The Osprey is a high wing, cabin sports glider model designed for fun flying. This is not a scale model based on a real (or what modellers call “prototype”) aircraft, but is designed purely as a flying model.
Sports models come in many guises and are often flown in competitions that are purely about flying duration, with many different sets of rules and regulations governing their size and shape. Often these models bear no resemblance to a real aircraft at all, with thin tubular fuselages, no undercarriage and very long thin wings. A cabin sports model means one which has a cockpit where a notional pilot could sit, with fewer compromises to the size and shape for duration. Therefore it sits between a scale model and a pure duration model, both in the way it looks and the way it performs.
These types of models are much easier to build and fly than their scale model counterparts and therefore form an ideal starting point for a new modeller.
Construction of the model from this kit uses the traditional method of “stick and tissue”, that is to say a built up balsa wood skeleton (framework), covered with a tissue skin. The balsa frameworks are built over a plan printed at the exact scale of the model which is in essence a real engineering drawing. The glider can be launched by hand on flat terrain for short and simple flights or on a slope for longer flights. It can also be “towed” into the air.
Free flight means just that – once the model is launched it is on its own. It must follow a predetermined flight path established when the model is initially adjusted for flight or “trimmed”. This type of traditional building technique and flying requires a degree of patience and skill ñ but is extremely rewarding. Although not a “seriou” sports glider model, if built correctly and in the right hands, the Osprey is capable of surprisingly long flights.
In the spirit of the old kits additional items required to build the model are things that can be found in the kitchen drawer or are easily available on the high street.
- 3 balsa sheets with precise laser cut parts and strip wood.
- PVA glue for building the wooden frames.
- Piano wire for making a tow hook (if desired).
- Dowel for the wing fixings and tail plane fixings.
- Rubber bands to hold the wings and tail plane in position.
- Piece of clear acetate for the windows and “trim tabs”.
- Tissue to cover the model.
- Parts reference sheet (W) and full size summary plan sheet (X).