Aviation-related downloads and links


This page provides access to information that I have used at Air Scout camps and other Youth & Education aviation events, and also provides links to a number of websites with aeromodelling content.

In some of the time spare from building my larger model, I have scanned and/or re-drawn some model aircraft plans and printwood, and present the results here for the benefit of anyone who cares to use them. There’s also a document about full-size aeroplane parts and controls, that I have used at Air Scout camps and other Youth & Education aviation events. All the scanned images include a ruler with both imperial and metric units, to help confirm that printouts are at the correct scale (which should be 100% for all these files).

Since I first set up this page, I’ve found that there are commercial enterprises dedicated to rather similar ends, but usually doing it much better! Mike Brannen ran Replikit, which supplied plans and printwood (“short kits”) for many old KeilKraft, Veron and Mercury designs. I offered to take down the items here which are duplicated in the range offered by Replikit, but Mike very graciously said that he did not mind if they stay. Recently the entire Replikit operation has been taken over by The Vintage Model Company which also offers full kits and a wider range of products.

If you don’t have a model shop nearby that sells such old-fashioned items as balsa wood and balsa cement, I can recommend both Sams and Flitehook as reliable mail-order suppliers based in UK; there are no doubt others I have not come across.

I do not intend to infringe any copyrights by making these files available. Ben Buckle has taken over the supply of some old KK designs, but not any of those featured here. Replikit supplies plans and printwood for many KK designs, but as mentioned above the proprietor does not object to the content of this page. Thus I believe I am not hurting anyone’s trade by my actions here. If anyone offers me a good moral or legal reason why any item should not be here, I undertake to remove the offending content immediately.

For re-drafting, I use CADintosh, a (Mac-only) shareware CAD application by Thorsten Lemke of GraphicConverter fame. It is a very capable 2-D drawing application, although its ellipse tool is rather poorly implemented for many of the things one might want to do in model aircraft plan drawing (such as the fuselage formers of the old KK Ranger). Apart from that, I am very happy with its price/performance ratio.

Since writing the above paragaph, I discovered that TurboCAD has become available for the Mac. I downloaded a trial version, and was sufficiently impressed to buy the 2-D flavour. It’s V1.0, and as expected for such an early release, there are some raw edges and slight bugs. I’ve also found a number of things that CADintosh can do but TurboCAD can’t. However, it’s quite usable and does do ellipses properly! I’ve tried it out by re-drawing some of the Ranger printwood and included the results in the PDF below. It doesn’t appear to provide cutting marks on multi-sheet printouts as CADintosh does, but instead allows sheet overlap.

All documents are available for download as PDF files. Depending on how you have set your web browser and PDF reader preferences, clicking on the link below should either display the file for immediate reading, or download it to your own machine for reading at leisure. Some browsers allow this choice through a pop-up menu, accessed using click-and-hold, right-click, or control-click. If you don’t already have the appropriate software for reading PDF files, you can download a free copy from the Adobe website.

Effects of Controls This 2-page A4 document illustrates the main parts of a light aircraft and describes the effects of the controls.
Flicka chuck glider plan
(524k)
This 3-page A4 document includes scans of the original instructions and plan from the 1959 KK catalogue, plus a copy re-drawn using CADintosh. I first made this available after an Air Scout camp in 2004 where local Light Aircraft Association (LAA*) members helped the Scouts to gain aviation badges. I took along a Flicka and it was much enjoyed after full-size flying had stopped - I should have brought 20 of them! So by popular request, after the camp, I made the plans available to the participating Scout groups. Total 3 sheets of A4.
[* The LAA was the Popular Flying Association (PFA) prior to 2008-01-01.]
Scraps indoor rubber
(168k)
Scan of the original instructions and plan from Model Aircraft magazine December 1960. I made my Scraps in 1987 in a couple of hours one evening. After brief test flights at home, it demonstrated its full capabilities in a larger space at a Christmas lunch event with BT Labs colleagues a few days later. Evidence of this and other festive outings is to be seen in the red wine stain on the port wing. Despite this mis-treatment, it’s still flying well. It has the advantage that it fits in a shoe-box for safe travelling. It comes as surprise to many people that something so small and simple can perform so entertainingly. I made this plan available in 2008 after I and other members of the Gloster Strut lectured at Shurdington Scouts on subjects for aviation badges. I took various model aircraft along as visual aids for my presentation, and many Scouts asked if they could be flown in the hall. Only one small chuck glider was suitable for that, so on the second week I took along Scraps and enjoyed the quietest moments of the evening while it made gentle circuits of the hall. Total 1 sheet of A4.
Catabourne catapult glider
(36k)
Re-drawn in CADintosh from the reduced-scale plan in SAM 35 Speaks May 2005, page 13. Used in the One-design Ladies Competition at the SAM 35 Gala, Old Warden, 30/31 July 2005. Total 2 sheets of A4 with cutting marks.
Catabourne catapult glider
(32k)
Same model as above; use this file if you have access to an A3 printer. Total 1 sheet of A3.
Cadet chuck glider
(96k)
Re-drawn in TurboCAD Mac from the reduced-scale plan in SAM 35 Speaks Nov 2005, page 64. Credited to Eddie Kiel - but I’m sure that should be Keil! Anyone know better? Total 2 sheets of A4, with half-inch overlap.
Cadet chuck glider
(96k)
Same model as above; use this file if you have access to an A3 printer. Total 1 sheet of A3.
KK Polaris chuck or catapult glider
(576k)
This is assembled from the several 400DPI scans required to cover the plan in the KK Polaris kit. In my kit, the actual pre-cut wood supplied was slightly larger all round than the sizes shown on the plan, but I haven’t bothered to reproduce the wood as I don’t think the difference is significant. Total 4 sheets of A4.
KK Polaris chuck or catapult glider
(576k)
Same model as above; use this file if you have access to an A3 printer. Total 2 sheets of A3.
KK Kirby Prefect flying scale glider
(128k)
Here are the 2 sheets of 1/16 inch balsa printwood supplied in the KK Kirby Prefect kit. If you have the plan from the kit, this is what you need to re-create the model. Scanned at 400DPI from the rather blotchy original wood. Unfortunately most KK printwood sheets are just too long to fit on a sheet of A4 paper after allowing for printer margins. Total 2 sheets of A4.
KK Kirby Prefect flying scale glider
(128k)
Same model as above; use this file if you have access to an A3 printer. Total 1 sheet of A3.
KK Sopwith Camel flying scale rubber
(228k)
Here are the 3 sheets of 1/24 inch balsa printwood supplied in the KK Sopwith Camel kit. If you have the plan from the kit, this is what you need to re-create the model. Scanned at 400DPI from the original wood. Unfortunately most KK printwood sheets are just too long to fit on a sheet of A4 paper after allowing for printer margins. Total 2 sheets of A4.
KK Sopwith Camel flying scale rubber
(228k)
Same model as above; use this file if you have access to an A3 printer. Total 1 sheet of A3.
KK Luscombe Silvaire flying scale rubber
(140k)
Here are the two sheets of balsa printwood (1/16 & 3/32 inch) supplied in the KK Luscombe Silvaire kit. If you have the plan from the kit, this is what you need to re-create the model. Scanned at 400DPI from the original wood. Total 1 sheet of A4.
KK Ranger C/L team racer
(556k)
Here are tracings (in my slightly wobbly juvenile hand) of the various balsa printwood sheets supplied in the KK Ranger kit. If you have the plan from the kit, this is what you need to re-create the model. Scanned at 400DPI from tracings I made before building my own Ranger. In the previous version of this file the labels of W1 & W2 were transposed; that has now been corrected. The only component too long to fit on A4 is F12 and I have re-drawn that in CADintosh with full dimensions, and cutting marks for lining up the paper sheets. Also included is a page of fuselage formers re-drawn in CADintosh. You will see on this page how CADintosh does not draw the start and end points of elliptical arcs quite where expected. The last page is all the printwood parts except for F12/F12A re-drawn in TurboCAD. Some minor dimensional errors that crept into the CADintosh version have been corrected here. Total 7 sheets of A4.


