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Very interesting and informative stuff Dave and thanks again. I have been looking at some fairly cheap lipos but think I will bite the bullet and splash a bit more to ensure endurance and reliability. I must say moving to lipos transformed my sports boats and I may even look at one for a weight and space saving solution in my little Mistral. Yes, Derek I always balance charge too as I found that cells could be a little unbalanced sometimes with a plain charge. I'm not sure if the cells have to be absolutely spot on or if there's a tolerance of say 0.1 volt. I have a small watt meter which will balance the cells (again at Dave's suggestion) and I find it invaluable. Also good for checking current draw in the bath. Thanks all, Ian
Thanks Dave for your valued advice on this. You may remember it was you who encouraged me in the use of lipos in the first place- always grateful. I tend to store my four lipos in storage mode but it's sometimes difficult to predict when one might want to use them, so in the summer they tend to be charged as and when. This might be the cause of my one puffy lipo. I am fastidious over charging and always find a job to do in the workshop when charging lipos and use a charging bag. I won't even leave an SLA battery charging overnight. I have been told the best way to discharge of them is to dunk them in a bucket of water! Sounds a bit drastic to me but the gent who mentioned it is a very experienced flyer of many years standing. I think I might prefer the complete discharge with a light bulb method. Interesting to know that lipos contain no harmful chemicals so I will check with my local recycling centre- still commonly referred to as the 'dump'. Finally, I notice huge variations in prices for lipos- does anybody know if the quality is reflected in the price or is it more to do with economies of scale? I tend to think one usually gets what one pays for, but somebody may have direct experience to help. Thanks again for the valuable input on this subject. Ian
HI all, Yes, that's the view I shall take and will find a way to dispose of the one that has gone slightly puffy. As you rightly point out they are pretty cheap now and places like Hobby King seem to have a wide choice and it will give me an opportunity to get something with a higher capacity. It was quite a decision to go over to them in the first place as I had heard so many horror stories but I'm certainly glad I did as the increase in performance is brilliant. The article that Craig linked to is very helpful and I shall save it for future reference. All the best...Ian
Thanks for the prompt replies all. Craig, the article you link to is very helpful- had a quick skim but will study in more detail tomorrow. My battery is nothing like as swollen as the one in the article- it's barely noticeable but still puffier than its identical twin. The article says that puffy lipos are OK as long as performance isn't affected. Jarvo and Haverlock you both recommend disposal and I think to be safe I will get some new ones. I'd have been interested to know why it happened- I have tried to be scrupulous in the matters of balance charging, storage charging and the use of low voltage alarms and I suppose it's just one of those things. Thanks again for the help. Ian
HI all, I haven't posted on this site for ages but remember getting some very helpful advice in the past. I have been using lipos in my Lesro Rapier with success (thanks Dave M) but noticed that one battery was getting slightly puffy. I suspect that this is not good but have been advised that it isn't serious. What might cause this to happen and might it get worse? Should I scrap the battery and get a new one. I have two and only one of them is doing it. Ian
[Score: 8/10] 36"/4100g Wild Rose Capable of 3mph and a runtime of 90mins Single Propellor (3 Blade 40mm) Direct Drive to a Graupner Eco (3 Blade) Powered by NiCad (7.2v) 3Amp/h Batteries Controlled Through Mtroniks (20Amps) ESC - Comments: Wild Rose was originally a steam launch with Pelican V twin and home built vertical fire tube boiler. She is now converted to electric and has the addition of a smart striped awning. I designed the hull with a program called ply Boats years ago. She has a double chine hull form and is built with 6mm ply frames and 1.5mm ply skins.
[Score: 9/10] 23"/1800g Mistral Capable of 5mph Single Propellor (3 Blade 35mm) Direct Drive to a Graupner 500 (3 Blade) Powered by LiPoly (7.4v) 1Amp/h Batteries Controlled Through Mtroniks (10Amps) ESC - Comments: This is Vic Smeeds Mistral published some time in the fifties I think. The original drawing was for an 18'' boat but I have enlarged to around 23'' giving a 1:16 ish model. The hull is Lite Ply frames and skins and the trim is mahogany- but it may be a bit heavy. She looks great on the water- and goes like a fast electric if I choose- which I don't! Wish I'd built her a bit bigger now.
[Score: 7/10] 36"/6800g Veleta Capable of 4mph and a runtime of 120mins Single Propellor (3 Blade 40mm) Belt to a 700 (3 Blade) Powered by Lead Acid (12v) 5Amp/h Batteries Controlled Through Electronize (15Amps) ESC - Comments: This is Vic Smeed's Veleta published some time in the early sixties and enlarged about 1.5 times. I'm not sure the enlargement was a good idea but she's still a pretty boat. Construction was balsa sheet and Lite Ply covered with nylon and Poly C water based resin. I would always use epoxy again in the future-as this material is not very tough. The drive is via turned brass pulleys and O ring giving a very quiet and positive drive.
