Dr. Zooch Return To Flight Space Shuttle build thread- #2

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luke strawwalker

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Yes, definitely! Yall hit the nail dead square on the head... build stock and then whatever you do later is up to you. Wes makes a fine product here, and despite it's slightly smaller size than the 'other' manufacturer's shuttle kit, I can say with certainty that this kit has been given a LOT of thought and careful design and uses top notch materials. I just hope I can do it justice... :) Any lack thereof is strictly my own!

That said, the advanced orbiter wraps are awesome, just icing on the cake, so to speak. Once I develop some paper modelling skills (this is basically my first paper model, though the shuttle is probably more balsa than paper, actually) and I'm learning a lot. The stuff Craig sent me will be a nice 'step two' LATER ON WHEN I'M READY TO TAKE IT.

For now, I'll enjoy this kit as Dr. Zooch has designed and sold them... and there's a LOT there to enjoy! I've worked off and on for about a week on it, and it is coming together, pretty nicely, despite my gaffs... sometimes I just do stupid stuff without thinking (like CA hardening the wings without thinking about it dripping on the side of the crew cabin, and leaving a small CA stain... :rolleyes: That's what I get for being a 'battleship builder' but that's part of the learning curve too... learning to tell the difference of when 'perfect' is the enemy of 'good enough'.)

After going to the club launch today and doing the report on it (posted over in events section) and doing the pics, maybe I can get back to my build tomorrow. Yall have a good night and we'll see ya then! OL JR :)
 

mjennings

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looks really good, don't be worried about little stains and such on the orbiter, up close and personal she's not really white anymore. Between the tiles and the thermal blankets they have dark spots here and there.


Don't be afraid, build light, don't make the ET road cone orange, and as long as the orbiter glides and not tumbles, she'll be beautiful.
It really is looking good...and discouraging me from opening mine which would suffer in comparison.
 

luke strawwalker

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Ok, finally got back to work on the shuttle and finished her up! Lemme see where did I leave off... I think I was painting the ET.

It ended up looking a little 'muddy' in daylight, as the orange and brown just seemed to 'wash out' the yellow and just didn't look right to me, so I just went over it again with another couple light coats of "Bauhaus Gold" in New Krylon-- I'll let yall judge how it looks for yourselves...

I cut 3/16 inch strips of masking tape and actually masked over the SRB lines before I painted the tank, so that I could preserve the lines and keep the paint out of the way for better glue adhesion. After giving the tank about a day to dry after it's minor recoats, I removed all the masking, including off the orbiter mounting dowels. I dry fitted the SRB's to the ET to get the alignment right, and then sanded the glassine off the tube where the SRB's would go, and gave them and the ET a light coat of glue for double-glue joints. After the first coats pretty well dried, but still SLIGHTLY tacky, I put down another coat of glue and popped them together. I was having a bit of trouble aligning the SRB's to the tank, since the lines are hidden once you get the SRB in place, and so I just laid it flat on my work mat and rolled it over until the ET and SRB both touched the work mat, held it abit, and then picked it up and 'rolled' the SRB a bit to make sure it's seam was centered against the tank. I then secured it and let it dry overnight. The next day I did the other SRB the same way.

I finished up the orbiter with it's engine bells and painted the top of the wing white testor's enamel, and after that dried, hand painted the leading edge RCC panels in gunmetal gray. After those dried, I then painted the wing roots at the front black to match the tiles, and the black lines across the rear of the wings at the elevon attach point.DSCF0002.jpg

I also ran off a copy of Foose's shuttle wraps for Columbia on printer paper, and carefully cut out the NASA meatball and the flag and "COLUMBIA" name and daubed a bit of white glue on the back and glued them on the wings... DSCF0004.jpg

One thing I noticed is, on the right side of the orbiter, the flag is backwards :D That's actually kind of funny to me, anyway... :)

I also painted the rear elevator to look a bit more 'realistic' with the black dividing lines between the inner elevons and outer elevons. DSCF0001.jpg

Once the orbiter was done, I went ahead and cut the dowels for the 'SRB struts' which the real shuttle doesn't have (on the front anyway) but which help prevent the SRB's from ripping off on the model on landing. I found it MUCH easier to just use the razor saw to gently cut the dowels off at an angle, give it a half rotation, and cut it again at an angle 1/4 inch long, rather than trying to sand in the angles. They turned out pretty well, though I did install them at a slight 'outward' angle for perhaps a bit more strength than simply being 'flat' like Titan 3 struts.