If the stuff above appeals to you, you might also find some of the following links interesting.

BMFA The British Model Flying Association (BMFA) is the governing body of the hobby (they prefer to call it a sport now as that attracts more funding) in the UK. Those of you with long memories will recall that the organisation was once called the Society of Model Aeronautical Engineers (SMAE). They organise competitions and provide insurance cover for members. A very important part of their work is in helping with planning and other considerations for model flying sites.
SAM 35 The Society of Antique Modellers has 2 chapters in the UK. I’m not quite sure why this is. You can join whichever you like; I’m in SAM35 simply because that’s the one I happened to stumble across first. Rather sadly, the adjective “antique” seems to apply as much to us modellers as to our model designs.
SAM 1066
The Vintage Model Company Mike Brannen’s original Replikit operation has been taken over by The Vintage Model Company, who continue to provide a wonderful service to all of us who remember the kits available in the 1950s and 1960s from firms such as KK, Veron and Mercury. The company supplies short kits (printwood) and plans for a wide range of these old models. Full kits including hardware items are now also available for many designs.
Potty Productions Fred Steer sells reproductions of old plans and printwood by several popular old-time makers. His selection includes designs by Frog and some from USA.
MSP Plans Martyn Pressnell sells plans of vintage, classic and new models.
Free Flight Supplies Mike Woodhouse supplies materials for modern competition model aircraft as well as traditional types.
Flitehook John and Pauline Hook supply lots of traditional aeromodelling stuff.
SAMS Models SAMS Models stocks a huge range of model kits, plans, materials and accessories, all well catalogued on the website - but the paper catalogue is worth acquiring too for all the useful advice and help it contains.
Col’s FF plan page Some model plans re-presented by Colin Hutchinson
The house of Frog Mike Stuart offers scans of plans and parts for many Frog designs, plus copies of old catalogue illustrations; very worthwhile as Frog products don’t seem to get as much exposure as KeilKraft and Veron.
Outerzone Outerzone is a listing of free vintage and old-timer flying model aircraft plans to download. The listing is free for everyone - you don’t need to register or log in to download these plans. The home page also has a link to VinPlanDex, a searchable online index of the thread on RCGRoups titled Vintage & Old-Timer Plans.
Colin Usher’s (Model) Engineering Web Page Colin Usher has a wide selection of resources related to model-making, both aeromodelling and model engineering. In particular he has overseen the preparation of indexes for a number of magazines, including Aeromodeller.
Cloud Tramp home page A simple, old, all-sheet rubber model with a worldwide following
Model Aircraft Photography Does what it says on the tin!
Alex’s paper airplanes Paper aeroplanes are a cheap and easy way of investigating aerodynamics. All these sites provide instructions on making and flying paper aircraft, even if they don’t know how to spell “aeroplane”!
The best paper airplane in the world!
Understanding why wings work Jef Raskin was a man who deserved a lot of respect, not least because he was a main designer of the original Macintosh computer that influenced the way personal computers have developed ever since. He also built and flew model aeroplanes and this archived article is about how wings produce lift, and how the usual explanation referring to the Bernoulli effect can be very misleading.

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