Loening XSL2 at 48" span

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Loening XSL2 at 48" span

Postby BillG » Tue Sep 28, 2010 2:10 am

Sometimes when looking for a build subject, I consider a rough spec of what I may want to build, and then look for the subject. After several biplanes projects, a break from two wings would be nice, along with a simple wing profile. I've enjoyed the low wing loadings of biplanes however, so a monoplane subject would require an ample wing, to simplify the chances of success. Simple, clean hull lines would also reduce build stress, which really helps when choosing low or unmodeled subjects, with limited documentation.

With all that nonsense in mind, I came across a subject the other day, which I have considered in the past. The Loening XSL2. There's not much info on the plane, and it also helps to search using XS"L"2 and not XS12, as I discovered, as a small "l" can appear to be a "1". I've seen the plane with radial and inline engines, but I think the Menasco B6 looks more attractive and cleaner. To each their own.
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Edit: I did a bit of searching, and I see this plane has been discussed here before:
viewtopic.php?f=14&t=252
Last edited by BillG on Fri Oct 15, 2010 2:42 am, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: Loening XSL2 48" electric rc

Postby BillG » Sat Oct 09, 2010 7:11 am

After a bit of work using photos, I managed to draw views for this plane and now have a basic fuse structure together. I'm starting to finally become motivated, now that I have something to look at. It's going together well, which is pleasing for a project that had me thinking that I was out of my mind for starting without views.

Image

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Re: Loening XSL2

Postby TASSE » Thu Oct 14, 2010 5:24 pm

Hello Will
What material are you using for the frame of the hull ?

Cheers Roy.
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Re: Loening XSL2

Postby BillG » Fri Oct 15, 2010 2:39 am

TASSE wrote:Hello Will
What material are you using for the frame of the hull ?

Cheers Roy.

Hello Roy. Haven't heard from you for a while. I believe I had heard you state that you were going to be away for a while.
I hope you like this subject. It certainly fits the yet unmodeled category, from what I've seen (or maybe not seen). I should also mention that the span will be 48".

The hull is framed from 1/8" balsa, using "Guillows" style construction, which lends itself to rapid scratch building from hand drawn views. The hobby shop tends to stock "ironwood", although I picked the lighter grades of the wood for the formers, with the lightest of it used for the rear formers. While not the lightest stock size, the thicker keels make straight framing from hand cut parts easier. This is actually one of the straighter frames I've built, given the method used, which still requires cutting/aligning/regluing joints, to tweak a straight frame.

I have fairly a light grade of balsa for the planned 1/16" sheeting, and will likely use 1/32" for the fuse top. I've used 1/32" to fully sheet planes this size in the past, but the added stringers, warps, and lack of sanding latitude have proven the gains to be questionabe. To keep weight down, the wings will be built like the Curtiss America, where functional rigging cables will allow for light framing, given the added support. As of now, the sockets for plug-in wings have been installed, and the wings will likely be removable for transport. The wings and tail feathers will also be Coverite Microlite covered for weight reduction. As they say, it's always a good thing to build to spec (or at least attempt to), so after doing enough of these scratch builds, I'd like to think that I can arrive at 36oz AUW, with a wing loading of 13.6oz/sq-ft. The fuse and motor tower with the motor and ESC installed in the pic below, weigh 10.1oz. Some other details are the 1/8" light balsa framed motor tower, which will be sheeted with 1/32" balsa. Given the large outrunner diameter, the motor was moved slightly below the scale (as accurately as I can use that word :D ) location, and will fit a 10" prop.

At that other forum where I link the pics from, the interest/knowledge level in these type of ships is low. I imagine there may be folks here like yourself, who have more information on this seaplane and seaplanes of this era, so any info may be useful. From the B/W pictures, I've deduced that the rudder top portion appears to be lighter than the remainder of the rudder. This is clearly seen in enough pictures to not simply be a shade difference, caused by the taper at the top of the rudder. I'm assuming that the plane is a light shade of gray, with a white area at the rudder top. In some pics, it is obvious that the wings are a darker shade than the fuse, but much darker, which is likely the common yellow color of USN planes of that era. I think this will be an interesting scheme, for a plane that I initially thought was completely white. If my assumptions are correct, I still am not sure if the vertical stab is yellow or light gray. Given that the plane was basically a one-off prototype, I did not initially anticipate that it was in full USN colors. Along with the colors, I found four properly sized wing roundel decals at the hobby shop, which is one more detail item secured.

Fuse and motor tower with the motor and ESC installed weighing 10.1oz. The functional scale vents will be useful for ESC and motor cooling airflow.
Image
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Re: Loening XSL2 at 48" span

Postby TASSE » Sat Oct 16, 2010 1:48 am

Hi Will
Yes i had two weeks in N.Y. The second week i spent upstate on the foot hills of the Katskils and ended up across the Hudson and going to Old Rhinebeck. Nice to see some of those old types in flight.

I failed to find a model shop in Manhattan or Brooklyn.

However what is Ironwood ? If its the African wood that i am thinking of its so dense that it wont float.
Over here we have Scandinavian Lightply which is stronger than balsa and about the same weight.

Glad to see you building a monoplane, and a rare type too.

Cheers Roy.
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Re: Loening XSL2 at 48" span

Postby BillG » Sun Oct 17, 2010 6:55 am

TASSE wrote:Hi Will
Yes i had two weeks in N.Y. The second week i spent upstate on the foot hills of the Katskils and ended up across the Hudson and going to Old Rhinebeck. Nice to see some of those old types in flight.