I filleted the SRB's with white glue on both sides, and then glued the struts in place with white glue. I assembled the trash bag parachute while watching TV the other night, so we'll call her complete.

Here's some pics... OL JR :)
 

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luke strawwalker

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All I really have left to do is trim the glide on the orbiter... but the cows have clipped everything down about an inch tall, so I have no 'recovery area' to speak of to do the trim tests... have to take it someplace nearby with grass... :)

I weighed the stack and the orbiter... the shuttle in ready to fly configuration, without engine, weighs in at 100 grams. The Orbiter weighs in at 16 grams. The orbiter balance point is 3 5/8 inch from the nose tip, about where the wings start to widen out, about 1/8 inch behind the first RCC panel. The entire stack CG without engine is about 4 1/2 inches from the ET nosecone tip. That moves it back 1/4 inch from the balance point of the ET/SRB's without the orbiter attached. These points are balanced WITH the parachute in the front of the ET, but without wadding and engine installed.

None of these balance points are mentioned in the instructions-- I just give them here for convenience, and perhaps maybe some input from Dr. Zooch if he would like to comment :) Perhaps Foose would check back in and give me a rough number of turns on the glide trim screw for a good 'starting point' for trimming the glider-- I noticed in his pics he posted of his gliders that the trim screw was run down pretty far-- not a whole lot of deflection was necessary.

Here's the money shots... :) This has been a fun build, and I've stretched my meager skills quite a bit. I've made a few mistakes, but I've learned from them, and I think I could do a MUCH better job if I were to do it again. I just might try it sometime, and I DEFINITELY learned a few things I can apply to other builds. If you have one of these, just GO FOR IT! If I can do it, anybody can if they take their time and try. If you don't have one of these, you owe it to yourself to get one. It'll teach you a lot and you'll have fun at the same time. Enjoy! OL JR :)

DSCF0006.jpg


DSCF0008.jpg


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DSCF0011.jpg


DSCF0012.jpg
 

Dr.Zooch

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Luke- when you go to build that second orbiter, le'me know and I'll send you the few parts that are hard to get (nylon screw, nose button etc.)

Nice looking' build- now don't be a squirmin' hatch blower... go out and FLY IT! :D
 

luke strawwalker

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Somehow I missed posting this shot, and double posted another... Oh well...

I like this one... very "Bond-ish".... :) OL JR :)

DSCF0009.jpg
 

foose4string

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Good job on the shuttle.

Now I want to build mine. I've had it for a while but it seems just when it's nearing the top of the build queue, something comes along and bumps it down. I got 8 new kits at NARCON so I'd better start on this before I open up one of those and bump this back down.

It looks like I'll need to build 2 orbiters. One stock one to get the balance point and one detailed one for later.

I'll have to ask Foose what weight cardstock he used for the orbiter. I think lighter 65lb stock would be better than 110lb stock. And since the wings are covered on both sides with label paper, I wonder if I could get away with thinner balsa or at least contest weight balsa.

