Monday, January 21, 2008

Plans for Vintage HLG or "Old Timer" Chuck Glider

This photo is of a hand launched glider designed in the 1930s by Syd Wallerstein. It qualifies as "Vintage" according to SAM rules. While pretty, the fuselage is heavy pine and so it flies like an overweight hippo. My best flight with it is 55s, which is pretty poor for a 22" span glider. This "fat boy" weighs in at around 50g. The streamer on the nose is an experimental dropping ribbon DT (which actually worked fairly well).

I'm going to re-use the wings on another vintage glider. The chosen design is also from the 1930s and is by Peter Bowers. I guess he is the same aviator who according to Wikipedia went on to work for Boeing and design the Fly Baby homebuilt aeroplane.

I have no idea how the Bowers 20" HLG will fly, but it is an attractive build for various reasons. First, it is the earliest polyhedral HLG that I'm aware of. Second, it seems to be the very early work of Bowers as a young man (possibly while a teenager) before he went on to become such an accomplished pilot and aeroplane designer. Third, the use of silk on the wing joints is interesting and I have a bit of orange silk knocking around.

The tail moment looks a bit short by modern standards and consequently, the tail feathers have a comparatively large area. It should be fun.

Wings of the Wallerstein cut off, reshaped and then sliced into sections, ready for joining into a Bowers wing. One of the advantages of cutting a wing is that you are able to see the aerofoil cross section. In this case, it was clear that more sanding work was required. You may be able to see that I've avoided the high point line.

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