NCR X-Wing Fighter

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MartinVrstal

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This is next in line of my North Coast kits to build. Who's built this kit and what should I look for or do to build a flyable rocket.

Do I trim the wing joiners to match the diagram although the diagram is a little off with wing support plexi pieces?

Any thoughts or comments are appreciated.
 

James Duffy

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This is next in line of my North Coast kits to build. Who's built this kit and what should I look for or do to build a flyable rocket.

Do I trim the wing joiners to match the diagram although the diagram is a little off with wing support plexi pieces?

Any thoughts or comments are appreciated.
I built the NCR X-wing just over a decade ago, and I don't recall any problems with the fit of the wing/plexi fin joints. In fact, that was the most fun I've ever had building from a kit. Once construction was complete I went nuts weathering the model to make it appear old, beat up, and "accurate." Here's a pic:

https://www.ninfinger.org/models/html_pix/xwing.html

Suggestion: ditch the supplied stick-on markings, and go the mask & paint route instead. The X-wing markings are simple enough, and the results will be much nicer.

James
____________________
James Duffy
jduffy@mac.com
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jadebox

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This is next in line of my North Coast kits to build. Who's built this kit and what should I look for or do to build a flyable rocket.

Do I trim the wing joiners to match the diagram although the diagram is a little off with wing support plexi pieces?

Any thoughts or comments are appreciated.

I don't recall any problems with that.

The only recommendation I would make is to beef up the strut that runs to the front of the nose. The rocket lands nose first and with all that nose weight, it's very easy for the nose to snap off. Even after I beefed up the nose of my second X-Wing, I had to repair it a couple of times.

I'd also sggest that you consider making so that it comes down horizontally rather than nose first - again to protect the nose.

On my second X-Wing, I glued additional strips of hard wood to the sides of the strut and attached a loop of wire that extended out the top of the fuselage near the nose. This allowed me to rig the recovery system so the rocket came down horizontally.



Be sure not to launch the rocket if the wind is too high. Here's what happens if the rocket weathercocks too much and the 'chute ejects when it's moving too fast:



I'm on my third NCR X-Wing. The first was the one pictured immediately above. It unkitted on its first flight.

The second one is the one I modified with the harness and beefed up fuselage. I flew it about a dozen times on Aerotech G motors and only repaired it a couple of times. I found that it flies best on something with a kick like a G77.

I retired the second one last year after a rough landing broke it one more time. I decided I didn't have enough epoxy to fix it this time.

The third one is still in the box in my build queue. It is really a fun kit to build and it looks terrific in flight.

-- Roger
 

jadebox

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Oh, a couple more unsolicited tips ....

Be sure to pack the parachute and shock cord as described in the instructions. They must be wrapped back and forth, not around the pod. If you wrap them around the pod, the 'chute won't deploy and that ain't good.

Also, you can leave the "laser cannons" on for flight. It looks better with them. You probably won't loose any, but one our more will likely get damaged. Usually just one of the tubes gets bent. They aren't hard to fix. I just straightened out the tube and spread a little wood glue over the damaged area. After the glue dried, I sanded the tube then touched it up with some white paint.

-- Roger
 

jadebox

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OH!!!! And, definitely, replace the motor tube with a standard size one. But, I suspect you knew that since you
have built other NCR kits. :)

-- Roger
 

MartinVrstal

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Roger...thanks for the info. Your one of the guys I was hoping to hear from...I've been to your build site (payload bay) numerous times.

So did you switch from kevlar to wire on the center spar for a horizontal landing...reasons for that?
 

jadebox

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Roger...thanks for the info. Your one of the guys I was hoping to hear from...I've been to your build site (payload bay) numerous times.

So did you switch from kevlar to wire on the center spar for a horizontal landing...reasons for that?
The first time I tried it with the Kevlar, the string broke. So, when I later had to repair the nose, I used a wire and that worked pretty well.

