Build: Orlik Wright Flyer I, 1:25

Discussion in 'Aircraft & Aviation' started by rlwhitt, Nov 16, 2007.

  1. rlwhitt

    rlwhitt Active Member

    My next attempt will be going to the roots of aviation, the Wright Flyer I from Orlik. I did a first impression of this kit a while back, where there are some pictures of parts and instruction pages, plus some commentary. You can view the First Impression here:

    This one will certainly NOT be an easy build and I'm going to have to get my mind adjusted, and try to bring my 'A' game! :) It has a lot of very thin parts, lots of rigging, and just an altogether different construction than most kits. It will be a real challange!

    Attached Files:

  2. rlwhitt

    rlwhitt Active Member

    Laser Cut parts

    I just cannot even imagine laminating all the wing ribs, spars, and other little thin bits and cutting them all out. Thus I would consider this laser cut parts kit a MUST! It costs as much as the kit, but well worth it in my opinion!

    Attached Files:

  3. rlwhitt

    rlwhitt Active Member

    The plane's construction starts with the wings. Not surprising, since this plane is pretty much all wing!

    The first thing you have to do is build a wing jig, using supplied templates laminated to 2mm cardboard and attached to a base. Upon this jig all the wing ribs and spars will be constructed and reinforced with CA, then the skins applied. The jig will form and hold the "sag" shape to the wings.

    Here is the completed jig with one lonely, wispy rib sitting there for illustration.

    Attached Files:

  4. Texman

    Texman Guest

    You are a brave, determined man indeed. Always wanted to do one of these in 1/144. Could prove most fascinating. Hope this goes well for you!

  5. josve

    josve Active Member

    It's in builds like that we say.....thank god for laserframes :)
    I'm sure you will do an exellent job on that plane Rick!!
  6. rlwhitt

    rlwhitt Active Member

    Some meager progress to show. I've started on the upper wing. Actually, the wings are identical except for the bits printed on the upper vs lower skins where miscellaneous parts mate later. I found the first real error in the drawings here, they have the skin sets numbered backwards in the drawing.

    First picture is an attempt to capture a shot of the full wing skeleton resting on the jig. Actually, it's not resting - I actually spot glued the main spar in several places and the leading edge spar at the tips to keep things steady and aligned while the ribs were installed.

    The second shot is a view midsection from the front. I used thick CA with accelerator to glue in the ribs. Once it was all built I carefully cut loose the glue spots holding it to the jig and painted thin CA with a brush applicator on the spars. Even with this step, the frame is VERY flimsy! It's obvious that the main strength will come from the skins!

    The 3rd pic is of the center section skin glued to the bottom of the ribs. One addition I made here was to apply a thin bond paper glue strip to the back of the skin first, as the butt joints occur right over these tiny 1/2mm ribs - they REALLY need the glue strips! As you see I also drew "rib lines" on the back of the skin for alignment. The leading edge is such a sharp, small curve I went ahead and sort of scored it from the backside with the ball end of my scoring tool. Not a sharpe score, but it makes the bend easier.

    Picture 4 shows that I have tapered the back ends of the ribs with an emory board, so it will make the transition at the trailing edge of the skin smoother.

    Finally, the 5th picture shows the finished middle section in place.

    Attached Files:

  7. cgutzmer

    cgutzmer Guest

    holy ceeeeerap! I can barely get 10 ribs to line up well...... excellent work! If you build that monster wing without warping tell me the secret!
  8. rlwhitt

    rlwhitt Active Member

    Well, there's too far to go to count any chickens, but my plan is to put on a section at a time and return it to the jig with some weight on top until it dries. I think that's the only chance of getting it straight!

  9. NYC Irish

    NYC Irish Member

    Threads like this make you realise how really cool Paper Models are

    John John
  10. milenio3

    milenio3 Active Member

    RICK, you excel yourself here!!!

    Congratulations on this fine fine plane!

