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Eflite 1/4 scale L-13 Blanik project

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  • Eflite 1/4 scale L-13 Blanik project

    I recently acquired a used 4.2m Eflite L-13 Blanik model. A flying buddy bought it while we were at at Joe Nall 2023 and I recently bought him out of the project. This model was released by HH back around 2013 or 14 or so. Weight in glider mode is around 24lbs.

    I always though the Blanik was one of the best looking metal sailplanes ever.

    We have a great aerotow group here in the DFW area, so it will mostly be for aero tow, but it came with an interesting way to get it airborne without a tow. It came with two removable 80mm EDF units that mount one under each wing root, as well as two 100 amp CC ESCs mounted inside.

    The backstory on this model is that it was assembled by Mike McConville of HH/H9 fame and used for factory demos.

    The model came with a full set of Spektrum HV servos. Research shows that not many were built with HV servos. Probably a good option for heavy glider aerobatics, but might be a little overkill for general flying.

    Overall, it is in pretty good shape, with a few scuff marks acquired over the years.

    I went through it last week with an eye towards flying it at an aero tow last Saturday. All was looking good until a micro HV servo in the left horizontal tail turned up with a stripped gear after arriving at the event. Such is life. Just glad the problem appeared before the first flight!

    This model is pretty good overall, but the kit has a known slightly weak area in the fuse, at the main wing spar carry through and at the fuse behind the rear of the canopy. This did not shown up on this model until installing both wings at the field, which showed some flexing in the fuse ahead of the wing carry through and behind the canopy. Will not be hard to improve with a couple of partial 1/8” ply bulkheads and some glass cloth and laminating resin.

    I have a new servo coming and have started creating the 1/8” ply parts needed. Once the parts are fabbed, it can be completed in one evening of glass work.

    Looking forward to getting it in the air soon, both as a pure sailplane and as one powered by two optional 80mm ducted fans.
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