I thought it would be fun to build a larger aircraft, and decided to try the Cherokee 180. I have flown the full scale during my pilots licence training. It was a good flying aircraft with great landing characteristics. I hoped this would translate over to the DTFB RC world. I started with the wingspan of about 60" so each wing could be made out of one sheet of foamboard. I also made the wing more scale by rounding the leading edge.
First flight of the Cherokee 180
Location : Flagstaff Flyers RC Field , Flagstaff AZ,
Altitude : 6500'
Building the Cherokee is pretty straight forward, but uses a thicker wing and double layer tail feathers. All of the exposed ends of the foam board were ironed to make them more rounded.
The following pictures with captions is in sequence for the build.
The fuselage cut out and ready to assemble , including power pod plate. Notice that the fuselage is longer then one sheet of foam board. Two pieces of foamboard were taped and then hot glued together.
Fuselage partially assembled
Underside of fuselage
Fuselage assembled including swappable power pod.
Stabalator cut out ( mostly) with carbon fiber tube ( arrow shaft ) fitted to the rear of the fuselage.
I had to move the power pod plate up in the front half of the fuselage to make the motor aline correctly.
One wing cut out and leading edge formed.
The Cherokee 180 uses a box spar. Here you can see one ready to be assembled and one assembled.
The spar installed in the wing.
Servos installed ready for the wing to be glued together.
Both wings built and assembled together; Wingtips are also installed. There is a 1/4" carbon fiber shaft run through the center of the wings next to the main spar for support. I also used craft sticks in the wingtips to make them more ridged.
Fuselage and wing assembled, ready to be mated together;
Landing gear and electronics installed.
Front landing gear assembly
Canopy, cowing front, and turtle deck installed.
Battery and reciver under the "windsheild "
Front veiw - ready for first flight.
The Cherokee 180 has been an interesting project. It has gone together with only minor adjustments. I feel like it flys very scale. I have had to add some up elevator mix in with the flaps to maitain level flight when the flaps are deployed. The stabalator is very effective and only requires 12* of throws. If I were to build it again, I would use a different type of control rod attachment to the carbon fiber rod that would allow a little more stand-off, so the servo travel would be a little more on the stabalator. I think this would allow a little finer control adjustment. I would probably do away with the swappable power pod and go with a more traditional firewall since the front of the cowl glues in anyway. I would classify the Cherokee 180 as a medium difficulty build with intermediate piloting skills required.
I am not real happy with the paint job. The tape pealed up in places between coats and I didn't notice it. Hence the overspray in a couple of places. It does add to the scale appearance though.
First flight attempt . Stabalator throws set too high.
Second successful flight .
Kelley Cherokee 180 :
Wingspan : 61"
Length : 42"
Motor : 950 Kv
ESC : 30 amp
Battery : 2200 3 cell Lypo
Prop : 13 x 6
CG : 2 " back from leading edge of wing ( not fillit )
Cherokee 180 Plans :