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How-tos

From assembly secrets to repair tricks


Wing-to-Fuselage Fillets

Wing-to-Fuselage Fillets

Advice from expert scale designer and builder Nick Ziroli: Instead of adding the fillet after the wing and fuselage are built, I make the shape of the fillet areas as part of the fuselage formers themselves. This requires having at least the wing center section built and attached to the fuselage, but to make sure […]
Getting Started with E-Power

Getting Started with E-Power

Today, our hobby is enjoying a literal “Golden Age” of RC electric flight. The amount of quality motors, batteries, controllers and connectors is just about limitless as are the types and sizes of airplanes you can fly with E-power. Even though there are plenty of plug n play packages out there where you get everything […]
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Scale RC Rivets & Screws Video

Scale RC Rivets & Screws Video

Master modeler Phil Noel knows aircraft rivets and screws. After retiring from the full-size aviation industry, his company Pinnacle Aviation custom-builds composite model kits as well as offering painting, weathering and repair service. In this video, he shows how he creates rivets on and applies scale screws to a Comp-ARF Spitfire and a Jet Legends L-39 Albatross.  Thanks to Pete and Dean Coxon for filming this […]
Radio Programming Secrets — Taming knife-edge flight

Radio Programming Secrets — Taming knife-edge flight

Mixing out unwanted tendencies during knife-edge is widely practiced, but like most things in aviation, there are trade-offs to consider. Programmable mixes let you automatically mix another control with your primary input to reduce or eliminate some of the unwanted tendencies associated with certain inputs and maneuvers. For example, when you apply a lot of […]
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Master the Waterfall

Master the Waterfall

When you’re flying a stable elevator, you can perform an inside “waterfall” (micro loop) by maintaining full up-elevator, and applying full power and a little right rudder to correct ... Continue reading ... Join our premium membership!
Troubleshooting Gas Engines

Troubleshooting Gas Engines

OK, so you’ve installed your gasoline engine properly, and made sure that the fuel tank is properly installed and the fuel lines and fuel filter are all hooked up correctly, but you still can’t get any fire in the hole—the engine just won’t start. As a safety note here, we always recommend using a properly sized heavy […]
Easy RV-4 Makeover

Easy RV-4 Makeover

Longtime MAN contributor Carl Layden wanted a plane that would stand out on the flightline, but he didn’t have the time to custom-build a model from scratch. His solution was to dress up an ARF and make it a unique flyer. Here’s his story. If you have been around the hobby for a long time, […]
Pro Tips for Laminating Balsa

Pro Tips for Laminating Balsa

As my online Build-Along for the Sopwith Camel continues, I recently did some lamination work on the top wing, and thought it would make a good How To. This technique has been used for decades but to a new generation of RC model builders might be worth explaining in detail. Here’s how I did. There’s […]
Shop Tip: Extending Landing Gear Axle Length

Shop Tip: Extending Landing Gear Axle Length

The stock hardware that comes with many of today’s ARF models is designed to do the job assigned and for the most part, they all get a passing grade for quality. If however you try adding accessories, the hardware may have to replaced or modified. An example of this is the new E/Z brake system […]
Fuel systems for Giants — Update your gas tank

Fuel systems for Giants — Update your gas tank

During a recent rebuild project of a Ziroli 77-inch Stearman PT-17 biplane, I replaced the the fuel tank and plumbing with newer hardware. Here’s how to install a new gasoline fuel system in your plane. (Above.) For the Zenoah G-38 engine powering the Stearman, I chose to install a 20 oz. fuel tank. I also used […]
Fiberglassing Wings Made Easy

Fiberglassing Wings Made Easy

There are many ways to apply fiberglass cloth to a structure. The most common methods use either polyester or epoxy resin and catalysts. Some of the resins require unequal mix ratios, like 1 part epoxy to 2 parts hardener, which is difficult to measure accurately. I also dislike polyester resin because it really smells foul. […]
DIY Wood Model Stand

DIY Wood Model Stand

While some RC’ers like to use PVC pipe and fittings to make stands to transport their planes, I prefer to use my carpentry skills to make them out of wood. I have made several of these stands out of thin plywood and yellow pine boards and they hold up very well. I suppose the PVC […]
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