5 foot wingspan Buzzard Motor Glider

by Plane Stupid RC | October 27, 2016 | (7) Posted in Projects

In this article I am going to walk you throught the build of my depron buzzard. I got the plans from one of my dad's mates who had built one. He brought it down to mine and tried to fly it but his "V" tail wasn't set up on his transmitter. It failed but he gave it to me to fix as he was busy over the weekend. Not only did I fix it, I flew it as well and that was the beginning of my first buzzard which is pictured here,

This one met its end after only eight days in existence. As I was powering up into the air the back of the wing came out of its rubber band mounting solution. The wings reared up and over hitting the prop which caused the entire airframe to scatter across the sky. I didn't know what had happened at this point only that my buzzard was in bits all over the sky. 

I did have the mobius on board that morning but it ran out of charge about 30 seconcs before it happened so I still didn't know what had occured.

To cut a long story short I eventually found all the bits (after a few days of constant searching.) There was a slight breeze on the morning and that had spread all of the lighter bits over 2 fields downwind. I wanted to make another one but I only had foamboard to spare and because the thing is so large it requires depron to keep it light. But lightness comes at a price as we all know you sacrafice strengh for less weight when using depron. 

This picture is showing you the finds of the first day of searching,

 After two weaks of serious tree pruning and helping my Dad shift branches and logs around he said he would by me a box of depron. This is why all of my models are made from depron now. 

The mk2 buzzard had some little changes. Instead of the horizontal pencil to the vertical pencil method that had let me down on my first model I went over the wing with big rubber bands using the flite test way of fastening wings on. I also changed the motor from a d2826 2200kv to an ntm 35 to 30 1100kv. This is a big improvment as It is a lot more docile when climbing but if you want it can still go vertical and gain good height quick. 

It is amazing how realistic it is in the air. One person even came up to me and asked me what I was doing looking up in the air with a transmitter. When I said it was the buzzard he couln't believe it! I also took a lot of time with the paint job making it as real as possible,

This is the build in pictures,


I did all of the painting by hand and blended colours to create a feathered effect. Alternative paint jobs can be found on the internet on similar models which represent other birds such as a bald eagle.

Did the MK2 buzzard fly? of course it did and here are some pictures from both my first and second buzzards,


How can I describe the flight charcteristics? Awsome is the only word for it. It glides amazing and looks real. So real it has made other buzzards fly over to check it out. Also pigeons and crows scatter before it like it has mistical powers.

This picture shows its size compared to the FT Spear,

Overall the buzzard is an awsome and realistic RC plane which is an awesome camera ship and glider. A must build for those of you out there. If anyone wants plans for this I will try to supply them in another article if enough people want them. I will also say that building with depron is a giant advantage as it is so much lighter than using foamboard. Although it is slightly more expensive and requires a slightly different build style the benifits when it comes to gliding are unreal.

Thank you for reading.



Plane Stupid RC on November 7, 2016
Nice that will save me a job. Thanks for sharing.
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CaptBill on November 12, 2016
Very cool.
Im actually in the process of working my way to a Bald Eagle. We have a few of them not far from our home. We often go across the bay and ul the river to spot them. This time of the year we see quite a few of them as they are migrating to areas that will not be frozen over. (Bald Eagles catch and eat mostly fish)
After spending hours watching them soar I decided to work towards building a full size , powered, soaring Bald Eagle. And hopefully to soar with them.
Full size will be 40 - 48" long with a very thick (leading edge to trailing edge) To be about like the real bird my wing will need to be 6 .5 - 7.5 span and ,at the shoulders, about 18" deep.
My first concept try is on the table using a FT Explorer as my starting point.

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Plane Stupid RC on November 13, 2016
Very good. I would definately recomend depron for that as it is so much lighter. Most of it is just air bubbles! I would also advise using a what I think is a KM3 airfoil like on my buzzard with the two steps. This is good because you can easily make it look like feathers and the effiency of it is unreal. When mine glides it is so slow and docile. I would also recomend a vtail as when gliding, unlike a normal tail where you have one elevator surface on a vtail you have two and it also will track nicer and true if you get it right.
Good luck with the build.
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Plane Stupid RC on November 13, 2016
You will also require a carbon rod in the wing to act like a spar or the wings will snap. I have a 0.4mm in mine and the wings still flex around alittle
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jamboree1 on November 7, 2016
To those wanting the plans, they can be found here, http://forum.flitetest.com/showthread.php?17616-The-Eagle-has-landed-or-is-it-flying .There is quite a few builds on this page with various designs and mods done
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Firebaby049 on November 21, 2016
I love the plans for different birds and look for as many as I can find then build them and get them flying. Redid The FT Sparrow a little and made it to look like other birds of different sizes and colors. May redo the Eagle a little to fit profile of a Turkey Buzzard then on to a Condor.
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Plane Stupid RC on November 12, 2016
Sorry! I don't know how or why that happened. All sorted now
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udo789 on November 7, 2016
Very nice article. Well done! Please publish the plans.
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ttprigg on November 7, 2016
plans would be great! Thanks!
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pintokitkat on November 10, 2016
Cooo, reading this article all the way through I got a distinct impression of deja vu!
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Ron DuBray on November 10, 2016
I also would very much like the plans
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HyFlyMark on February 4, 2017
need plans!
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Plane Stupid RC on February 7, 2017
Now plans can be found on 5ft wingspan RC buzzard. Review footage and build plans article.
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5 foot wingspan Buzzard Motor Glider