Skunk Plane

[Skunk plane, hovering] Flipper flew 3-D pretty well. But it didn't glide well, or do aerobatics like a real airplane; it was really only good at 3-D.

But a little after we made Flipper and its predecessor Fifi, Dave got roped in to testing some designs from Slowfly (now sadly out of business), and he found they worked very well indeed. After a bit of testing, he settled on a design he liked based on the 24" model, and built one for me too. They're built entirely of EPP, with a carbon fiber wing stiffener.

[Two skunk planes] Slowfly was supplying kits in either black or white EPP. Since Dave was building lots of kits, he had both colors, and decided to mix 'n' match. He called the result "skunk planes". Mine's the one with the white wing and black ailerons. (Yes, that means that most of the photos here are of Dave's plane, not mine. It's really hard to take photos while flying!)

[Skunk plane] They fly beautifully, nothing like Flipper and Fifi. They hover just as well, but they can also do normal aerobatics and even glide a bit. They're very graceful in the air. And quiet, too -- power comes from a torquey but light brushless outrunner ("CDROM motor"), not the high-revving geared Feigao that powers Flipper and Fifi.

[Skunk plane, hovering] It does nearly everything pretty well, and can fly indoors in a gymnasium (we get the chance to do that once a year).


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