    It looks that is a model you can actually fly - at least as a glider -.
  11. Mark_1984

    Mark_1984 Guest

    This looks like a totally awesome build Rick. I shall be watching with interest. I've got a 1/16 Hasegawa kit at home somewhere, and that is scarry enough. But in paper..... you're a braver man than I ;)
  12. rlwhitt

    rlwhitt Active Member

    Finally, the upper wing is complete. It did not turn out as well as I'd hoped, but this is a frightfully hard covering job! The ribs supply NO structural support at all, so the old habits of anchoring an edge and pulling the skin taught around nice solid framework just don't apply here! Still, it'll be OK, and I've got another chance to do better with the bottom!

    Here is a top view showing a bit of the downward curve aspect, and a look at the bottom where the various strut anchoring plates go.

    Attached Files:

  13. rlwhitt

    rlwhitt Active Member

    On to the bottom wing, and what do we find? Yep, another major goof in the kit. Look at the picture and see if you can detect the problem. Ah yes, the center skin is printed with the mounting point outlines for the engine and hip cradle BACKWARDS! Ugh..

    So it looks like I'll have to use a scanned replacement and modify it in Photoshop. Too bad it has these diagonal seams. If not for those I could just flip it! As it is, the bits will have to be moved around manually. And then print about 1000 trials to get the color somewhere close. Another option could have been to physically cut the parts out and swap them with cuts from the other side - but that diagonal seam goes right through there!

    I wished I'd noticed this before starting - I would have done all the skins from scans.

    Attached Files:

  14. Elliott

    Elliott Senior Member

    The upper wing looks good here, Rick. No doubts here about your ability to fix the bottom wing either. Two things Ive learned on your builds and others is 1) Check and build everything in my mind, then dryfit and 2) repeat step 1. Also, it helps to have an infinite amount of patience. :smile: Looking forward to more of your excellent work.

  15. Stev0

    Stev0 Active Member

    This is definitely one of those projects that would separate the men from the boys.... =O
  16. rlwhitt

    rlwhitt Active Member

    Done with the bottom wing. Good news is it went together nicer than the top and came out a bit neater and straighter in the end. Bad news is the awful patch job I had to do to get rid of the gray marks for mounting the motor and hip cradle. As I mentioned in the previous posting, they are printed backwards! I must have tried dozens of scan/print variations and this was the best of the lot. Quite ugly. :( Luckily the thing will be full of wires and propeller shafts and may be obscured a little.

    Attached Files:

  17. rlwhitt

    rlwhitt Active Member

    Struts - Joining the Wings

    Next step is going to prove to be the most tedious stage of this model, I think. The 2 wings are attached with 18 "struts" between them. Below is a picture of a few of the "wood" wrapping pieces and the laser cut inner part (0.5mm thick). The wood grain is printed on thin bond type paper and wraps around the core.

    The other picture is the figure that shows how each end of the struts is made. A shaped plate glues to the wing and holds a piece of wire attached to the end of the strut with thread, and also 2 wire "hooks", that will serve as belaying points for the rigging lines. Alas, there are 36 of these bad boys. It's gonna take a little while... :)

    Attached Files:

  18. Gil

    Gil Active Member


    Suggest you put Orville or Wilbur in the prone pilot position over the "splotch"...,

    An inter-plane holding jig will remove most of the "stress & angst" involved in this assembly step.

  19. rlwhitt

    rlwhitt Active Member

    On that note, does anyone know where I can get a 1:25 prone pilot? I was wanting to put one in here anywhat, though I think I'd better put him on the correct side! :)

    And as for the jig, that will be a requirement for this one for sure! Maybe even until all the main rigging is in place.

  20. In spite of the problems it is looking good. But I know from experience a photo cna be forgiving. But Keep it up. On the ribs not supporting anything. I know you didn't want to cut out all those ribs but did you consider maybe using matt board? I use it all the time and it is relatively easy to cut and makes great ribs and formers. Just a suggestion. Keep up the good work.

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