into two 4 foot sections.

Would anyone else be interested in a shared purchase of a sheet?

My immediate need is for a set of 28 inch floats, for which I have already made  the required template for hotwire cutting the blanks. I may make one or more additional template sets for smaller floats. Another alternative is to bandsaw out floats, as this works very well with the pink or blue styrofoam.
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Offline ganguy

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Re: Float Flying Basics
« Reply #5 on: July 26, 2018, 08:07:14 AM »
Are you sure that stuff is rigid enough? The EPP foam in ARF's is more rigid, and is stronger in 'tear-away" resistance. I suppose you could use a thin coat of fibreglass.
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Online Deerslayer

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Re: Float Flying Basics
« Reply #6 on: July 26, 2018, 09:24:15 AM »
Are you sure that stuff is rigid enough? The EPP foam in ARF's is more rigid, and is stronger in 'tear-away" resistance. I suppose you could use a thin coat of fibreglass.
It is quite strong. Sands very nicely. Put one layer of Tough tape on the bottom, from tip to the step, for abrasion resistance. Fibreglas, with its epoxy, adds unnecessary weight for little gain over using either Tough tape or just packing tape. A spine of, perhaps 1/4" square balsa along the top centerline, full length, to attach blocks or pads for mounting hardware.

For what the hobby industry charges for floats, it is worth a try to make your own.   Make at least one spare pair, then if yours get broken and hot-glued enough to exceed the Flypaper Golden Ratio, you won't be grounded (or should we say, "watered"?).
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