I use 65 lb. for the nose and payload bay. I'm pretty sure that is what the kit uses. Zooch already supplies a bottom wing skin(photo of the actual shuttle) on the stock version which is printed on what looks to be 65 lb stock. It gets glued to the bottom of the wing. I still haven't figured out how a layer of sticker paper on the top and bottom of the wing outweighs the stock 65 lb bottom laminate, glue, and paint(top of wing), but somehow it does. The OMS pods are little more involved, but I can't see that attributing all that much. During one of my experiments, I went so far as to make a wing frame with a skin as opposed to solid balsa, but I didn't see any drastic change in performance either way. Whatever the case, if you think you can save a gram or two, it might not be a bad idea. It only takes that much in the nose to bring it back to the proper balance, but less weight overall will only help your glide times. Since this is a sport flier I'm not concerned over a couple of seconds lost. It still does pretty well with the BobH skins.;)
 

luke strawwalker

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Luke- when you go to build that second orbiter, le'me know and I'll send you the few parts that are hard to get (nylon screw, nose button etc.)

Nice looking' build- now don't be a squirmin' hatch blower... go out and FLY IT! :D
Hey, I'd really appreciate that! Soon as I get her trimmed and the weather cooperates, I'll put her up! I'll take plenty pics and put em up here when I'm done... I just LOVE that new Fuji Finepix S2000HD and it's 13.5 frames/sec burst mode... got a couple guys in the club wanting to get one now!

I've also been thinking about something else to go along with this build, something related to some stuff I've read over in www.nasaspaceflight.com/forums by Dennis Wingo that's got me thinking... :D

I bet I have enough spare balsa lying around to do it... :)

Later! OL JR :)
 

foose4string

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JR that turned out great! You did a much better job documenting this build than I ever could. Look forward to your flight report.
 

luke strawwalker

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Good job on the shuttle.

Now I want to build mine. I've had it for a while but it seems just when it's nearing the top of the build queue, something comes along and bumps it down. I got 8 new kits at NARCON so I'd better start on this before I open up one of those and bump this back down.

It looks like I'll need to build 2 orbiters. One stock one to get the balance point and one detailed one for later.

I'll have to ask Foose what weight cardstock he used for the orbiter. I think lighter 65lb stock would be better than 110lb stock. And since the wings are covered on both sides with label paper, I wonder if I could get away with thinner balsa or at least contest weight balsa.

Interesting points Bob... I'm sort of a 'battleship builder' and so I probably did a little overkill-- gluing the paper templates to the bulkheads, a little extra glue, etc. I hardened the wings with CA before installing the bottom wrap. I'd recommend doing this BEFORE gluing on the upper payload bay section and stuff, as any drips of CA will make 'transparent spots' in your wraps! (Lesson learned). Also I wouldn't exactly recommend the battleship build on this, as it really isn't necessary when you think about it... if it crashes bad enough to smash it up, an extra layer of glue won't help, and the extra weight makes the crash more likely, and probably more damaging because of the added weight and therefore inertia... Lesson #2 learned :) One thing that I WOULD recommend is gluing the paper on the 'tailhook' assembly for the trim screw and the 'elevator elastic hook'. That part can use a little beefing up to prevent cracking across the grain, and it's so small that a little extra paper and CA won't hurt anything.

Other than that... I'll let the masters speak... :D OL JR :)
 

luke strawwalker

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JR that turned out great! You did a much better job documenting this build than I ever could. Look forward to your flight report.
Thanks Craig! I hope we can get the discussion going about this kit, and that others will join in and chip in questions, experience, and advice, as I learn a TON from you guys! Thanks for the compliment on the writing... I've sorta 'inherited' writing up the club activities and doing the photos during the launches for our section, Challenger 498. I cross post the stuff from our monthly launches here on the farm in the 'events' section and link the pics on our yahoo group page.

I'm looking forward to flying her. Probably be this weekend at the earliest though... :) OL JR :)

PS... How did I come out on the weights?? Heavy?? I'm just kinda curious to know what these things SHOULD weigh, so I can factor that in to my own reckoning of how I'm doing and where I should improve... TIA!
 

mjennings

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My orbiter needs full elevator to glide. Your stack looks good, that 13.5 fps should get you some good picks, I usually only get sitting on the pad and smoke trail with my cameras.
 

