Precision Scale Stinson SR-5E with free 3-view drawings

Precision Scale Stinson SR-5E with free 3-view drawings

When it comes to scale subjects, nothing is so appealing as a classic subject from the Golden Age of Aviation. Ron Peterka has an amazing Subject that will soon be featured as a Construction article in Model Airplane News, his amazing Stinson SR-5E.

Stinson SR-5E  & Ron Peterka

This 1:5 scale model of Stinson “Reliant N-14187 is, in a way, a memorial to Tom Laurie who spent ten years restoring a vintage 1934-35 Stinson to a prize winning aircraft.  He was a model builder who wanted a full-scale project even though he didn’t have a pilot’s license or an A & P license.  He never did get his pilot’s license and had to have a rated pilot fly his spectacular restoration to Oshkosh for the 1984 EAA convention where he won Grand Champion – Antique.

Stinson SR-5E

If you decide to build this model for possible competition, you should collect all the documentation you can find before starting construction.  A good photo pack is available from *Bob Banka’s aircraft documentation service.  Model Airplane News was kind enough to offer free downloadable 3-view drawings of the SR-5 by W. A. Wylam that are incredibly helpful and very closely match the measurements taken from the full-scale aircraft.

Just click for sheet 1

Just Click for sheet2

Once the drawing is visible right click to save the high resolution version.

A good article on this aircraft was printed in the Nov. 1984 issue of the *Sport Aviation magazine of the E.A.A.  There are good photos and information there.

Stinson SR-5E

This is a precision scale model and requires advanced building skills so this article will only cover special areas of building.   All materials are readily available balsa, ply, and fiberglass.  A list of vendors for specialized pieces will be found separately.   The covering and paint I used is the Stits Process which matches the materials used on the full-scale aircraft as noted in the aircraft logbooks.

Stinson SR-5E

My completed model weighs in at 25 pounds powered by a Zenoah G-26 engine and flies very scale like at half throttle, although it tends to float a bit, and the flaps are not quite as powerful as you might expect.  This is good, because the model tends not to balloon when flaps are applied in flight.  The horiz. Stab. and elevator are enlarged 5% for better flight stability as allowed by USSMA rules.

Stinson SR-5E

My efforts to build a precision scale model were helped by having the Stinson on display at the San Diego Aerospace Museum adjunct hangars at Gillespie Field where I could climb in and around to measure and photograph every detail, inside and out.  Several months of drawing, and redrawing, gave me a set of construction drawings and I began construction.

Stinson SR-5E

From the beginning I wanted a scale sprung landing gear rotating around a point that was outboard of the fuselage side so I actually built a landing gear assembly before having anything to put it into.  The module is built up of ply and sheet aluminum with gear legs made up by *TNT Landing Gear Products in Swanton OH.  They have the equipment to cut and bend the ¼” thick aluminum leg blanks to the specs on the plans at a reasonable price.

Stinson SR-5E


Wingspan   98 inches

Length         64 inches

Weight        26 pounds

Wing Area       1550 Sq. Inches   10.7 Sq. Ft.

Wing loading      approx 38 oz./sq.ft.

Power required     2.25 to 3.0 HP

Radio Required (with on-board choke)   7 channel 6 high torque servos, 2 std. servos

Gear Used

Radio:  –  Tx Futaba T10CAP, Rcvr  Futaba R6014HS 14 ch

Servos: –  Total 9 servo EL, RUD, AIL-2, FLAPS -2, &Tail whl  HI TORQUE (Fut S3010 )TH & CK  – Fut S148

Engine: –  Zenoah G-26,  26 cc disp., Magneto,

Prop:  –  APC 17×8  Turns 7800-7900rpm  static,  ½ throttle @ cruise

Dummy engine: Frank Tiano Ent. (FTE)

Landing Gear:  –  TNT Landing Gear (custom)

Batteries:  Dual batteries with battery backer system.  Dual sw & chg ports

Stinson SR-5E

When completed the gear is sprung, adjustable, and operates in a scale manner with the wheels straight on the ground, hanging with negative camber in flight, and still having enough movement to absorb landing shocks.  Very realistic.  If you decide to simplify, I would suggest a one-piece gear with a heavy plywood support extending outboard above the gear to force the gear to flex around the scale location. This would replace the whole spring assembly.