[Score: 8/10] 36"/11300g Dunlin Capable of 7mph and a runtime of 120mins Single Propellor (3 Blade 50mm) Geared to a MFA 500 geared 6:1 (3 Blade) Powered by Lead Acid (12v) 7Amp/h Batteries Controlled Through Electronize (15Amps) ESC - Comments: I built 'Dunlin' from Harold Underhill's plan for a Police river launch and elected to use the lines for a three foot model. I originally installed a Caton twin cylinder steam engine and Cheddar Puffin boiler but reverted to electric some while ago. The hull is mahogany plank on 6mm ply frames. She weighs about 25lb and has great presence on the water.
Cornwall Model Boats have a good supply of fittings but the most authentic fittings for a model such as Sea Queen may be from Reade Models. Not sure how to do a link on here but this is the page... http://www.reademodels.com
Brian, It was my pleasure to meet you and your wife and see your excellent Riva. As I said on the day, It's just a shame the weather wasn't better and there weren't more people about- doesn't look too promising for tomorrow either! Now you know where we are, perhaps we could meet up again someday. Ian
HI Larry, Yes I did run It with the solid fuel but that Is what has put me off. I have thought about building a small gas fired boiler- I built a 3''dia vertical boiler for another boat- just wondered If It was worth It. I have a two foot hull which might suit It- or It might be too heavy -what sort ofweight Is your fantail all up? I know that was designed for the plant. What other fuels have you tried? It would be nice to see a video when you get round to It- always Interesting
Brian visited our water at Canonteign Falls today and despite the poor weather, had a good sail on the lake. It was great to see the Rivarama In action and what a boat! Beautifully built and great presence on the water- It looked just right. Just a shame there weren't more folk about to see It, and I wish I'd taken my video camera. It certainly sets a high standard to aspire to. Thanks for coming along Brian, and It was good to finally meet you and your wife. All the best...Ian
I think that It's probably worth buying new tins of paint when finishing a hull; If you're anything like me It doesn't happen that frequently! I find a couple of tinlets go a long way on a boat hull, although It doesn't pay to think about how much per litre Humbrol costs. I have tried other types of paint. Plasticote offer a tempting range of colours, but I find It a nightmare to apply nicely. Blackfriars do some nice enamels but I always tend to come back to Humbrol. If the matt colours are used then It Is worth finishing with satin or gloss polyurethane varnish. Ian
I find trying to do any painting In the area where wood has been worked on Is fatal. I always paint In a different room If I'm brushing (the kitchen table) and do It In the evening and leave quietly-and go to bed! Thinning the paint helps (consistency of single cream)- full strength Humbrol shows nibs and dust badly. I apply the paint with a 1/2'' flat brush and lay It off with a larger brush sold for finishing varnish. I have a pipette dropper for adding thinners and mix In foil cake cases- washed thoroughly of course. Latterly I have gone over to Halford's sprays as It's so much easier once all the masking Is done- but there's nothing like a well applied enamel finish, especially on the sort of vintage model you are talking about. Good luck...Ian
By the way, I forgot to mention I have found a product called Poly-C which Is supposed to be the same as Eze Kote but cheaper. It Is excellent. I have just skinned a balsa and plywood hull with the leg of some nylon tights and found It works very well. The main problem Is finding a pair of tights big enough- my wife Is fairly petite and I found I just couldn't bring myself to stand for long browsing the tights section In my local Morrisons! One leg only came 2/3rds along the hull and I had to overlap from each end which wasn't Ideal but with a bit of wet and dry and P38 I think I've got away with It. I wasn't sure how a piece of laminating cloth would drape round a round bilged hull- and still don't know! Looking forward eventually to seeing shots of this In action, Colin
Thanks for the Information Colin. I have always used epoxy up until now but Eze Kote certainly sounds...eze-er! my main problem Is getting some. I can order It but will pay about £3 postage. A local shop has Eze Dope and says It's the same thing- but I'm doubtful. I will have to wait until I can order several bits from a supplier who keeps It. I know you have been Involved with full size craft as have I- but I did have a nasty reaction to epoxy once (stupidly using a bare digit as a handy smoothing tool) so am very wary of It now. Ian
HI Brian, I have been meaning to say something about your video- thought I had actually- senior moment. Absolutely brilliant! You must be so pleased, and what a lot of joy that model will bring as the weather gets warmer, not only to you but all who see It In action. Well done! Ian
HI Steve, It's a while since you posted this but I thought I ought to mention that Lesro Models sell the plan for Sea Queen- at a price! You may also be aware that the plan will not have any frame shapes- unless these have been added latterly- but could be derived from the Information on the plan. They also sell the plans for many of the other Aerokits boats. Hope this helps...Ian
Looks fantastic and what an achievement. I agree with Dave, It would be great to see some action shots before you 'retire' her to a museum. My heaviest boat Is 25lb and I don't like carrying that any distance! She doesn't bounce about though. Ian