Fred22

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Awesome shuttle Luke :) I like the colour scheme and the quality of the thread with its written and pictoral details were great. Cant wait to see it fly :) :)
Cheers
Fred
 

luke strawwalker

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My orbiter needs full elevator to glide. Your stack looks good, that 13.5 fps should get you some good picks, I usually only get sitting on the pad and smoke trail with my cameras.

Hmmm... full elevator as in the screw nearly all the way OUT?? (full UP elevator I presume) Sounds noseheavy but it glides well?? Interesting...

I found myself falling back to my experience set and turning it in 1 1/2 turns from full out, like you would when starting a lawnmower motor after a rebuild of the carbuerator... start rich and lean it back til it misses, then give it an extra half-turn to richen the mixture... (at least in the old days before the 'green' non-adjustable carbs that either run right or you junk them)

Anyway, yes I know that don't work with a shuttle, but it's as good a place as any to start I suppose... LOL:)

I was just amazed at how little deflection of the rear elevator was present in this pic that Foose put up, and I'd LOVE to get his input on this...

Discovery-Wrap-rear.jpg

I hope Foose will check in on this and tell us if this was just the finished build pic or if the glider had actually been trimmed at this point.

I REALLY like the thin round elastic too... and mounting it through the holes for easy replacement. Looks neat (and lighter) :)

Later! OL JR :)
 

foose4string

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JR, that shuttle is trimmed and has flown a few times. That pic shows it as flight ready.;)

Remember, I was adjusting nose weight before the cockpit was actually glued on. I was trying to add as little trim weight as possible to the nose, but just enough to get 'er going. I didn't want the glider to take on any more weight than it had to with those wraps. Being stingy on nose weight meant very little deflection was needed in the rear. I was trying to create minimal drag and optimal lift with what I had. I figured less brake in the rear would give me a bit more wing area and more speed. Good things to have when trying to stay in the air! Seems like it worked out ok.:)
 
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rosko_racer

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...One thing I noticed is, on the right side of the orbiter, the flag is backwards :D That's actually kind of funny to me, anyway... :) ...
Luke:

The flag on the right side of the Orbiter is facing the right way. The stars will always face into the wind as it hits the flag. Think of it as one running with the flag on a pole. At least that is the explanation that was given to me when I was in the Nat Guard and we started using the U.S. Flag on the right shoulder of our uniforms. This way it makes sense.

BTW your Orbiter is comming out very nice, I am even thinking of pulling out mine ahead of the building q....
 

foose4string

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Yeah the flag looks ok to me. What's glaring at me is the black wings on my Discovery! As mjennings pointed out earlier in the thread, the black on the top of the wings is only present on the Columbia. I honestly never noticed that before and didn't change it when I was altering Bob's wraps. I have corrected this on the Atlantis so far and need to change the others.
 

luke strawwalker

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JR, that shuttle is trimmed and has flown a few times. That pic shows it as flight ready.;)

Remember, I was adjusting nose weight before the cockpit was actually glued on. I was trying to add as little trim weight as possible to the nose, but just enough to get 'er going. I didn't want the glider to take on any more weight than it had to with those wraps. Being stingy on nose weight meant very little deflection was needed in the rear. I was trying to create minimal drag and optimal lift with what I had. I figured less brake in the rear would give me a bit more wing area and more speed. Good things to have when trying to stay in the air! Seems like it worked out ok.:)

I agree... I'd say by looking at the aerodynamics of the thing that you succeeded quite well, and when Dr. Zooch says yours outglides his, well, that's all the endorsement I need... I'd love to see what a REALLY optimized Zooch orbiter can do on a glide...

You certainly have the right paradigm... the least weight possible and lowest deflection on the elevator to reduce angle of attack to the minimum needed to keep the nose up for a stable glide yet reduce drag to the minimum...

Very cool! OL JR :)
 

luke strawwalker

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Luke:

The flag on the right side of the Orbiter is facing the right way. The stars will always face into the wind as it hits the flag. Think of it as one running with the flag on a pole. At least that is the explanation that was given to me when I was in the Nat Guard and we started using the U.S. Flag on the right shoulder of our uniforms. This way it makes sense.

