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  • Writer's pictureJon

"Tri"-master VTOL

Alongside the Stealthjet that I wrote about previously, I have been making another foray into VTOL with a Cessna engineers fever dream, a VTOL Skymaster, aka the TRImaster.

What started as a CAD exercise is moving along at pace now. The concept is to take the Version 2 of my Cessna Skymaster and make it a VTOL model (and in the process release the Version 2 ). The motor configuration sees two motors up front on a swivel axle for forward flight, and a rear motor, between the booms, that can rotate left and right to offer yaw control in the hover. The model will be controlled by the venerable KK2.1 board running Open AeroVTOL. I know there are much more powerful flight controllers out there but this one is so cheap and simple I can't resist.

The plan is to build the central fuselage section in PLA and get testing the model in hover whilst I print the wings and tail in LW-PLA. I like the idea of the aircraft being modular, so can be flown in just the hover 'pod' state and in full. Presently the model is powered by 2 3S batteries, one powering the front two motors and one the rear but I'm open to different battery configurations as testing progresses.

One of the attractions for VTOL to me is the ability to play around in confined spaces, like my garden, rather than having to head out to a flying field. In addition it's great not to have to hand launch! Programming the model isn't as hard as it first appears. the documentation that comes with Open AeroVTOL is excellent and can be followed step by step quite easily as I found with my other VTOL experiment the AW609.

I'll keep you posted with my progress, so far I have done the first few initial hovering tests and managed to keep the model in one piece!

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Imagine my surprise! I started printing the 'right middle' center section of the wing for the 8mm spar and there was NO channel for the spar to go through....... The file is labeled [almost] correctly..... in the pdf assembly instructions it's not labeled the same as in the .stl files folder.... The pdf Assembly instructions don't include anything about the wing....

The spar is especially important since I am printing with Overture Air Poly, a 'pre-foamed' light weight PLA [with a 30 gram weight saving on this part alone].....



Congratulations on the beautiful work.

I am a big fan of VTOL aircraft.

I'm looking forward to seeing the maiden flight.

Good landings


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