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- Home Page Archive #5 -
"Heavier-than-air flying machines are impossible." Lord Kelvin, 1895

In order to provide for a reasonable homepage loading time, it is impractical to just keep adding items to the top of the stack and keep all the old stuff there too. Therefore, I have created these Airplanes and Rockets Homepage Archives to maintain a historical snapshot of everything once on the homepage. Unfortunately, I did not think to keep a record until around Fall of 2009; I had just been deleting items from the bottom of the stack. No more, though. Hence forth, if you recall seeing something on the homepage but it is no longer there, please check out these archive pages. I also keep an archive of all the modeling news additions:

Homepage Additions Archive:

| 1 | 2 | 3 | 4 | 5 | 6 | 7 | 8 | 9 | 10 | 11 | 12 | 13 | 14 | 15 | 16 | 17 | 18 | 19 | 20 |
| 21 | 22 | 23 | 24 | 25 | 26 | 27 | 28 | 29 | 30 | 31 | 32 | 33 | 34 | 35 | 36 |

Modeling News Archive:

| 1 | 2 | 3 | 4 | 5 | 6 | 7 | 8 | 9 | 10 | 11 | 12 | 13 | 14 |

Sustained Human-Powered Ornithopter Flight

"Snowbird" 1st Sustained Human-Powered Ornithopter FlightOn August 2, 2009, students from the University of Toronto Institute of Technology set a world record for sustained man-powered ornithopter flight - 19.3 seconds, covering a distance of 145 meters at an average speed of 25.6 k/hr. The included video records that flight which took place at the Great Lakes Gliding Club in Tottenham in Ontario, Canada, as witnessed by the FAI. The "Snowbird" weighs in at just 45 kg w/o pilot, and has a wing span of 32 meters, and is powered by a 0.3 hp engine (the human pilot). Model building skills and materials are used throughout; e.g., carbon fiber, Styrofoam and balsa, CA glue and vacuum-bagging laminated assemblies.

The Wright Cyclone 9 Radial Aircraft Engine

The Wright Cyclone 9 Radial Aircraft EngineWhile perusing old editions of American Modeler, I came across an advertisement for a plastic model of the Wright Cyclone 9 radial aircraft engine that was made by Monogram. Thinking that it would be nice to have, I stored a search on eBay, and then waited. After a couple months, e-Bay sent me a notice of one that came up for auction.

Cox Golden Bee .049 Engine

Cox Golden Bee .049 Engine Disassembled after CleaningThis Cox Golden Bee .049 was purchased on eBay for around $30. It was very dirty, but disassembling it and soaking it overnight in a bath of Evapo-Rust worked a miracle on it. The shiny metal parts were buffed using a Dremel MotoTool.

Spektrum DX5e Tx & AR500 Rx for Sale

Spektrum Dx5e Tx & AR500 Rx (click for larger pic)This radio was removed from a Radian sailplane that I sold separately. I was going to put it in a park-size plane, but will not have an opportunity anytime soon so I'm selling them. DX5e Tx and AR500 Rx are in like-new condition, and have never been in a crash or even a hard landing. Sells new for $100 (just the Rx alone costs $60 new). Please e-mail.

      Only $50 (firm)+ shipping & insurance

** This has been sold **

Blattenbergers' Compact N-Gauge Train Layout

The Blattenbergers' N-Gauge Train LayoutWhile living in Colorado Springs, CO, our family decided to build a compact N-gauge model train layout that looked like the northwestern Nebraska landscape that we had driven through many time. It represents the old west that comes to mind from the Oregon Trail days, although that pre-dated the train routes of the day. An inexpensive Lionel N-gauge train set was purchased, along with a few extra sections of track. See how it turned out!

AAM Commander 2-Channel R/C System

AAM Commander 2-Channel R/C SystemBelieve it or not, there was a day when building your own electronics was a good way to save money if your budget was smaller than your appetite for R/C systems, radios, even TV sets. Heathkit was a source of pre-kitted products, but like most electronics companies of yore, they no longer offer kits; it is much cheaper to have complete systems built overseas. Besides, modern components - resistors, capacitors, ICs, etc., are far too small for most people to work with successfully. Here is a two-part article from the April and May 1972 editions of American Aircraft Modeler presenting the AAM Commander. It makes a good read because of the theory of operation that is covered. Part 1 | Part 2

FCC Part 95 Rules Changes (72-75 MHz)

The Academy of Model Aeronautics (AMA) is a strong watchdog and defender of our frequency use rights in the U.S., and advocates on our behalf before the Federal Communications Commission (FCC). In response to a Notice of Proposed Rulemaking, intending to "simplify, streamline, consolidate and update" Part 95 of its rules, AMA reviewed the NPRM and formally addressed some minor issues. The recounting of AMA's historic and contemporary role in the promotion of model aviation as part of the presentation is quite impressive, and is worth reading. Bandwidth is precious and an extremely valuable commodity. The 9-page PDF file can be read here.
              Thanks to the AMA for its efforts!