BTW your Orbiter is comming out very nice, I am even thinking of pulling out mine ahead of the building q....

Ah, ok, my bad... :) Just looks funny that way...

Least they aren't upside-down... (yet... but thats a political discussion not germane to the discussion so I'll shut up now LOL:))

Thanks for the clarification and info, rosco!

Later! OL JR :)
 

luke strawwalker

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Yeah the flag looks ok to me. What's glaring at me is the black wings on my Discovery! As mjennings pointed out earlier in the thread, the black on the top of the wings is only present on the Columbia. I honestly never noticed that before and didn't change it when I was altering Bob's wraps. I have corrected this on the Atlantis so far and need to change the others.
Really??? I never noticed that EITHER!!! I even looked up the shuttle in my copy of ROTW to get the 'proportions' about right when I hand painted it on! I think that it's Discovery or one of the other block II orbiters in the drawings in ROTW and it had the black stripes...

Time for another Supplement!!!! (are you reading this Peter?? LOL:)

They do look cool though... OL JR :)
 

Dr.Zooch

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My orbiter needs full elevator to glide.
That's not right-:eek: you could probably remove some nose weight. Most of these need only slight nose-up to glide. Of course that's a "shuttle style" "Glide" Now if you're looking for the Estes long distance glide... well a bit more nose up elevator- but not Full Up.
 

Dr.Zooch

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So- you wanna inspire conversation eh? Well, here's a series of images of the orbiter deploy that some of you may not have seen...

Trf001.jpg


Trf002.jpg


Trf003.jpg


Trf004.jpg


Trf005.jpg
 

Dr.Zooch

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This one I call my in-fright series...

When I originally ran these on the old TRF I got a PM that said "From someone who flies the real thing, I find the third image a bit frightening."

000trfRR1.jpg


000trfRR2.jpg


000trfRR3.jpg
 

foose4string

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I agree... I'd say by looking at the aerodynamics of the thing that you succeeded quite well, and when Dr. Zooch says yours outglides his, well, that's all the endorsement I need... I'd love to see what a REALLY optimized Zooch orbiter can do on a glide...

You certainly have the right paradigm... the least weight possible and lowest deflection on the elevator to reduce angle of attack to the minimum needed to keep the nose up for a stable glide yet reduce drag to the minimum...

Very cool! OL JR :)
I'd say Wes' shuttles are about as optimized as it gets. He builds 'em ultra light with minimal amount of finishing and gets some respectable glide times when you consider the subject matter. His usually make wide circles around the field in a "glider" sort of way. On the other hand, mine usually head into the wind and continue on straight line for most of the duration. Not quite as lazy in the air and with a more direct, speedy, approach. Major scale points.:D
 

DM1975

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This one I call my in-fright series...

When I originally ran these on the old TRF I got a PM that said "From someone who flies the real thing, I find the third image a bit frightening."
:eek:

I have to get one of these, in fact I have to get SEVERAL of your kits (including your Saturn models which I think are just dead sexy). I have been meaning to for a while now but just have not gotten around to it.
 

Fred22

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Even woth a mediiocre finsih like mine they look great in flight :) I built mine stock and it glided great :)

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foose4string

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Those are great shots of the orbiter in flight, Fred! I haven't managed to get any good close ups of that little bugger in flight. I have few decent boost shots though. After some minor protest about it not having clear fins by a forum member or two, I took a few liberties with the last photo.:)

Shuttle-liftoff!.jpg


Zooch-shuttle-flight.jpg


STS-114-shuttle-flight.jpg


flame-fins-ps.jpg
 

Fred22

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Come on Foose hers the real deal taken by one of our many mod operatives of your super secret missile base :)
(This is a joke and the good doctors supplies proper instruction on how to build great flame fins for the kit. Do not build or fly the kit without fins because this would mean you need a hockey helmet so you dont chew your own ear off. Thus ends the disclaimer :) )

STS-114-shuttle-flight.jpg
 
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