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Thorp T-18 Redux

Messages
683
Country
us-california
I have begun the odyssey of a new and improved Thorp T-18. When I was a kid back in the late 60's my Dad built his first one. It took about 5 years to build, and according to his logbook it had it's first flight on April 27, 1972. I'm pretty sure that's me off to the side in this picture...

First Thorp.JPG


We flew that plane for many years. Dad decided to sell it when he was not able to fly it enough to maintain proficiency. Over the years we built and flew a Pietenpol Aircamper (modeled that one too). Dad started work on another Thorp in the mid 90's, and in 2004 Dad put his Magnum Opus into the air.

Dad and I about to depart the Cactus Fly-In, April 2012.

IMG_3625.jpg


This is the plane that got me started modeling 20 years ago using FlightShop. I kept working on it trying to overcome assorted limitations of the different sim versions over the years. It was not until FSX came out that I could actually see the VC quality level I had envisioned for years actually become reality. I decided to use his last build as the final version of my model. The sad part was that at the time the sim pretty much sucked at rendering reflections on a flat surface. I never released a polished aluminum version. It just looked bad.

When P3D V3 came out with dynamic reflections I ran a test and was very happy to see something resembling reality using a very chrome looking material. After my Dad passed away I have wanted to revisit the project and have the polished aluminum version included. This time I am armed with better reference material and a lot of improved modeling skills. I thought it would be interesting to compare the old with the new...

compare side.JPG

compare top.JPG


1.JPG


There are a lot of things I will be able to use from the original model, and all of the custom animations carry over. I intend to rework some textures, but at this point texture mapping and creation has become second nature for me. I'm hoping that I can crank this out fairly quickly.
 

Heretic

Resource contributor
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6,828
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germany
Looking forward to it.

Any consideration for other variations, such as the tricycle or retractable gear ones? (Wiki says those exist.)
 

Heretic

Resource contributor
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6,828
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germany
Fair enough.

I faintly remember we've been over this back for the old version, but what engine did your T-18 have?
 
Messages
683
Country
us-california
It was Dad's T-18. It started life with a Lycoming 0-290-g, 125 HP. It was upgraded to an 0-320, 150 HP.
Tonight's work put in the landing gear, windshield, and early canopy. I also realized the cowl cheeks were off, revising them is w.i.p. I also put it into P3D to look at shading...

2017-9-11_21-45-47-73.jpeg


2017-9-11_21-46-52-172.jpeg
 

Heretic

Resource contributor
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6,828
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germany
awesome ...
dynamic reflection?:scratchch

FSX and P3Dv1/v2 showed a static bitmap as a reflection on surfaces with ther corresponding material properties, while P3Dv3/v4 realistically depicts the aircraft's surroundings on the surface.
 
Messages
1,376
Country
mexico
Hello lads

Robert, this is a very sexy aircraft. All has been shaped beautifully!

Congratulations,
Sergio.
:)
 

n4gix

Resource contributor
Messages
11,662
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unitedstates
This week I have learned a bit about how to control dynamic reflections in P3D. I also did some more bodywork on the cowl stuff, and cut in the canopy frame.
Isn't it neat to finally have real, mirror like reflections? :cool:

It's always bothered me flying across water and seeing mountains and trees reflected from the aircraft! :confused:
 
Last edited:
Messages
683
Country
us-california
Thanks for the comments. I've been refining the cowling so that it has an inner surface and the cheeks can be removable. Someday I just might fill that space :scratchch
I have also been working on all the parts that make up the tail wheel assembly.

2017-9-17_14-37-18-872.jpeg


2017-9-17_14-38-3-256.jpeg


cowl 3.jpg


tw.jpg
 

Paul Domingue

Resource contributor
Messages
1,525
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us-california
First chance to look at the thread Rob. Looking good. I still have the first version in my hanger.
Will you be tweaking the FDS on this version or are you satisfied with the way it flys now.
I'm looking forward to testing it when ready as well as the other creation of yours that's been on the backburner all these years. ;)
For the rest of you reading this thread I'm proud to say I met Rob's dad, a very fine gentleman, and was able to run my hand along the shiny surface of this aircraft.
 
Messages
683
Country
us-california
Hey Paul,
Sorry for the delay in replying, I have been busy on many fronts. Thanks for the kind words. Regarding the flight dynamics...it is pretty decent as it stands, but I may fiddle with it via airwrench. I was able to get my Midget Mustang to stall in a believable manner using that program. I recently came across a very good 3-view drawing that included a good airfoil section. It was better than what I had cobbled together at the start. After reworking my "reference box" I have adjusted assorted parts of the model to fit. I have also got the fuselage mapped out. Rivets are going in...

side.jpg

fuse.jpg
 

Paul Domingue

Resource contributor
Messages
1,525
Country
us-california
I'm certainly looking forward to testing your Thorp v2 when it's ready. I'm expecting my new computer desk that I ordered from the single breasted warrior women company to arrive tomorrow and have my system back up and running shortly thereafter.
 
Messages
453
Country
us-florida
Great model and plane. I am looking forward to this being released.

Just curious,

What program are you using for the modeling?

Thanks
 
Messages
683
Country
us-california
One of the the actual plan drawings I have is a detailed 3-view. My frustration has been that it was a very well-worn bit of paper, and the side view had become detached. I put it somewhere safe, and must have done a good job as I could not find it when I got started on this project! :banghead:
Having gone through two side views found on the net and reworking assorted parts each time this week I managed to strike gold while trolling for reference material. I'm reworking parts as required, at this point the wings are the last bit to be done. I also will have to adjust all the tail wheel bits...and re-map stuff again.

101717-01.JPG
 
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