Snowball - PROJECT

by FliteTest | February 17, 2014 | (27) Posted in Projects

The Snowball was the brain child of RCGroups.com fourm member Lee. He smashed together two ideas from fellow scratch builders goldguy and Larry3215 to create the "ATV" of foam board planes. 

What separates the Snowball from a Nutball are the raised motor and the pontoons on the belly. 

Snow does not mix well with foam board, as everyone knows, so we built these big guys out of 1/2 inch insulation foam. 

It worked well with repelling water, but the material was too brittle in the cold. To see their untimely death check out the episode. 

So now we were back to square one, or circle one in this case. How can you make a Snowball that loves snow? 

Minwax is always a good choice but it's messy and we wanted to find some better solutions. So here are 3 of our favorites. 

1. Camp Dry

This is simply a silicone spray ment to help repel water off of boots and camping tents. The easiest way to apply it to your plane is to assemble it first (glue and stickers will not stick if you spray before you build!), tape off any electronics, and give it a good coat. Keep in mind this stuff is NOT water PROOF, it is water RESISTANT. Even that being said, this technique works very well. 

2. Colored Packing Tape

You can pick this stuff up all over the place. We got ours from LazerToyz.com

This method was the cheapest but most time consuming. The cool part is getting to design your own color scheme! Here, Alex went with "Don't Eat the Yellow Snow(ball)". Just make sure that if you are gluing two surfaces together, cut the tape away because the glue won't adhere too well to the shiny surface.

3. Laminate Contact Paper

This is another one that you can get at almost any craft store. This was more expensive than the tape method but looks much cleaner. 

The rolls come in a variety of sizes. Same thing as the tape method if you are gluing two surfaces together. Remove the laminate from whatever surfaces you want to glue together. 

This is the finished contact paper version. Shout out to Nolan, Blake, Randy, and Jedd from plane-awesome.com for sending us some stickers! Check out their reviews and send 'em some love!

Once we had our planes armored up, we took them for a spin!

We were happy with all these techniques to help our planes combat the harsh season. Use which ever method is more convenient for your project. 

If you want to turn your Nutball into a Snowball (or maybe add some floats to your FT-Flyer) we will have a conversion kit and plans available at the bottom of our build article!

Thanks again to Lee, goldguy, and Larry3215 for the inspiration! And thanks to you for watching!

 

LINKS

- Swappable 3 Pack (for a Nutball speed build kit)

- Nutball Scratch Build (for free Nutball plans)

- Lee's Snowball Thread

- goldguy's Nutball Thread

- Larry3251's Capricorn Thread

- Colored Packing Tape

- plane-awesome.com


If you've had success waterproofing a plane let us know about it! Chat it up in the forums!

COMMENTS

Winging It R/C on February 17, 2014
But I wanted to make a snowball today. :(
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lFritZl on February 17, 2014
Touch and go's in the snow looks like soooo much fun. Kinda wish we got snow here :(
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tramsgar on February 17, 2014
Good winter fun! Thanks, guys.
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solarflash on February 17, 2014
I would be interested putting these on my FT Flyer,,,,,,,Yard full of snow today, but this week-end temps expected in the low to mid 60's.
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RCairforce on February 17, 2014
Cool! Can the floats be used for water as well as snow?
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Nathan_116 on February 17, 2014
have you guys ever experimented with Minwax spray? I've heard it works really well.
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sailorJohn on February 17, 2014
Tried it, seemed to work.
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sailorJohn on February 17, 2014
Seem to remember edge gluing just a week or so ago!
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Ron B on February 17, 2014
Did you have to go to a bigger motor because of the added weight?
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dz1sfb on February 17, 2014
Just use Model Plane Foam. No paper to strip, and already waterproof.

Ken :)
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Techno16 on February 17, 2014
I liked this soo much I made my own ground worthy spin-off! (Pontoon Plank thread on the forums)
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hansdude on February 18, 2014
Driving around on the ground almost looks more fun that flying it :P
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G.D.X RC on February 18, 2014
that's great idea...!! is that can take of and landing on the water?

and almost waiting the plans.. :D
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G.D.X RC on February 18, 2014
i want to try build the FT Flyer with snow landing.. coz that awesome!
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Red20RC on February 18, 2014
Nice! I actually bought a roll of the sticky-back film a few weeks ago to try laminating foam board. Good to see it works 😀
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twan1997 on February 18, 2014
why does it need the thrust angle? and how many degrees up is that?
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F2G2Corsair on February 18, 2014
Hey, have you guys tried Minwax Spray to waterproof your planes? I've tried it on a few scraps of foamboard, and found it to work just as well as brushed on minwax, and it's faster and cleaner too. The only drawback is it takes a little practice to get the technique right.

My technique is to keep the nozzle over a foot away while spraying back and forth and slowly walking around the foamboard. The coating appears to be much thinner, in fact it doesn't even change color, but I've tested it by running water over it with no effect, so it seems to work well. Lastly I noticed the Clear Gloss Minwax Spray doesn't require you to shake it for 2 minutes before using it, unlike the Clear Satin kind.
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sailorJohn on February 19, 2014
Wonder if sticky back film is paintable?
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sailorJohn on February 19, 2014
See "Foamies fast color and vinyl protective coating" on FT
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88stang on February 19, 2014
where can I find the plans for this conversion kit
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CrashnDash on February 19, 2014
I'm chomping at the bit here, waiting on the float plans. The plane is ready to go!
You guys are great. Keep up the fine work.
Bob
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rifted on February 19, 2014
Thanks so much you guys on making/proposing a great idea, to make out of a situation (snow) not to limit us out there keep flying no mater what!!! Make memories as you have always say! And making people to remember that there are people on your forum/page proposing ideas, recognizing them is what flitetest is all about! Thanks so much on keeping people thinking which is the machine that keeps us moving and enjoying even more this great hobby! Can't express more with words what the great rc community appreciate what you have accomplish! Thanks so much and fly safe!
Ed
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Pilotx1 on February 21, 2014
has anyone tried this with elevons rather than elevator adn rudder to make it a bank n yank?

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matic.vrecko.9@gmail.com on February 26, 2014
where are the plans?
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Snowball - PROJECT