The completed Piper Pacer
shows the paint design and the
placement of decals. A non-flying
propeller was used in the photo.
Build your own Short Wing Piper.
Free plans are available by clicking here.
I used thinned Brodak butyrate color dope for the final coats
of paint. I applied it with a basic Paasche H airbrush. You can
use butyrate dope over nitrate dope, but you cannot use nitrate
dope over butyrate dope. I used Brodak Piper Cream and
Brodak Brown for my Pacer. If you do not have an airbrush, you
may be able to use a Preval sprayer which is available through
Brodak or in many paint stores.
Each time you paint the wings and tail, place them in a jig to
dry without warps. Mask the fuselage design with masking tape.
You can easily cut the masking tape by applying it face down
on glass and cutting it with a razor guided by a metal ruler. You
can seal the edges of the masking tape with clear dope before
spraying to prevent the color from bleeding under the tape.
I have provided artwork that you can scan and print onto
decal paper, which is available from Micro-Mark. An inkjet
printer can print them onto the decal paper in a dark-brown
color. Seal the decals with clear spray and following directions,
apply them to the Pacer.
Using the CG shown on the plans, adjust the battery to
achieve the balance. If you cannot properly balance it, try using
a small bit of clay in the tail or nose. Check your rudder and
elevator control movement to ensure they move in the right
direction. I suggest using a transmitter with dual rates and
setting the throws to minimal movement.
Charge the battery and do not use full power for the first
flight. Fly on a calm day—these small models are extremely
lightweight and the slightest breeze will affect their flight.
Adjust the motor for what you feel is enough power for it to
gain altitude after hand launching. Later you may want to try
takeoffs if you have a smooth surface for those tiny wheels.
Should you lack confidence for these first flights, do as I
did and have an experienced RC pilot fly and trim the model.
This Pacer is not meant for 3-D flying, and looks best flown
in a scalelike manner. When it’s airborne, the tiny Pacer looks
remarkably like its full-scale brother.
41 Model Aviation OC TOBER 2013 www.ModelAviation.com