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Post  Kim Sat Oct 31, 2020 1:54 pm

From my Facebook Page:
---------------------------------------------------------------------------
My late Cousin Bill built this Sterling Models (I believe) rendition of the immortal Boeing-Stearman "Kadet" biplane.

Extensively used during WWll  to give Army Air Force Cadets their first dose of aviation, the PT-17 Kadets were built in the thousands, and continued to serve after the war as Crop Dusters, Airshow Performers, Sky Writers, and Banner Draggers...along with who-knows how many other professions.

Bill finished his Stearman in the 1980's but never flew it.  Eventually gifted to me by Uncle Wayne, I did a bit of restoration work on it, including giving the empty cockpit a pilot:  "Little Louise".
Little Louise was a gift from Mitch & Patty when they were running Tailwinds R/C Hobby Center in Cape Girardeau, and somewhat shamefully, she's been patiently waiting several years for her first flight.

After bragging and failing (a familiar combination for me) that I was gonna fly the Stearman at S.M.A.L.L., it was surely the time to have it and Louise make some circles.

The scale propeller Bill made up for display is really too large for the old McCoy, but I wanted to use it, even knowing we were gonna be on the backside of the power curve.

The hill had a pretty calm morning, and so today became "The Day".  After a test run of the McCoy, Louise and her Stearman were "stooged up", refueled, and launched.  I'd decided to skip any inflight video/photos for the 1st flight, which was about the wisest thing I've done all week.
I knew the Stearman would be a bit tail-heavy, and it was...as in: full down elevator jabs for about half the flight.  That alone kept me busy, along with a breeze that showed up just in time to add to my excitement.

The McCoy, apparently delighted to be brought back to life, just ran and ran, as the Stearman tried to put on it's own imitation of a bucking pony.

Finally, and luckily, during one of the biplane's few level moments, the McCoy croaked, and I got the plane and Little Louise onto the grass without even tipping over.

So, the Stearman will fly again, on a calmer day, and with a goodly amount of lead stuck in it's nose to keep Little Louise from peril.

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Post  rsv1cox Sat Oct 31, 2020 2:19 pm

Good looking airplane, good looking Louise.  Shades of Amelia lookalike.

So happy to see the McCoys get some recognition.

"Little Louise Flys Cousin Bill's Stearman!" P1010540
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Post  NEW222 Sat Oct 31, 2020 3:18 pm

Great story and pictures ther Kim. Thnks for sharing them with us.
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Post  OhBee Sat Oct 31, 2020 8:35 pm

Your sure"little" Loise hasn't gained a little...ah.....I can only see her from the shoulders up so..and she is behind the CG in the rear cockpit!....nice looking plane!  I have an RC  version. Sweet flyers!
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Post  Oldenginerod Sat Oct 31, 2020 11:15 pm

So Kim, just a wired open carb? I believe the Blue Head is only R/C.

Rod.
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Post  Ken Cook Sun Nov 01, 2020 6:52 am

Kim, that indeed looks to be a Sterling kit. I built one myself. My good friend has a son who's handicapped. His name is Evan and he's confined to a wheelchair. While Evan can not properly move his muscles including his mouth, his speech is impaired. My buddy was building one of these Sterling biplanes for him. Well, he screwed it up bad and I took it off of him and completed it. I've had it for several years now and I hope to finish it soon so I can get it off of my bench. These kits are robust and well done. Your tail heaviness doesn't surprise me as the plane could use a .35. I have to ask you how it performed as I expect nothing more than roundy round. Is the plane capable of a wingover once you sort out your cg issue? The wings aren't symmetrical so I'm not expecting inversion. Originally, I planned a Fox .25 bushed engine for it and now I'm considering the .35 stunt. I have to cut the cowl and I see yours is tastefully done.
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Post  getback Sun Nov 01, 2020 7:58 am

Beautiful airplane ! and pilot Very Happy  not U Louise tongue  I am surprized you flew it knowing it was tail heavy , But glad you were able to get to the ground without flaw to do some weight distribution decisions silent  When you said crop dusting Man that took me back to the time when i would see them coming in low and doing their business  cheers Airplane Those were the Days  sunny
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Post  rsv1cox Sun Nov 01, 2020 8:07 am

I agree Ken, Kim's model is well done from the nicely integrated struts to the configuration of the cowl and the finish is perfect.

I know that Fred isn't high on Sterling kits, but the few that I have done, about seven have always been top rate.  The spun aluminum cowls especially, and the plans, you couldn't ask for better.

But, I'm not sure that is a Sterling kit.  Looks it, but the Sterling  had an engine hanging out in the wind and a stick built fuselage unless he covered it with formed balsa sheet.   Maybe cousin Bill took some liberties with the build (no complaint here, it's marvelous) it could be something else.

My Sterling 28" PT-17 and 33" Nieuport 28.  The 17 is powered by a Cox .049 and the Nieuport by a Testors Series 21 .29.  The Nieuport has symmetrical wings and is advertised as a stunter, but all I ever did with it was round arounds and wingovers.  

"Little Louise Flys Cousin Bill's Stearman!" P1010541

BTW that series 21, despite receiving a lot of grief, it's one of the best engines that I have ever owned.  Got a bunch of them.
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Post  Kim Sun Nov 01, 2020 5:50 pm

@Ken Cook wrote:              Kim, that indeed looks to be a Sterling kit. I built one myself. My good friend has a son who's handicapped. His name is Evan and he's confined to a wheelchair. While Evan can not properly move his muscles including his mouth, his speech is impaired. My buddy was building one of these Sterling biplanes for him. Well, he screwed it up bad and I took it off of him and completed it. I've had it for several years now and I hope to finish it soon so I can get it off of my bench. These kits are robust and well done. Your tail heaviness doesn't surprise me as the plane could use a .35. I have to ask you how it performed as I expect nothing more than roundy round. Is the plane capable of a wingover once you sort out your cg issue? The wings aren't symmetrical so I'm not expecting inversion. Originally, I planned a Fox .25 bushed engine for it and now I'm considering the .35 stunt. I have to cut the cowl and I see yours is tastefully done.

Hey Ken,
My Cousin Bill REALLY loved detailing out his models!

As it is, the plane is and will be a roundy-round. It's way low on the power curve, but this can be a cool thing. WAY back in the day, Uncle Wayne built a Jetco PA-12 "Cabin Cruiser" with a hopelessly anemic Wen Mac .049. We loved the plane because it's marginal power allowed us more scale-like takeoff rolls and even touch and goes when done carefully. I envision the same for the Stearman.

When it's McCoy quit, it DID seem to have a decent glide, and I'm looking forward to getting it on 360°'s of asphalt on the ramp at Cairo.
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Post  Kim Sun Nov 01, 2020 5:57 pm

@Oldenginerod wrote:So Kim, just a wired open carb?  I believe the Blue Head is only R/C.

Rod.

Hey Rod,
Yeah, it's a got a wired carb...you can see it's corner in a couple of the photos.

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Post  Kim Sun Nov 01, 2020 5:59 pm

@getback wrote:Beautiful airplane ! and pilot Very Happy  not U Louise tongue  I am surprized you flew it knowing it was tail heavy , But glad you were able to get to the ground without flaw to do some weight distribution decisions silent  When you said crop dusting Man that took me back to the time when i would see them coming in low and doing their business  cheers Airplane Those were the Days  sunny

Kind of a stupid thing to do, though it seemed to be fairly close to a working balance. It WILL have adequate ballast for the next flight!
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