I failed to find a model shop in Manhattan or Brooklyn.

However what is Ironwood ? If its the African wood that i am thinking of its so dense that it wont float.
Over here we have Scandinavian Lightply which is stronger than balsa and about the same weight.

Glad to see you building a monoplane, and a rare type too.

Cheers Roy.
I would have liked to join you in upstate NY. Beautiful country.
The ironwood is actually a term that some of us Guillows kit converters joking use, to refer to the low grade, heavy Guillows wood included in the die-cut kits. The Scandinavian lightply sounds interesting. Basswood is the only thing we have here, which is close to that description. I had considered using 1/64" mahogany for this build, until I realized the the grade available at the hobby shop was heavier than 1/16" balsa.

Recent progress on the build:

Aluminum tubing sockets installed for plug-in wing tubes, with 2 additional degrees (1 per side) added to the rear socket, as there will be gradual washout in the wing panels. The washout causes the rear wing tubes to be at a slightly greater dihedral angle than the front.
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Finished sheeting the motor tower, as well as constructing the tail feather frames.
Image
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Re: Loening XSL2 at 48" span

Postby BillG » Sun Oct 24, 2010 7:55 am

Aluminum tubing for plug-in wings, with the rear set at a slightly higher dihedral angle, for progressive washout in the wing panels.
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A section of a cowl bought for another project and never used, finally becomes useful for the side intake scoop.
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Wing layout drawn, with ply airfoil template for cutting the wing ribs.
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Removing as much weight as possible from the wing tip float balsa stock, before laminating the 1/4" sheets together.
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These floats will be cut in half, cored for lightening, and reglued together, as 19gms each is heavier than I would like. Around 1/2oz or less should be obtainable.
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Waterproofing the sheeting with polyurethane, before applying to the frames. The BSI thick CA works well for applying sheeting with the poly already applied, if you move fast.
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Lightweight 1/32" sheeting used on the bottom rear fuse surface (top rear will also use 1/32") with stiffeners installed after applying the sheeting. Hopefully this will eliminate the need for any nose ballast.
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Re: Loening XSL2 at 48" span

Postby TASSE » Mon Oct 25, 2010 1:18 am

Hi Will, so far its looking great, but i think that using 1/32 sheet for the under surface of the hull is dodgy . I always use ply wood as flotsum can easily hole it.

Cheers Roy.
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Re: Loening XSL2 at 48" span

Postby BillG » Thu Nov 04, 2010 3:30 am

TASSE wrote:Hi Will, so far its looking great, but i think that using 1/32 sheet for the under surface of the hull is dodgy . I always use ply wood as flotsum can easily hole it.

Cheers Roy.

Hello Roy,
To be more specific, the front under hull is actually a thick 1/16" balsa sheet. Only rear under fuse and the top is 1/32" sheet. I've used 1/32" too liberally before on my Seabee, and it didn't work out well. I ended up adding so many stringer laminations for stiffeners, that it defeated the purpose. Even on this plane, I added stringer laminations inside the bottom rear 1/32" sheeting, as I would be worried about breaking it otherwise. That said, by the time they are added, you don't come out much lighter than just using 1/16" sheeting, but some. In this case, it was done only for CG purposes, as having to add ballast is a double weight killer. Weight wise this plane is working out well. The light 1/32" on the rear fuse top, along with planned light Microlite covering for the tail surfaces, has made the CG setting to appear to need no ballast in the nose. The AUW now, with literally everything execpt covering/paint/float-tail struts/rigging is 28oz. I had planned on 36, and still may make that, but even at 40oz AUW the wing load is 14.5oz/sq-ft. I've been known for flyable, but heavy builds in the past. My recent lightening trend has been working well, and lately I'm almost wondering how I've managed to build as light as I've been. You would have had to see some of my previous builds. :shock: There's always trade-offs, but it seems that when I'm not trying to shave weight wherever practical, I end up with tanks.

More lightening could be done, but I'll leave some thickness in case I do some further shaping. Reduced from 19.5gms to 16.2. It all counts.
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Floats glued back together, and WB pilot halves are assembled with bust added. I should have cut away the WWI scarf. The primer will be sanded to hide the seam line and fill wood grain, before painting.
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Second time using this method of wing construction, and likely much more in the future. The frame and aileron shown here weigh 35gms.
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I can start covering, now that I have the bare bones photo. There are actually a number of small details to add, when looking closely at the Loening photos, such as the rope cleat sitting on the front.
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Scale aileron linkage location, with top wing control rod. I debated using the ball links, but went with E-Z links. The servo horn will be enclosed, so adjustment will be at the aileron horn. The need for a third hinge to eliminate slop was also found.
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The aileron servos will be connected individually to the receiver, and differential will be programmed. I had to change the servo horn center position, creating adverse differential, as the pushrod exit slot in the wing would otherwise be quite long.
Image
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Re: Loening XSL2 at 48" span

Postby BillG » Wed Nov 10, 2010 2:22 am

The fuse is fully covered now with Ekonokote, after coating the hull with Balsarite. I haven't used Balsarite for a while, and discovered one thing about it, which is that it does not soften to the point where "nibs" will push down with the hot iron application. I didn't want to sand it, as scuffing may make it a bit "dusty", but I had to sand it with fine paper such that the imperfections of the brushed coating did not show through the covering.

Covering seams on the air intake scoop are filled and sanded using high build primer, after first scuffing the covering for better adhesion.
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Covering the hull ribs, making sure the covering is well adhered to the rib corners against the hull. A strip was first added to the hull center, and then hull was covered with 2 sheets.
Image
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