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Free plans for Curtiss Helldiver

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    Free plans for balsa rc airplane Curtiss Helldiver


    Wingspan: 48 inches

    Length: 37-3/4 inches

    Wing area: 396 square inches

    Flying weight: 24.3 ounces

    Wing loading: 8.84 ounces per square foot

    Free plans for balsa rc airplane Curtiss Helldiver

    Materials List

    Wood: Sheet balsa is required if the laser-cut parts package is not used

    Five 1/16 × 4 × 36-inch balsa

    Four 1/8 × 4 × 36-inch balsa

    One 3/16 × 3 × 36-inch balsa

    One 1/32 × 8 × 18-inch birch plywood

    One 18 × 4 × 8-1/2-inch light plywood

    One 1/32 × 4 × 18-inch balsa

    Two 1/16 square × 36-inch basswood

    Eighteen 16 × 1/8 × 36-inch balsa

    Two 1/16 × 3/8 × 36-inch balsa

    Eighteen 3/32 square × 36-inch balsa

    Two 3/32 × 1/4 × 36-inch balsa

    Eight 1/8 square × 36-inch balsa

    One 1/8 × 1/4 × 12-inch hard balsa (servo rail)

    Two 1/8 × 3/8 × 36-inch balsa

    One 3/8 × 1/2 × 12-inch basswood (landing gear mount)

    One 1/4 × 6-inch triangle stock

    One 1/8 × 6-inch dowel

    One 3/16 × 1-inch dowel

    One wood toothpick

    Wire: One .025 × 18-inch steel wire

    One .032 × 18-inch steel wire

    One .046 × 12-inch steel wire

    One .093 × 36-inch steel wire

    Miscellaneous: One pair 2-1/12-inch main wheels

    One 1-inch tail wheel

    Three feet of nylon thread (rudder pull-pull cable)

    Four 3/32-inch wheel collars

    One manila file folder

    Two 8-32 × 1 nylon socket head bolts

    Twelve 3/16 × 1/16-inch rare earth magnets

    One .008 × 8 × 18 clear acetate

    One 3/16 × 8 × 18 artists foam boards

    One 3 × 6 × 8 mm Depron sheet

    Twelve #2 flat washers

    Twelve #2 × 3/8 sheet metal screws

    Power: Suppo 2217/9T outrunner brushless motor

    20-amp ESC

    APC 11 × 5.5E propeller

    2,000 mAh 2S LiPo battery

    Guidance: Two Suppo S-60 servos (ailerons)

    Two Suppo S-90 servos (rudder and elevator)

    Three 6-inch servo extensions

    One 6-inch Y lead

    Free plans for balsa rc airplane Curtiss Helldiver

    The model was designed with a 48-inch wingspan at 1:12.5 scale. The idea was to provide a simple park flyer-style model that could be built and flown by anyone with intermediate modeling and flying skills, was large enough to fly well, yet would be easy to transport.

    The model is primarily built from balsa and plywood. The fuselage features an internal truss frame with external formers and stringers, and the wing is of egg-crate-style construction.

    Guidance is four-channel RC with power provided by an economical brushless outrunner motor powered by two battery cells. Access to the internal components is through removable canopies on the front and rear cockpits. The wing is also removable.

    Meanwhile, don’t let the full-scale Helldiver’s checkered beginnings scare you away from pursuing this project. The model is a solid, stable flier that can be flown easily by anyone with some "low-wing" experience.

    Free plans for balsa rc airplane Curtiss Helldiver

    The model is easy to fly, cruises nicely at half power, and goes where you point it. Before the first flight, drop in a freshly charged battery then make a final walk-around to ensure that the center of gravity is correct, and that the controls are properly set up and move in the right direction.

    Free plans for balsa rc airplane Curtiss Helldiver

    Takeoffs are easy—throttle up to approximately 2/3 power, and when the model is ready to fly, add a pinch of up-elevator and you’re off and running. Trim the aircraft for straight-and-level flight at a comfortable speed.

    In the air, the Helldiver tracks nicely and turns easily with little input. It will also turn extremely tightly at approach speeds, with no indication that it’s going to snap out from under you. The stall is benign and uneventful and breaks right down the middle. When the nose drops, it immediately begins to fly again.

    Free plans for balsa rc airplane Curtiss Helldiver

    The Helldiver penetrates well, so only a little power on the landing approach is needed. Keep the nose down and fly the model all the way down. At roughly a foot from the ground, ease the nose up and wheel it on. Keep just a touch of power on, steer with the rudder, and the aircraft will track straight and true as the tail comes down.

    Free plans for balsa rc airplane Curtiss Helldiver


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    Free plans for balsa rc airplane Curtiss Helldiver


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