How to Make an RC Airplane Smoke Machine

Written by howard altman
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Gas-powered RC planes are capable of producing loads of smoke while in flight. Smoke systems use smoke oil to produce white smoke at relatively low temperatures. This oil is pumped into the aeroplane's muffler while in flight. The heat of the muffler is able to turn the oil into smoke. Smoke systems require space and are easier to install in large planes.

Skill level:

Things you need

  • A "smoke" muffler
  • Fuel tank for smoke oil
  • Fuel pump
  • Silicone tubing
  • Check valve
  • Servo
  • Push rod

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  1. 1

    Install the smoke oil tank in the plane's fuselage. The size of the tank will depend on the amount of room available in the fuselage. Think about how the smoke oil tank will affect your plane's centre of gravity.

  2. 2

    Install the smoke actuating servo near the smoke oil tank. Make sure the push rod will have easy access to the check valve.

  3. 3

    Connect the smoke oil tank to the check valve with silicone tubing. The check valve will stop and start the flow of oil to the muffler.

  4. 4

    Connect the check valve to the fuel pump with silicone tubing. If you place the fuel pump before the check valve, pressure will build up at the check valve when the smoke is off.

  5. 5

    Attach silicone tubing from the fuel pump to the muffler. Make sure the tubing can handle higher heat.

  6. 6

    Run a push rod from the smoke actuating servo to the check valve. Make sure the servo action is correct and that turning the switch on opens the valve and switching off closes the valve.

Tips and warnings

  • Don't start pumping smoke oil into the muffler too soon; if the muffler is not hot enough, no smoke will be produced, and oil can back up into the engine.

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