Stinson SR-5E

A *Zenoah G-26 gas burner provides ample power for realistic flight at half-throttle and a 20 oz tank will give you close to 25 minutes flight time. The engine cowl on my model is a modified cowl
from *Fiberglass-Specialties as used on the Top Flite SR-9  Gull Wing Stinson.

Updated: October 3, 2019 — 9:03 AM


  1. Stunning model! I love the Stinson and Ron’s is one of the most beautiful I have seen.

  2. Are there any vedios available on line of this plane in flight?…..pete

    1. Now all that is needed is a 1: 5 scale 1934 Auburn Speedster to park next to the Stinson. At that time Stinson Aircraft was owned by E. L. Cord and his Auburn Cord Duesenberg Automobile Coumpany. They also owned Lycoming Engine Co. that is still in business today making light aircraft engines. This is what I would call a real “Labor of Love” Thank You for showing it!

  3. Congratulations Ron!….I know how much effort you put into this bird……I love watching it go!

  4. Most beautiful airplane ever built and the real one is easy to fly and flies hands off, landings are easier than a J3 Cub. David Pearce, ATP, Master Pilot
    Designated Pilot examiner.

  5. is that prop painted ,looks like real chrome..can youreply to me as how it was done ?

  6. I built a rubber powered one of these when I was a kid. I always loved the look of the plane. Great job.

  7. Nice to see Ron is still building Scale. We were members of the Thermallers Model airplane club,
    in San Gabriel, CA., in the 60’s. He and Kingsley Kau , enjoyed Freeflight flying Scale. Beautiful build on the SR-5.

  8. It looks just like the full size aircraft…amazing scale detailing!

  9. Wow what an awesome job certainly done the subject proud,

  10. Rebuilding ST Jr. Looking for any info you may have on original SR 5 drawings, pics etc. The SR Jr is basicly the same airplane the 7 has some minor modifications. Hope our turns out as exceptional as your model.

  11. Correction SR JR and 7 should be a 5. Bad typing

  12. Very nice scale building !!!

  13. Ron, what can I say but your creation is just amazing, I’m new to RC flying, and this summer will be my first flight at RC flying

  14. I have one that I need to build. It is a kit that is the same size as this one.

  15. Beautiful model. Your attention to detail is fantastic. I am restoring a “full scale” SR-5, NC14572.

  16. I just added the two high res 3-view drawings and a gallery of unused photos from Ron’s construction article that will be in the September 2013 issue of MAN. If you want to download the Wylam drawings for the Stinson Reliant SR-5 simply click the links and when the drawing appears, right click with your mouse to do a “save as” and then save it to your desktop. The drawings are scanned and cleaned up so they will print and fit on standard 8.5×11 printer paper. No copyright applies. These are free for personal use and for Scale Documentation. Enjoy!
    Gerry Yarrish

  17. The static display prop has blades hand carved and covered with aluminum duct tape. The hub is a machined aluminum part with some added detail and sandblasted to look like cast aluminum. The flying prop is a modified shape Zinger painted to resemble the full scale prop.

    1. Good day Ron.
      I wish to build your model of the 98″ Stinson reliant.I bought the 3 sheet plan to build the 98″ stinson reliant Sr-5e I am from south africa and have difficulty in getting access to the construction articles. will it be possible for you to assist me with the construction article.
      Thank you in advance.
      Eben Botha

  18. Ron has always been a master builder even back when we were flying indoors in San Pedro in the 60’s. You have done a remarkable job on your Stinson and it looks like a real winner! Good luck Ron and keep on flying. Kingsley Kau

  19. Hi Ron,

    Yes indeed what a beautiful model and glad you finished it. It looks absolutely perfect! I purchased NC-14187 from the San Diego Air & Space Museum at Gillespie Field, El Cajon, CA in December 2002 and it has been a real delight. Would love to get in contact with you and see the model close-up. Maybe even take a photo with the two birds together.


  20. Dear Ron Peterka
    I need some airplane drawings. Section, elevations, etc. I try to make airplane for my grandson.

    Sincerely yours

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