Tapered Airfoil Glider (Updated)

by scottmi Mar 8, 2019
Download All Files

Thing Apps Enabled

Please Login to Comment

This model is quite nice. Printed one at 400% as suggested, and it flies great. I intend to try cutting the model up to do a 1200% version, because why not. Would have a wingspan of 1.2m and would weigh around 352g. Will update once I do it, and hopefully it will fly :)
Do you thing scalling it up that much could work ?

Super! Love to see a picture of your make. Yes, I would think it can/should work to scale up. What are your thoughts on how to join the cut wing parts?

Cool, I'm definitely doing it then. I was considering two main options : the first one would be to print the second wing part without a bottom, (but with a brim so it does stick to the bed) and then glue some chopsticks to the inside of both ends of the wings, and then glue them on the other wing, or, make an attachment part that would be similar to the dihedral join (with possibly 1-5 degres of extra dihedral), to save on weight and make a good joint (in this case, the second wing part bottom would be cut up according to the dihedral join cutouts). I will post pictures of my current make when I get home.

Sounds good - though for join, instead of chopsticks, might consider printing some flat rectangles of PLA, perhaps 2 or 3 layers thick (at .20) and use those as inserts to glue onto the insides. At that thickness are flexible, but still have some strength. Less weight, perhaps more stability. Two or three small rectangles, per side, per join.

Oh, smart. Should be better for the wings in case of a crash too. Might also add some string/strut attachment to the dihedral joint to keep the wings from breaking under their own weight/flexing excessively, or is that unnecessary?

strut sounds good... but only if necessary. wouldn't do string.
print it, try it..!

And I'm back from my first attempt at a wingpiece. It failed, after a lot of warping of the wing, making it unusable. It needs some infill to keep it straight. I have settled on 2% cubic infill, and one perimeter. Would increase total airplane weight by about 80g, but with much much stronger wings. EDIT : that print failed quite early too, so I have switched to 2% line infill, as my printer has had issues with cubic infill in the past.

I was even thinking 1%. certainly minimum possible. cubic sounded like a good option, bummer not working.
how is the line working, and will your slicer do gyroid?

Woke up to another failure... Still better than the previous attempts, only needs a couple tweaks I think (less coasting/disable retract at new layer, plus a lot of stringing inside the infill). And yes, I could do gyroid, I'll try it later. Thanks for the advice

Added 6% and 12% dihedral wing joins.

Printed at 300% so it would fit. I could probably do a little larger. Used a clothes pin as the weight so I could adjust it. Going to print another to get the dihedral right so it will stay balanced on the roll better. This one if anything has anhedral on this one right now.

That looks nice! If you can find a stick like a chopstick, really good to get less weight, further out to balance. I also found i didn't break them as fast as the stick would 'stick' into the ground on landing. Only when i hit the rocks or decking has it been breaking last few flights.

re Dihedral, I received some feedback on another forum that recommended greater dihedral. I'll be making and posting a couple additional wingjoins - one with 5% and another with 12% - in the next day or two.

Another beautiful day - Spring may have finally really arrived! So i get outside and have to wonder:
Do I make 'em just to break 'em? Well... The fuselage is the weak part, but these have both been glued up again and ready for more flights.

Getting an odd cut in the bulbnose fuselage model when I slice it in S3D. It is at the back little tab of the wing mount straight through the whole model. Not sure why it is showing up.

Just checked and it is doing the same thing in Cura.

the regular (short, complete) bulbnose or the long nose version? In the long version, there is a cutout for attaching the tail. Can you provide a picture or screenshot of the slice?

Yep, the stl needed some repairs. ran it through Netfabb and now clean. try fuselage_bulbnose_fixed.stl

Fixed part looks good.

Interesting to see that show up in your slice. That is an artifact from the original sketch/extrusions in Fusion 360. Try running the stl through a repair program (Slic3r does that automatically unless you turn that off, so maybe why I didn’t see that). I’ll try a new .stl export to see if that goes away and/or run it through a repair tool before posting a bit later today.

Comments deleted.

A few more flights today, using short fuselage with chopstick extension on nose, and the launch hook. Got ambitious and with a great rubber band launch at about 50° got a beautiful flight, shooting up and then leveling at about 20 feet, and gliding out about 100 feet to a rocky bank where it shattered on landing. :-( (Yeah, i saw it coming...Should have gone out to a field. DOH! ) Nose broke off, tail broke off with PETG fuselage. (see picture of parts). Washer is 4g and located about 25mm back from tip balancing CG at about 25% back from leading edge. Required tape trim tabs on elevators to get good level glide (without tape was always a pretty parabola of a flight). See picture for example of tape - aimed for a 45% angle on the tab on each side.

Anyone else fly this yet!? :-)

Good flight with original short fuselage! Glued a takeout chopstick to the front (see pictures) of the original short fuselage and with one steel washer about 60% forward, got CG balance at 22%. Lawn dart performance until added a couple small cellotape tabs to the elevators to give a slight upward bias. Success! Got a couple very nice 15+ meter (50ft) level flights with just that bit of tape added. Very Happy! See pics for pictures of balance, chopstick with weight, and tabs.

I am continuing to post updates and tweaks to the fuselage as i print new versions and experiment with them. Please download the latest whenever you choose to print this yourself!

Hello there.
I had similar glider in mind. But ended with something that looks more like a real ultralight plane, than hand_throw glider. My design is too tail heavy, and i didnt make proper balancing. So i broke elevator in first flight attempt. Printed another one, but Im affraid to throw it again :o))
Does your glider fly properly? Please add some video of flight.

Tomas - made first film today with help from son. I'm not particularly video savvy so may take a while to get posted, but you are not missing anything. a pretty lawn dart, again. Using the newer longer fuselage. See pic for difference in size! This one is, it turns out, too long. Moved CG back to 27%. I will adjust to move CG to 24 or 25%. The original fuselage had CG at 22%. Also, used a new PLA (Hatchbox Yellow) and the first wing was printed too hot for that PLA and just did not hold up. Brand new spool, too. Temperature matters!

Wow that kridlem is pretty!
Good request, and sorry no, i have no video yet. Will try to make one in the next week or so. This really does need extra length at the nose. With current design, needs around 11-13 grams of weight at the nose to balance CG, which makes this more a 'Hotliner' style fast moving plane than a delicate 'glider.' So far, my flights will soar out..and then DOWN! I will be working on a two part fuselage to extend then nose out for better (and lighter) balancing. I will post an update when that is completed. Again, this is an exercise to develop and print the wing. The current fuselage is not optimal.