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Author Topic: The Brian Horrocks Swallow TA9  (Read 701 times)
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« on: June 12, 2009, 08:45:39 AM »

One of the few things I have not done in aeromodelling is to build and fly a control line model and given my involvement in Free Flight this segment of the hobby never raised a blip on the radar until I attended a “veterans gathering” (a social/ modelling fly-in similar to the English Old Warden event that features all 3 disciplines, F/F, C/L and radio interference models) and met a lot of the Australian members of the Barton Forum (Gossie who posts here is a member of that forum) and decided the time was right to have a go.

The model chosen is fairly obscure by OZ standards with the plan obtained from a long time friend as an addition to the plan service I run and being designed as a trainer I felt it was the ideal vehicle to learn on (more on that later). A study of the plan indicated that it left a lot to the imagination on how certain features were executed (no plan view was shown) and it became apparent that this model should be built under the tutorage of a mentor, in the end I had to draw up a number of views in order to visualise how to assemble the model.

Construction was fairly straight forward and by using light timber and a minimum of finish got the flying weight down to 21 ozs. I eventually got to talk to the designer Brian Horrocks (UK Gold Trophy winner in 1956?) and asked him why the flat bottom wing section was used instead of the conventional symmetrical section and his answer was that as the model had to be built in front of TV cameras for a kid’s program and speed was the essence. Brian admits that the symmetrical section is better and he would have liked to add flaps.

The name Swallow was originally chosen for the design but the program sponsor at the time (mid 60’s) was Trans Australia Airlines (absorbed by QANTAS in the 80’s) and TV channel 9 the broadcasters, it was felt that TA9 was more appropriate. From memory 4 examples were built.
The model is covered in AEROSPAN synthetic tissue, fuselage painted in “rattle can” Magenta and fuel proofed with 2 part polyester. The engine is an OS LA15 and the 50cc tank gives about 5 minute’s duration flown on 15 thou x 52 foot lines.

The flying qualities are quite good; it sits out straight on the line; takes off quickly and performs wing overs and inside loops with ease. It will fly inverted BUT trying to right it back to normal flight requires an outside loop, a lot of height and a change of underwear if you get my drift.
All told it was an interesting exercise and worth the effort but did I fly it? No, I’m still looking for a crash proof trainer!

Ployd in OZ
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The Brian Horrocks Swallow TA9
The Brian Horrocks Swallow TA9
The Brian Horrocks Swallow TA9

"So I collect engines, what's your problem?"
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« Reply #1 on: June 12, 2009, 07:41:29 PM »

But have you flown it yet?

The ACE is 'back to normal' including covering. Spill the beans on yourself.
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Re: The Brian Horrocks Swallow TA9
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