I didn't look very good, though, so, next time, I might get fancy and mount a t-nut or something near the nose so I can detach the harness for display.

I was worried the wire might catch on the wings or another part and damage the rocket, but, in six or seven flights with that rig, it never happened.

I've thought of a few more things ...

I bought a Top Flight thin-mil 'chute that packed a little tighter than the original 'chute which I think made deployment more reliable. But, it was a challenge to pack because the thin-mil stuff is slippery. I think you can find something better to use for the shock cord, too - something that would be as strong but pack in a tighter space.

Also, I recall having a problem filling the gaps between the plastic pieces when building my first one. I don't recall what I was trying to use. For the second one, I used Squadron Green Putty (I think it is recommended in the instructions) and it worked well.

I couldn't find anything that worked very well at gluing the plastic trim parts to the wood parts. I ended up using epoxy. Some trim pieces would come off, but only when the rocket landed. So they were easy to find and easy to glue back on.

Wow ... I'm making this rocket sound like the Ford Pinto I drove (and repaired daily) when I was in high school. :)

-- Roger
 

MartinVrstal

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Here's what I've accomplished today. Wings sanded to 400 with a coat of sanding sealer and again sanded to 400 grit. I did trim the wing joiners(small plywood pieces) to the size on the diagram. Not sure if I should have or not...We'll findout I guess.

Wing joiners tacked with ca, with 30 min epoxy fillets....small ones. Upper and lower wings attached together.Fuselage tube was marked with top,lug, center and wing lines and bulkheads were epoxied together and inserted. Gorilla cable attached and bulkhead rings epoxied to fuselage tube.

I haven't epoxied the wings on yet...just a dry fit for now. It does look like my trimming of the wing joiners has made my wings not exactly across from each other, just a little off...oh well.

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stickershock23

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I

https://www.ninfinger.org/models/html_pix/xwing.html

Suggestion: ditch the supplied stick-on markings, and go the mask & paint route instead. The X-wing markings are simple enough, and the results will be much nicer.

WOW Very nice job. And it looks like a really fun kit to build and fly. But I'd be scared to fly one if I had it. just because it seems so fragile!

Would anyone be interested in a set of vinyl decals for this kit? I could definitely whip up a set if you needed them!

Keep posting on the build, I am very interested in how it goes together!
 

MartinVrstal

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I wasn't happy with the way the wing/wing joiners turned out. I severed the epoxy joints on the top side of each joiner and added a spacer piece to fill in what I had removed originally. A dry fit showed that my wings were back in alignment with each other. I let the wings dry over night.

Today I epoxied the wings on with fillets all around. Also started the task of cutting out the plastic body halves.

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EMRR

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When you build this, please consider taking as many pics and document as possible for an EMRR article. All we have is this excerpt from a Sport Rocketry issue.

HERE

Nick
 

jadebox

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WOW Very nice job. And it looks like a really fun kit to build and fly. But I'd be scared to fly one if I had it. just because it seems so fragile!
It's a model with a lot of nose weight and a bunch of plastic details attached. So, it is a bit fragile. At the same time, though, it's rather beefy with thick plywood wings and a wooden framework under the formed plastic shell.

Over all, though, it's definitely one of the coolest kits I ever built and flew. It's really fun to build and always attracts attention at launches.

-- Roger
 

MartinVrstal

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When you build this, please consider taking as many pics and document as possible for an EMRR article. All we have is this excerpt from a Sport Rocketry issue.

HERE

Nick
Sure Nick...I'd be glad to help out. Theres just not much anywhere about this X-wing model.
 

rrobe99999

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I hope to build another X-Wing one day if I can get my hands on a kit. The C-powered X-wing was my 1st rocket 30 years ago. The Maxi-Brute X-wing looks like the same size as NCR but is D-powered. However, it has the extra fins on the back which are omitted from the NCR kit. Does anyone know what the differences are that require the Maxi-Brute to have the extra fins for stability? Could a Maxi-Brute X-wing be built W/ 29mm MM and be stable W/O the extra fins? Also the Maxi-Brute has NC deployment instead of rear. Was one version an improvement over the other?
 

dpower

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...Was one version an improvement over the other?
I'd appreciate an answer to this too - I have a built maxi x-wing, never flown. There are sparse launch reports of a maxi, I was thinking of using the largest thin-mil chute I can pack, add horizontal recovery, and using an E15 or E18. From your assembly pics, I can see that the maxi is *much* more fragile.

In any case, thanks for the build thread!
 

MartinVrstal

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Hey Paul...thanks for checking out my build thread. I can't help you on the Maxi vs NCR X-wing, all I have is the smaller model #1298....also never flown.

My question for the day is...How much do I need to trim off the aft end of the plastic body parts to match up with the plastic ring that mounts onto the 2.5 body tube? I'm thinking that it needs to be flush and I need to trim some more off.


Also...has anybody ever contemplated converting this into a front ejection model like the maxi and smaller X-wing versions?

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troj

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What's the going rate on the NCR X-Wing these days? I have one new, unopened in the box, along with another one that's 95% complete. I'd be willing to part with both, provided it's worthwhile.

-Kevin
 

rrobe99999

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Troj, the un-opened X-wing will go for over $150 on eBay. Unfortunately (for a buyer who wants to fly) this is a Star Wars collectible, not just a rocket. You should go ahead and finish the other one, and it would probably appeal to a Star Wars collector as well (depending on how good it looks). I wish someone would make some molds from the plastic parts and offer a clone kit at a reasonable price.
 

MartinVrstal

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A lot of work has happened over the past few days. Here's an update.

I figured out that all the plastic has to be trimmed away from the aft so it will fit properly. These photos shows what needs to be trimmed out for the wing on the top and bottom body pieces.

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MartinVrstal

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The fuselage formers are epoxied to the center rib. Also the front launch lug stand off is attached. This all gets epoxied to the bottom fuselage.

The nose weight is added.

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MartinVrstal

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The wing assembly is then epoxied to the bottom fuselage...no photo. Once that is dry flip it over and epoxy the top to the bottom with the help of some clamps and plenty of rubber bands.


Next you have to make up some wing fill in pieces from leftover plastic.

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MartinVrstal

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I've assembled the Ion Engine tubes and cut out the vac-form wraps.

Just a shot of some green putty drying.

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troj

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I wish someone would make some molds from the plastic parts and offer a clone kit at a reasonable price.
Are you interested in one? If so, I'll make you a good deal on the opened one. Some minor initial assembly has been done, and four pieces were so badly warped that they need to be replaced. They're thin plywood, so cutting new ones would not be an issue, and I do believe I have the originals, which can be used as templates.

I originally acquired the second one just to use it for templates for the first, but never got around to it.

If you (or anyone else) is interested, contact me privately. I'd like to see at least one of them go to someone who wants to fly the thing.

-Kevin
 

jadebox

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Troj, the un-opened X-wing will go for over $150 on eBay.
That ($150) is about what I paid for each of the kits I've bought over the past few years. I don't think that's too bad. I suspect that if someone were able to produce a new kit, it would probably have to sell for about that much.

-- Roger
 

MartinVrstal

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Ion Engine and afterburners fully assembled.

Wing saddles are epoxied to the wings.

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MartinVrstal

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I ended up with small spaces between the plastic wing saddles and the plastic fuselage. I masked the area out and filled the gaps with J-B Weld.
 

MartinVrstal

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Next up was to epoxy the Ion engines to the wing saddles. Then the laser cannon tubes.

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MartinVrstal

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I didn't forget the front lug. The motor mount is about the end of construction.

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MartinVrstal

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This has been a really fun build. I haven't done much with vac-form pieces in a while. Up next will be some final sanding then start in on painting.

Can't forget R2.

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