Park Scale Models Monocoupe 90a

Posted 10/16/07, revised 2/25/08

This is an infectious little flyer.

Originally designed by Zeke Brubaker as a very light 3-channel flyer for rudder, elevator and throttle with a GWS IPS drive, it is also now available from Zeke's company, Park Scale Models, configured for ailerons, optional flaps and small brushless motors. I got to fly two different versions at the 2006 NEAT Fair built by Paul Dixon and Chris Parent, and immediately knew that I had to have one of my own.

Chris Parent had set his up with ailerons and flaps and I found the extra lift and drag fun to play with. No, the flaps are definitely not needed, but they add a little something extra, and I decided to do the same with mine.

Naturally I had to make a few changes, but nothing to change the character of the kit. The biggest construction change I made was to move the rudder and elevator servos from right behind the instrument panel in the cockpit area down into the battery compartment. I also built up the cowl and wheel pants out of balsa. The vacuum form parts were fine, but I wanted to color match the covering on the fuselage as accurately as possible. Using more covering seemed like the easiest way to do that.
Since my favorite time to fly small light models is right around sunset, I also added a lighting system. Nothing fancy, just red, green and white LEDs on the wing tips and fin to simulate the navigation lights that might be on a full scale version. I toggle the lights on and off with the retract switch driving a small Astro Flight FireFly brushed speed control from full off to full on. I also programmed my Spektrum DX-7 transmitter to give a slight elevator offset with flaps to minimize pitch changes.
The Monocoupe is a delightful flyer, easily taking off from a smooth surface or short grass. After ensuring the wheels turned freely in the wheel pants, it is perfect for flogging the circuit, shooting touch and goes until the battery signals a need to refuel. A 2S 640 or 700mAh pack will give me a solid 15 minutes of play, so I can't see any compelling reason to add more weight with a larger pack. I do need to be attentive to the timer when flying after sunset though, as the Astro controller will cut out before the Jeti, plunging the model into darkness.
For more on this lovely little flivver, be sure to visit Park Scale Models and the RC Groups discussion thread featuring this model.

Monocoupe Stats
Wingspan: 36 inches
Length: 22 inches
Wing Area: 190 square inches
Flying Weight: 10.4 ounces
Wing Loading: 7.88 ounces per square foot
Motor: AXI 2204/54 outrunner
Speed Control: Jeti Advance Plus 8-amp ESC
Propeller : APC 8x3.8 SF propeller
Battery: 2S, 300-800mAh Li-Poly
Radio: Spektrum DX-7 with Spektrum AR6100
Servos: (5x) FMA PS-10

The lineup at the NEAT Fair 2007.
My model is bracketed by Paul Dixon's model at left and Chris Parent's at right.


Awards

WRAM Show 2008
First Place - Electric Scale


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Copyright 2008, Thayer Syme. All rights reserved