EZ400G - RC Airplane, some useful modifications
The EZ400G (shown below) is available from Northeast Sailplane, and is widely used for aerial photography. Its stability and low speed flight also make it an excellent primary trainer.
The open design makes this one easy to outfit with a camera. The total weight with Optio S4 camera, MPJet brushless motor and 2 cell 2100 LiPoly battery, is 21 ounces. However, since the camera weighs about 4 ounces, this adds an extra 25% or so to the design weight.
Given that the camera is precious cargo, it makes sense to spend a bit of time to reinforce the airplane's structure.
For flying without a camera, these changes are probably unnecessary.Suggested modifications:
1) Reinforcing of the pylon with spruce. Add one vertical piece each to front and back of the pylon, left and right (total four pieces).
2) Adding shear webs to the wing center section. This can most easily be done by trimming the covering from the bottom portion of the wing, in front of the spar only. Add the shear webs in front of the spar, then recover the open portion of the wing. This is the most time-consuming mod, but will add a great deal of strength to the wing.
3) Brushless motor. We used an MPJet 25/35 (the larger of the MPJet series). This bolts right in to the supplied motor mount. A Castle Creations 25 Amp speed control was mated to this motor.
4) Lithium Polymer battery. This setup does fine with a 2 cell (series) Lithium battery, 2100MAh. (Propeller is an APC 10x7).
5) Landing Gear brace. Use a piece of music wire to bridge the landing gear legs. Wire wrap and solder.
6) Horizontal stabilizer mount - fiberglass this onto the carbon rod fuselage. The rod is round, so there is not much glue area, unless the fiberglass cloth is added.
7) Triangle stock reinforcement between at vertical to horizontal stab joint. 8) 1/8 square spruce stock to reinforce wing hold down pegs.
EZ400G ready for another aerial photography mission: