New Build Project — 85-inch Douglas Skyraider — Reduced Ziroli Design

New Build Project — 85-inch Douglas Skyraider — Reduced Ziroli Design

It has been a while so I decided to get a little more serious about a new workshop project. My new build is going to be an 85 inch span version of Nick Ziroli’s 100-inch 1/6-scale Douglas Skyraider. Reduced 15%, the 85 inch version will be about the same size as the popular giant scale warbirds in the Gold Edition Top Flite line. My Skyraider will have about 1160 square inches of wing area and at 20 pounds would have a wing loading of about 41 oz./sq. ft. Very acceptable and very close to the numbers for the Top Flite FW-190.

So, here are a few pix to start with. Stay tuned, I will update the series as things come together.

The project will include: Hitec RCD servos, a Fuji 43cc gas engine and Robart #148E 90-degree Electric Rotating 1/5-scale retracts.


Out of the box from LaserCut USA, the parts for the Skyraider are beautifully done.

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Balsa wing ribs

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Stabilizer ribs and plywood pieces

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Above you see my choice for power, the 43cc gas engine from Fuji. Should spin a 19×10 or 20×8 prop nicely. (no longer available from Tower Hobbies).

Since I am building the Skyraider with an 85 inch span, it is perfect for stock hardware items including the landing gear and control horns from Robart Mfg.


I loved the Robart electric powered 148E 90 degree rotating gear I used in my Top Flite Corsair and will use them again in the Skyraider.


Also, since Nick Ziroli calls out Robart hardware in his plans, I will also use Robart control horns and HingPoint hinges.

I also will be using a scale “Skyraider style” tail wheel unit from Earl Aune. It is rugged and lightweight and best of all he also has a scale functional tail-hook mechanism I will be using as well. So stay tuned for more.



For the next installment CLICK HERE


  1. Jerry, what are you going to use for an canopy?

    1. Hey Rodney, it just so happens that the 13 inch WW2 bubble canopy from Sig Mfg. is a perfect, match! And I mean 100% match in contour and length. Even the angle for the windshield is spot on! Amazing! The cowling will be a wood build and then used as a plug for a mold and then laid up in glass. By a friend who is a master glass guy!

  2. Where can I get the plans for the 85 inch Skyraider.Also you noted that you purchased a short kit for it . How did you get that done and by who?

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