Ranking of Kits

soyuppy
Member
Member
Posts: 84
Joined: September 18th, 2015, 12:08 am

Ranking of Kits

Postby soyuppy » August 10th, 2016, 10:07 pm

Wright Stuff will be coming Div B this coming school year, 2016-1017. Since this is fresh of Div C, this is a better place to ask this question.

Does anyone have sense of competitiveness that the kits available from various providers, like Freedom or AMA, provide? How good are these kits? The last 2 year at Div C National, does anyone know the top contenders use the kits? which one?

retired1
Member
Member
Posts: 673
Joined: July 25th, 2012, 5:04 pm
Division: Grad
State: FL

Re: Ranking of Kits

Postby retired1 » August 11th, 2016, 8:18 am

A high percentage used the freedom flight kit. Some people used it with their modifications. Some people used variations of older models.
No kit will win. It is the student that builds correctly and then practices a great amount. This way they learn the minor differences in their craft that make a large difference in flight times.

User avatar
Zioly
Member
Member
Posts: 152
Joined: April 17th, 2016, 4:50 pm
Division: B
State: WA

Re: Ranking of Kits

Postby Zioly » August 11th, 2016, 10:17 am

A high percentage used the freedom flight kit. Some people used it with their modifications. Some people used variations of older models.
No kit will win. It is the student that builds correctly and then practices a great amount. This way they learn the minor differences in their craft that make a large difference in flight times.
But wouldn't the availability and quality of materials have the same, if not larger impact on flight times? I mean, even if a build is engineered to perfection, if it's made from cardboard, it's not going to perform to its fullest potential.
Bottle Rockets: 5th
Ecology: 9th
Hovercraft: 14th
Scrambler: 29th (with a failed run too  ;))
Mousetrap Vehicle
Hovercraft
Ecology
Experimental Design (or other inquiry :P)

...Yes, my profile picture is G2 apEX at the PGL Major Qual.  :lol:

retired1
Member
Member
Posts: 673
Joined: July 25th, 2012, 5:04 pm
Division: Grad
State: FL

Re: Ranking of Kits

Postby retired1 » August 11th, 2016, 12:09 pm

The question was kits. I can speak to the normally high quality of Freedom Flight kits as I have used their kits for over 6 years. They are also flight proven before being sold as a kit. Most people, but not all, do not have the time or resources to find perfect wood.
I have seen their kits do extremely well and some do terribly bad. Teams that are building airplanes for the first time without a somewhat experienced builder to guide them, normally do not do well.
Assuming a reasonable airplane, the winners will normally expend a good bit of flying to tweak their bird.
Dave has one bit of instruction that is not well followed--Read all of the instructions before you start building.
He also says that the difference between an OK flight and a winner is experimenting with tiny changes.
The one very good non kitted airplane design and instructions was pulled from the internet. I heard that it was by the family of the deceased author.

I had to giggle at a video of building a glider by one of the best glider competitors in the US had to glue his dihedral break 3 times.

soyuppy
Member
Member
Posts: 84
Joined: September 18th, 2015, 12:08 am

Re: Ranking of Kits

Postby soyuppy » August 11th, 2016, 1:26 pm

A high percentage used the freedom flight kit. Some people used it with their modifications. Some people used variations of older models.
No kit will win. It is the student that builds correctly and then practices a great amount. This way they learn the minor differences in their craft that make a large difference in flight times.
Thanks for the info. Yes, assumption it's not the kit that win it's how the kit put together and test. I thought that was given. But the kit does provide the quality of the wood with precision laser cut along with step by step instruction. And I asked here to see if anyone has difference opinion/experience with the various kits out there.

retired1
Member
Member
Posts: 673
Joined: July 25th, 2012, 5:04 pm
Division: Grad
State: FL

Re: Ranking of Kits

Postby retired1 » August 11th, 2016, 2:09 pm

Laser cut LLC does a nice job of cutting. Their WS plane looks a bit simple, but probably is easier to assemble. No idea of wood quality, but since he is near a good source of wood, I would expect it to be good.

Struck out at Turner toys. For some reason, I do not think that they had a kit last year.

Personal experience-I would avoid Wards even tho they are the Official supplier for SO.

If you are going to build a plane, I would strongly suggest that you read the Chuck Marcos article. It is a good additive to any kit that you buy.

User avatar
daydreamer0023
Member
Member
Posts: 195
Joined: January 29th, 2015, 5:44 pm
Division: Grad
Location: I have no idea where I am, but I can tell you exactly how fast I'm going ;)

Re: Ranking of Kits

Postby daydreamer0023 » August 11th, 2016, 3:41 pm

Just to put my two cents in, I definitely second what everyone here has said. Go for the Freedom Flight Kits that Dave makes. He does a great job with them and the material quality is great. It's a great starting point for beginners and the instructions packet has GREAT pieces of information if you take the time to read through it. Also read Jeff Anderson's article, I think it's on the Wright Stuff page on the Science Olympiad website last I checked.

No matter what though, practice and learn to fly your plane right. From what I've found, even if you build the most wonderful plane, only meticulous trimming will get you the times you want. You simply HAVE to take the time to trim the plane, there's no way around it. As always, have a repair kit handy. I can't even count the number of times I've managed to break something on my plane.

I've used an unaltered Freedom Flight Kit last year and it did great for me - my partner and I medaled in the top three in both regionals and states. However, I have seen many people use the same kit with not so great results. The only difference was how I trimmed the plane.

Speaking of top nationals placers in the event, judging by the looks of the picture, the top plane was a relatively unaltered Freedom Flight Model with two dimes (don't know if they have a dime bonus this year). I saw DoctaDave's plane, another top flyer, which had a parabolic carbon fiber wing with a custom propeller and a special device for holding the three dimes. It looked phenomenal to say the least (and terrified me as a first time Nationals competitor and first time competitor in any build event), but he did emphasize the fact about how it DOES NOT MATTER what plane you use, but how you trim it.

Hope this helps!
"I am among those who think that science has great beauty. A scientist in his laboratory is not only a technician: he is also a child placed before natural phenomena which impress him like a fairy tale." - Marie Curie

jander14indoor
Member
Member
Posts: 1559
Joined: April 30th, 2007, 7:54 am

Re: Ranking of Kits

Postby jander14indoor » August 12th, 2016, 3:41 am

I'll qualify the "it does not matter" which plane you use. But only a little.
It MUST be at or near minimum weight.
Any reasonable design can win. BY reasonable, I mean near, but not over maximum size, good moments tail to wing, proper propeller selection. That's why planes with high times tend to look similar. Aerodynamics only allows so much variation
You need to learn to build accurately and neatly, don't expect to be a winner with one plane.
But I'll agree with the others, PRACTICE LOTS. In addition to correct trimming, proper match between rubber and prop is essential!
Hint, the whole point of the log is to get the message across that this event is NOT about designing a plane, its about TESTING and MODIFYING (trimming) a plane.
Comment on wood. Yes Freedom Flight provides good wood. YOU CAN FIND BETTER with a little effort. You just need time and to know what to look for. Check the archives for discussions on that subject.
And ANYONE can cut accurate ribs. There is nothing magic about laser cut. A simple jig will do just as well. Again, check the archives on the subject.

Jeff Anderson
Livonia, MI


Return to “Wright Stuff C”

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: No registered users and 1 guest