Wind Flying

Wind Flying article from September 1972 AAMWebsite visitor Lars B. wrote from Sweden requesting that I scan this "Wind Flying" article from the September 1972 edition of American Aircraft Modeler. It describes a method for replacing engines and motors with human power for preforming some pretty impressive C/L aerobatics on windy days. I can remember doing this as a teenager, only I did it with the engine in place but not running.

Third Line Theme

 - Airplanes and RocketsI'm not sure how long the 3rd-line for throttle control has been around, but this article from the August 1957 edition of American Modeler seems to suggest that it was introduced formally around the time of the 1957 model hobby industry trade show in Chicago - maybe a few years before. There in an exhibitors' booth was a special bellcrank featuring a three-wire control line system offered by the J. Roberts Model Manufacturing Company, of Baker, OR.

Eveready Battery Ads

 - Airplanes and RocketsHere is a fairly low-tech example of how much things have changed in five decades. 1-1/2-volt batteries have been the de facto standard for model engine glow plugs probably since their inception (someone please correct me if I'm wrong). In those early days, there was not the plethora of specialty companies providing niche hobby needs, but Eveready stepped up to the plate and offered 1-1/2-volt batteries specially designed for modelers' needs.

My NIB Cox Babe Bee Model 350

Cox Babe Bee .049 engine (model 350)This Cox Babe Bee .049 has never been run and was purchased with the original package and the instructions on eBay. It is one of the later model Babe Bee .049 engines that was sold just before Estes, who bought the Cox model line, stopped producing and sell them altogether. Note the black fiber fuel tank rather than the turned aluminum fuel tank. It looks kind of like a Black Widow .049, but it is not. The package is marked as being the "350" model.

Babe Bee: New Member of the Cox Family

Babe Bee: New Member of the Cox Family (April 1957 American Modeler)How can it possibly be that it was in 1957 that Cox introduced the Babe Bee .049 engine? That pre-dates me by a year, and man, I'm feeling old. Cox must have sold 10s of millions of the beauties. I know my paper route earnings were responsible for at least half a dozen of them. Today, a new-in-box (NIB) version will easily cost you $100 on eBay. Alas, what was music to our ears was annoyance to the neighbors, so now electric motors have replaced the little screamers on toy store shelves. Read the public unveiling of the Cox Babe Bee from the April 1957 American Modeler.

Dozens of New Model Aviation Comics

Vintage Model Aviation ComicsAs mentioned earlier, I acquired a bunch of new Model Aviation editions. After a few hours of scanning and cleaning them up with graphics software, about three dozen new comics have been added to the collection. I broken them down to ten on a page, so there are five pages of them now. Enjoy!

Sketchbook Additions Posted

Most building tips are timeless. Even in this era of ready-to-fly (RTF), almost-ready-to-fly (ARF), bind-and-fly (BAF), etc., there are still many modelers who build their own aircraft. Take a look through all of them - you'll be glad you did.

Many New Additions of American Modeler Added

New Editions of American Modeler AddedYou might have noticed that a lot of the articles posted here are done at the request of website visitors. I have managed to collect the entire set of American Aircraft Modeler magazines, and offer to scan construction articles or 3-view drawings, or just about anything else within reason - at no charge. Recently, I have begun doing the same for AAM's precede, American Modeler. So far, I only have a couple dozen issues.

Northrop SM-62 Snark 4-View

Northrop SM-62 Snark 4-View (January 1957 American Modeler)This 4-view drawing of the Northrop SM-62 Snark, which was the first U.S guided missile with intercontinental range, tailless turbojet powered weapon cruises at high sub-sonic speeds.

About Airplanes & Rockets

Kirt Blattenberger, Webmaster - Airplanes and Rockets
Kirt Blattenberger
Carpe Diem!
(Seize the Day!)

Even during the busiest times of my life I have endeavored to maintain some form of model building activity. This site has been created to help me chronicle my journey through a lifelong involvement in model aviation, which all began in Mayo, MD. There is a lot of good information and there are lot of pictures throughout the website that you will probably find useful, and might even bring back some old memories from your own days of yore. The website began life around 1996 as an EarthLink screen name of ModelAirplanes, and quickly grew to where more server space ...

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